The bustling ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan and one of India’s most captivating cultural destinations. Life here buzzes by at a somewhat frantic pace, though take your time on our Jaipur morning market walk to soak it all up and you’ll find yourself gaining a fascinating insight into the daily workings of this splendid city.
Our Jaipur morning market walk makes a refreshing change of pace from the forts and palaces (though they oughtn’t to be missed either!) and offers a vivid opportunity to get to grips with life in India. With an oh-so-worth-it early start of 6 am, accompanied by your experienced local guide, our Jaipur morning market walk begins with the phool mandi or flower market. Here, you’ll immediately be confronted with a riot of colours, sounds and smells, with beautiful wafts of jasmine, roses and marigolds filling the air around you, while merchants haggle with their customers. Many of the flowers you’ll encounter are merely heads which are used in Hindu prayer ceremonies and to decorate the home.
Continue to the almost chaotic vegetable market, and the sensory overload heightens further. Fresh, colourful produce surrounds you – from the familiar (tomatoes, onions, potatoes) to the more exotic (bottle gourd, chillies, capsicum). Ladies whoosh by carrying big pots of the stuff on their heads. You’ll want to get out of their way pretty sharpish; if you don’t, they’ll soon make their presence clear! “Challo challoooo!” (let’s go, let’s go!). This is chaos, but its organised chaos and one must move with the flow!
Another stop on our Jaipur morning market walk is the milk market. Here, you’ll see merchants who’ve travelled in from a 50km radius from their farms to sell their milk, unpasteurized and collected the very same morning from their cows and buffalos. You’ll see customers dipping their hands into the milk, a practice centuries-old to determine the thickness and therefore quality and price (perhaps not the most hygienic method, though those who purchase it boil the milk at home before consumption).
In contrast to the whirlwind of activity around you, as you walk through the old city of Jaipur, you’ll notice how incredibly organised it all is, with streets perfectly grid-aligned. Each lane designated to a specific trade; be it artisans, jewellers, carvers, bangle makers, gem cutters, miniature painters or utensil makers. You’ll also see some beautiful frescoes amongst the old havelis (large houses with a central courtyard), and several temples (there are over 4,000 in Jaipur!).
Our Jaipur morning market walk continues into the Govindji park where you’ll see a seemingly very happy bunch of locals practising “laughing yoga”. Lift your arms and start laughing; not only does it increase happiness, but it is also said to strengthen the immune system, reduce pain and lower stress!
We then reach the Govind Dev Ji temple. Legend has it this famous temple was sculpted by the great-grandson of Lord Krishna, 5,000 years ago. You’ll see hundreds of Jaipurites gather here for the daily service, chanting praises in unison for Lord Krishna and joyfully clapping.
To end, our Jaipur morning walk introduces you to some of the city’s most loved street food, often sold by inconspicuous vendors hidden away amongst the narrow streets. Enjoy deliciously spiced aloo (potato) samosa drizzled in chutney, a sickeningly sweet jalebi (a coil of batter, fried and steeped in sugar syrup), and wash it all down with a cup of masala chai (spiced tea) from Jaipur’s famous Sahu Chai.
The tour will see you back at the hotel in time for breakfast. After, we suggest enjoying a few hours at leisure before reuniting with your guide later in the day to take in other highlights of the Pink City (such as the City Palace and its fabulous private rooms, Amber Fort, or spending time with elephants at Dera Amer).
“A wonderful excursion for anyone wanting to see and understand the daily goings on of life here, our Jaipur morning market walk is sure to be a highlight of your visit.” – Madeleine Hann, Co-Founder at Indian Excursions Co.
If you’d like to experience our Jaipur morning market walk on your upcoming trip to Rajasthan (available only as part of a planned itinerary), please get in touch. As specialists in this specific region of India, we’re an ideal match to assist with your arrangements.0