Planning a trip to Jaipur, India? If you want an unforgettable trip to this magical “Pink City”, use this guide to help plan your itinerary so you don’t miss any of the best things to do in Jaipur!
Where is Jaipur?
Jaipur is the capital of the Indian state of Rajasthan, which is in northwest India. New Delhi, the Taj Mahal, and Jaipur are known as the “Golden Triangle” which is the most popular tourist circuit in India.
Why is it Called the Pink City?
In 1876, the King of Jaipur painted the entire city pink to welcome Queen Victoria and her son, Prince Albert on a royal tour. The color pink represents hospitality, so this was a grand gesture! Prince Albert started calling Jaipur “the Pink City” during his visit and the name stuck.
Is Jaipur Worth Visiting?
Yes, Jaipur is certainly worth visiting! It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in all of India. Jaipur has an impressively well-preserved 22-mile wall surrounding the entire city. It’s the second longest wall in the world after the Great Wall of China!
In Jaipur you can visit a massive fort, luxurious palaces, royal tombs, and a beautiful, colorful gate that looks straight out of a fairytale.
Read More: The Ultimate 1-Week India Itinerary
Is it Safe to Visit Jaipur?
Jaipur is definitely safe for tourists if you stay in the tourist areas. Violent crime is rare. However, one thing you should look out for are the “hawkers” around the Amber Palace. They will try to sell you their cheap wares for a WAY overpriced amount. Just ignore them!
When is the Best Time to Visit?
The best time to visit Jaipur is in the winter, from November to February. The weather is warm and dry during this time. However, this is also peak tourist season, so it can be quite busy!
What Are The Best Things To Do in Jaipur?
The most popular things to do in Jaipur are:
- Amber Palace (Amer Fort)
- Hawa Mahal (Pink Palace)
- City Palace
- The Royal Tombs (Gaitor Ki Chhatriyan)
- Patrika Gate
These are the things you absolutely don’t want to miss if you go to this magical Pink City of India. Below are our tips for visiting each place. You can use this guide to help plan your itinerary so you don’t miss any of the best things to do in Jaipur!
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #1:
See the Hawa Mahal (Pink Palace)
This beautiful palace has a few names. It is called “The Pink Palace” (Hawa Mahal) and the “Palace of Winds”. Women in the royal family watched ceremonies and festivals from its windows while staying hidden from the public eye.
This palace is a quick stop. It took us maybe 15 minutes at the most to take pictures. We only took pictures from the outside, but if you have an extra 30 minutes or so you can go inside too.
If you want a better view of the Pink Palace, you can go across the street to one of the cafes. This will get you higher up and therefore you will have a better view for pictures.
We visited the palace first thing in the morning and the cafes were not open yet. However we asked if we could go inside one of the cafes just for pictures, and they were kind enough to let us in!
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #2:
Visit the Amber Palace (Amer Fort)
Jaipur was previously known as Amber (or Amer). The King of Amber built this palace in 1592. It was a private palace where the royal family lived in the 1600s. It has red sandstone and white marble on the outside, and majestic, opulent rooms inside. The palace is so grand it has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site.
On your visit to Jaipur, you might see the Amber Palace sometimes referred to as Amer Fort or Amer Palace. These are all the same place.
Before you leave, be sure to stop at Maota Lake, which is right in front of the palace. Here you have a beautiful view of the reflection of the palace, and it’s a great opportunity for a unique photo.
Plan to spend about 2 hours at the Amber Palace if you want to see the entire complex.
The best view of the wall of Jaipur is from the palace.
The palace is so beautiful inside! This was one of my favorite rooms.
Pictured above is the “Mirror Palace” inside the fort. The mirrors came from Belgium and now cover almost every inch of the walls and ceiling in this room.
Elephant Rides at Amber Palace
Like many defensive forts, the Amber Palace sits on top of a hill. To get to the main entrance you can either walk up the hill, or you have the opportunity to ride a brightly painted elephant.
If you want to do the elephant ride, be sure to get to the palace first thing in the morning, before 9 AM. Since this is such a popular activity, the line gets very long, and they stop offering rides after 11 AM.
While the the Jaipur government performs routine inspections to ensure that the elephants are healthy, and the treatment of the elephants has greatly improved in the last few years, we chose not to do the elephant ride at Amber Palace.
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #3:
Visit the City Palace
City Palace is the royal palace where the King lived and ruled in the 1700s. Today it houses a museum and continues to be the home of the royal family. The palace complex has several buildings, courtyards and galleries. Visiting the palace is definitely one of the most popular things to do in Jaipur.
A regular ticket at City Palace is 700 Indian rupees ($9.50 USD). This includes entry to the Sarvat Bhandari courtyard (pictured above) and the Pritam Niwas Chowk courtyard (pictured below).
Plan to spend about 2 hours exploring City Palace.
The Four Gates of City Palace
This inner courtyard has four small gates adorned with decorative elements representing the four seasons and Hindu gods. Here are the gates and what they represent:
The Peacock Gate represents autumn and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. You will see colorful peacocks around the doorway.
The Lotus Gate refers to the summer season and is dedicated to Lord Shiva-Parvati. You will see a continual flower and petal pattern around the gate.
The Green Gate, also called the Waves Gate, is dedicated to Lord Ganesha. It is a bright green color suggestive of spring.
The Rose Gate is dedicated to the goddess Devi. Here you will see a flower pattern around the gate which represents the winter season.
See the “Secret Rooms” at City Palace
If you want to see more at City Palace, you can buy a special “Royal Grandeur” ticket for 2000 rupees ($27 USD). You’ll get access to the “Secret Rooms” at City Palace (hidden behind the gate above).
If you’re not on a tight budget, I highly recommend it! Not that many people buy this special ticket, so you won’t have to worry about any crowded tours. It’s a special experience to admire and enjoy these rooms and have them practically all to yourself!
Here are the secret rooms you’ll get to see:
The Hall of Beauty
The royal family still performs prayers here during Diwali (the Festival of Lights) every year. The room is covered in gold, rubies and emerald gems. It is incredible to see in person!
The Blue Room
You can see from the photo above why this is called The Blue Room! The walls in this section of the City Palace are bright and beautiful. They are all blue and decorated with white detailing. The royal family would enjoy monsoon rains from this room, which must have been an incredible experience.
The Mirror Palace
This room has small mirrors covering the walls and the ceiling! Mirrors are everywhere! Take your time and really soak in this room. You will never see anything else like it.
The guard in this room will turn off all the lights and light a candle. This single flame will reflect off all the mirrors! It’s a truly magical and beautiful experience.
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #4:
Visit the Patrika Gate
Patrika Gate is genuinely jaw-dropping. It is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen! This is definitely not a place you should leave off your list of sites to see in Jaipur.
Patrika Gate is a relatively small gate on the outskirts of town, about 30 minutes outside of the city center. This gate also serves as an entrance to Jawahar Circle Garden, where you can spend a few hours exploring. Unfortunately, we didn’t have the extra time for that.
You will want a minimum of 20 minutes here while you admire all the beautiful colors, artwork and architecture.
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #5:
The Royal Tombs
The kings of Jaipur were laid to rest here at these royal cremation grounds. The name Gaitor Ki Chhatriyan comes from the Hindi word Gaye Ka Thor which means “resting place of the departed”.
Plan to spend about 1 hour exploring this hidden gem. It’s very peaceful and not as crowded as Amber Palace or City Palace.
The beautiful monuments here are made of pure white marble.
The carvings in each monument reflect the style and taste of the specific king and the culture that was prevalent during his time.
Read More: The Taj Mahal — What You Need To Know!
At the tombs you can see a section of the wall of Jaipur. This location was once an entry gate to the wall.
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #6:
Experience a Traditional Indian Village
This experience was one of my favorite things we did in all of India!!! I highly recommend visiting the traditional village of Chokhi Dhani on your trip.
My favorite part of the village was the artisans market. Here we found all the traditional souvenirs we had been seeing at all the other markets we went to in India, but at this market everything was the best quality and the cheapest price with no haggling. (Haggling was common everywhere else we went to in India.) Save your souvenir shopping and do it here! You can find just about anything, like traditional clothes, outfits, shoes, rugs, jewelry, purses, quilts, leather goods, textiles, and more. The artisans will demonstrate how the goods are made and will even give you a hands on demonstration.
You can also eat a traditional meal here, but this was the only meal we had in India where the food was too spicy to enjoy. Definitely bring PLENTY of bottled water because you can’t buy it here (they only offer tap water), but you can bring your own. Also, save room for dessert, it was super good!
If you are looking for some extra fun, this is where you will find things like camel rides, free henna tattoos, snake charmers, magicians, circus performers, carnival games, and so much more.
You should plan to spend at least 2-3 hours here. This includes time to eat dinner.
Best Things To Do In Jaipur #7:
See the Sunset at Birla Temple
The Birla Temple has an amazing view of the sunset. This temple is Dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi.
This temple was built by the Birla family, which is one of India’s most famous business families. Their foundation, The Birla Foundation, built this temple in 1988. Interesting fact: The king sold the land where this temple is located to the Birla family for only one rupee!
There are many sculpted idols of Hindu gods and goddesses here in addition to Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. You’ll also find intricate carvings of ancient Hindu quotes and symbols along the temple walls, along with pictures of many other important historical figures, such as Confucius, Socrates and Buddha.
The Birla Temple is different from the traditional ancient Hindu temples because of its modern design. You’ll want to make sure you have at least 30 minutes to spend here.
Making the Most of Your Time in Jaipur
I’ve found that when I only have 1-2 days in a city, the best way to see many attractions is to book a tour.
We booked an amazing tour with GetsHolidays for our entire trip in India. They took us to all the best sites in Jaipur, including all the places mentioned above in this post!
The tour isn’t too expensive when you consider the entry fees and taxi fees to visit all of these places. Those fees would add up quite quickly if you were to plan it by yourself. Plus, if you book a tour with GetsHolidays, your admission to Chokhi Dhani is included!!
I highly recommend GetsHolidays. We would definitely book with them again!
Questions About Jaipur?
Do you have any questions about visiting Jaipur? Ask me anything in the comment section below. We’ll do our best to help!