Jaipur,the pink city is famous for its forts and palaces, due to its magnificent architecture,the most popular tourist place in India. In my previous blogs I have written about the famous City Palace and the Amer Fort. Now I would like to write about my visit to ” Hawa Mahal” or the Palace of Winds. It was the summer retreat for the Rajput Kings, built by Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799. The windows of the palace allow breeze to blow in and keep the palace cool during the hot summer months. The palace is built in the shape of a crown,as it is believed that the King who built it was a great devotee of Lord Krishna
We entered through the main entrance called ” Anandpoll”,even before we entered I was immensely impressed by the huge red and pink sandstone elegance,that stood in front of me.We walked further to ” “Chandra poll”.
What is unique about Hawa Mahal is it looks like a honey comb,on looking at it from the street we may feel it is the front side of the palace,but it is the back side. It has 953 lattice work windows or rather they were called Jharokhas in olden times.I was mesmerized by the intricate designs of the windows. These windows were used by the Royal ladies to view the daily life of the city,the festival celebrations,and Royal processions,as in those days women used to cover their face with a purdah and never showed their face to men ,who were not close family members.
Hawa Mahal has five floors and no stairs to climb, but only ramps to reach the top floors.It is an extended part of a huge complex. Each Storey is named differently like Sharad Mandir,Ratan Mandir,Vichitra Mandir, Prakash Mandir and Hawa Mandir (from where it got its name” Hawa Mahal”)
The best time to visit the palace is early in the morning or at night to see the beautiful illuminated facade.