In the heart of the old city of Jaipur, the City Palace occupies a large area, divided into a series of courtyards, gardens, and buildings. The outer wall was built by Maharaja Jai Singh II, but other additions are much more recent, some dating back to the beginning of this century. The palace is a wonderful blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture, a major tourist attraction.
The centre of the palace, is the Chandra Mahal, or the Moon Palace, which provides a fine view of the gardens and the city. The ground and first floor of the Chandra Mahal, form the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh Museum. The museum has an extensive collection of art, carpets, enamelware and old weapons. The paintings include miniatures of Rajasthani, Persian and Mughal schools. The Mubarak Mahal, or the Auspicious Palace, contains the textile section of the museum.
The palace also houses the Diwan-i-Am, or the hall of public audience, and Diwan-i-Khas, or the hall of private audience. In the Diwan-i-Am, ornate pillars support the high ceilings. The walls, intricately painted with touches of deep red and gold, provide perfect mounts for immense medieval Afghan and Persian carpets. Miniatures from the Mughal and Jaipur schools, and Jai Singh's translations in Arabic and Sanskrit of the astronomical treatises of ancient scientists, are displayed in glass cases.
When to visit
The best season to visit Jaipur is during winters from October to February.