Jal Mahal, The Water Palace of Jaipur, India (with Map & Photos)

Considered one of the great icons of the city of Jaipur, Jal Mahal, also known as the Water Palace, is one of the main attractions to discover during any visit to the Pink City of India.

Jal Mahal Water Palace
Jal Mahal Water Palace

What to see in Jal Mahal


The state of Rajasthan, one of the driest in India, has always had a special relationship with water: from the construction of step wells as famous as Chand Baori, to artificial lakes such as Ranisar Talab, in Jodhpur, or the famous Pichola from Udaipur. Examples of "aquatic architecture" in an arid environment where we also find buildings such as the Jal Mahal.

Built in the middle of Lake Man Sagar, what is also known as the Water Palace was born as a dam attempt after an exhausting drought that devastated the area in 1596. Refurbished by different architects, the final touches are attributed to Jai Singh II. The result is a palace as lonely as it is fascinating, today one of the must-see visits during a city tour of Jaipur.

Jal Mahal Water Palace
Jal Mahal Water Palace

Like many other monuments of the Rose City of India, this complex was also built in red sandstone following the pattern of the Rajut and Mughal styles so characteristic of this area of ​​India. The Jal Mahal is a lavish architectural example made up of five floors, four of which are submerged after the increase in the lake's flow due to the rains. In addition, there are also two chhatris (or typical ceremonial pavilion of the area) a few meters from the palace.

Despite its potential, the Jal Mahal remains uninhabited after years of neglect that led to various not very successful reforms. The choice of new materials far from the original style, and the loss of its gardens are some of the consequences that in recent months have led the authorities to rethink a new direction.

Jal Mahal Water Palace
Jal Mahal Water Palace

Although the palace cannot be visited, we do recommend taking a boat with a private guide in order to enjoy the explanations and panoramic views of this complex which, especially at sunset, is the best journey back in time.

Jal Mahal Map