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Jaipur and Amber

My first stop was Jaipur, in Rajastan, and my first stop in Jaipur was the Jantar Mantar, a collection of large scale astronomical (and astrological) instruments. This here is a ginormous sundial! The sun casts a shadow on the curved portion, which is marked off to 2-second accuracy!

Giant Sundial at Jantar Mantar in Jaipur

Here I am in front of a slightly smaller sundial:

Sundial at Jantar Mantar in Jaipur

Then I dropped by the City Palace next door. Here's a guy who offered to pose with me, but then he asked me for a tip. :P

Guy who offered to take a picture with me and then asked for a tip

Sadly, I'm super paranoid now every time someone comes up to me. :\

Amusingly, almost every other time, it's because they want to take a picture with me using THEIR camera! Apparently, East Asian guys are a novelty around here. Also, they always ask me, "Where you from?" And I answer, "U.S." And they look very confused. :P

This is the huge silver urn that I was trying to take a self-portrait in before that guy distracted me:

Giant silver urn at City Palace in Jaipur

Next to Jaipur is Amber, home of the famed Amber Fort. On my way up the mountain, there were a lot of elephants on the road. Here's a painted one:

Painted elephant

And this next photo I call "Self-Driving Elephant":

Self-Driving Elephant!

:D Google needs to switch gears and look into uploading elephant brains into cars instead. :P

This is what the Amber Fort looks like (as I shot later from the Jaigarh Fort):

Amber Fort, viewed from Jaigarh Fort

It's a collection of inter-connecting passageways that lead to lots of empty rooms. Reminded me a lot of early first person shooters. :)

When I first go in, there was a huge line, but people just shooed me along, like "This line is not for you." Turns out they were all in line to go to the temple inside the fort. (You can kind of see the tented area in the above photo; that's where the lines were.)

Here's touristy shot of me on the Amber Fort. Note all the long walls around the area. I call it the Great Wall of India!

The Great Wall of India?

And here's another reflective self-portrait, from inside the Amber Fort. Look at all the shiny!

Shiny reflective stuff at Amber Fort

A family having fun:

Having fun at Amber Fort

The girls were waiting their turn.

And finally, I headed back to Jaipur. Here's the Lake Palace, only accessible by boat. I heard it's going to be converted to a hotel. :\

Jal Mahal, the Lake Palace

I saw the Lakshmi Narayan Temple on my way to the hotel from the airport, and I knew I wanted to see it up close, even though I knew it wasn't a huge tourist attraction (because it's relatively new):

Lakshmi Narayan Temple, the Marble Temple

This was the first of many times when I had to take my shoes off. It was spacious inside. No benches, just people sitting and praying or just hanging out.

Incidentally, you can see in this photo how a lot of women wear saris in India, though not all. Men are mostly in Western clothing, though again there are some who wear traditional clothing. I'd say it's about 90/10 in opposite directions.

On the hill next to this temple is the Moti Doongri Fort, only open one day every year!

Moti Doongri Fort

This view of it reminded me a lot of Edinburgh Castle in Scotland.

You may notice that I skipped over my trip to Jaigarh Fort. That's because I'm saving it for tomorrow. Tomorrow you will get: MONKEYS! :D

Comments (8)

The Lake Palace looks cool. Also the elephant seem like a good idea. :)

Indiana Toasty! Looks like quite the adventure you're having!

I'm glad you're having such a good time and jealous that now you've been to Rajasthan when I haven't!

Love the sundials. 2 second accuracy? Where do you stand to read it that closely? Also love the funky modern temple; wish I could see the inside too. I assume it would have been rude to take pictures inside?

Oh good point. Dunno. Maybe a ladder? :P And yeah, most of the temples require you to check your bag even. So many places here require you to check your shoes and your bag, camera, some places even your cell phone. Taj Mahal apparently they don't like anything with wires (like chargers) and I was told even books.

They made me toss out a sealed packet of gum at the Taj Mahal. (Surprisingly let me go through with my cough drops, and also missed my open pack of gum, haha). It was a tad ridiculous.

Also, I'm cracking up at how we managed to have similar trips within a month of each other. :-P

Yeah, the Taj Mahal had the most extensive security. So yeah, no food, no electronics except for camera and mobile (that means no chargers or cables), and even no books!

those fort things are crazy looking

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 17, 2011.

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