26.9124° N, 75.7873° E
Jaipur. It’s no secret that life is experienced through rose tinted glasses in this city. Rajputana, mojris, ghewar, kathputli, bandhini – whichever direction you take, there’s no missing the city’s art & culture rich soul.
Modern yet deep-seated in its tradition, Rajasthan’s capital has natives and travellers enthralled alike. When a place offers more gems than one can count, it becomes a masterful job to pick those which truly enrich your experience. Fret not, your eyes and ears may have been told a lot about this Golden Triangle vertex, but we use the DSSC sieve and bring to you the insider insight on what to visit, what activities to engage in, and where to shop.
Amer Palace, Jantar Mantar, Hawa Mahal, City Palace, Jal Mahal – you’ve either ticked these off your list, or have them listed, if neither, then you need to review your life choices. Moving beyond the known, the DSSC Jaipur City Guide is here to take you places even locals may not know. Hop aboard and discover the city’s colours beyond pink!
Drop by here
Surya Temple, Galta: Part of the renowned Galta Ji Mandir (aka the Monkey Temple), Surya Mandir promises to render you speechless with a panoramic view of the city. While looking onto the expanse of the town nestled among the Aravallis is a sight in its own, the journey up the hill is as beatific. Drive up the abundantly green paths to a vision pristine white shrine shining among the hills for some much-coveted peaceful time-out form the world.
Chota & Bada Sagar: The man-made lakes, Chota Sagar and Bada Sagar, are two of Jaipur’s best kept secrets. Beyond the Khedi Gate, stop by for your dose of serenity by these lakes – situated conveniently near the popular Amer Fort and Anokhi Museum, yet sans the scurry of the man city.
Maniharon ka Rasta: Snaking its way in the Tripolia Bazaar is this lane brimming with stellar bangles. As the glint catches your eye, make sure to Stop.Look.Buy (oh, you will!) the lac bangles, a speciality in the region. Extend your stroll through the bazaar for some ittar shopping and the stunning gold filigree mosque.
Moti Dungri: The hill of pearls, Moti Dungri was christened so because of its appearance, which is akin to a perfect pearl drop. Sitting right in the middle of Jaipur, the hilltop houses two architectural gems – famous Ganesha temple and a royal palace built like a Scottish castle. While the castle has been the residence of Sawai Man Singh II and later Rajmata Gayatri Devi in the past, it now restricts entry to public. However, the Ganesha temple remains as revered and the hill view is not one to be missed.
Get in on the act
Dera Amer Camp: Sitting among the foothills of the Aravali Range, Dera Amer Camp takes you away from the bustling city streets, yet dials up the activity quotient. Stay among the elephants – feed, paint, bathe them, and trek with them – as you camp in luxury tents and bite into organic meals, with the forest looking at you. They’re also home to camel safaris and bird watching, ensuring that you leave as a fan of glamping (whether you like that term or not!).
The Nahargarh Ride: Paddle onto this cycling tour to zip across Jaipur’s finest spots. A three-hour expedition, the Nahargarh Ride begins early morning at the Hawa Mahal. As you cycle away it takes you through the pink lanes, crossing the Jal Mahal and all the way up to Nahargarh Fort, with the Aravali hills encasing you all through. Adventure, sightseeing, seeing the local life up close – with all three boxes checked, you wouldn’t want to miss this experience!
Rajasthan Polo Club & Vintage Car Rally: Need to mix up the dose of history & culture with something contemporary? Then this is just the fix for you. Polo matches are played all year round, with the game season being in September and January. Take out your chiffons, groom that moustache, have your flute ready for champagne that’ll overflow into after-parties, and get set to polo like a royal. If visiting in January, another activity on your not-to-be-missed list should be the Vintage Car Rally, with blue blood flowing through the veins for this city, expect to spot the likes of 1934 Rolls Royce and 1964 Ford Mustang – car enthusiast or not, you’ll be hooked.
Lose some wallet weight
Idli: Thierry Journo, French interior and fashion designer, set shop in Jaipur 11 years back, and since then his love for all things beautiful has the city enchanted. Clothes, accessories, furnishings – the boutique is your one stop shop for everything statement, made by blending Journo’s designs and local artisans’ craftsmanship.
Teatro Dhora: Jaipur’s first concept store, Teatro Dhora stays true to that description. You’ll find creations from homegrown designs across the country here, from jewellery to leather goods, photographs to clothes, and everything in between. Not just a store, it transforms into a performance space in the evenings, providing an engaging platform to artists, musicians, actors, and performers in general.
Trunks Company: Defining bespoke, Trunks Company started in 2011 to bring to the fore India’s local arts & crafts skills. Brothers Paritosh and Priyank Mehta channeled their virtuosity in leather, which brings together the finest leather form across the world and fashions it into trunks that are worthy of becoming heirlooms, as they claim. Classic trunks, travel trunks, bar trunks, jewellery trunk – they’re bringing style to storage.
Bazaars: The Johri Bazaar and Bapu Bazaar should be on your go-to list for everything local made. Leheriya, Tie & Die, puppets, lac bangles, pottery, gold and silver ware, dry fruits & spices, mojris, and more – the bazaars have your Jaipur shopping spree covered.
While you’re about the city, know where to stay & where to eat for a rose-tinted experience of the pink city.