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India  
 
Day
Itinerary
1 Agra
2 Agra
3 Jaipur
4 Jaipur
5 Rathenborn
6 Varanasi
7 Varanasi
8 Delhi
9 Delhi
   
   
   
   
   
 
 
 
 
 
   
 
 
 
 
 
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Itinerary
Amer Fort
Hawa Mahal
Step Well
Bihari Ji Ka Mandir Temple
Galtaji - Monkey Temple

At the top of the hills around Amer is the Jaigarh Fort - and a wall snakes through the hills around the city. Below the Jaigarh Fort is the Amer Fort which is really a place built like a fort.

This picture of the Amer Fort is from across the Maota Lake which provides water to the palace. Constructed of red sandstone and marble the opulent palace is laid out on four levels, each with a courtyard.
Sun hitting the main gate, Suraj Pol (Sun Gate), to the Amer Fort

Stairway from the main fort courtyard to the palace grounds

Balcony in the main courtyard

Ganesh Pol, or the Ganesh Gate, named after the Hindu God Lord Ganesh, who removes all obstacles in life, is the entry into the private palaces of the Maharajas. It is a three-level structure with many frescoes that was also built at the orders of the Mirza Raja Jai Singh (1621-1627). Above this gate is the Suhag Mandir where ladies of the royal family used to watch functions held in the Diwan-i-Aam through latticed windows.

All along the hills around the Amer Fort is a wall as the first line of defense from the fort you can trace it's path into the city.

Detail of the Ganesh Gate

The palace sports a floating garden in Maota Lake

If you like you can take a elephant ride from the city up to the Amer Fort gates.

In the king's private quarters is a open hall which is covered in glass and mirrors.

The mirrors are convex shapes and designed with colored foil and paint which would glitter bright under candlelight at the time it was in use. Also known as Sheesh Mahal (Mirror Palace). Sheesh Mahal was built by King Man Singh in 16th century and completed in 1727.
Cal and Virginia Ann in the room with all the mirrors

Detail of the walls

Hall with the mirrors covering the ceiling

Pretty colored stone carvings along with the mirrored wall.

The king's chambers

Virginia Ann in the palace courtyard

The balcony in the palace where the women had rooms

Third floor balconies

Public Hall for the King to address the populace.

An entrance to private royal quarters

The view from the Royal bathroom through a single piece marble screen

Detail of the marble screen in the bathroom

Rooms on the second floor of the royal chambers

Marble outlay detail in the palace walls - love the little insect

Wall niche in the palace

A view of Jaigarh Fort from Amer Fort. We did not venture up to Jaigarh Fort. There are a few ways to get there - one is a tunnel used by the palace to escape to the higher fort if the palace is threatened.

Palace walls

Colorful detail on the cupolas

Sun Gate with the protective wall on the hillside in the background

A stepwell in the town of Amer near the Amer Fort

Steps are carved so no matter the water depth you can reach the well.

Galtaji is an ancient Hindu pilgrimage site in the town of Khania-Balaji, about 6 miles from Jaipur. The site consists of a series of temples built into a narrow crevice in the ring of hills that surround Jaipur. A natural spring emerges high on the hill and flows downward, filling a series of sacred water tanks in which pilgrims bathe.

A new shrine here at the temple since my last visit a year ago in India.

The main temple is the Temple of Galtaji, built in pink stone. The temple features a number of pavilions with rounded roofs, carved pillars, and painted walls.

The second temple up the hills surrounding a pool of sacred water

The monkeys at the temple are Rhesus Macaques - here is a little one with a marigold lei for lunch.

Monkey sitting on pole in one of the temple pools

Shrine at the top of the temple pools.

Monkey watching to temple

Cow head fountain from one pool to the next down the hill.

A mother ensuring the little one can open a banana

A very small monkey snacking

After the temple we walked around the old town center

The wedding season was in high gear. The month of December was a "good" time to get married so there was a good supply of marriage flowers. These are leis.
On the second floor of a building was a jungle fresco

A small shrine in the back streets

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