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20 Things To Do In Jaipur (And When To Do Them) On A 3-4 Day Trip

Updated: Mar 21

Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan in North West India and no ordinary city at that.

Often known for its historic tales, royal architecture, vibrant culture, traditions and art, Rajasthan is embodied in the capital. In the year 1700 -- over 300 years ago -- King Sawai Jai Singh overthrew the Mughal emperors and established an independent rule over the city. With his aggressive architectural initiatives, he brought on a wave of political and cultural revival to the city. Jaipur was then iterated and built upon by several of his successors over the next 200 years. Today, it's a bustling metropolis, straddling its ancient history on one side and its malls, tall buildings, metro on the other side.

My stay here for a few months has given me a local-level perspective of things to do in Jaipur. Other than exploring the city myself, I've personally shown around a few of my visiting friends and gained a good understanding of the what's what of the city. While there's many things to do and explore in Jaipur and even a few days ain't enough, if that's all that you have, then here's my curated list of must-do activities, experiences, and sights in Jaipur on a 3-4 day trip. To get the most out of your limited time, it's super important to plan this tour in a way that you do these activities in this order and at these timings.

Day 1:

1.Things To Do In Jaipur: Visit the City Palace, Old City

city palace jaipur

Officially the king's residence, the palace bears testimony to the pomp and royalty that once lived here. Today, you can marvel at the beautifully carved and painted doors, archways and balconies. Some rooms housing the royalty's personal effects are also available to peek into. The famous "Blue Room" with an entry fees of Rs. 750 is an Instagram-shoot favourite.

2. Check out the Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal Jaipur

Just next door to City Palace, is the imposing Hawa Mahal, the most iconic structure in the city. Even though it's called a mahal (palace), it's technically a wall comprising of levels of windows that were supposed to be used by the royal women to look at the bazaar in their own privacy.

3. Grab a coffee at Windview Cafe

For the best view of Hawa Mahal upfront, battle through the long queues to grab a seat at the famous Windview cafe or the Tattoo cafe next to it. Brace for average food and throngs of Insta-reel makers, but a stunning view to go with your food.

4. Go on a food tour and grab local delicacies

Jaipur is an Indian foodie's paradise with many local delicacies such as kachoris, dal baati churma, lassis and more. Locate "Sardarji Hing Wala" on maps and get yourself a special Dal Kachori from here. Legend has it that this shop has been importing their hing (asafoetida) from Afghanistan for over 50 years to this day. There's many chaat and lassi stalls nearby by but people I know swear by Lassi at GT and sweets from Sondhya. (As a vegan I'm oblivious to both.)

food tour in Jaipur

5. Shop in Johari, Tripolia and Bapu Bazaars

Of course any trip to Rajasthan is incomplete without going overboard shopping its many handicrafts and art works which have been commissioned in the city by its many rulers.

What to buy in Jaipur?

In no order of preference, here's what I recommend:

  1. Block print anything - beautiful kurtis, sarees or even bed linen in hand block printed and natural fabrics like cotton, linen and chiffon.

  2. Juttis -- Uniquely shaped embellished bellies that go great with Indian wear as as western clothes for a statement look.

  3. Boho clothes - Think shrugs, harem pants, strappy tops and dresses in Indian motifs and fabrics like silks, cotton, georgette and more

  4. Gemstone jewelry: Rajasthan is one of the largest exporters of semi-precious jewelry in silver, kundan and gemstones and for a good reason.

Shopping in Jaipur

6. Grab drinks/dinner at Bar Palladio /Shikhar Bagh

After a tiring day out in the old walled city, come back in the city to kick back with a drink and dinner at the very aesthetic and soothing Bar Palladio - rated one of the best restaurants in Jaipur by CNN traveler. The nice, open air Shikhar Bagh is right next to it and is also a great option for dinner and drinks.

Day 2

Dedicate the day to exploring the ancient royal forts, palaces and other landmark places that bear testimony to Rajasthan's glorious past.

7. Visit the Amer Fort

One of the most salient landmarks of Jaipur, the Amer fort is located about a thirty minute drive away from Hawa Mahal. To make the most of the day and beat the queues (and pre-wedding shoots), make sure to start as early in the morning as possible. I recommend getting there by 8 am latest as you need a good 2-3 hours to explore the fort and the palace at an unrushed pace. Get a good look at its massive ramparts, viewpoints, courtyards, the lavish and beautiful murals on its archways and gates, the mirror-loaded "Sheesh Mahal", and its many dining rooms and imagine the lifestyles of the people who would've lived there over the last 300 years.

8. Sit by the Panna Meena Kund Stepwell

Just near the exit point of Amer Fort, is the demure Panna Meena Kund or stepwell. Stepwells or Baoris are ancient systems of water conservation in many states of India there are many all over Rajasthan as it's a parched state. While the largest stepwell in Rajasthan, the Chand Baori is located 92 kms away from the city, the Panna Meena is the best you can visit in the city. Marvel at its geometrically criss-crossing beige steps with an emerald pool of water about 20 feet below.

Panna Meena Kund Stepwell Jaipur

F&B Tip: After a tiring jaunt at the Amer Fort and Panna Meena, stop by for lunch at the newly opened Garh Rooftop cafe and enjoy the view of Amer Fort over your food and drinks.

9. Head to Jaigarh fort and spend max an hour there

Jaigarh is one of the three major forts in Jaipur and is famous for housing the largest cannon in the world! One can spend an hour at the Jaigarh fort in between Amer and Nahargarh fort. The ramparts of the fort make for a great walk with views of the Amer Fort and the Aravalli hills in the distance. Grab lunch at the in-house Rajasthani restaurant for a thali and "Laal Maas" if you're a non-vegetarian.

Jaigarh Fort, jaipur

10. Head off to the Nahargarh fort and Padao cafe for sunset

Make sure to get to Nahargarh by 4pm latest as you need an hour to go around the fort.

One of my favourite places in Jaipur, the Padao cafe at the Nahargarh fort is the best place to watch the sunset high over the city of Jaipur. Get there an hour before sunset to grab the best seats and watch the sun go down, shading the skies with orange, pink, and everything in between over your drinks that come included in the Rs. 100 entry ticket. One can also pre-book a special balcony seat for a premium charge for special occasions and dates.

Padao Cafe Nahargarh fort jaipur

11. Grab a fancy dinner at Once Upon a Bagh

Relax after a tiring day of walking through forts, palaces and hills by a drink at the very classy Once Upon A Bagh restaurant located close to Amer Fort. If that's not within the budget, then come outside the walled city and check out one of the hundred of new-fangled bars and cafes in csheme or Malviya Nagar.

12. Admire Jai Mahal on your way back

A palace half submerged in water is the literal definition of this palace. Currently not open to Public, there's not much to do about Jai Mahal than admire it as you pass it on your way from Amer Fort back into the city.

Day 3

13. Go to the Galta ji temple for sunrise

The Galta ji temple is famous for its "kund" or a steep pond in the temple premises. By itself, the Galta ji kund is a great sight, but combine it with a sunrise hike and then get to the kund on your way down. The haveli or the palace outside Galta ji is an underrrated spot by itself with beautiful murals all over the palace that make for a great photo shoot.

14. Go to Albert Hall Museum

You must've seen the impressive colonial-mughal styled building on your previous days in Jaipur. Time to explore this palace turned museum at leisure. Amongst other royal artefacts displayed in the museum, the Albert Hall Museum also houses a real Egyptian Mummy!

15. Grab snacks at Masala Chowk

Located right next to the Albert Hall is a cluster of food stalls and kiosks collectively called the Masala Chowk. ("Spice Square") Enjoy the many chaats, Rajasthani thalis and continental snacks at reasonable prices in an open air, community setting.

16. Walk through the golden hour at Patrika Gate

Modelled on the beautiful mural art found in century old palaces and havelis in India and especially Rajasthan, the Patrika Gate is a recent introduction to the cityscape of Jaipur made by the founders of "Rajasthan Patrika", the region's enduring newspaper. But what if I told you this place is in fact not from ancient or even recent history, but rather just about 8 year old!

Antique or not, the Patrika Gate is a stunning visual feast full of art, colours and a glimpse of Indian architecture at its best, and also evidently a pre-wedding shoot favourite.

Patrika Gate, Jaipur

17. Have dinner at Chowki Dani

Chowki Dani is a Rajasthani-village themed resort located on the southern outskirts of the city. Open only in the evenings, Choki Dani is a great option for dinner if you want to get the essence of the rural and traditional Rajasthan all in once place. Enjoy the many frills like palmist, puppet shows, kalbelia dancing, and camel rides (i didn't) and feast on the most indulgent Rajasthani sit-down dinner. The servers bring you dish after dish as you hold your tummy in meek resistance while they have none of it and continue to load more and more food into your ecofriendly "pattals" (leaf plates).

Day 4

With the touristy stuff mostly out of the way, maybe time to do some local experiences in the city. Here's what a local Jaipurite would do over a weekend.

18. Visit the Birla Temple

The stunning Birla temple is a recent addition to the city but no less imposing with its white Marble exteriors looming high over the roads juxtaposed against an ancient fort. Pay a visit to the Laxmi Narayan temple inside and marvel at the beautiful stained art and mixed-media paintings of Indian mythology on the walls.

19. Grab brunch at Magnolia Cafe

Even though there are many great cafes and restaurants in Jaipur, the Magnolia is literally located inside a mini forest of sorts. It's a great place to have brunch or evening coffee in an outdoor setting. There's also a mini amphi-theatre outside the cafe which runs shows and plays at times.

20. Grab a play or art exhibit at JKK

The Jawahar Kala Kendra is a jewel in Jaipur's rich art and cultural scene, designed by the same architects behind the IIM building in Ahmedabad. Inside, there are multiple halls and gardens dedicated to plays, art galleries, shows and even a cafe run by the Indian Coffee House. Next to JKK is an exhibition area which pretty much has a shopping expo running through the year and is great to stock up on handicrafts, art, clothes and ceramics from all over the country.

JKK Jaipur

With this itinerary, you'll have more than a great experience in Jaipur. However if time permits, you can spend a lot more time on any of the above spots and go deeper exploring, spending more and leaning more into the experience. If you have a day or two to spare, consider my weekend itinerary for Pushkar for another great experience in Rajasthan.

Have a great trip to Jaipur! Khamma Ghani Sa


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 I (Monica) am a lifelong traveler, (40 countries), sustainability and veganism advocate, and a marketer by profession. I'm old school in that I still like to blog and document rather than shoot and post.

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