What is Amer Fort? – Amer Fort is a fort located in Amer Town of Jaipur, Rajasthan. Amber or Amer Fort is located high on Aravali hills adjacent to Maotha Lake. While entering the capital city Jaipur from Delhi via road Amer Fort welcomes everyone in a majestic way.
The bright yellow colored Amer Fort is the most popular tourist destination of Jaipur. Amer is famous for its rich history, mansions, heritage and architectural monuments.
Where is Amer Fort?
Amer Fort is in Amer town of Jaipur district. Amer fort is 11 kms away from walled city of Jaipur in the valley of Aravali hills.
Amer is one of the three forts in Jaipur. Before Jaipur was built, Amer was the capital of Dhundhar state. Amer Fort is 260 kms away from Delhi by road on NH 48.
History of Amer Fort
History of Amer Fort dates back to 9th century. Amer was founded by Raja Alan Singh. Alan Singh was from Chanda Clan of Meena community.
Question – When was Amer Fort built?
Answer – It is claimed by historians that Amer Fort was founded in 967 CE.
Question – Who built Amer Fort?
Answer – Although, Amer Fort was founded by Meena King Alan Singh ji, what we see today is the fort built by Rajput Kachwaha kings on remnants of earlier structures.
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Firstly, Amer Fort was built on remnants by Raja Man Singh of Amer. Later Jai Singh l expanded much of the fort. Later successors of Kachwaha kings expanded and improved the fort for 150 years. The first style fort structure was built by Raja Kakil Dev on the present day Jaigarh Fort.
Before Jaipur, Amber was known as Dhundhar State and in 1036 Amer was capital of Dhundhar State.
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- 967 CE – Meena King Raja Alan Singh of Chandra Clan founded Amber
- 1036 – First Rajput structures were made by Raja Kakil Dev of Kachwaha Rajput clan
- 1600 – Kachwaha King Raja Jai Singh l expanded much of the fort into present day structure. Ganesh Pol and Diwan-i-Khas in Amber Palace of Rajasthan were built in era of Raja Man Singh l. And for 150 years other successors contributed to the fort.
- 1727 AD – Jaipur was established and capital of Kachwaha rulers was shifted from Amber to Jaipur.
Question – How old is Amber Fort?
Answer – Built in 967 CE a portion of Amber Fort Kadimi Mahal is oldest surviving palace in India.
Attractions in Amber Fort
Amer is epitome of Rajput royalty and culture. Amer fort is perfect example of Rajput Military Hill architecture. Strategically built over ‘Cheel ka Teela’ (meaning home of high flying hawks), it signifies the elevation of the fort. On one side of the fort is Maotha Lake and other side is protected by thick forest.
The architectural marvel of Amer Fort is made of red sandstone, marble and big stone blocks. The bright yellow colour of fort shines when sun rays fall on it. The large fort contrasts with Maotha Lake and surrounding thick forests.
- Suraj Pole Gate – The main entry gate to the fort is called Suraj Pole gate as it faces east. The huge entry gate signifies the prosperity and ensures proper passage for elephants. The suraj pol gate was used by armies to march in after victories in war.
- Jaleb Chowk – Jaleb Chowk in Arabic means Army’s assembly point. Jaleb Chowk in Amer Fort was used for armies, horses and elephants. Kings and generals used to inspect the march and received salutes by armies in this place. This is one of the four courtyards in Amer Fort.
- Ganesh Pol – The courtyard of Jaleb Chowk leads to Ganesh Pol. Ganesh Pol is another fascinating gate of Amer Fort. It is painted with murals of Hindu gods. The gate is named after and dedicated to Lord Ganesh who is the god of prosperity in Indian culture. The gate is built in Mughal Rajput style and it is the main entry gate to private palace in Amer Fort. Suhag Mandir above the Ganesh Pol was used by ladies of Royal family to see ceremonies held in Diwan-i-Am through latticed windows.
- Sheesh Mahal – Sheesh Mahal lkiterally means Palace of mirrors. Inside the Ganesh Pol of Amer Fort, on one side is Sheesh mahal. The building is covered with thousands of convex shaped mirrors. The wall and even the ceilings are covered with mirrors which produces glittering reflections in night. Sheesh Mahal was built by Man Singh in 16th Century.
- Diwan-i-Am/Diwan-i-Khas – Diwan-i-Am is public audience hall. This courtyard is built with two even columns with 27 colonnades. Diwan-i-Am was used by king to hear grievances and petitions of general public. Diwan-i-Khas was used for discussions with elites.
- Sila Devi Temple – Maharaja Man Singh l of Amber lost a battle against king Kedar of Pratapaditya in East Bengal. He prayed for victory to goddess Kali. Goddess Kali blessed him in dream and the result was overturned. Maharaja Man Singh l established his shrine in Amber in devotion. The idol of Sila or Shila which means stone slab was recovered from sea and later brought to Amber. Thus, the goddess is named Shila Mata.
History of Shila Mata Temple
The temple of Shila Mata was built in 1580AD. Temple is open for devotees everyday from 6 in the morning to 12 in day and from 4 pm in evening to 8 pm in Night.
As, the Shakti is seated in the temple special puja is performed during Navratri days. This temple is a place of religious importance to Jaipur and thousands of devotees come to the temple during Navratri days.
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Until 1980, animal sacrifice was practiced in temple before government declared it illegal by law.
Elephant ride in Amber Fort Jaipur
The most attractive features of Amer fort is elephant ride. Riding an elephant up hill on the zigzag cobbled paths of the fort gives a lifetime memory to riders. Cow elephants are used for the ride as they are calmer than bull elephants. These decorated elephants start from downhill and drop the riders in one of the courtyards of Amer fort.
Total duration of Elephant ride in Amer Mahal front takes from 30 minutes to 45 minutes. Elephant ride in Amer fort costs INR 1200 per person.
There are around 80 elephant doing rides in Amber Fort. The number of trips per elephant per elephant are fixed and most of the days all the trips are over by 12 in day time.
To avoid queues and hassles plan to reach the fort early in the morning before 9 am when the rides start. The cost of elephant ride is fixed by government.
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Lately, Government has taken initiatives to stop possible animal cruelty. Thus, every elephant needs to get regular medical checkups.
Light and Sound show in Amer Front
Government has attempted to revive glorious past, culture and traditions of Amer in Light and Sound show. This attempt puts Amer fort on the list of night tourism in Jaipur.
Timing of light and sound show in Amer fort of Jaipur:–
|Amer Fort Show (Month)||Light and Sound show (English)||Light and Sound show (Hindi)|
|October to February||6:30 PM||7:30 PM|
|March to April||7:00 PM||8:00 PM|
|May to September||7:30 PM||8:30 PM|
Price – 200 INR for Foreigners and 100 INR for Indians
Timing of Amer Fort – Amer fort opens for tourist at 8:30 AM in the morning and closes at 6:00 PM in the evening.
Now cycling tours to Amer Fort are facilitated by many companies in Jaipur.
How to reach Amer Fort?
Amer Fort is 11 KMs away from walled city of Jaipur on the way towards Delhi. It is well connected to most parts of Jaipur by buses, autos and cabs. For Adventure seekers, bikes on rent in Jaipur are also available.
Nearest railway Station – Jaipur Railway Station 21 kms
Nearest Airport – Sanganer Aiport, Jaipur 24.6 kms.
It takes at least, 2-3 hours to visit Amer Fort.
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