Happy Free Friday! Looking for fun and free things to do while traveling in India? You’ve come to the right place. Keep reading to learn about a tranquil temple complex off the beaten tourist path near Jaipur, India.
India is a land of astounding architecture, intense color, and sacred mysteries, and no place displays this better than Jaipur. This enthralling and chaotic city is Rajasthan’s capital and showcases the history, culture, and spirituality that define this ancient country. But for travelers who need a break from the mayhem of busy streets and tourist hordes, turn to the east, where one of Jaipur’s hidden gems sits tucked away in the Aravalli Hills: Galtaji.
Galtaji is a complex of temples, shrines, and pools that were built by Diwan Rao Kriparam in the 18th century. It has become a famous pilgrimage site for Hindus seeking to worship Lord Krishna, Lord Ram, and Lord Hanuman and be cleansed in the sacred “kunds” (water tanks) filled by natural springs.
Sacred Pool at Galtaji Temple
The most famous attraction in the complex is the Temple of Galtaji, constructed with pink sandstone and surrounded on all sides by the Aravalli Hills. Inside, visitors will find painted walls, round roofs, and intricate pillars. Travelers can also explore Surya Mandir (The Sun Temple), which offers stunning panoramic views of the city and surrounding hills for those willing to make the hike. And don’t miss the Galta Kund, considered the holiest of all the kunds and believed to never go dry. Hanuman Temple, made famous by the hundreds of monkeys that call it home, is another must-see of this sprawling complex.
Descent into Galtaji
Travelers who journey here will be surrounded by calm pools, lush vegetation, soothing religious chants, and lots of monkeys. Several tribes of macaques and langurs wander freely and cause all sorts of mischief, so keep all snacks well sealed and stowed away. Whether you’re seeking spiritual fulfillment or are just a curious traveler, Galtaji is a fantastic (and free) way to spend a day in Jaipur. Just make sure to watch out for the monkeys!