This tour is a great orientation of Jaipur, you’ll discover its architecture, religion and crafts and meet the locals…
Join us for a walking tour of UNESCO-listed Jaipur to learn about its architectural jewels. The tour starts at 8.30am when it’s peaceful, before the bazaars and markets take over. This is when locals go to worship and we join them at one of the city’s oldest temples, which is known for its 300-year-old fresco painting and set in a private family home. This begins our discussion about religion and architecture in Jaipur; at one junction in the city, we get to see a Jain Temple, a mosque and a Hindu temple – this speaks to India’s diversity and religious harmony.
We continue our walk at Broad Road, which was once used by the royal family, so it’s lined by grand houses. As we enter the winding by-lanes you’ll hear about Jaipur’s history as the first planned city in India, the vastu shastra and shilpa shastra architecture and havelis owned by artists, craftsmen and traders. You’ll get to meet some of these characters when we visit the metal-beating community who still work without technology, in the same way they have for 200 years. It’s fascinating to see how everything has been hand-created.
Other key architectural sights on the tour include the City Palace, the Ayurvedic hospital and two huge, 10-foot-tall silver jars which belonged to a king of Jaipur. Guests love visiting a local family in their haveli to chat about life in Jaipur and meeting traditional bangle makers. I like going to the flour mill, which is a rare site in India these days. The man who runs it grinds the grain by hand and operates a barter system whereby he’ll take a percentage of the product in return for his work.
We end the tour with an immersion into some of Jaipur’s hectic markets. There’s the spice market with over 300 shops which draws buyers from far and wide, followed by the vegetable and flower markets. The flower market is always busy with people shopping for weddings and festivals, which seem to happen every other day here. I recommend this tour as a great orientation of Jaipur; you’ll discover its architecture, religion and crafts and meet the locals, learning the stories and legends behind our city.