Wind palace or Palace of Breeze, commonly know as Hawa Mahal, is a astounding piece of architecture monument situated in Jaipur (Pink City), Rajasthan. It was built by Maharaja Sawai Pratap singh son of Maharaj Sawai Madhoo Singh in 1799. He was very inspired by marvelous structure of Khetri Mahal built by Maharaja Bhopal Singh of Jhunjhunu. Lal Chand Ustad was the architecture of this crown shaped five-story Rajput-Mughal masterpiece.
Royal women during that era used to follow the Purdah (face covering). This beautiful structure was made for Royal women to witness and enjoy the royal celebration, procession and festival on streets without being seen to anyone so they could follow their customs and tradition. This palace is a part of City palace and there is not any entry gate from Facade side. The facade of building is akin to honeycomb of beehives and has pyramidal shape.The building has carved sandstone grills, arched roofs, domes with finial and tangled design of latticework in windows providing it’s unique crown shape facade.
This unique jem is a fusion of Hindu Rajput and Islamic-Mughal Architecture. Maharaj Sawai Pratap Singh, grandson of Maharaj Sawai Jai singh founder of city Jaipur, was the devotee of lord Krishna and the Palace is designed in lord Krishna’s Crown. With finial, floral patterns, lotus and fluted pillars one can witness the charming Rajput architecure and with dome and arches of roof can be seen as the intricate amalgamation of Mughal Impression on this beautiful monument.
The structure is 50 feet (15 meter) in height with complex latticework on 953 windows (Jhrokhas).. The building was built with red and pink sandstone.The palace does not have any foundation making it the biggest structure in the world. The structure is located near Badi Choupad in south of Jaipur.
Why it was built
There is not any exact history or reason as why it was built but there are some unique features that it has. It is Crown shaped as the Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh was Lord Krishna Devotee and it is also inspired by the Khetri Mahal of Jhunjhunu. It is also said that it was built for Royal women so that they can celebrate the royal celebration, festival, fair and Carnival on street and in city.
Why it is called Hawa Mahal
With intricate lattice work and small windows and unique structure, it allows the air through the small portholes which naturally cools the chamber inside the palace making it cooler outside and airy giving it’s unique name Hawa Mahal. The cool breeze air conditions it in summer making it the favorite place of Maharaj during season. The 5th floor of structure is called Hawa Mandir thus giving it’s unique name Hawa Mahal.
The facade of structure does not have any entry gate and actually is the part of City Palace of Jaipur. One has to enter from City palace side from a beautiful door which opens in a large courtyard to see the other side of Hawa Mahal. There are two-storey buildings on three side and Hawa Mahal structure on eastern side. The fist two stories have large patios before them and there are no stairs and upper three-storey can only be reached by ramps. The courtyard has archaeological museum having rich history of Rajputana. There is pleasing fountain in courtyard making rooms more cooler in summer. The walls of building is less than one foot thick and having no foundation makes it a remarkable example of Rajput architecture.The upper three-storey have the thickness or area of a single room so one can sit and enjoy and city view from inside however the bottom two-storey have the spacious patios before them.
Hawa Mahal is an extension of City palace which itself is one of the excellent example of Rajput architecture. Hawa Mahal is around 5km away from Jal Mahal which is in Mansagar Lake. Amber fort (UNESCO world heritage site) is around 8 km from Hawamahal and easily be reached by Bus , Tuktuk or Taxi. Jantar mantar (astronomical observatories and UNESCO world heritage site ) and Albert Hall Museum are also nearby tourist places.
How to Reach
Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan with having presence of interantional airport in Sanganer just 13km (8mile) away from Hawa mahal. City is well connected with all other major city of india by Train, bus and Air. It is just around 7km from Railway station, one can take taxi,bus, tuktuk or Riksha to easily reach to monument.
Visiting Time, Entry Fee, Open and Closing time
Fee:- 200 INR for foreigner Tourists and 50 INR for Indians
Opening and closing time:-All days 09:00am to 04:30pm
Best Time and Seasons to Visit
Early morning or late evening is the best time to witness the eye-popping structure when the golden rays hits the red and pink sandstone providing unique red flame radiance and glow.
During winter October to February is the best season to visit as you can enjoy the weather and can easily go out in day.
Hawa Mahal Video