The Pink City of India
We left Agra in the late afternoon. Our next visit was Jaipur, five hours by Inner City train from Agra. Arriving in Jaipur late at night and we were so hungry – no food served in the train. Luckily our hotel, Umaid Bhawan thought about this and prepared us small snacks – onion samosa and murukku. They were delicious!
The first morning in Jaipur started with delicious Indian breakfast, puri and curry (what a rhyme!), served at the hotel’s rooftop restaurant. The hotel was so lovely. It was a small hotel; the pillars were decorated with Indian ornament carving and colorful murals of Indian goddess including Ganesha. It has a swimming pool as well, not too big but comfortable for lap swimming. The location is in a quiet residential area, and there were some auto-rickshaws waiting outside of the hotel for guests. The auto rickshaws were quite organized, the drivers wore uniforms with their name on it. We had mister Ido Khan as our auto rickshaw driver during our stay for three nights in Jaipur. He did not speak English very well but he understood our requests and drove us to places where we would like to. He did not force us to go to Tourist Information Center 🙂 (oh..if I remember those New Delhi scams.. )
The history of Jaipur’s by name as the Pink City derived from an event in year 1876. The city was painted in pink as ordered by Jaipur’s Maharaja Ram Singh to welcome the British Prince of Wales and Queen Victoria. The color pink symbolizes of hospitality. Since then the city maintained the color of their buildings, keeping its hospitality characteristic alive until today. However, when mister Khan drove us around the city, I could not help to notice that most of the old buildings painted with bright red, they didn’t look pink to me. The buildings surrounding Jaipur were charming. The city still kept most of their old edifices with red bright color stones that make them looked distinctive. Yet, some of the newer houses painted in blue, as we saw them from Jaipur’s hill.
During our stay in Jaipur, we visited several places: Birla Temple, Hawa Mahal, Sun Temple, Bazaar Bapu (a textile market with products that cheaper than Bazaar Tripolia), Naragnth Fort, Royal Galtor and Jaipur City Palace. It was quite a hectic visit considering that I had terrible stomach ache throughout our stays in Jaipur. Most likely the stomach problem because I ate too spicy Masala Papad – it was my fault though, as I always asked to be served with Masala Papad with similar spiciness as Indians. It appears my Indonesian stomach was not as strong as Indians 🙂