Day 2 in Jaipur!
We had a blast today exploring more of the Pink City. We began the morning with 8:15breakfast. Jas Vilas has a dining room in the morning where we can order toast, eggs, and pancakes. They even make fresh orange juice! We met Deependra, our fantastic tour guide, at 9:15 in the lobby. From there we hopped into the bus and headed to the City Palace of Jaipur! It is home to the royal family of Rajasthan and it was converted into a museum. We walked around and explored a couple of the exhibits, including carriages used to pull the royal family and even armory. My favorite exhibit was a big room that had giant pictures of the royal family on the walls and a beautiful chandelier over two silver thrones. Unfortunately, pictures were not allowed in the galleries! While we were walking out, a we got to see a cute puppet show! The music was fun and we all enjoyed it.
Next we headed to a print store where someone gave us a quick painting demonstration. He used such tiny brushes and showed us how he painted an elephant! We had the opportunity to walk around and shop. I bought the cutest hand-painted postcard with elephants on it.
We walked to the Jantar Mantar monument to see all of the architectural astronomical instruments built by the Rajput king Sawai Jai Singh II. The world's largest stone sundial is there, and we got to see it and measure the time! Next we walked to Hawa Mahal, which is a palace that is built so that the women can look out of the windows and see the festivals on the streets. We loved going up to the highest floor and looking out on the city.
By this time we were hot and starving! So we got lunch at Heritage Spices. Everyone enjoyed their meals and it was a great opportunity for everyone to cool off. Next, we went back to the store where everyone bought their saris to pick up the finished products! Many people on the trip wanted to street shop, so we spent the next couple of hours buying pants, skirts, scarves, jewelry, tea, and spices! While we were wandering the streets, there was a sand storm and even some rain! It was nice and refreshing after such a hot day.
After relaxing at the hotel for about 45 minutes, we went to our cooking lesson. It was at the home of a family who lives in Jaipur. The husband was a farmer, and the family ate food that he grew on his farm 65 km away. The wife was a chef and she has been featured in multiple magazines and articles around the world; however, she is not considered a professional chef, which makes her accomplishments even more special. We had the opportunity to make stuffed eggplant and dal. We even rolled out and cooked roti! At the end we got to eat the food we made plus a couple of other traditional Indian dishes.
Today was so much fun and we got a true taste of Jaipur!