Hawa Mahal or "Palace of Winds" was built in 1798 as a part of the City Palace. It is an icon of Jaipur. Its unique honeycomb design comes from the five stories of intricately latticed windows. These were designed to allow the ladies of the court to see out over the street with out being seen. The lattice also helps to cool the air flowing through it.
It is built of red and pink sandstone and is spectacular when it seems to glow in the early morning light.
Unfortunately it was closed for renovation when I was there but I got to see a good example of bamboo scaffolding.
The Hawa Mahal is probably the most recognisable monument in Jaipur - I'd certainly dreamed of visiting it since I was a child! Built in 1799, by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh as a continuation of the Royal City Palace, it was designed in the form of the crown of Krishna by the architect Lal Chand Ustad. Its 953 small windows, called jharokhas, decorated with intricate latticework, were originally intended to allow royal ladies to observe everyday life in the street below without being seen. The royal family of Jaipur also used the palace as a summer retreat since the window screens and the shape of the building (the top three floors are only one room in width) also provided cool breezes, enhanced by fountains; hence its name.
Entrance to the Hawa Mahal was originally from the city palace through an imperial door, which opened into a large courtyard surrounded by two storey buildings. Nowadays however entry is from a side road to the right as you face the palace.
I'm not going to repeat everything you can read in most Vter postings about this palace, in Wikipedia, or something alike.
My special feeling, besides the confirmation of the beauty of its facade, was the way it is intricated with the city, dominating the image of the area, but very well integrated in the whole.
Not the usual outstanding luxury apart from the city and contrasting with it, but something being part of the street, living with it, still hiding the faces of gone women, behind its delicate windows.
This tip will seem unusual by the title I have mentioned. but believe me , Jaipur will never look such beautiful , unless you hover around the city from air! Please see the pictures of Mansarovar Lake, which is built in the shape of a Kite around 300 years ago! You will never be able to see this view or realise the importance of the lake or the architecture , if you see it from the land.
It is no wonder , who can build The Observatory, can also build The Lake based on "Vastu Shastra", no wonder Jaipur is a prosperous city!
I shall put this on my Must visit list.
The hawa mahal was built by the kings so that the queens could have a look at the festivities and happenings outside the palace without being seen. It was also built in honour of lord Krishna and each floor is called a Mandir such as Roop Mandir, shared Mandir etc.
The entrance is only Rs. 10 per person, but do engage a guide to get all the details.
The most iconic structure of Jaipur, the gently-tapering Hawa Mahal or Wind Palace was built by Maharaja Pratap Singh in 1799. It is a 5-storey structure with the top three being just one room thick. The names of the five stories are, Sharad Mandir, where autumn celebrations took place; Ratan Mandir owing to the glasswork on the walls; Vichitra Mandir, where the deity Lord Krishna was worshipped; Prakash Mandir; and, Hawa Mandir, after which the Palace came to be known as Hawa Mahal.
It has 953 niches and 152 windows with over-hanging latticed balconies through which the royal ladies confined to the ‘purdah’ system, could watch the proceedings below in the streets of Jaipur. The system of cooling the hot summer breeze is the same as used in the Mughal monuments of Delhi and Agra. Through a series of gradually-decreasing openings, the air was cooled before it entered the main hall or the room.
The entrance is through the Siri Deorehi Gate and past the Hawa Mahal Bazar but the façade of the Palace is best captured from the main street below. Audio guide by Narrowcasters (narrowcasters.com; Mr. Mudra Verma-9314612870), is available at the entrance itself. The top floor provides plenty of excellent photo opportunities, not only of the rear portion of the tapered ‘mukut’ (crown) but also of Jaipur city and of the streets below.
It is open between 9.30 am and 4.30 pm.
First Written: Apr. 4, 2012
Hawa mahal literal means palace of breeze or wind.It's well known for its 953 jharokhas(windows).The five storey palace is made up of red stone and situated in the hustle and bustle of city.Being situated in the heart of city makes it most accessible place of visit than others and the local market is also steps awaybut has a flipside as well,The surrounding is very noisy and populated.
once inside the palace makes you re paint the past and make you feel really breezy :P.
Hawa Mahal means Palace of the Winds. It was built by Maharaja Pratap Singh II in 1799 and was designed by the architect and astrologer Lad Chand Usta.
The red and pink sandstone façade of Hawa Mahal is one of the most photographed structures in Jaipur. There is no front door, but in the five stories high façade there are 953 windows and niches. It is the many windows that allow the cool air to circulate.
Hawa Mahal, which forms part of the east wall of the City Palace, was built for the women of the royal family. It was a place where they could sit behind the laced windows looking down on the daily street life and parades below without being seen.
Inside Hawa Mahal there is a small museum and from the top there is a great view.
The palace is open between 9.00 - 16.30 on Saturdays - Thursdays.
Admission was Rs 50 (August 2010). If you want to have an audio guide it is Rs 110 more.
Considered one of the iconic symbols of Jaipur, this architectural fantasy was built in 1799 by the city's ruler Sawai Pratap Singh. It was named Hawa Mahal, i.e. "Palace of Winds," and was specifically designed to enable the ladies of the royal palace to watch the streets of Jaipur without being seen. The palace, therefore, has no entrance on the main street and its widows contain lattices to provide the utmost privacy. The pink façade of the building, with its five floors and domed Baroque-like windows, rises like a mountain above the street, but despite its height, the palace is only one room deep. The rear side contains two spacious courtyards with arched porticoes and is painted in a pretty mix of pink and yellow.
For more photos, check out the travelogue: "Hawa Mahal."
Hawa Mahal was build in 1799 and is a spectacular landmark in Jaipur Old City. The name Hawa Mahal means "The Palace of the Winds". The building has a pink-sandstone architecture with 1000 small windows. There are 5 storeys inside without stairs, only a series of ramps.
This beautiful building is in the main street. It was built by Maharaja Sawal Pratap Singh in 1799 to allow his harem to watch the busy comings and goings of the town bazaar, instead of being shut behind four walls all day, as was normal at that time for Muslim women. It is built in Rajput style.
We were not able to go inside, and were assured there was nothng to be seen. Looking from outside is free!
It is very picturesque outside, however nothing much to see on the inside really! We also shopped on the way to Hawa Mahal, if you are fond of colorful clothes this is the place to go! AJ was thrilled by an unexpected experience here, we got a black and white foto of our’s clicked in a 1906 german camera for only Rs 20! It was a good experience surely!
Built by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh in 1799, its rajputana architecture is truly breath taking! It was built for the women in the royal family keeping in mind the 'purdah' tradition. This structure allowed the women to see the happenings on the streets of jaipur without being seen themselves.
Despite offering a good view we'd advise against going inside, there's only a narrow staircase to the top- both going up and coming down. The crowd and gthe feeling of being trapped up there left us pretty tired!
Built in 1799 by order of Maharajah Sawai Pratap Singh, this pink confection of a building is part of the city palace complex. I call it a pink confection because my first impression of it was that of a giant pink honeycomb cake. The design and shape was meant to resemble that of Krishnas crown. It is built from red and pink sandstone, highlighted with white.
Comprising of 5 stories, there are no stairs- only ramps to ascend.The entrance courtyard has 3 sides of 2 story height, and the eastern (street facing) side is 3 stories high, and has width of exactly one room.
The Front of the Wind Palace has 953 windows, covered with carved lattice filligree windows, which allows a cool breeze to circulate through the building. This frontage was designed so that the ladies of the zenana, (who held strict purdah) were able to look down and watch street activity without themselves being seen.
The architectural style is Rajput (Chatris) but softened with touches of Mughal (delicate curved arches and marble inlay ornamentation.).
There are fine views of Jaipur form the top floor of the building.
Hawa Mahal is the most easily recalled landmarks of Jaipur and is also its icon. Located in the city Palace it is best viewed from the outside for the palace is really a facade. This five-storey building overlooking the busy bazaar street is a stunning example of Rajput architecture and artistry with its pink delicately honeycombed 953 sandstone windows known as 'jharokhas'. It was originally built for the ladies of the royal household to watch everyday life and processions in the city from their veiled comfort.
not to attract tourist
The Hawa Mahal or Palace of the Winds was built upon the orders of poet-king Sawai Pratap Singh in the 18th century and is the most impressive monument in "The Pink City" of Jaipur. It was built as a vantage point so that the women of the palace could watch the royal processions passing through the bazaar behind stone carved mesh like screens.
Open 9am-4.30pm. Closed on Fridays. Was closed for renovation when we were there in July, 2008.
Good photos are best taken across the street where the crafts shops are.