Magical Hues of the Hawa Mahal, or The Palace of Winds in Questions and Answers

A couple of weeks ago I was fortunate to make my way to the Hawa Mahal – an iconic monument in Jaipur that had been on my bucket list for a long time. While being genuinely impressed by one of the most recognized monuments in India, I find it quite difficult to write about such a  popular subject. However, below you’ll find some questions and answers I’ve put together for the first timers or anyone who’s curious 🙂

When was the palace built? The magnificent structure was constructed of red and pink sandstone in 1799 during the reign of Sawai Pratap Singh, a Kachwaha ruler of Jaipur.

Who designed the palace? Shaped like a huge Lord Krishna’s crown, Hawa Mahal is the result of creative ideas of the talented architect Lal Chand Ustav.

What was the purpose of this structure? It allowed the ladies of the palace to observe the street life without being noticed by passers-by. The royal women had 953 (!) tiny windows at their disposal to choose the most comfortable location in order to watch parades, processions and random drama on the streets. With myriads of windows and overhanging enclosed balconies, the Hawa Mahal’s facade resembles a honeycomb of a beehive.

    Why is it called the palace of Winds? The structure is located at the edge of the huge City Palace complex. Its countless windows allowed the air to pass through, providing some relief during the hottest time of the year. The width of the palace’s top floors is no more than a single room, which makes it’s easier for the wind to reach the area behind. Generally speaking, the Hawa Mahal is an enormous ornamental screen decorated with astounding latticework.

Are the Hawa Mahal’s interiors as beautiful as the facade? It’s a matter of personal preference, of course,  but I found the chambers of the Hawa Mahal rather simple compared to the interiors of the City Palace of Jaipur and many other royal residences  I’ve visited throughout India. The main attraction of the Palace of Winds lies within its striking exterior. However,  the chambers do have some lovely columns, arches, and stained glass windows that let the sunlight fall through in beautiful hues. Another interesting feature of the Hawa Mahal’s interior is the use of ramps instead of stairs. It seems the royal ladies’ outfits and jewelry were so heavy that it was almost impossible to walk, so they had to be wheeled around.

Recommended for you: Udaipur City Palace quick facts and photos

What is the best time to visit the Hawa Mahal? I would suggest avoiding the weekends in order to ditch the crowds. The number of people was rather intimidating when I visited the monument and it took a great deal of patience to take some “deserted” pictures. Also, the air temperature is on your side if you make a trip to Jaipur between November and February.  Do come early in the morning to see the golden rays of the sun creating interesting color effects on the Hawa Mahal’s gorgeous ren-and-pink façade. The monument is open from 9.00 am to 4.30 pm in all days, and the ticket price is Rs 50 for Indians and Rs 200 for foreign visitors.

And now I’m letting the photos speak for themselves. Enjoy!

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal  Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal

Hawa Mahal Hawa Mahal Hawa Mahal Hawa Mahal Hawa Mahal Hawa Mahal Hawa Mahal
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22 thoughts on “Magical Hues of the Hawa Mahal, or The Palace of Winds in Questions and Answers

  1. The captures are magnificent!! There is only one suggestion though Antonia, to make your beautiful shots vivid and pop out, kindly keep the background of website plain white. Because the background also fights for visual attention, so the images will not be able to reveal its true beauty that it holds.
    Just a humble suggestion that’s all. Really loved your post!

    • Oh, so sorry to hear that, Tara. Actually, the background of my site is pale yellow and it doesn’t interfere with the images. But sometimes, with slower internet connections, it fails to load. Thanks a lot for reporting the problem, I’ll try to improve the site’s visual aspect.

  2. I love those brightly coloured facades. It really sets it apart from much of the neutral tones that so many buildings in India have. Amazing to think that architecture like that could have withstood over 200 years!

    • To be honest, I was a bit intimidated by the thought of visiting oh so touristic Jaipur, but the beauty of its iconic monuments is worth all the hustle and bustle.

  3. Wow! It looks great in there.
    I visited Jaipur when there was no entry into the Hawa Mahal. So I got to see it only from the outside. 🙁

    Must see it!! 🙂
    Thank you for the pictures.

  4. OMG. It really is breathtaking. I have to ask about photography though: did you find that there were a lot of restrictions to photographing inside the palace? I’ve heard from others that they’ve faced interesting bars throughout India when it comes to photography.

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