A magnificent palace complex in the heart of Jaipur, the City Palace is one structure that rightly reflects the rich culture of the Maharajas. It was the royal seat of the Maharaja of Jaipur, who belonged to the Kachwaha Rajput clan.
In order to preserve the heritage of the bygone era, few portions of the City Palace have been converted into museums and galleries. To your surprise, the royal family still resides at this palace.
As one enters the palace complex, the very first thing that is likely to catch his eye is the richly decorated gateways. A total of three captivating gateways-Virendra Pol, Udai Pol and Tripolia Gate greet the visitors right at the entry point of City Palace.
Post entrance, one can make his way in different directions which leads to the prominent attractions inside City Palace. Attractions like Mubarak Mahal, Chandra Mahal, Pitam Niwas Chowk, Diwan-I-Khas, Diwan-E-Aam, and Maharani Palace make City Palace one of the best places to visit in Jaipur.
City Palace History
The royal palace was built by Sawai Jai Singh of the Kachwaha Rajput Clan. he is also credited to be the founder of Jaipur. City Palace was used as a residing throne by him when he started its construction in the 17th century as he wanted to shift the capital of Rajasthan from Amber to Jaipur.
The design of the City Palace in Jaipur was laid out by the architects - Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya and Samuel Swinton Jacob. That is why you can see a European touch to the palace.
Raja Man Singh II last ruled the Kachwaha Dynasty and was the last ruler to sit on the throne of his palace.
City Palace Location
City Palace is located on Jaleb Chowk, opposite Jantar Mantar.
City Palace Timings
9.30 am - 5 pm (Day timings)
7 pm - 10 pm (Night timings)
City Palace Entry Fee
The palace is separated into two - the museum and the royal family residence. Therefore, you need to buy two separate tickets to explore each section. You can also take a combined ticket to visit both parts. Here are the entry charges to City Palace for Indian Nationals -
- Museum and Exterior: Adults - INR 200, Children (5 - 12 years) - INR 100
- Night Visit: Adults - INR 500, Children (5 - 12 years) - INR 250
- Composite Ticket: Adults - INR 300, Children (5 - 12 years) - INR 200
- Royal Grandeur (Chandra Mahal Tour): Adults - INR 1500, Children (5 - 12 years) - INR 1000
- Royal Splendor (special ticket): Adults - INR 3000, Children ( 5 - 12 years) - INR 1500
Architecture of City Palace
A marvelous blend of Rajput, Mughal and European architecture can be seen at City Palace in Jaipur. The palace is built according to the ‘Vastu Shastra’.
Designed in ‘Grid Style’, the City Palace has four gates to enter and exit. They are named Tripolia Gate, Udai Pol, Virendra Pol, and Jaleb Chowk.
City Palace has many palaces, temples, terraces, balconies, gardens, courtyards, and patios, which are ornamented with latticework, jali work, inlaid ornaments, and carved marbles.
The most interesting part of City Palace is the Pritam Niwas Chowk that has four gates, which represent four seasons. All these features make City Palace Jaipur a remarkable structure left behind by history.
Inside City Palace
There are many courtyards inside the City Palace along with a temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. Here is what is inside the City Palace in Jaipur -
The decorated gates of City Palace
This magnificent palace has three beautifully designed gates - Tripolia Gate, Virendra Pol, and Udai Pol. The main palace has four small gates named Pritam Niwas Chowk. It leads to the Chandra Mahal. People believe that these gates represent the four Hindu gods - Lord Vishnu, Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati, and Lord Ganesha.
The Mor Gate displays the autumn season, the Lotus Gate represents the summer season, and the Leheriya Gate denotes the spring. Lastly, the Rose Gate is ornamented with rose carvings and symbolizes the winter season.
Welcome Palace or Mubarak Mahal is built with a European touch. It is converted into the Maharaja Sawai Mansingh Museum and showcases a wide collection of robes, Pashmina shawls, and clothes of Sanganeri block print.
A grand peacock gate welcomes you to Chandra Mahal. This palace is known for its beautiful paintings and mirror embellishments that leave tourists fascinated. It is a seven floored building with each given a different name - Sukh-Niwas, Mukut Mahal, Ranga Mandir, Pitam Niwas, Shri-Niwas, and Chhavi-Niwas (in no particular order). The Chhavi Niwas was used by the kings as their monsoon retreat. The ticket for Chandra Mahal has to be bought separately.
Known as Anand Mahal Sileh Khana in earlier times, the armory has a large collection of weapons used by Rajputs in wars. You will see daggers, rifles, knuckle braces, and more weapons. Also, some weapons displayed in the armory were from the 15th century.
This part of the City Palace has many royal rides and chariots that the royal family uses. The royal chariot is built in European style and was gifted by Queen Victoria in 1876 to Maharaja Sawai Ram Singh II.
Holding life-size paintings of the Jaipur Maharajas, Diwan-e-Khaas is a royal darbar. Maharaja used to hold private meetings with his courtiers at this place. The royal throne called ‘Takht-e-Rawal’ along with chairs can be seen at this hall with beautiful ceilings of gold and red.
Also, the paintings on the walls contain ancient texts, embroidered rugs, handwritten original manuscripts of Hindu scriptures.
Diwan-e-Aam (Sarvato Bhadra)
This is the first palace you will see when you enter the City Palace. It was used to hold meetings with the common public of Jaipur. The architecture of this hall is worth seeing. The magnificent crystal chandeliers hanging from the ceiling and two gigantic silver urns are present here.
Legend says that these vessels were used by Maharaja Sawai Madho Singh II to carry water from the holy river Ganges to England. Besides, the marble flooring and stalls from where you can shop traditional Rajasthani dresses and handicrafts are not to be missed.
Govind Dev Ji Temple
This temple in City Palace is dedicated to Lord Krishna. It receives a large number of devotees every day and is thronged by people during the Janmashtami festival.
Here are some things you must keep in mind while visiting City Palace in Jaipur -
- The place is fit for differently-abled people.
- Hire a local guide in the local language. You can also take an audio-guide tour.
- Wear comfortable shoes.
- You can shop for locally produced paintings and jewelry from the museums.
- Carry a water bottle.
- The palace tour will require 2 to 3 hours.
- There are certain places where you cannot click pictures.
- Visit City Palace between September and March as the weather is pleasant.
How to reach City Palace in Jaipur
From Jaipur Airport, the City Palace is around 13 km away. You can get cabs to reach City Palace.
Local buses can also be hired, which is a better option for budget travelers. Get down at Tripolia Bazaar or at Badi Chopar from where you can walk to the City Palace.