Chapter 10: Amber Fort, Jaipur
Dawn isn’t so bad when you can watch it lighting up Jaipur during a lavish rooftop breakfast in a former royal palace. (image credit: all photos unless otherwise noted are ©Janine Smith & Jayalakshmy Ayyer)
Fully caffeinated, we headed out to the first stop of our day, the world’s skinniest palace, the Hawa Mahal.
Like so many things in India, the Hawa Mahal (Palace of the Winds) is both seriously odd and sensuously beautiful. From far away, the ornate five story facade of projecting bay windows and balconies resembles the crown sometimes shown on statues and images of Lord Krishna. But all that architecture is a thin-walled, barely one-room-wide illusion erected in 1799 by Maharajah Pratap Singh, grandson of Jaipur’s founder, Sawai Jai Singh II. It’s basically a 3D trompe-l’oeil facade that allowed the veiled ladies of the harem to watch events in the city…
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