The Astounding Amer or Amber Fort, Jaipur

Amber Fort Jaipur medieval architecture at Rajasthan

In Brief : Amer Fort

Amer Fort or Amber Fort is located in Amer, a town near Jaipur, the capital city of Rajasthan. Raja Man Singh, ruler from the Kachhwaha clan of Rajputs began construction in 1592 and the fort, which was built as a strong, safe haven against attacking enemies, was completed by Mirja Raja Jai Singh. The striking fort, built with red sandstone and marble is in perfect mélange of Hindu and Muslim architecture is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Indian elephants at Amer Fort Jaipur Rajasthan
Decorated Indian elephant used for tourist ride at the historic Amber Fort in Jaipur, Rajasthan.

History of Amer Fort

The city of Amer was the home town of princess Jodha- the Consort of Akbar. Raja Man Singh was an ally in the court of Akbar. Due to this, many structures in Amer fort are influenced by Mughal style architecture and reflected in every nook and corner of this trumphant fort. Also exquisite Rajputana elements peak through its architecture. The palace features large ramparts and quite a few elaborate gateways with cobbled paths which add a solemn aura to the fort. The carvings and ornamentations on the walls and ceilings of the palace are exemplars of the artistry of the Rajput craftsmen and architects.

Rajasthani women perform dance at historic Amer Fort Jaipur
Rajasthani women perform folk dance at historic Amer Fort, Jaipur
Rajasthani musician playing violin at Amer Fort
Rajasthani musician playing folk instrument at Amer Fort, Jaipur

In & Around Amer Fort

Perched on “Cheel ka Teela” (Hill of Eagles) of Aravalli ranges, the sturdy fort overlooks Maota Lake, the main source of water for the Amer Palace. One of the major attractions of this fort are tamed elephants embellished in colorful velvets, synonymous with Indian royalty – the power and opulence Indian kingdoms once constituted. Every year a great many tourists throng the Amber Fort to mount on these majestic elephants up the vertical ascend to the entrance of the Amer Fort. Although I decided against riding those lofty elephants, instead trekked my way up the hill. The elevation of the fort presented perfect panorama of Jaipur cityscape in my conquest. Whilst I was engrossed with my camera lenses focusing on the vantage points, I was about to be crushed by an enormous elephant, if not for a fellow passenger who alerted me. On rush hours, the hilly road could be cramped by sightseers and the elephants keep coming one after another. If you are commuting on foot, you need to watch out for those bigfoot beasts. Enthusiasts can also enjoy sound and light shows depicting historical accounts on Amer Fort and bask in its royal splendor.

Indulge yourself in a soothing stroll in and around the fort complex. You will be taken aback by the grandiosity of the then lords, especially in the third courtyard which houses royal palaces. Since the fort complex is enormous, it could take hours to saunter, so you can opt for a jeep or golf buggy, services available within the Amer Fort territory.

Intricate Architecture of Amer Fort

Amber Fort Jaipur aerial view of open courtyard with Aravalli mountain at sunrise
Aerial view of open courtyard with Aravalli mountain at sunrise inside Amer Fort, Jaipur

Architecture of amazing Amer Fort is a proclamation of Rajput extravagance and an unmissable landmark of Jaipur. The palace is quartered into four parts; each with an open courtyard, offering breathtaking view of the fort and the adjoining Aravalli hills. Beautiful sunrises and sunsets can be captured in wide angel shots standing on the palace courtyards. No wonder Amer Fort scores as my all time favorite fort in India.

Amber Fort royal palace medieval artwork at Jaipur Rajasthan
The Ornate Gateway, Ganesh Pol at Amer Fort, Jaipur

The palace features many sublime structures, such as – the ornate gateway Ganesh Pol, Sukh Niwas (The Pleasure Hall), dazzling Sheesh Mahal or the mirror palace, Jai Mandir, Diwan-i-Khas (The house of ministers) and the Diwan-i-Aam (The house of Public). The prodigious Ganesh Pol gate is the center of attraction at the Amer Fort. Bedecked with alluring frescoes, the gate opened into the king’s private quarters and a beautiful Mughal styled garden separated its twin buildings. Sheesh Mahal or the Mirror Palace is embellished with glass enameled panels and multi-mirrored ceilings, the bewitching Sukh Niwas or the Hall of Pleasure with its ivory embedded sandalwood doors was the amusement expanse of the sovereign and every inch of it was etched in romance. The Jai Mandir is also been noted for its stunning marble relief panels. A visit to these medieval buildings transport visitors back to the glorious era of kings and emperors. Vigorous paintings of famous Rajput chiefs adorn the walls of the palace unveiling regal lifestyle and family history of the monarchs.

Amer Fort Jaipur Seesh Mahal medieval architecture with garden
Seesh Mahal architecture with medieval garden at Amer Fort, Jaipur

The Amer or Amber Fort is replete with inspiring stories of grit and grandeur of the Rajput kings. If you are a travel and photography enthusiast, Amer fort should be at the top of your bucket list.

Photography Tips For Amer Fort

Amer Fort in Jaipur is a photographer’s paradise and you will want to have your camera handy while touring. It is often considered as one of the most Instagrammable spots in India. Here are few points to take notice before you chalk out your itinerary.

  • To use a tripod is forbidden throughout the grounds, and there is security staff consistently patrolling each area of Amer Fort. Nevertheless, if you enter to the fort premises early in the morning, you may be able to get some pictures before the gurds ward you off!
  • To avoid crowds in your exclusive Amer Fort shots, we recommend arriving as early as possible.
  • Keep your camera equipment secures to avoid theft.

Summary : Amer Fort In A Nut-Shell

Location: It is located in the small town of Amer, which is about 11 km from Jaipur.

Timings: 8 am to 5.30 pm and from 6:30 pm to 9:15 pm.

The Amer Palace is quite vast and takes upto 4-5 hours to take a complete tour. If you are unable to walk to the fort, you can catch a jeep or golf buggy instead, the latter being the cheapest option.

Entry Fee: INR 550 per person for foreign nationals and INR 100 for Indians.

Amer fort elephant safari: The elephant ride uphill to the the fort entrance is a thrilling experience and the fare is Rs.1100 for two people. It takes about 30 minutes for the elephant to plod up the hill. If you plan on taking the elephant ride, try to reach there early in the morning to avoid long queues in the later hours.

Amer Fort Light & Sound Show:  If you happen to visit the Amer Fort after dark, the show will be an added pearl to the multitude of memories you’ll take with you. The ticket for the show is available at the ticket counter for Rs.100.

Share your experiences if you have visited Amer Fort or any other hill forts in Rajasthan. Also if you are planning to visit this iconic fort, leave a comment below!

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