Jaipur - Capital of Rajasthan - the 'Pink City'. Jaipur means "the city of victory" & was founded in 1727 by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II and designed by architect Vidyadhar Bhattacharya in accordance with the principles of town planning set down in "Shilp Shastra" an epochal treatise on the Hindu architecture. This colorful city is enriched with royal tradition & culture, attractive monuments, Forts, Palaces like the Magnificent City Palace, Hawa Mahal, Jantar Mantar, Amer, Nahargarh and Jaigarh fort which are some of the most exquisite blend of Hindu architecture. The whole city was painted pink to welcome the visit of Prince Albert in 1853. City today has a population of more than 5 million residents. Presently, Jaipur is a major business and tourist centre with all the requisites of a metropolitan city. The city covers an area of 200.4 sq. kms and lies at an altitude of 431 m above sea level.
Ranthambore - Ranthambore lies on the easternmost spur of the Aravalis, located near Sawai Madhopur which is 12 kms away. Ranthambore was a private Tiger reserve of the Maharajas of Jaipur. It is studded with Pavilions and Watch Towers. The main attractions here are the National Park and Ranthambore Fort. The Fort also houses the Temple of Lord Ganesha, where annual fair is held on the eve of Ganesh Chaturthi in September. The famous ruler of Ranthambore was Rao Hammir Deo Chauhan who fought against Allauddin Khilji in 1301 AD. Many battles were fought and many rulers won and lost. In the middle of 15th century, Rana Kumbha captured the fort and later handed over to his son. Thereafter, the Hada Chauhans of Bundi and the Mughal Emperors Akbar and Aurangzeb occupied this fort. When Aurangzeb died, the Mughal Emperor Shah Alam gifted it to Sawai Madho Singh I of Jaipur in 1754 and since then it was maintained as the private hunting reserve of the Maharajas of Jaipur. Among the more famous who were part of these hunting parties were Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh. This national park is one of the finest Tiger reserve in the country under the project Tiger. Apart from Tiger this park is a haven to wild animals and birds. Some of the animal species found here are Leopards, Jungle Cats, Sloth Bears, Indian mole Rats, Indian Fox, Toddy Cats, Five striped Palm Squirrels, small Indian Mongoose and in Reptiles - Rat Snakes, Indian Chameleon, North Indian flap shelled Turtles, Indian Pythons and more.
Agra - Agra is a major tourist attraction as it contains one of the Seven Wonders of the World - Taj Mahal. Agra is an ancient city situated on the river Yamuna within the state of Uttar Pradesh. The city has been described as Agraba in the epic Mahabharata. The city was capital of Lodhi Kingdom and later on served the same for Mughals. During 16th and 17th century the city was developed as art, culture, commerce and learning center by Mughal Emperors like Akbar, Jehangir and Shah Jahan. Some wonderful buildings were erected in Agra City by the Mughal’s. Agra city is famous for monuments and crafts. The monuments and crafts have preserved the cultural heritage for centuries.
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