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Upon arriving in Jaipur and taking in the vast expanse of buildings painted a uniform shade of terracotta pink, it’s easy to understand why this spectacular city is known as the Pink City. As the largest city in the Indian state of Rajasthan, Jaipur is famous for not only its pink walls, but its statues, galleries and royal architecture, which celebrate the city’s heritage. With music, food, entertainment, local culture and so much more in ample supply, the heart of Jaipur is best explored on foot from Leisure Inn Grand Chanakya.
Nahargarh Fort, translating to ‘bode of tigers’, stands on the edge of the Aravalli Hills, overlooking the city of Jaipur. Originally constructed as a retreat, the walls were later extended over the surrounding hills, forming fortifications that connected Nahargarh with the Jaigarh and Amer Forts. Nahargarh Fort’s elevated position provides visitors with spectacular city views from morning to night, with guide-led tours running daily. The spectacular fort is located just 15 minutes taxi drive from Leisure Inn Grand Chanakya and there are shuttle buses available at the foot of the hill for those not willing to brave the climb.
Built in the 16th Century, Amer Fort still stands as a grand example of ancient Indian architecture. Built using a unique combination of red and white sandstone, the fort is known for its blend of traditional Rajput and Hindu style architecture, and a mixture of Hindu and Muslim style ornamentation.
Every evening, the Amer Fort hosts their spectacular Son-et-lumière light and sound show, which highlights the local legends, folklore, and celebrates the maestros of folk music, who, to this day, continue to give the Rajasthan region its unique identity. A bus from central Jaipur will take around half an hour, but this incredible experience is worth the trip.
From intricate brass works and precious stones to textiles and spices, the Bapu Bazaar is the perfect place to immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of Jaipur. Located in the heart of the old city, between the Sanganeri Gate and New Gate, the bazaar is a 15 minute walk, or five minute taxi ride, back to Leisure Inn Grand Chanakya for those with a few too many souvenirs to carry.
Chohki Dhani, meaning ‘special village’, is a traditional Rajasthani-style village, just 20km south of Jaipur. Chokhi Dhani boasts a wide range of open-air restaurants serving traditional Rajasthan cuisine, live entertainment and adventure park-like attractions, perfect for the whole family. For those wanting to immerse themselves in authentic local culture, Chokhi Dhani is not to be missed.
Hawa Mahal is located a short distance from Leisure Inn Grand Chanakya and is Jaipur’s most distinctive and spectacular five-storey palace. Hawa Mahal translates to ‘Palace of Winds’ or ‘Palace of the Breeze’ and was built in 1799 as an extension to the Royal Palace for the royal women, so that they could observe and enjoy the delights of city life from within the palace walls. Its unique honeycomb-like façade, and pink and red sandstone features attracts hundreds of tourists from all over the world. A range of guided and self-guided tours run throughout the palace and its grounds daily, offering guests unrivalled views of the delicately worked exterior and luxuriously decorated interior.