When we talk about Jaipur then it is not possible that we could ignore the Amer fort. It is undoubtedly the most beautiful fort and the pride of Jaipur!! Amber fort, also known as Amber Palace boasts of an artistic grandeur and structural expertise. It is a reminiscent of the bravery and courage of the mighty Rajputs, who had played a remarkable role in the history of medieval India.
Crowning the crest of a hill, Amber Fort offers a panoramic view of Maota Lake and the historic old town at the base of the hill, which was the early seat of the Amber kings before they made the fort their capital.
The main entrance to the historic Amber Fort is through the imposing Suraj Pol, so called because it faces the direction of the rising sun, the Kachhawaha family emblem. The gate leads into a huge courtyard, Jaleb Chowk, lined on three sides with souvenir and refreshment shops. A flight of steps leads to the Shila Devi Temple, which has silver doors; silver oil lamps, grand pillars carved to look like banana trees, and contain the Kachhawaha family deity, a stone image of the goddess Kali. The next courtyard is the Diwan-i-Aam, the space for public audience. Near it is the Sattais Katcheri, a colonnade of 27 pillars, where scribes once sat to record revenue petitions.
The magnificent Ganesh Pol is the gateway to three pleasure palaces, each with special features, built around a Mughal-style garden, Aram Bagh. Maota Lake, which provided water to the fort, is surrounded by two exquisite gardens. The Kesar Kyari Bagh has start-shaped flower beds once planted with saffron, flowers, while Dilaram Bagh, built in 1568 as a resting place for Akbar on his way to Ajmer, is a clever pun on the name of its architect, Dilaram. A small archeological Museum is located nearby. The farthest and oldest end of the fort was converted into the zenana, with screens and covered balconies for the seclusion of the royal ladies in purdah. Faint traces of frescoes are still visible on the walls. In the centre of the courtyard is a pavilion with 12 pillars, the Baradari.
This rambling Palace depicts the true lifestyle of the gutsy Rajputs who are better known for their radical, audacious, volatile and decadent behavior. One among the best hill top palaces, amber palace presents a curious blend of Muslim and Hindu architectural design. An aide memoir of the yester years, this palace is a redolent of creativeness of the artisans of ancient time.
Recently, two major developments have taken place at Amber fort. A very old tunnel to connect Amber Fort and adjoining Jaigarh Fort is now opened for public along with the electric cab facility for the tourists. Besides, Elephant rides to fort, sound & light shows and cultural evenings have always been a favorite among the visitors.
Certainly, Amber Fort, is one of the few places in India where the entry fee is worth it with never ending, consisting of a maze of rooms, tiny and grand!! Spectacularly set within surrounding rugged hills and dotted with majestic architecture, Amber Mahal is one of the best places to visit on your trip to Jaipur.