The pink city, the first stop for many people visiting Rajasthan with the high walls that surround the old city are certainly bombarded with a cacophony of sound as the modern cities traffic joins with the old centre.
I need to find new words for hustle and bustle to enable me to continue describing Indian cities, this rather hectic spectacle is thankfully becoming more common place and is easier to handle each place I go.
Inside the bazaar laden old city walls the wide boulevards are interspersed with a seemingly endless series of lane ways and alleys, some much more inviting than others. There are a few splendid temples and palaces peering over the low rise peach /pink /pale salmon coloured shops. I never could decide what the pink-ish colour of the city was, it’s a continued theme throughout the old city, uniformly marrying the old with the new.
Jaipur is an interesting enough place to wander, albeit a shoppers dream, or nightmare, depending… it can never be said the small strangely uniform looking shops are not inviting or welcoming. Truth be told the frequent invitations are so constant that for me they border are infuriating and irritating. Away from the shops the city doesn’t become less welcoming, there is always someone trying to help you visit a site, direct you towards a palace, many of them have a conveniently close mode of transport, and low friendly prices.
The call to prayer reverberates around the city 5 times a day giving a nice bit of cultural context to a place where much of the notable architecture is designed with a Murghal influence. The Hawal mahal, or the hall of wind is a very good example of this, with a very pretty locale and very much worth a visit. It’s busy, but you can find a quiet spot to view the streets activity, maybe an elephant with painted face, or a camel pulling a cart will add just that bit more local flavour.