Corporate trips are typically a catch 22 situation. You travel to an interesting place, but there’s hardly any time to explore the destination. More so if it’s your first time to the place. My company sent 10 of our top salespeople for a three-day training to Jaipur, which was first-of-its-kind for us. So far, we had mostly been to either metro cities or unassuming small towns, which can’t be called a ‘tourist locale’. I was definitely excited for my first-ever trip to the Pink City but wasn’t sure how the tour and training will fit in together.
Anyhow, we skipped the flight and booked a minivan, which was barely a couple of hours drive. But it was an interesting ride. I would recommend anyone visiting Jaipur to book a reliable cab from Delhi to Jaipur and do a road trip. Trust me, it is exciting. On the way, I saw a few places, which I would like to stop at, on my next trip.
Our training started on the same day we reached. To be honest, half my attention was towards where and when I will get to go out in the city and see the amazing palaces and museums, and try the food. As soon as our first-day session got over by 4 pm, our entire team sat down to plan the rest of the evening. Many of us had not been to Jaipur and it made sense that we hang out together. Since we had limited time, we had to pick the best of the city that we could cover in three evenings. We availed comfortable and spacious tempo travelers in Jaipur and planned a quick itinerary.
Jaipur in a jiffy
As we drove around the city around sunset, I watched the red sandstone structures aglow in the dusk light, making it look rosier. There was a very prominent artistic vibe about the place. Although the millennial, urban influence runs parallel, it couldn’t override the heritage that the city stands for.
We started with the City Palace which was about to close in an hour. However, most tourist places in Jaipur are open till late, perhaps to accommodate tourists like us. The sprawling complex was no less a mini town within itself. With courtyards, pavilions, temples, palaces, and gardens, it would take an entire day to cover the premise. We split and explored to our liking. I stopped by the Chandra Mahal and the City Palace Museum. It was soon time to move on to the next stop, Amber Palace. Thankfully, our cabbie was quite resourceful and just knew how corporate travelers like us would like to explore.
The 16th-century fort sat like a lion atop a hill. It enclosed a palace, few temples, and courtyards with a moat. And as the evening got darker, the structure lit up and shone like pure gold. The place would have looked clearer in the daylight, but I loved the nighttime view. Every corner of the fortress was illuminated and the intricate carvings and enamel work looked more enhanced. Roaming around the huge central courtyard, surrounded by arched corridors and pillared verandahs, I felt as if I had wound back in time.
That was the end of our first evening. The next day, again, after the training session, we headed for Hawa Mahal. Your Jaipur trip will be incomplete without visiting this iconic structure of the city. But we didn’t have enough time to tour in detail, so we resorted to exterior views and customary photos to take home. Later in the evening, we went to Jal Mahal, to enjoy the views of the palace, shining like a bright star in the middle of the expansive lake. We couldn’t visit the palace because of the timing issue, but the views on the outside were nothing short of breathtaking. There were a few restaurants around the promenade, offering uninterrupted views. We resorted to one of them for a relaxing time and a royal dinner, with royal views.
The last evening, with not many options to explore as per our schedule, we headed to the Nahargarh Fort, which lies high up on a hill, guarded by a long perimeter wall. Although the fort tours closed at 6 pm, we could still hang around the area and catch the evening views, as the sun hid behind the Aravalli Hills. Soon, the city below lit up and sparkled like a thousand stars.
While the rest of the team headed back to the hotel, a couple of my close colleagues and I went for a night drive. So what if we couldn’t see it all in the day. The Pink City still had its rosy tint on, even in the darkness. Whether you visit for a work trip or a personal vacation, Jaipur will ensure that you have a great time.