Most people travelling to Jaipur know all about the iconic Amer Fort (aka Amber Fort and Amber Palace) and its grand splendour. Being one of the most beautiful places to see in Jaipur and a UNESCO world heritage site too, it is a renowned attraction that is in every Jaipur itinerary (and rightly so). But did you know that there actually is another magnificent site located just besides it, that should be on your radar too?
Known to locals and a few adventure-seeking visitors, the great wall encircling the Amer Fort and parts of Amer town is an underrated albeit picturesque landmark to visit in Jaipur. Also referred to as the Amer Fort Viewpoint and the Amer Wall; it is a few kilometres long fortification with an array of pictorial watchtowers to sit and admire the pleasant surroundings from.
So, if you are visiting Jaipur and are interested in exploring a hidden gem that also happens to be one of the best sunrise and sunset spots in the city, then don’t forget to head to Amer and climb to the top of the wall. Along with an unobstructed view of the Amer Fort itself, you will also be amazed to get a unique bird eye’s perspective of Amer town, Jal Mahal, the Aravalli Mountains and the city of Jaipur from there.
The great wall of Amer might not be the easiest place to get to in Jaipur, but with the right information, it can certainly be less challenging. As a local who has been there plenty of times, I am happy to share all my tips with you. In this post, you will find information about the starting point of Amer Fort Viewpoint, best time to visit, how to get there and other practical recommendations.
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What is the Great Wall of Amer?
The Amer wall is a beautiful line of defence on the jagged ridges of the hills surrounding the Amer Fort and Amer town. It was built by the erstwhile rulers of Amer to keep the invaders from entering Amer, the then capital of Rajasthan. Consisting of several watchtowers, steps and walls located on a great height; it is a rampart that was useful to soldiers in keeping a vigil on the surrounding hills and areas.
The exact year when the great wall of Amer was constructed remains unidentified. But since the Amer Fort itself was built in the 16th century, the wall also is believed to be at least a few hundred years old. It is also likely that it was built in parts over a period of a few years. Stretching along some nearby villages, forests and the town of Amer – the great wall of Amer used to be many kilometres long.
Unfortunately, nearly 50% of it has either crumbled or disappeared entirely today. The precise length of the wall cannot be known due to the missing sections, but the length of it is presumed to be at least in 3 figures. Although there are many parts of the wall, the fraction besides the Amer Fort is in the best condition and is good to visit.
As a person fond of its unique architecture and all that it resembles, I do hope that more attention and action is given to restoring and maintaining the Amer Wall going forwards.
Did you know? The Great Wall of Amer is said to be the third longest wall in the world. The second longest in the world is the rampart of Kumbhalgarh Fort which is also in Rajasthan, India. And the first is, of course, the Great Wall of China in China.
Where exactly is it located?
The Amer Wall is situated in the town of Amer near Jaipur. Amer is at a distance of 11 kilometres (6.8 miles) from the city of Jaipur and 22 kilometres (13.7 miles) from the Jaipur International Airport.
The wall of Amer can be seen along the mountain ridgelines from many places in Amer town. There are a few available hikes that visitors coming to Amer can do and they each provide unique viewpoints and perspectives. Though the most beautiful (and Instagrammable), is the section with watchtowers directly opposite the Amer Fort. Here is the Google Maps location for it.
CG’s tip: Since the great wall of Amer is located in close proximity to Amer Fort, it is best to combine your visit to both of them together. If you have more time, then you can explore the many temples and stepwells around the town too.
How to best reach the Amer Fort Viewpoint?
In order to climb the Amer Fort Viewpoint, you will first need to arrive at the front parking of Amer Fort. Amer Fort is around a 20-minute drive eastwards of Jaipur and can be reached by the following transport options:
If you are exploring Jaipur on a budget, then getting a bus to Amer Fort is the cheapest available option. Buses in Jaipur run every day between Hawa Mahal (in the old city) and Amer Fort at an interval of 10 minutes. You can choose between a non-AC or an AC bus, which are priced at INR 15 and INR 30 respectively.
CG’s tip: If you are planning to visit the Amer Fort Viewpoint for sunrise, then buses might not be available that early. I would recommend double-checking the timetable a day prior to your visit, or to use one of the other modes of transport on your way to Amer and get a bus on the way back.
Auto-rickshaws (or tuk-tuks) are king in India and the same remains true for Jaipur. Irrespective of the area you are coming from or the time of travel, chances are an auto-rickshaw would always be attainable close by. In fact, there is even a big taxi-stand by the front entrance of Amer Fort from where you can easily get a standby auto-rickshaw for the way back.
The prices for these vary depending on the distance, but are usually around INR 200-250 from/to the old city. Just remember to not agree to the first quoted price and bargain a little bit. If you would rather pre-book an auto-rickshaw to save time, then you can also reserve them a day in advance or ask your hotel to arrange one for you.
CG’s tip: Although auto-rickshaws are plenty in Jaipur, it can be difficult to find one in quieter areas if you are looking to visit before sunrise. It is best to book one a night prior, either in person or online on Ola or Uber.
Getting a taxi is the most comfortable way to get to Amer Fort and its viewpoint. You can use the Uber or Ola app on your smart phone and have a taxi pick you up almost anywhere in Jaipur. Uber in India operates similarly to other parts of the world and is often cheaper for one way rides compared to Ola, its Indian counterpart.
However, during times when there is a price surge or higher demand, getting an Ola can be cheaper or faster. If you are looking to cover several spots in Jaipur at once, then I would recommend hiring an Ola taxi for the entire day or a few hours. Depending on how far away you plan to go or the time period, you can book a taxi according to the km or hours required.
Irrespective of which cab aggregator company you use to get to Amer Wall, the prices are mostly similar to those of auto-rickshaws available on the streets. But if you like to save more, then you can even book auto-rickshaws or two-wheeler taxis from the Ola app.
CG’s tip: Taxis booked via an online platform are even more convenient if you don’t speak the local language. You can check the route on your phone screen and confirm that the driver is taking you to the right destination. It also guarantees that you won’t be given an inflated price simply because you are a tourist.
If you are exploring Jaipur in your own vehicle, then you can also drive to Amer Fort and access the viewpoint from there. The nearest parking is that of Amer Fort itself and the starting point of the climb to the wall is just beside it.
And since most tourists travelling to India get a private taxi that stays with them for the duration of the trip, you can also ask the same driver or guide to bring you to Amer Wall. You can check packages for private taxis in India here.
Renting A Motorbike
Renting a motorbike is the least popular option by far. But if you plan to explore sections of the Amer Wall that are best accessed by two-wheeler vehicles or just love to drive them, then this might be ideal for you.
You can hire a motorbike for around INR 400 a day from many places in Jaipur. Just remember that in some areas the road is winding and there can be blind turning points in and around Amer (especially en route to Nahargarh Fort), so only rent a motorbike if you are an experienced rider.
How to get to the top of the Amer Fort Viewpoint?
Once you have reached the Amer Fort, you will find yourself on the main road of the town that is at the foot of the fort. The Amer Fort viewpoint is located directly opposite the fort. Its watchtowers and path can even be seen from the main drop off point for the fort. The entrance to access the staircase leading to the top of Amer Wall is situated just across the street.
There is a small Dargarh (shrine) of light blue colour opposite Amer Fort and the way to the top goes through there. You will need to enter the Dargarh by climbing a few steps and then go left towards the main stairs of the wall, which are a few metres away on the right-hand side. From there onwards, the path is straightforward and you will need to climb the over 350 steep stairs to reach the top.
Due to the ancient infrastructure and the elevation, you may feel your legs working out with each stair you climb. If that happens, just have a look behind and see the view of Amer Fort to get yourself going. You can even sit on a step and take a break for a few minutes.
The entire climb usually takes most physically fit people around 20-25 minutes to reach the top. If you are an avid hiker, then you may even be able to do it in a little less time. In order to ensure that you don’t miss the sunrise or sunset, I would recommend to start climbing 30-45 minutes prior to when you would like to be at the top.
CG’s tip: It is one of the few places in Jaipur that can be seen free of charge. In case somebody stops you to ask to pay a fee, just know it is a tourist trap and you don’t have to give them anything.
Best time to visit?
The best time to visit Jaipur and most of its attractions is during the winter months of October to February. October is when the tourists start coming into the city after summer and monsoon, so if you want to experience decent weather with minimal crowds then it would be the ideal time to visit here before the peak season.
The temperature in Rajasthan can be really intense during the summer, so I would not recommend climbing the wall of Amer in the strong desert heat. Afternoons in Jaipur sometimes go as high as 47 degrees Celsius, and with the altitude, the Amer Fort viewpoint only tends to feel worse.
Although monsoon is better in terms of the weather, it is also not ideal to visit the Amer Wall. The already uneven and arduous stairs to the top often become slippery after rainfall and can be dangerous to climb. Due to the continuous showers, sometimes algae also forms on the steps and makes it even worse.
There have also been incidents related to lightning accidents at the Amer Fort watchtowers. Some people have unfortunately lost their lives because of it recently, so please visit during the proper season and remain at a safe distance from the edges at all times.
Is sunrise better or sunset?
This is something that I get asked most often. Since the Amer Fort Viewpoint is both a beautiful sunrise and sunset spot, a lot of people often get confused between which one to go for. Honestly speaking, I think the answer depends on person to person.
If you like having places all to yourself and don’t mind the early wake up call, then sunrise is definitely quieter. It may also be the best time to take photos at Amer Wall because the sun rises from the opposite side and its soft light reflects wonderfully on Amer Fort. Due to this lovely golden glow, the fort looks even more photogenic for the first few hours of the day.
Additionally, sunrise also means that you can enjoy the walkaway at the top for longer. Unlike sunset, it won’t get dark in a couple of minutes, so you can take your time capturing the many perspectives and then take a seat at one of the watchtowers and enjoy the pleasant surroundings. Nevertheless, going for sunrise does mean that you will have to climb up when it is still dark.
Sunset, on the other hand, is favourable if you want to climb the stairs during daylight. The sun sets behind Amer Fort and turns the sky all shades of orange. It is a great period to capture some beautiful sun flares with the Amer Fort. And after the sun sets, you can also take some picturesque photos of the city of Jaipur with all its lights turned on.
However, do note that more people visiting the Amer in the day are heading to the viewpoint for sunset nowadays. Because of this, the two watchtowers present at the top can get a little busy in peak season. Moreover, even though there are no set opening times for the wall of Amer, you might have to rush back down because of the dark.
CG’s tip: If you are visiting both the Amer Fort and Amer Wall in one trip, then it may be better to go at sunrise. Amer Fort is a relatively big landmark and if you aren’t used to walking much, it can tire you to climb the wall afterwards.
Some things to know before visiting the Amer Wall
The Great Wall of Amer is an attraction that has only recently started becoming popular amongst tourists. There is barely any information about it online, so here are some points that could help you better plan your trip there:
- Make sure to wear comfortable shoes. The steps leading to the top can be uneven and slippery in some areas, so it will be easier for you to climb the wall in shoes.
- Remember to take a reusable water bottle with you. The way to the top and back can be tiring, so chances are that you will need something to keep you hydrated. If you are planning to stay for long, then you can also take some snacks but always get everything back with you and make sure to not litter.
- Regardless of when you choose to visit the Amer Fort, make sure to not climb the wall during the mid-day and afternoon hours. The journey will only be more tiresome and you will feel even hotter at the top.
- If going up at dawn or climbing down after dark, then you can also take a headlight or torch with you. I personally find the torch on my smartphone to work just fine!
- You might find this wall being called the Jaipur wall online, but that is simply untrue. The city of Jaipur is a walled city and the wall surrounding it is the Jaipur wall. The Amer Wall, on the other hand, is in Amer town (which is a few km away from the old city of Jaipur) and is much more ancient.
- And last but not least, the Amer Wall follows the ridgelines of the mountains around Amer, so always remain careful when there and do not stand on the edges for just photos. The fall on the other side is really deep into the valley and can be really dangerous.
The Amer Fort Viewpoint is a photographer’s paradise in every sense of the word. With watchtowers made in the beautiful chattris (dome shaped pavilions) style, incredible views of Amer Fort, Aravalli Mountains, Amer Town and the city of Jaipur – it is almost impossible to not want to take photos when visiting here. Below are some tips that might be helpful if you are looking to photograph it:
- The Amer Fort viewpoint is one of the very few places in Jaipur where you can use a tripod. Most of the touristic sights in the country (yes, including the Amer Fort itself) actually have a ban on tripods and you need to get special permissions to use them. Nonetheless, it can be windy at the top, so it might be better to have someone to keep an eye on it.
- The Amer Wall is also one of the few places where you can fly a drone in Jaipur. The lines and curves formed by the ramparts here are particularly amazing for aerial shots and make for a great subject.
- Even though sunrise is not a busy time in general, it is always good to know that the walkway is actually bigger than one would expect and that there are many photo points to cover. Just make sure to get creative and try different angles while you wait for others to leave.
- Also, do not forget to bring a zoom lens if you have one. The watchtowers are further away from each other and are best captured with a telephoto lens.
- A wide-angle lens is also a great idea if you are interested in shooting the arch and the perspective in the picture below. There actually is not enough space to go back when taking this shot, so a wide-angle lens can be helpful.
- If you want to take photos in a nice flowy dress, then please don’t climb the uneven stairs wearing it. There are not many people on the top usually, so you can always hike in comfortable clothes and change later.
- In case you are deciding about what colours to wear; red, white and yellow contrast beautifully against the stone colour of the wall. However, anything bright with a solid colour would work well.
- And lastly, remember to keep an eye on your equipment at all times. The Amer wall is becoming a rather popular photography spot, so it is always better to be safe than sorry.
Other places to see in Amer
Even though the Great Wall of Amer can take a while to see, there are also other places in Amer town that you can check out when there. As the historic capital of Rajasthan, the town of Amer houses many hidden gems that are worth seeing too. Here are some of my favourite sites that you can consider near Amer Wall:
I know it goes without saying, but the Amer Fort is a beautiful place that should be on the very top of your Jaipur to-see list. Being one of the most Instagrammable places in Jaipur, it is an iconic landmark that also happens to be just across the road from the Amer wall.
CG’s tip: The Amer Fort opens at 8 am every day, so you can go to the viewpoint to watch the sunrise first and then continue onto the fort. The ticket price is INR 100 for Indians and INR 500 for foreign visitors.
Panna Meena Ka Kund
Panna Meena Ka Kund is a symmetrical stepwell in Amer and another must see spot in Jaipur. It was built in the 17th century to collect and store rainwater. Today, it is an ancient reservoir that also happens to be one of the most photogenic places in India.
Panna Meena Ka Kund is located at a driving distance of 5 minutes from Amer Wall. The entrance is free of charge and it will only take you a few minutes to see it as it is just one stepwell. Just note that it is not allowed to go on the steps without obtaining permission anymore.
CG’s tip: There is also a lesser known temple called Ambikeshwar Mahadev Temple that is just opposite this stepwell. If you are interested, you can check it out for free too.
Jagat Shiromani Temple
Jagat Shiromani temple is also near Panna Meena Ka Kund. Built in the 1600s by Queen Kankawati, it is an extremely peaceful sight full of striking stone carvings. It is located near the back entrance of Amer Fort.
CG’s tip: Although it is free to visit the Jagat Shiromani Temple, you may be asked to pay a fee for videography when visiting. But, if you are taking just photos, then you don’t have to pay any charges.
There are of course other places to see in Amer town like Nahargarh Fort, Jaigarh Fort, Anokhi Museum and so on. But since it is not possible to visit all of them together, the above four are what I would recommend you to combine in one trip. You can read best places to see in Jaipur post for more information.
I hope you found this guide about the great wall of Amer helpful. It is one of my favourite hidden gems in Jaipur and I hope that you like it too. If you have any further questions or doubts about visiting the Amer Fort viewpoint, then please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. I would love to hear from you!
Want to keep reading? You might like “A Local’s Guide To The Best Instagrammable Spots In Jaipur” and “Staying at Alila Fort Bishangarh in Jaipur, India” too.
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