2 Weeks in India | 24 hours in Jaipur & Video Diary

After Varanasi, Jaipur was luxe and amazing and wonderful. I mean, the city itself is wonderful and I'm sure we would've loved it regardless, but after the trauma of Varanasi, it was great to be in a luxe hotel, it was great not to be worried about getting run over by a rogue tuk tuk or cow, and it was just great to be able to do a bit of sightseeing and shopping.
Our flight required a layover in Delhi so we got to eat airplane food for a couple of meals.

At the Varanasi Airport I got myself a paneer tikka panini and at the Delhi Airport, we decided to try some KFC just for kicks. I did love checking out the McDonald's menu as well; I mean, McSpicy Paneer? Come on.
We were able to rely on Uber once again so getting a ride from the Jaipur Airport to our hotel was painless and cheap.
ITC RAJPUTANA
This hotel seemed really extra and incredibly luxe when we were checking in but it seems like they spent all of their coin on the lobby and not much on the rest of it. Walking through the hallway towards our room, we felt more like we were in a Sheraton than a luxury hotel. The room itself was clean, shower water pressure was great, but it just didn't seem to match the splendor of the lobby.
We did get a lovely pink welcome drink, but it was pink because it was beet-based so it had that slight twinge of dirt.
HANDI
For dinner, we grabbed an Uber to Handi, which had great reviews. The diners seemed to be mostly locals (or else they were just all Indians on holiday) which made us feel like we'd made a good, authentic choice.
We decided to get rice, chicken makhani, and mushroom peas curry. Oh, and a stinkin' huge order of naan. The naan was the best naan I've ever had. The chicken makhani was much spicier than I was expecting, since butter chicken is usually quite mild, but it was delicious. The mushrooms in the mushroom peas curry were halved so it felt like you were chomping on a big piece of meat; it had a great savory flavor.
After dinner, we returned to our hotel and took a little jaunt around the grounds. The pool area was actually really lovely and I am a little blue that we didn't get to enjoy it. There were large, comfy cabanas, hammocks, hanging chairs, and loads of squishy sun loungers everywhere.
We woke up bright and early the next morning. Our flight out of Jaipur was actually that same evening so we had to check out before we went on with our day. The hotel agreed to look after our things but wouldn't allow us to leave any valuable electronics behind, probably for liability reasons. Or maybe they had a problem with specific staff members having sticky fingers?
PEACOCK ROOFTOP RESTAURANT
For breakfast, we went to a rooftop restaurant that was actually super cute. D started with her usual coffee while J and I shared a masala chai.
For our meals, J got a huge order of toast at D's insistence (which I don't even understand because she didn't even eat any of it), D got an omelette, and I got a paneer tikka waffle sandwich, which was bomb.
AMBER FORT
The Amber Fort was the only tourist attraction we visited in Jaipur, but it was a great one. It was really cool and beautiful and because it's high up in the mountains, it was pretty breezy. And because it's so big, you'll find yourself alone in some areas, which is pretty great.
The main courtyard area is free but if you want to go up the stairs and through that door shown in the photo above, you'll need to get tickets. It's ₹500 ($7.50) per person for foreigners.
We actually took some awesome photos in this courtyard because it was so empty but they were all done with self-timer on J's camera which he lost on the airplane from Mumbai to Istanbul. And now the camera is stuck at the Ataturk Airport and they won't ship lost items at all so if there's anyone who can help us out by picking up the camera and shipping it to us, please let me know! (You would certainly be compensated for your time and efforts.)
Funny story: as we were leaving the Amber Fort and I was walking under the gate, my exit was timed perfectly with a bird crapping so I got poo all over my arm, which I was alerted to because it was hot and fresh and I was like, "Hm, why is my arm hot?" Luckily, it was just my arm, not my head or my clothing and of course, I had wet wipes and hand sanitizer in my bag (I never went anywhere without it) so it was easy enough to just wipe off and sanitize, no biggie. 
If we'd had time, I would've wanted to go to the City Palace, as it's famed and it is quite beautiful inside. However, we had much more pressing matters to attend to.
THE GEM PALACE
I had read that if I wanted to buy gold in India, Jaipur was one of the best places to do it. We had our Uber take us to the Gem Palace and at first we were nervous because there were dozens of other jewelry shops on the same street and everything was closed. Also, when we pulled up, some guy pushing an old man in a wheelchair tried to block our car door and maybe squeeze some money out of us but D and I crawled out of the car on the opposite side and J dodged them. And luckily there was a policeman standing by the driveway adjacent to the Gem Palace who asked us if we were there to shop and when we said, "Yes," he ushered us inside.
The staff here are all really lovely. They aren't pushy; they're really matter-of-fact, can understand that different people work with different budgets, and they are so sweet. I ended up buying an awesome bracelet with hearts, stars, fish, and a Ganesha in the middle; the fish are what attracted me, since I wish I was a mermaid every day, it suited me. I kept one ring (the one with the translucent milky chalcedony stone) and gave the other two to my sister. I think the stones in my bracelet are all differently colored tourmaline stones, but I'm not sure. The clear stone in my sister's one ring is a stonkin' huge diamond; jk, I think it's tourmaline or petalite. The light blue stone and light purple stone might just be topaz or tourmaline; I cannot remember. I was too excited to write anything down.
Above the jewelry shop, there was a temporary pop up shop of handmade clothing. Everything was beautiful and though I thought about purchasing something, everything was a bit too long on my short frame and though they said they could hem it and it would be ready in a few days, we were taking off that night so I couldn't. Besides, I'd just spent a good chunk of my Christmas bonus on jewelry, did I really need to buy more?
D did buy this gorgeous dress though. She's already made plans to wear it for a night out along with the pair of earrings J bought for her downstairs.
SHEESH MAHAL BAR
After our shopping spree, we returned to our hotel. We had quite a bit of time before we had to go to the airport so we decided to get some drinks and relax a bit before dinner. D got a pink strawberry drink, which tasted like syrup and it was delicious. I got this green minty, herbal sweet drink that was refreshing and great. J got some blue concoction, which was the only actual cocktail (D and I got mocktails) and it gave him pink cheeks.
JAIPUR PAVILION
For dinner, we just went to the Jaipur Pavilion, as it was the only open dining option.
They gave us bread to start, which was fine, but the star was the pesto. It was made with spinach and cilantro and loads of other spices and it was awesome.
For my main, I got the murgh biryani. My stomach was feeling just a bit queasy, maybe because I was infected by bird poo, but anyway, this hit the spot. There were spicy pepper sprinkled throughout, which I loved, and the chicken was lovely and tender, though my main complaint would be that there was way too much chicken.
J got the laal maas, which is a signature dish of the state of Rajasthan. It was spicy and fiery and delicious. I didn't have any of the mutton but I did drizzle some sauce over my biryani and it was so good. I wish I could try and recreate this at home but I think you need v. specific peppers and spices and I doubt I have access to any of that stateside.
D went rogue and slurped her way through a bowl of clear soup (Asian-style) and spaghetti aglio, olio, e peperoncino, which she said was good but had beans in it, which was weird.
After dinner, we piled into an Uber and headed to the airport and we were off on our next adventure.
Here's my video diary:

xoxo.

Comments

  1. hahaha i love your writing! i dont know why i made him get the toast. i think it's because i thought mine wouldnt come with and i get anxiety when there arent enough carbs hahaha. So good to read this entry because we really had such a sweet honeymoon time in Jaipur... the city pampered us.... also i loved Handi... it was my second fav restaurant that we tried in India (first is Gulati)

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  2. I'm having fun reading my own posts because I wrote all of these in a jet lagged stupor so for the most part, I have no memory of what I wrote haha

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