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Jaipur City
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Jaipur, also popularly known as the Pink City, is the capital and largest city of the Indian state of Rajasthan. During the British rule in India, Jaipur was the capital of the princely state of Jaipur. Founded on 18 November 1727 by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, the ruler of Amber, the city today has a population of more than 3.2 million.

Jaipur is the first planned city of India, located in the semi-desert lands of Rajasthan. The city which once had been the capital of the royalty now is the capital city of Rajasthan. The very structure of Jaipur resembles the taste of the Rajputs and the Royal families. At present, Jaipur is a major business centre with all requisites of a metropolitan city.

The city is remarkable among pre-modern Indian cities for the width and regularity of its streets which are laid out into six sectors separated by broad streets 111 ft (34 m) wide. The urban quarters are further divided by networks of gridded streets. Five quarters wrap around the east, south, and west sides of a central palace quarter, with a sixth quarter immediately to the east. The Palace quarter encloses a sprawling palace complex, (Hawa Mahal), formal gardens, and a small lake. Nahargarh Fort, which was the residence of the King Sawai Jai Singh II, crowns the hill in the northwest corner of the old city. The observatory, Jantar Mantar, is one of the World Heritage Sites. Jaipur is a popular tourist destination in Rajasthan and India.

Architecture

Jaipur is considered by many urbanists to be one of the best planned cities. In an era when most of the Rajputs were busy fighting with each other, Jaipur's kings diplomatically broadened their control sphere maintaining good relations with the Mughals.

The city was planned according to Indian Vastu Shastra (Vedic Planning for the comfort and prosperity of the citizens). The directions of each street and market are East to West and North to South. The Eastern gate is called Suraj (Sun) Pol, while the Western gate is called Chand (Moon) Pol. There are three gates facing East, West, and North and a Northern gate (known as Zorawar Singh gate) which faces toward the ancestral capital of Amber, while many gates face South.

Although the present city has expanded from outside of its walls, the original planning was within the walls. The gates used to be closed at sunset and opened at sunrise. Almost all Northern Indian towns of that period presented a chaotic picture of narrow twisting lanes, a confusion of run-down forts, temples, palaces, and temporary shacks that bore no resemblance at all to the principles set out in Hindu architectural manuals which call for strict geometric planning. Thus, for Sawai Jai Singh II and the Bengali Guru Vidyadhar, the founding of Jaipur was also a ritual and a great opportunity to plan a whole town according to the principles of Hindu architectural theory.

The town of Jaipur is built in the form of a eight-part Mandala known as the 'Pithapada'. Nine signifies the nine planets of the ancient astrological zodiac. It is also known that Sawai Jai Singh II was a great astronomer and a town planner, and hence the 'Pithapada'. Also, the commercial shops are designed in multiples of nine (27), having one cross street for a planet.

Tourism

Jaipur is a very famous tourist and education destination in India. Lots of people flock to Jaipur to view the various forts and monuments in Jaipur which reflect its glorious past. Tourism is a significant part of Jaipur's economy. Some of the world's best hotels are located here.

Forts & Monuments

* Hawa Mahal
* Amber Fort
* Jaigarh Fort
* Nahargarh Fort
* City Palace
* Jantar Mantar
* Jal Mahal
* Rambagh Palace
* Central Museum, (Albert Hall Museum)

Temples

* Govind Dev Ji temple
* Galtaji
* Birla Temple also known as Lakshmi Narayan Mandir
* Moti Doongri Ganesh Temple
* Panchayati Hall devoted to Temples of Goddess Durga and Lord Shiva

Gardens

* Ram Niwas Garden
* Sisodia Rani Garden and Palace
* Vidyadhar Garden
* Kanak Vrindavan

Others

* Chand Baori(stepwell)
* Chokhi Dhani
* Raj Mandir Cinema

 
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