Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Amer fort from a distance... A big distance. But I did manage to tick off one more place from my list of places to see while in the north. The pink city is truly awesome. And it's actually not pink but brick red. The colour of gehru which is used to paint the walls as one overly friendly young guy in the train explained to me when he overheard me gushing about the pink houses we would see in Jaipur. He also added an unnecessary "who would paint their house pink?"  after that explanation. So let me start this from the start.

Diwali day and no-one is in the office apart from me and Darshika. We were always planning a trip to Jaipur but it had never fallen into place. So we said lets go to Jaipur this weekend. Since I'm  a member of the youth hostel, getting a place to stay is usually no problem at all. Then began the planning which was massively done by Darshika since I was super busy :( but she did a pretty good job of it and loved all the freedon to decide what we would do with our time too so it was all good. We booked train tickets to get there and bus tickets to come back.

Then came the Friday we were supposed to depart on and my drill just would not get over. Luckily we finished by 11 and rushed home by a private cab. and then the fun began. A 3:00 am cab to the station, getting into a train at 4:30. and all this when Im not used to travelling by trains at all just added to the charm.

Day 1 was a whirlwind tour of all the places outside Jaipur. So we started with Amer fort, and jal mahal and then drove all the way across Jaipur in the opposite direction to see Chowki Dhani. Now this place is absolutely a must go to if you are in Jaipur. Its a theme park with the theme of a Rajasthani village and is complete with magic shows, puppet shows, dances, elephant and camel rides, fortune tellers and a place where the artisans can sell stuff. And the food is absolutely to die for. Please, if you go to Jaipur or are in Mumbai check out Chowki Dhani though the one in Jaipur is much better than the one in Mumbai.

Day 2: We decided to backpack this day and see the places inside the city. Starting off with the City Palace. And as luck would have it some royal guests were expected that very day. We could not see the guests because they were taking their own sweet time but we did see the preparation. A horse buggy along with three decorated camels and a band playing bagpipes were all part of the grand royal welcome they were to receive. Man I wish I was the guest of the present royal family and if there was a young prince on offer, who was smart and good looking, I would not mind marrying him either :P

City Palace was followed by Jantar Mantar, a collection of old equipment to measure the movements of celestial objects. It increased my respect for the old Indian generations. They truly were into innovation and science. The current geenration is so busy earning money that all this has been thrown out the window.  We then went on to Albert Hall a beautiful museum and then after lunch walked to Hawa Mahal which was another experience as we covered in 20 mins flat as it was almost closing time. So we ran up the place posed clicked ran and repeated the cycle till we reached the very top. :D

And then we shopped!!! Obviously we had to. Badi Chowpath is the place to go if you want some nice traditional things. There's a lot of bargaining involved and Im just super happy that I managed to buy 2 dress materials after reducing their cost to 2/3 of what they were asking . :) You need to be a good bargainer for this place Im not a good bargainer but I did mange to get things down to my range. This was followed by dinner at MI road and then a rickshaw to Sindhi camp from where we took a bus back to Delhi.

 The cost of the entire trip per head without the shopping was Rs 3600 and Im sure there is margin for improvement here if we had not used a cab on the first day but then being girls we thought it was the safest option since we were roaming the outskirts of Jaipur. So all in all it was a nice quick weekend getaway.

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