Located on Cheel ka Teel hill, the Amber Fort is a top tourist attraction in Jaipur. It is situated in a town called Amer and was built in the 16th century. The fort has a glorious past. It attracts tourists in large numbers from all-round the globe. The opening hours of the fort are 9.30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m., every day. But before this information can be of real use to you, let’s read some interesting facts about the fort that compel you to plan your Jaipur Tour.
1. The name comes first, how did the fort get this name: There are two stories behind the fort being called Amber fort. First, it is said that it is been named after Amba Mata, a form of Goddess Durga. Meenas residing in these regions used to believe in Goddess Durga a lot and thereby named the fort. The second story suggests that it has been derived from the name Ambikeshwar, which is considered a form of Lord Shiva.
2. Construction took a century: The construction of Amer Fort was initiated by Raja Man Singh in the late 16th century. However, it got completed in its present form by Swai Jai Singh II and Raja Jai Singh I. This entire time from Raja Man Singh to Swai Jai Singh II and Raja Jai Singh I, covers a period of 100 years.
3. Shila Devi temple: The story behind the temple is intriguing. It is said that Goddess Kali appeared in the dreams of Raja Man Singh and asked him to find her statue on the shores of Jessore (near Bangladesh). Raja did that but instead of a proper idol, he returned to Amer with a big stone. The servants of the king cleaned the stone to find the image of Shila Devi. Henceforth, the temple came into existence with the Shila Devi deity.
4. Sheesh Mahal: It is one of the exotic views inside the fort. The walls of the Sheesh Mahal or Mirror Palace is etched with concave mirrors, redirecting a ray of light in such a way that the entire Sheesh Mahal gets lit up. The Sheesh Mahal has been a favorite spot among Bollywood directors. The song, Pyaar Kiya Toh Darna Kiya from the movie Mughal-E-Azam is shot here.
5. Jaigarh Fort, close to Amer Fort: Situated on the same Cheel ka Teel, the Jaigarh Fort is a fort built for the military of the king staying in Amer Fort. It will fascinate you that there is a 2-km long underground tunnel that connects the two forts. The tunnel was used for evacuation at the time of war. (Wondering about the planning and brains of kings and architects of old times?)
6. Ganesh Pol: It is a spectacular entrance from where the Maharaja used to access the finely crafted palaces inside the fort. While taking a tour of Amer Fort, you will notice a small window on the top level of this facet. You will be surprised to know that the window is just not a part of beautiful architecture nor carved out for ventilation, it is made keeping in mind the females of the Royal family who would want to capture a sight of the events happening in the main hall. The window was the binoculars for the Royal women who were not allowed to appear in public. (Well-thought! Isn’t it?)