Warning, this blog entry is photo-heavy. I am too attached to my images. It was heartbreaking to edit them out. So here are the ones that made the cut. There are hundreds more in my iPhoto. But for purposes of story-telling, these will do. I had to split the article so I wouldn’t slow down your screen. Please click on “Read more” below to see the entire photo blog after the jump.
Like I said, this was a whirlwind tour of India. I always considered myself a traveller rather than a tourist. Patrick and I like to stay at places for 5 to 7 days, with no planned itinerary. We do the must-sees then we avoid tourist traps. The rest of the time, we try to live like locals. My mother always told me to see local markets and places of worship to get a taste of a new place. This trip was not like that. I joined a tour group for the first time.
I was with a bigger group. The itinerary was well-planned and tight. Our days were packed with all the must-sees. Plus, factor-in the land travel time between Delhi, Jaipur, Agra and back to Delhi, this “road trip” left very little time to explore local shops and markets. But my little group of friends are resourceful. We pooled our talents together and we were able to do micro trips to specific shops. More on that in future posts.
I know most people wanted to see the Taj Mahal. And let me tell you, it is breathtakingly beautiful. It’s has always been on my list. But this trip, for me, was really all about Jaipur. I’ve always been fascinated with Jaipur and the region of Rajasthan.
We arrived in Delhi in the middle of the night, like at 2AM. Then we boarded our bus to Jaipur. It normally takes 4-6 hours by land depending on who you talk to. Ours took much longer because trucks were out during the night, hence slower speeds and heavy road traffic. Our driver probably deserves an entire entry about him, haha, but I’ll spare you the gory details. Just look at the first photo. Yes, he hit “something” on the way to Jaipur. We don’t know what it was. All we heard was a freaky shatter of glass. Then we all went back to sleep.
All along I thought the town was named after amber – the gem stone. But it is actually pronounced “Amer”. Amber is about 11 kilometers from the city of Jaipur in the state of Rajasthan. This was the capital of the ruling clan of Kachhawa from 1037 to 1727AD after which it moved to Jaipur.
Upon entering the gates of Amber Fort, we saw this woman dressed in colourful clothing cleaning the rocky floor by the gates. This was a common sight inside the walls. (Annoyed that this was saved in low-res, grrr).
Claudette Vitug and Ingrid aka the baghag.