Jaipur, popularly known as the Pink City, was founded in 1727 AD by one of the greatest rulers of the Kachhawaha clan, the astronomer king Sawai Jai Singh. The pink color was used at the time of making to create an impression of red sandstone buildings of Mughal cities - and repainted in 1876, during the visit of the Prince of Wales. The city is best explored on foot and the adventurous visitor willing to go into the inner lanes can discover a whole new world not visible to the tourist-in-a-hurry.
Places of interest are mainly located within the walled city. The City Palace complex is the most important landmark with its numerous outbuildings, courtyards, impressive gateways and temples. Across the road from the palace is the Jantar Mantar one of the five observatories built by Sawai Jai Singh. A collection of complex astronomical instruments, chisseled out of stone- most of which continue to provide fairly accurate information to this day - is the highlight of this observatory Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) adjoins the outside of the palace wall.
Built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh, the Hawa Mahal is a remarkable structure which overlooks one of the main streets and also provides some excellent views of the city. In the not-too-distant past, ladies of the court found it convenient to watch the activities on the streets below without being observed themselves.