We started our first day in Jaipur at Elefantastic. I had quite a bad experience with elephants in Thailand where they were badly treated, but this was nothing like that. They were all really healthy and well looked after and only half of the elephants are out each day while the other half rest. Our elephant was called Kali. We started with feeding her sugarcane so she could get familiar with us, then painted her with some natural paints, gave her a wash down and went for a ride at sunset. It was a bit of a cheesy touristy thing to do, but it was fun.
We stayed in the most lovely hostel where we had a private room. They had a help yourself breakfast of toast, boiled eggs, jam and chai which we enjoyed out on the rooftop terrace each morning. Our driver, Mr Shabbir picked us up and took us out for the day. Jaipur is known for it's lovely terracotta pink buildings and beautifully painted elephants. We visited the Hawa Mahal, Amber fort, Jal-Mahal and Jantar Mantar (an incredible Astrological park). I bought lots of handmade scarves, bedding, throws, cushions etc. from a wholesaler which I could never fit in my bag so had to post home... I've never seen so many beautiful textiles which they kept bringing to me while I sat and drank chai, it was difficult to just buy one or two of things!
In the afternoon we had drinks at the Peacock rooftop restaurant where everything was a piece of art including the chairs. In the evening we went to Lassiwala where I tried a saffron Lassi and then we watched 'Singh is bling' at the Raj Mandir theatre. This was such a great experience! Raj Mandir is a beautiful old theatre, we went for the best seats which were £3.50 each and were luxurious seats in the front row of the balcony where we were had someone serving drinks and popcorn in the interval. It was the first Bollywood movie I've watched all the way through and it was brilliant... mostly because of the audience who from the moment the previews started went crazy screaming and whooping for every romantic, good looking or fighting scene, it was hilarious! Afterwards we went to Rawats for Pyaz ki kachori (similar to samosa) and Indian sweets.