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Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan, what many consider to be classical India. Together with Delhi and Agra it makes up the Golden Triangle.

Jaipur was my favourite place in India, as it was what I had imagined the country to be like. We rented a car and driver from Agra, which was invaluable around Jaipur area to reach such places as the Amber Fort and Jaigarh.

Amber fort

Like Indiana Jones's Temple of Doom, the Amber Fort rises forbiddingly above the surrounding landscape. You can walk up the dusty path, or do like the tourists do and arrive in style by elephant.

A local restoration worker makes the climb on foot.

Woman worker

Jaigarh walls

Above the Amber Fort, the walls of Jaigarh, itself a separate fortification, stare down.

More colourfully dressed women sit listening to the music in the background.

Colourful women

Hall of mirrors

Parts of the palace roof are adorned with thousands of tiny mirrors.

There was some excellent music going on, and this kid was getting right into it.

Indian music

Garden area

Garden area within the fort, perhaps sometimes filled partly with water.

The walls of the Amber Fort in the foreground, Jaigarh behind.

Amber walls

Monkeying around

Up at Jaigarh itself, there were plenty of monkeys for entertainment, but don't get too close!

Not just monkeys though, there were camels to watch out for too.



This cannon is one of the star attractions of the fort, being one of the largest in the world. The only other one I've seen on this scale was in the Kremlin in Moscow.

In this part of the country water is scarce, and there are a number of step wells like this. Designed so that you can reach the water when it's at various levels, although this one is practically dry.

Step well

Palace of the Winds

The Palace of the Winds must be one of the most photographed buildings in India. Part of the old "Pink City" of Jaipur, it was built so that nobles ladies could observe the street life without being themselves observed.

Looking out at the street life from the palace windows.

Looking out of the Palace of the Winds

Inside the palace

Inside the palace and just behind the facade. There wasn't a whole lot to see inside, but it was worth the climb to the roof.

From the roof of the Palace of the Winds, the views across Jaipur were spectacular.

Jaipur view

Jaipur street scene

A view of one of Jaipur's main streets in the Pink City, heading off into the haze.

Something you don't often get stuck behind in UK traffic, a full-sized elephant. We also spotted the occasional camel wending its way through the throng.

Jumbo traffic


A shot of the lake outside Jaipur, looking back towards the Amber Fort and Jaigarh.

I'm not sure whether this palace was intended to be sunken, but indeed it is now a man-made island in the middle of this man-made reservoir, formed by the red dam on the left.

Sunken palace

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Copyright © Ross Wattie 2008