Some people just come and go, while some come, make a mark, change everything around for good and leave us with a lot of memories to treasure all our lives ! One of these great people is Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II, the last ruling Maharaja of Jaipur who embarked on a program of modernization, created infrastructure and numerous public institutions that later resulted in Jaipur being selected as the capital of Rajasthan. Today, on his 108th birth anniversary, let’s look at some of his greatest treasures named after him 🙂
1. Maharaja Sawai Mansingh Vidyalaya
Also known as S.M.S. School, MSMSV is one of the best schools in town. It was organised in 1984 by the Sawai Ram Singh Shilpa Kala Mandir Society, a trust set up by the Late His Highness Maharaja Sawai Man Singh and stands as a perfect example for relevant co-education till date.
2. S.M.S Medical College
Established in 1947, SMS Medical College is the oldest college in Rajasthan and is one of the premier medical colleges of India.
3. S.M.S Hospital
Sawai Man Singh Hospital is the major hospital of Jaipur and Rajasthan state of India. SMS Hospital also became the hospital to have treated largest number of patients in India in 2013, leaving India’s premium AIIMS hospital behind !!
A huge cricket stadium in Jaipur, S.M.S stadium is situated at the corner of Rambagh Circle. This stadium hosted a solitary Test match, between India and Pakistan, starting in February 1987 and never looked back. It has also hosted IPL matches for Rajasthan Royals, its local team, and who won the first season.
5. S.M.S. Museum
The most stunning architecture and a major landmark in Jaipur, City Palace houses the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum that has a marvelous collection of art, artifacts and handicrafts illustrating the history and culture of the great Rajput kings and leaders.
With the melodious sounds of flute and bass of drums, Janmashtami festival brought the air of cheer and happiness in Rajasthan. Krishna Janmashtami is celebrated with great enthusiasm and fervor in Jaipur and the epicenter for these celebrations is the popular Temple of Govind Devji in City Palace premises.
For the celebrations of Janmashtami i.e on Monday August 18, 2014, the magnificently adorned idols of Radha Govind ji are placed in a specially decorated swing and the temple is exploding with colors and energy.
Thousands of worshipers will now multitude the temple and celebrate the festival with an outpouring of ecstatic music, dance and poetry in both classical and common languages amid the tranquil sounds of temple bells.
The temple will follow new time schedule today. According to this Gwal Jhanki will be open at 5.45 pm, Sandhya Jhanki at 6.30 pm and Shayan Jhanki at 9.30 pm.
A road trip during Monsoon is always a fabulous idea. Isn’t it? You cannot take joy in the monsoon if you are not outdoors experiencing its magnificence; after all, the rain has travelled seas and oceans to reach you. Open the window and feel the wind in your hair. Take a deep breath and let the sensational spray touch your face. The blooming new leaves and the freshness of rain washed leaves will uplift your mood.
As the rain washes the city anew, here’s a list of spots to enjoy Jaipur’s rains to its fullest!
The Pink walls of Sanganeri Gate welcomes you 🙂
Take a stroll on the otherwise busiest street of Pink City-Johri Bazaar
Rain washed Hawa Mahal looks fresh & charming-
A fascinating look at pigeons-
Picturesque Pink City with a dash of green–
Amazing View, when clouds come floating in-
The wet sandstone structure of Jal Mahal, giving an appealing and refreshing look
Having ‘bhutta‘ roasted on ‘angeethi‘ in rainy season is the best option
Peep into the idyllic green oasis of Kanak Valley, nestled in the jungle-clad foothills of the Nahagarh Hills-
For adventure seekers, an uphill drive to Nahargarh Fort-
For breathtaking views, drive slow to take in the greenery and the sounds of the forest-
The most striking view, watching the wispy clouds playing in the broad sky-
Sighting mystical heritage structure (fort wall) and a road amidst dense green forest-
Panoramic view of Jaipur from Nahargarh-
At last, Kuch Chat-Pata ho Jaye at JalMahal, Jaipur
Big news for the art and craft lovers!! Displaying true sophistication and craftsmanship the much appreciated and much awaited FORHEX Fair is back in the Pink City for its 6th year with a whole world of craft, handicraft and textile. The fair is scheduled to start from August14 to 17, 2014 at the B.M. Birla Auditorium, Jaipur- Rajasthan.
The Forhex Fair is an indigenous initiative of Rajasthan Handicraft Exporters, to seek better marketing opportunities especially in the Indian Domestic Retail market. Providing a wide business opportunity to Handicraft sectors, the Forhex Fair will not only showcase the widest possible range of Crafts and Textiles but will also double up as a practical retail area for products made by local artisans, the student bodies of various craft & design institutes and the exporters This would thereby provide them rich clientele of local, national as well as international buyers on ‘Home Turf’.
There is no dearth of amazing off beat destinations in Rajasthan. From the historical sights to cultural landscapes, from Thar Desert to shimmering lakes, from serene temples to swanky beautiful malls, there are unlimited spectacular places to visit in Rajasthan. But this weekend how about hiking on a blissful and adventurous break at Bhangarh and discovers the secrets of the Haunted Ruins of Rajasthan along with heritage sceneries?
Yes, Bhangarh” is amongst India’s most haunted places, famous for its historical ruins, situated in Alwar district of Rajasthan and around 80 km. drive from the state capital Jaipur. The history and story of this fortress are irresistible. Entering the borders of Bhangarh between sunset and sunrise is strictly prohibited due to paranormal activities reported inside.
When RTB planned its first trip to Bhangarh we googled everything to get an idea about the place and roads etc. Now this blog will be…
If you’re a passionate traveller and carry a smartphone or a camera or both , there are high chances that you love photography as well.
Apart from eating and dancing in rain, there is one more thing that carries its own charm in monsoons, Photography ! So if you are a local or a tourist who is luckily in Jaipur right now, these are the places that can be captured through your lens but touch your heart instantly and will stay there forever.
1. Jal Mahal
Jal Mahal or Water Palace, where every Jaipurite or visitor of Jaipur would just love to just sit by and watch the magical lake and mesmerizing architecture of the palace. Sunrise and Sunset are the best times to get some terrific shots at this place with a perfect blend of nature and architecture.
2. Bhangarh Fort
We doubt you haven’t heard of the “Most Haunted” place of India : Bhangarh Fort ! Located 80 km away from Jaipur, this place is extremely popular for its historical ruins, roofless houses and the gorgeous backdrop of Aravallis that will make your time picture perfect – literally.
Located on the famous JLN Marg in pink city, as you move around the twisting tree-canopied walkways of this forest escapade, Smriti Van, you will know what a heaven of birds looks like ! Apart from capturing the bright greens of monsoon, if you are fond of bird photography, you will get some extremely colorful and varied birds to click in different angles.
4. Albert hall Museum
Residing in the Ramniwas Garden, Jaipur , Albert hall is the oldest museum in Rajasthan also proudly known as the ‘State Museum of Rajasthan’. A classy example of Indo-Saracenic architecture, the most picturesque view of Albert Hall is when the pigeons are sitting on its chattris or flying all around under the azure blue sky 🙂
5. Panna Mian Ki Baori (Stepwell)
Panna Mian ka kund or stepwell near Amber fort is one of the treasured places which ifvisited during Monsoon, you will remember it through out your life ! Although all the stepwells have their own magical aura, this one is comparatively less populated and shines out its real vibrancy during rains.
6. Nahargarh Fort
Lying on the edge of Aravalli hills, Nahargarh fort has been a romantic spot in Shuddh Desi Romance, a Friends’ hangout place in Rang De Basanti and a favorite among Jaipurites to visit especially in rains ! Just go up there, sit at Padao restaurant and you will automatically get your perfect shots.
7. Chandlai Lake
A very beautiful and small lake 30 km away from Jaipur ,Chandlai offers another birding sight. The main attraction is the various Migratory birds seen at this place, especially Flamingos.
One of the most famous pink sandstone architectural marvels , Hawamahal situated at Badi Chaupad with five storeys and 953 windows is every photographer’s delight. But what’s challenging is how you make your click different from all others. Hawamahal is well lit and looks beautiful ,even at night !
9. Maota Lake, Amer
Below the superb Amer fort, lies the Maota lake which swathes the pink city in its allure in the monsoons giving the residents and tourists a chance to stand near it and sip tea, while the photographers can find their right moment to capture this absolute visual delight !
10. Chand Baori (Stepwell) – Abhaneri
Abhaneri is 95 km from Jaipur, it is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Dausa. Built back in 8th century, it is one of the deepest and largest stepwell in India. The phenomenal structure is 64 feet deep and consists of 1000 perfectly symmetrical narrow steps, spanning 13 storeys. The stepwell is one of the most photogenic places, and looks even more serene during monsoon as the water fills in the bavri. So, f you’re planning a weekend getaway this is the place you need to go to.
11. Patrika Gate – Jawahar Circle
Patrika Gate is one latest yet trendiest spot to visit during monsoon. It is situated at Jawahar Circle, at a distance of 2 km from Jaipur International Airport. This place has become photographers’ favourite, with hand-painted motifs depicting the traditional side of Pink City which includes paintings of temples, forts, rulers of Jaipur, jewelry, and photographs of Hawa Mahal, City palace, Jal Mahal, etc. Opposite to the gate is a lush green garden surrounding a fountain offering musical show every day from 7:30 p.m. if you’re in the town then Jawahar Circle is a must visit spot, kyuki Jaipur aaye or waha nhi gaye, toh kya khaak Jaipur aaye!
Give me some sunshine, give me some rain, I’ll make the best of the weather, and you’ll fall in love with me all over again!
If there’s one piece of advice we can give you this monsoon, it’s to go ahead and buy yourself an umbrella! We’ll give you 5 reasons for this:
1. It’s a style statement. You can’t carry an umbrella that you have thoughtfully purchased, and be lost in the crowd! These half-spherical things will always make a perfect accessory.
2. It’s a peek into your personality. Red or yellow, polka-dotted or monochrome striped, the subtly stylish or unblinkingly funky, whatever umbrella you pick, it speaks volumes about the person in you.
3. It’ll be a part of some of your most special moments. That moment when you feel like the classic Raj Kapoor or Nargis, or when you feel all Zoobi-Doobi musical like Aamir Khan and Kareena Kapoor, it’s the umbrella effect that makes you all Bollywood-like romantic.
Raj Kapoor, Nargis Dutt in Shree 420
Kareena Kapoor, Aamir Khan in 3 Idiots
4. Protects you from the sun-shine and the rain alike. It lets you unleash your free-bird spirit, as it becomes your companion through a 40 degrees outside sunny weather, or a raining cats and dogs day.
5. Most of all, it’s the affordable and one of the unique ways to add colours and joy to your rushing daily life 🙂
The month of Bhadon or monsoon is full of celebrations, festivities and traditional hustle-bustle in Rajasthan. Especially, the week that was! With Eid-ul-Fitr, Sinjara and Badi Teej spanning the week, Pink City witnessed prayers, celebrations, preparation of traditional recipes and some very colourful cultural events in the city.
There’s no better way to experience the vibrant culture of fascinating Jaipur than attending the festival of Teej, and attending the traditional royal procession, called the Teej Maata Ki Sawari, led by decked up elephants, musical bands, chariots and folk performers through the walled city. Each year it begins from the Tripolia Gate of the City Palace in the evening, and ends with the immersion of the idol in a lake. This time the idol was ssubmerged in the Taal Katora pond. Here are some hues and highlights of the procession:
“I have explored everything from top shot five star hotels to the best dhaabas, and always end up eating at Niros, because this is where my heart lies”, says Bina Kak on the joyous occasion of 65thbirth anniversary of Niros today.
There are so many cafes and restaurants opening up almost every day in Jaipur giving an equal competition to all the oldies, but as they say ‘Old is gold’ ! Among all these new outlets appealing to the teenagers and college going crowd in Jaipur, stands a restaurant amidst the most enticing shopping and foodie area of pink city: Niros.
While walking around the streets of M.I. road after a round of shopping, you spot a small restaurant called Niros…NOT ! You never ‘spot’ Niros, you know Niros by heart, by mind and especially by tongue 😉 This restaurant that lies in the lane of many more eateries, ice cream places, and shopping outlets, but what’s absolutely interesting is that it stands out and shines just like an old wine that keeps getting better and dearer each day.
Started by late Ved Prakash Pardal in 1949 and now run by his sons Rajnish and Vinay Pardal, Niros was the first place in Jaipur to serve Continental food, and good continental food ! Despite being popular and loved, Niros never rested on its laurels and kept on working towards excellence and soon became the only centrally air conditioned restaurant in the city in 1962 and the first one to bless Jaipurites with Chinese food on the menu in 1970. From a classic restaurant, Niros went on to become a landmark by which every other place, lane and shop was known to all the locals and tourist guides in Jaipur. We can say that before Google Maps came in, Niros was the definition of maps in Jaipur !!
With a garden ambiance complimented by potted plants and murals by the internationally acclaimed artist, Satish Gujral, Niros has a simple yet a very posh ambiance. “As Niros completes 65 glorious years today, I feel extremely nostalgic and miss my dad more than ever. I want to thank all those who love us and have made this possible and look forward to their visits and patronage hereafter” – Rajnish Pardal, owner of Niros.
When asked about what Niros means to the Jaipurites as it completes 65 years of success today, 60 year old Shekhar Verma , a retired professor of University of Rajasthan and a food connoisseur says ‘In early 70s, I used to go there every day for their special Keema Samosas which were available only from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m. People used to queue up to have those amazing things which were available only at Niros’
“The subtle interiors, cozy ambiance and soft contemporary English music have been the most appealing features of Niros and if I say I am in love with their Chicken A La Bomb Femme, it will be an under statement.” Shekhar Verma adds.
Indian politician, social activist and Bollywood actress Bina Kakis someone who loves to explore different places but somehow, Niros just does it for her. “Even though it’s quite irritating not being able to like any other place in Jaipur, what’s truly amazing and satisfying is the way they treat us. The music is extremely good and still not too overpowering. At the same time you will always find the who’s who comfortably sitting and enjoying their time. Some of their chefs are as old as the restaurant and that’s probably the secret behind their consistent recipes.”
Her top favourites are the Chicken bharta, fish, Niros special desserts especially Caramel custard, Kidneys on toast and French onion soup. “The best part is that you get to have the paan of your choice at the end of the meal.” Bina Kak adds.
Not just Bina Kak, even her daughter Amrita Kak, a popular singer who’s now married and resides in the Punjabi hub of Delhi, gets constant craving for the food of Niros to the extent that the delicious Chicken Tikka masala is packed and sent to her from Jaipur to Delhi.
The restaurant has received the opportunity to serve various renowned personalities like the Ex- Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir, Farooq Abdullah and his son, Omar Abdullah, Indian film actors & directors, cricketers like Kapil Dev, artists etc.
Rajnish Pandal and Late Maharaja Bhawani Singh
English Supermodel Naomi Campbell
Rajnish Pardal with Prakash Padukone, Father of Deepika Padukone & Former Indian Badminton Champion
Indian film actors Dimple Khanna and Late Rajesh Khanna
Rajnish Pardal with Farooq Abdullah
Indian film actress Sharmila Tagore at Niros
Some locals who belong to Jaipur and have been staying outside for a few years also expressed their views on Niros. Nitin Hajela, now working in Bangalore, says “For me, Niros is one of the iconic restaurants of Jaipur. My memories here date back to my childhood days when it was always a matter of joy and privilege to dine here with family and relatives. It was here I had my first tryst with continental cuisine. Amongst Rajasthani cuisine, Laal maans is the most savoured dish though the entire menu which is worth trying. I never miss to visit this place in my trips to Jaipur”
Nitin Hajela, 41 , now working in Bangalore
Swati Thapar, 24 , working in Social media firm
After a nostalgic trip with the older generation, Jaipur Beat also asked the younger generation as to what role does Niros play in their present day life. Swati Thapar, 25, working for a Social media firm says “Whenever there is an occasion in the family or friends, the first place that comes to my mind is Niros. Apart from chicken and fish, I love to have the Spanish omelette and Cheese macaroni at Niros”
There are very few things which never change and if they do, you keep loving them more every day.
So all you Jaipurites, the weekend is knocking at your doors so how about quickly wrap up and celebrate by going out tonight to Niros and experience the joy of sharing good food and good times together !!