Jaipur is used synonymously with Majesty. All thanks to it’s centuries old history of royalty. It’s flamboyance attracts tourists from across countries. And being an Indian how could I have been remain untouched with it’s rich heritage and culture. I planned to make it happen on the right occasion, 15th August, The Independence day. I planned to pen down this post to give the prospective independent riders to Jaipur an idea as to what is the feasibility of a three day ride to Jaipur.
Day 1 – The Traveler mode
The start: I have planned a three day trip to Jaipur beginning at Sonipat my hometown. I’ll take you through a detailed description of my day wise journey. I hope you take cues from my videos about the beauty of this journey and soon plan one for yourself too.
- The distance: I need to travel a total of 310 kilometers from my house in Sonipat to reach Jaipur. And riding pillion with me is my colleague who’s a first time rider but I am sure his inquisitiveness towards riding will soon turn into his passion for the same. He initially had a tough time though but not to worry as there is always a first time. Let me give you an insight into our first day of journey.
- We began to ride post lunch as we could reach Jaipur and get the evening to rest to begin afresh the next day
- With two short breaks, one for coffee and the other to quench our thirst for water, I reached the royal capital of Rajasthan after driving for almost five and a half hours just before the dinner time. The Recycle café is an exciting place to fuel yourself up for a long ride. Try it yourself!!!
- The city of heritage extended a warm welcome to us. Trust me, none of my Independence day eves seemed as enriching as this.
- We reached the hotel and winded up our day after the dinner. A sum-up of my day 1 is available at https://youtu.be/XjaYAUsfBqY
The first impression: Like most other Indian cities Jaipur too projects a mix of two wide sections of the society, the richest and the poorest. The palaces and other heritage sites defend the opulent fraction of the city while the artisan’s work at display at not so exaggerated prices proves the grinding poverty that exists. Nonetheless, it gives me immense pleasure to be able to be in Jaipur and pursue my ride on the 72nd Independence day which I termed as my “Freedom Ride”. My friends are about to join me in this freedom ride through Jaipur and we plan to begin exploring the city on our day 2 at Jaipur. My excitement is going to grow intense as the day unfolds and I can’t wait to experience it.
Day 2 – The explorer mode
At the dawn of day 2: With my group of fellow bikers who joined me in my freedom ride, we all are setting off to the Jal Mahal to capture the beauty of sunrise. The view of sunrays illuminating up the city over Jal Mahal with it’s brightness is just so engaging. If you are in Jaipur you can’t afford to miss this. See it to believe it at https://youtu.be/aFehYTdYhPE
The first experience: We evidenced the simplicity of the city through it’s tiny yet busy streets while on our way back to the hotel from Jal Mahal. A quick glance at the city which just woke up to the 72nd Independence Day was nothing less than captivating. And we, all the fellow bikers together didn’t miss the opportunity to take pride in gliding our national flag up high in the air. Our eternally cherish able dawn of Independence day had just come into existence.
The places we visited: Being a brother always entitles you to bear a shopping list of your lovely sisters. And I was no exception.
- Johari Bazar: We all headed to the famous Johri Bazar. Spices, handicrafts, clothing, jewelry, footwear, you name it, they have it. Shopping here is so much fun while getting lost in the similar looking lanes of the market. But if you are aware of what you need and what’s truly worth taking then this place is worth getting lost once at least.
- Nahargarh Fort: Zooming up the curvy roads leading to the Nahargarh Fort in the scorching hot sun amidst fast blowing winds is nothing less than a thriller. You need to be very careful with the drive as there are many sharp turns included till you reach the Fort. A famous song sequence from the movie Rangde Basanti was filmed here. I have covered that for you, take a glance at https://youtu.be/aFehYTdYhPE .
- The altitude of the fort makes you struggle to catch up with your breathing. That’s when we decided to ditch the sun and escape to the nearest restaurant.
- Famous local food joints: In our attempt to satisfy our appetite we came across many popular food joints which serve the authentic food of Jaipur.
- The Lakshmi Mishthan Bhandar is one of them. Having tasted their delicacies I couldn’t stop myself from getting stuff packed for home too. Trust me, if you are here, this is not a place to give a miss unless you wish to ignore the royal taste. The choice is yours!
- There’s a paratha place too which serves over a 100 variety of authentic parathas dolloped with pure Desi ghee.
The takeaway: To my surprise it started pouring in but the rains couldn’t dampen our spirits to continue. It drenched us completely though;-). We came across happy children trying to swim in the water accumulated streets, the roads that disappeared due to clogged drains hindering the flow of traffic but the high-spirited nature of the Jaipur city was undeterred. And that kept us going too. The vivacious nature of the people enriched our day 2 in Jaipur.
Day 3 – The winding up mode
We started our day by winding up our luggage from the hotel. We plan to begin our journey back home after our visit to the landmark of Jaipur, Hawa Mahal. After all, in Jaipur and how dare we miss visiting the Palace of winds.
The prominence: Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh built this five storied exquisite building which is popularly known as Hawa Mahal. I was amazed at the fact that this building has no foundation to it yet stands so strong and tall for more than 300 years now. Owing to it’s 953 balconies which facilitate the free flow of air, it derives it’s name The Palace of Winds. And guess what I have peeped through all of them. Just kidding! Jokes apart, the balconies were actually made with an intention of letting all the females of the palace to have a panoramic view of the world outside without them being noticed. Must say, protective attitude was inherent in the royal blood too.
The royal architecture: It was an era where even the women of the royal families abided by the purdah system. Seclusion was not the motto of the purdah system which is why Hawa Mahal was built incorporating numerous windows to enable the female members of the royal families to have a glance at the festivities, processions and day to day general life on a routine basis. Isn’t that wonderful of Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh to be so thoughtful in an era which lacked formal education unlike today.
The mythological touch to the monument: As a staunch devotee of Lord Krishna, Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh had a strong wish to reflect his Lord’s image in some or the other way in the monument that was yet to be built. The chief architect was accordingly instructed. The outcome was that Hawa Mahal’s shape reflects the shape of Lord Krishna’s crown.
Hawa Mahal’s other attractions: The most significant part of The Palace of Winds is the museum that stations the age old traditions and culture followed by the Royal families. The wide range of weapons, artefacts and antiques that are at display are sure to enthrall the history enthusiast in you.
The takeaway: I was totally thrilled by the beauty and architecture of Hawa Mahal. My day 3 was all about Hawa Mahal and I believe it couldn’t have been better either. The age old architecture which produced buildings so strong that even without a foundation the structures still not just stood tall but also could easily accommodate so many activities of tourists for over centuries now. Please see it for yourself at https://youtu.be/g3WFsOdZXo0
By somewhere in the afternoon I finished my trip with Hawa Mahal and started my journey back home. With an insight into the royal families and their lifestyles I left Jaipur with a promise made to myself. A promise to be responsible towards the preservation of our rich heritage and culture. An effort made at an individual level goes a long way in bringing about a positive change at a collective level. What are you waiting for, Jaipur is waiting for you!
For all that I have left unexplored in Jaipur, there’s a next blog coming up. Be sure to check it out to complete your thrilling experience of visiting Jaipur from the comfort of your screens. And for those who want to get thrilled in person, the pat 2 of this blog will help you organize your time and efforts efficiently. I’ll be back soon…. Continue Jaipur Journey in part 2