Thursday, June 16, 2016

Delhi-Agra-Jaipur - Part V (Jaipur, Rajastan)

When we were in Rishikesh, I had this urge to  book a bus ticket from one of the travel agents with the leftover allowance. Destination? Jaipur, Rajastan.

A must see. No regret.

I had about RM300 to splurge for this short trip. We took the bus trip back to Delhi, and on the way back to the hostel, I parted with all the coursemates of TERI in Qutb Minar Metro Station. Reason? Since Gurgaon IFFCO Chowk Bus Station is the last bus stop to go down south of Jaipur located within Delhi, it was feasible to get the bus from there just in case my bus from Rishikesh got stuck in the jam. So taking the metro would help me to save time instead getting a taxi from the hostel itself. Yes, my hunch was right. We reached New Delhi at about 10.30 pm and my bus departure was at 12 midnight.

 Yes, I took a sleeper bus, a deluxe type, Rs650/ RM40 one way. The conductor boy took my heavy backpack, i settled down and just stared at my own cabin. 

My cabin was completely like a coffin on the go. I tell you next time if you have the chance to have a sleeper bus, just go try to board this type, no regret! My experiences with some express bus in Malaysia were horrendous so this bus was a life saver. I could have a long rest before one day tripping in the whole Pink City, ala express mode.

I got down somewhere near the stadium area of the Pink City in the next early morning and looked for a place for a day's use. The plan was to cover as much as I could and to board a bus back to Delhi on the same night because I had to attend the class the next day. No ponteng ponteng ok. Going to Jaipur had caused my course instructor to worry on my safety, so just be sensible.

Lucky the hotel I took charged me about Rs.500/RM30 from 8am to 8pm. The hotel was kinda new. I like the interior, the cleanliness, the coziness inside despite the heavy and noisy traffic outside. Location? It was sandwiched between two block of buildings, a hidden gem for any traveler who stumbled the path.

Finally, I met a cosy place after 6 hour journey!

The hotel's bathroom.

After some rest, I decided to find any cab people for a day's tour so I requested the hotel's receptionist to find one. A rickshaw driver would be accompanying me around the city for Rs800/RM50.

The first location? 
Here goes my simple itinerary:

8.00- 11:00 : Amber Place tour
11:30-11:50 : Jal Mahal photo stop.
12:00 : Hawa Mahal photo stop
12:30 - 2:30 : City Palace tour
2:30 -3:00 : Lunch nearby Hawa Mahal again.
3:00 - 4:30 : Free n easy window shop @souvenir stores.
5:00 - 8:00: Go back to the hotel, rest and ready to go!

One of the famous landmarks of the Pink City. 
I am kinda impressed for this structure with its old time charm. Jaipur is a historical version of Disneyland. A happy place to visit. Touristy but well maintained.
On our way to Amber Fort. I wished that I had more time to visit Jaigarh.
My cab driver for that day. I could not remember his name, but a cool person to wait for me throughout this day's tour.
A glimpse of Amber Fort. The road heading to the place is well maintained and clean.
Scenic view of Amber's Fort from far.

I met Mr. Illyas at the entrance of Amber's Fort. Immediately I appointed him as the tourist guide for this attraction. We took a bike ride all the way to the palace, to save time and effort!
Block of buildings between the path taken to go up to Amber Fort. Oh my they are used to hiking!
View from the top.
The staff in charge to play the welcoming music anthem. I was so impressed with Mr.Illyas - he gave a signal to them once we entered the court and they started to play. Oh dear, I feel like a Queen already hahahahhahaha

The fort entrance for the court area. 
Posing at the middle of the court. It was said this area was filled with many soldiers and the army's horses.
The Dining Area.  Very grand!

Outside Dining area. It is a day's restaurant. 

The corridor towards the Banquet Hall.
We did not enter the palace since we were short of time. How I wish I spent more days in Jaipur!

Later, Mr.Illyas took me to this place - Panna Meena ka Kund, another attraction nearby to Amer Fort. It was awesome since there were two of us, enjoying the spot. 

I feel like a princess somehow, ahahhahahah!
A masjid name Masjid Jamek beside the Panna Meena ka Kund. This masjid was built by the king in honour to the Queen's father upon that time who is a Muslim.

Mr.Illyas Khan aka Salman Khan, my tourist guide. Not only a knowledgeable guide but he rides very well. Definitely you can have him if  you happen to be here. Just look for him at the ground entrance of Amer Fort. Insya Allah he will be there to asist you.
Mr.Illyas Khan's friend. He was kinda shy :)
The lake's side. Visitors can see the Jal Mahal from this spot.
After Jal Mahal, we went back to the Pink City.

The Pink City is surrounded with beautiful buildings. truly amazed me.

Hawa Mahal. The experience just to see this building is so "Mahal"... priceless i tell you.
Local women in long colorful shawls, on our way to the City Palace.
The City Palace is a must whenever you are in Jaipur. Located next to Jantar Mantar, which I had skipped,  for a solo tourist, City Palace offers a self guided tour, in English and some other languages. Truly convenient for you to learn many things about the origin of the kings, how the state or kingdom was administered and other historical facts. 

The entrance of City Palace.
The picture clearly explains on the cost incurred for the entrance fees. Buy a Composite Ticket please. Worth the money and the experience.

The intricate design of the City Palace.

The building used to be a living quarters for the palace officials. 
Perhaps it has been sometime for me not to visit a museum, however I really applaud the City Palace's management to house a number of local artisan, in the next building with their work for display and sale. If you are running out of time or choice, just be here to admire the work and they would be happy to show you the story of the craft they make.

The fabrics and the textile business in Jaipur is a thriving venture. I was spoiled with choices to pick one or two items, later found  myself buying cotton quilts.  

Jaipur was a mind blowing experience for me. I think the City speaks for the finesse and elegance they had even now for a kingdom.  Please do not miss the city otherwise your Golden Triangle journey will not be complete. Till then!