City Palace

The beautiful City Palace of Jaipur was built by Sawai Maharaja Jai Singh II between the years 1729 and 1732 but a lot of changes were made to the original structure by the subsequent rulers. The beautiful palace is laid in a grid pattern with wide avenues. The intricately carved marble interiors, delicate jaali (lattice) work, magnificent pillars and inlaid ornamentations provide a unique charm to the palace. The palace complex comprises of several royal buildings including the Chandra Mahal (The Moon Palace), Mukut Mahal (The Crown Palace), Mubarak Mahal (Auspicious Palace), Maharani's Palace (Palace of the Queen), City Palace Museum and Shri Govind Dev Ji Temple. You can enter into the City Palace through three richly decorated gates viz. Tripolia Gate, Birendra Pol and Udai Pol. Tripolia Gate is reserved for use by the royal family while the remaining two gates are open for the public.

As soon as you enter into the City Palace through Birendra Pol, the first palatial structure that you will face would be the Mubarak Mahal. It was built by Sawai Maharaja Madho Singh II as a reception lounge for the foreign dignitaries. The Mahal now has been converted into a museum (named as Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum) that houses a rich collection of royal formal costumes, silk saris, Kashmiri Pashminas, embroidered shawls and other textiles. A set of 250 kg voluminous clothes worn by Sawai Maharaja Madho Singh is also on display at the museum.

Diwan-I-Khas (Hall of Private Audience) is the next attraction of City Palace. Main attraction of Diwan-I-Khas is the two huge sterling silver vessels which were made by melting 14000 silver coins. No soldering was done to make these huge silver urns which have been officially recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest silver sterling vessels in the world. Sawai Maharaja Madho Singh II is believed to have carried the holy Ganga waters in these vessels on his trip to England and hence the vessels are named as Gangajelies.

Chandra Mahal is a gracious seven storey palace which is situated in the North West direction of the City Palace. The royal building is regarded as the best part of City Palace complex. It is set out amidst well laid out gardens and there is also a decorative lake in its foreground. Each floor of Chandra Mahal is given a different name as per the purpose for which it was built. For example, the floor called Chabi Niwas has intricate mirror work while the one called Ranga Mandir has elaborate use of colors.

There is one more City Palace in Udaipur in Rajasthan which is situated on the banks of picturesque Lake Pichola. The palace presents a fusion of medieval Chinese and European architectural styles and is considered to be the largest of its kind in Rajasthan.

The best time to visit City Palace Jaipur is from October to March when the weather generally remains pleasant and desert heat is less intense. The palace and the museum remain open for the public from 09.30 AM to 5.00 PM except on Sundays.

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