Amer fort or Amber fort is the top most attraction of Jaipur. This is a large fort located a little away from the main city of Jaipur. This fort is located on a small hill and is attracting thousands of tourists every year.
History about the Amer Fort
Before 900 AD, Meenas who named the place after their deity, Amba, occupied the place. During 900 AD, Raja Kakil Dev built a small fort in the area. It is said that the Khogongs captured the region when Meenas were weaponless during Diwali festival. He built the Amber fort in 11th century at the spot where Jaigarh Fort is found today. The first structure in the place of Amer fort was built by Raja Man Singh in 16th century. Later, his successors went on modifying and renovating the fort to the fort that we see today. In 18th century, when Jai Singh II shifted his capital to Jaipur, the use of this fort was limited.
Why Amer Fort is so famous ?
If you are taking a 4W drive, you would be entering through the sun gate of the monument. If you are taking up an elephant trip, you would be entering through a narrow gate. Sun gate is the major gateway of this fort. The gate was built in the past to welcome victorious army into the palace. The gate open to Jaleb Chowk.
1. Jaleb Chowk
This is a gathering place for the soldiers. It is one of the courtyards of the palace that was built in 18th century. Parades used to happen here in the past.
2. Sila Devi Temple
Once you walk up the stair near the chowk, you will end up in a temple that was built in 16th century. It is said that buffalo sacrifice was very common here during the past. This temple is dedicated to Kali, a ferocious goddess. The main deity is made with silver. It is said that the deity was retrieved from sea near Bengal. The deity of Durgais said to be made from the stone on which King Kamsa killed all the siblings of Lord Krishna.
3. Ganesh Gate
Once you walk past the temple, you will find Ganesh Gate, which forms the entry to the private palace of the kings. It is a three-storied building. It is said that women stay on top of the gate and watch functions.
This is the hall of public audience, which has two rows of columns. There are 27 colonnades and each one has an elephant shaped capital. This was the place where king met his subjects.
5. Mughal Gardens
The third courtyard has Mughal garden that are famous among tourists for strolling and photography. It was built in 17th century and there is a large fountain inside a star shaped pool in the center.
6. Jai Mandir
This is a palace, which is famous for mirror ceiling and glass walls. It is also called as Sheesh Mahal or Glass Palace. The palace was built in 18th century and was restored in 20th century. One can get a good view of Maota Lake from the hall.
7. Sukh Niwas
This is called as the hall of pleasure. The hall has a door made with sandalwood and has many marble inlay works. A water pipe keeps the room cool even during summer. It was a summer retreat of royals.
8. Magic Flower
This is a pillar carved into a flower. The base of the pillar forms a flower, which has a fish tail, hooded cobra and other designs in it. Each design can be visualized by hiding another design in the panel.
9. Man Singh Palace
This is the oldest structure in the fort. It is said that it took 25 years for the completion in 16th century. This palace is located in the central part of the fort. The palace has pavilions, meeting venues, balconies and others. This palace stands as a gateway to the ancient city of Amer.
This is the residence of the women of the royal family. There is a small hall with floral glass inlays, located near the residence.
11. Turban Museum
This museum has a large collection of various turbans.
Where this Fort is located ?
Amer fort is located 11 km away from the main city of Jaipur. You can find taxis from any part of Jaipur to reach Amer fort. It is located near the national highway that runs between Jaipur and Delhi.
Best Time to Visit in Amer Fort ?
The fort is open from 8 am to 6 pm. The light and sound show starts by 7 pm. The English version show starts by 7 pm and the Hindi version starts by 8 pm. Elephant ride starts from 8 am and ends by 12:30 pm. At night, the fort will be illuminated with lights and it is a good time for photography and sightseeing. The night entry is allowed between 7 pm and 9 pm only.
Indian visitor : INR 25
Indian students : INR 10
Foreigner : INR 550
Foreign students : INR 100
Light show in English : INR 200 per head
Light show in Hindi : INR 100 per head
Elephant ride : INR 1100 per couple
4W drive to and from the fort : 400 INR (for five people with one-hour waiting time)
Night entry : INR 100 per head
Guides are available near the ticket counter. A guide would cost INR 200 per trip. Audio guides are available in varying languages. Audio guide cost INR 200.
Shopping and Dining Places
There is a restaurant inside the fort, Surabhi restaurant. The restaurant serves many cuisines. During dinner, you will be presented with traditional song performance or puppet show. There are a few shops near the entrance to buy drinks and water. Toilet facilities are available near the entrance.
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