Jaipur, the city of palaces as they call it is indeed a city of beautiful havelis and forts. I’m not really a monument person but every corner of these ancient havelis are so picturesque that its hard to get enough of it or capture its true appeal. I did try my best though as you can see in the pictures in this blog as well as on my Instagram and there’s more to come for you will see the city alive in my travel movie that will go up on my YouTube soon.
In my opinion, Jaipur is not as captivating as Udaipur and I’d probably never visit Jaipur again but this trip was a once in a lifetime experience for me because my school friends and I witnessed a big fat Marwadi destination wedding at the city palace, explored the city and its food, had some minor unpleasant moments and experienced a stay at a five star property, an authentic haveli hotel and a zostel for backpackers, all in this one trip. It was a summation of what we call life, with highs, lows and most importantly sticking together through it all. It was a first for us all and I think I’ll be posting three blogs to cover my complete travel adventure. This blog is going to be about this city’s good and bad.
We landed at about 7.30 on a Saturday morning, welcomed by mogra garlands at the arrival and escorted to the Marriott Jaipur where we were to stay for two days as a guest of my friend’s family. Its because of this wedding that I got to experiment with my ethnic style and not to forget, I designed my own lehanga for the wedding ceremony which I am unconditionally in love with. I also draped a saree for the Sangeet function and was comfortable in it for the very first time. Thanks to my girlfriends who helped me do so even after being a few glasses down and the night would have been a fashion disaster without them. Every ceremony had an exquisite grand set up with an A-class service. From Mehandi to the big day, the food of every possible cuisine was on our plates and the cocktail party was definitely the best part for us millennials in which we danced in the Sapphire lounge in Marriott. I haven’t attended too many weddings and definitely not a love marriage which is why this one was a very unique experience for me. The way these two families collaborated with love for a flawless wedding was refreshing to see. It was a pure love affair which I was afraid only happened in movies.
After our luxurious stay, we set of as backpackers, ready to explore the city of palaces. We checked in at the Nahargarh Haveli hotel, a heritage hotel with a very courteous staff and a beautiful rooftop restaurant where we enjoyed our late night girl talks and the morning coffee with a view of the city and the metro rail. The place is affordable as it cost us 3k a night for three people. The places and restaurants that we explored while our visit will be covered in the next two blogs. The next day we check out to shift to Zostel, the place we were most excited to stay at. So for the people who don’t already know, Zostel is like a hostel for backpackers, solo or in a group, with rooms with bunk beds, a kitchen, a TV room and a rooftop chilling area. Travellers from all across the globe prefer staying here when in Jaipur as it only costs 500 bucks a night, is safe and is more like a global intervention.
We met a couple of people from Korea, China, Australia and different states of India, all having various sets of reasons to visit this city. Got into a quiet fascinating conversation with a 26 year old Sydney guy who was in India since a couple of months and had plans to visit a lot of asian countries till March to collect data about orphanages where his firm and clients could donate fund to. He was married and had done all sorts of jobs to get through life. Intrigued by what I was doing, he reassured me that I was on the right track and wished me luck with my blogging as he left. The one thing that was common amongst us all was our love for travel. Saving up to travel the world is what most of the unmaterialistic people prefer. The best way to learn and grow that is. I wouldn’t call it a very safe city. The locals here don’t respect women as much and eve teasing is a common behaviour. Roaming alone past 8pm is also out of question. A solo trip to Jaipur is not advisable.
With an unforgettable experience, a lot of stories, memories, pictures and souvenirs, we flew back to the city that never sleeps to get our sleep that we hadn’t gotten enough of in the past week.