The sprawling Amber Fort is a typical example of what the
lives of our gallant Rajputs were like - militant, adventurous, temperamental
and also self-indulgent. It is among the best hilltop forts in India. Within the
stern exteriors that seem to grow out of the rugged hills are mighty gates,
temples, huge ornate halls, palaces, pavilions, gardens and even a ramp to take
you to the hilltop palace! and guess who climbs the ramp? Elephants. Yes,
beautifully- caparisoned elephants go up and down carrying visitors to and fro.
These well cladded elephants make a joyride to Amber fort and in turn makes your
travel to Amber fort a fascinating experience. This some thing which you cannot
afford to miss in any Rajasthan itinerary.
Just 11 kms from Jaipur, Amber fort is a splendid fort constructed in a scenic
locale. Being a perfect blend of Hindu and Muslim architecture, Jaipur attracts
travellers from around the globe. Built in 16 the century by Raja Man Singh, the
fort stands as a proud reminder of the exotic building skills of the artisans of
the yesteryears. This fort from yore days unfurls the legacies of the time when
the august rulers imagined the unmatched craftmanship.
Old Amber Palace
The Old Palace lies at the base of the
Jaigarh Fort. This area was the original Amber before Man Singh I came along and
went on a building spree. The early 13th century palace here is not very
interesting as compared to the grand Amber Fort-palace, yet you could do with a
visit. This Old Palace can be reached from the Amber Palace too - there's a
stone path leading from the Chand Pol to these ruins at the base of the hill.
The road is currently being restored. Here lie the remains of ancient Amber
which include temples and crumbling palaces and patches of walls. The cobbled
streets and broken down havelis (mansions) give it the aura of a medieval town.
But these mute remnants of a bygone golden era seem to speak volumes.
Diwan-i-Am or Hall of Public Audience
:This is a delicate palace which you would
come across on your travel to Amber fort. This forty pillared pavillion is
perfect example of intricate craftmanship and was constructed by Mirza Raja Jai
Singh. The pavilion worked as a place where Maharajahs used to recieve its
general public and used to hear their pertaining problems. The southern area of
this palace was kept clear so that the royal ladies could watch the proceedings
of Diwan-I-Am from the Zenana house ( Women's quarters).
Shila Mata Temple
Entry into Shila Mata Temple is through Singh Pol. The
temple is devoted to Shila Mata ( Goddess Kali), the goddess of victory and
houses a black marble idol of the goddess which was brought here from Jessore by
Raja Man Sigh in 1604. You would find nine images of Goddess Durga (strength)
and ten forms of Goddess Saraswati ( knowledge) which are carved on the silver
gates of the temple. The mandap of this temple is made up of white marble
contrasting the colours of the idols.
Ganesh Pol & Suhaag Mandir
Ganesh Pol forms another attractions in Amber fort
and is an imposing gateway which lies south of Diwan-i-am. The gateway has been
painted beautifully and endorse typical Rajasthani motifs. From Ganesh Pol, you
can move to beautiful garden or Charbagh, which is based on the Mughal patten of
Diwan-e-Khas (Hall of Private Audience), Sukh Niwas, Jai Mandir & Jas Mandir
Diwan-i-Khas show cases a rich amalgam of Rajput and Mughal architecture. The
architecture is showcased in the fascinating Diwan-i-khas, Sukh Niwas, Jai
Mandir and Jas Mandir. Decorated with beautiful mirror work, Diwan -I - Khas has
wonderful carvings on the walls and the ceilings. The major attractions of these
halls are miniature murals made of coloured glasses which depicts Radha and