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Galtaji Temple Jaipur: A Monkey Temple of India

8 mins. read

Cover photo Mitchell Ng Liang an

Monkeys have played a significant role in the history of our ancient land. Be it the mythological army of monkeys led by Lord Hanuman in the Ramayana or Mahatma Gandhi’s philosophy of the three wise monkeys during the Indian freedom struggle, these langurs have been part of our cultural heritage for a long time. Galtaji Temple in Jaipur is reputed to have a huge number of monkeys residing within its complex. It is because of this reason that an entire episode was dedicated to the National Geographic series “Rebel Monkeys”. Since then, tourists from all over the world have been intrigued by the Monkey Temple in Jaipur city. As one of the most popular travel destinations in the country, Jaipur welcomes millions of visitors each year. Awe-struck by its historical background, monuments, food, and culture, travellers cherish their time in this city. The Galtaji Temple in Jaipur has become popular in recent years due to its quaint location and serene environment. Mentioned below are some interesting facts about the Monkey Temple in Jaipur, India: -

History of the Temple 

One of the most sought-after places to visit in Jaipur is the Galtaji Temple due to its archaic relevance for the Hindu community. It is believed that Saint Galtav practiced tapasya (penance) here for many decades during the Satya Yuga. It is in honour of this holy saint that the temple was built by a Rajput advisor, Diwan Rao Kriparam. He is said to have been very close to the then Rajput ruler, Sawai Jai Singh II. In the fifteenth century, the yogis practicing meditation at this temple were driven away by Payohari Krishnadas, a Ramanandi sadhu. His followers who belong to the Vaishnava Ramanuja sect gained control of the Galtaji Temple in Jaipur where they also constructed several other facilities. It is also observed as the governing office of the Vaishnava tradition in India. During the Mughal era, Emperor Akbar, known for secular ideology, visited this temple as well. When his wishes came true, he was so elated that he allotted 2592 bighas(acres) of land for further development of the temple complex also known as Shri Galtaji Peetham. Besides this, legend has it that the author of the Ramayana, Tulsidas, spent some significant time at Galtaji Temple in Jaipur to write a few chapters of the book.

Architecture Within the Premises 

As we all know, Jaipur has been an important city in North India during the medieval era, especially during the rule of the Mughals. Due to this phenomenon, the architectural style of most palaces and monuments in this city has a blend of Rajputana and Mughal architecture. In the case of the Monkey Temple in Jaipur, pink sandstone, a hallmark of this city, has been used. Set on a mountain pass in the Aravalli range, the magnificence of this holy shrine can be felt as soon as you spot it from afar. Surrounded by plum trees and bushes, the sheer brilliance of this temple’s architecture is enhanced by the natural water springs and kunds (water tanks) within its complex. Jaipur’s Galtaji Temple is distinctive in nature because it has not been constructed like other Hindu temples in the country. Inspiration has been taken from a haveli in order to create a grand ambience of this temple. In order to reach this temple from Jaipur, the Galta Gate was also constructed 150 years ago. As one of the few remaining Old City Gates, it is popular among history buffs and architecture enthusiasts.

Best Time to Visit 

The opening hours of the Monkey Temple in Jaipur are 5 am in the morning while the closing time is 6 pm every day. There are no entry charges required and people from all walks of life and religious backgrounds are welcomed here. Jaipur tour packages by reputed travel companies offer a visit to this temple all year round. The festival of Makar Sakranti is celebrated at its premises on January 14th every year, thus, planning your visit on this holy day is recommended. Besides this, the ideal time to witness the majestic aura of this temple is during the winter months between October and March. This is mainly because the weather is cool, so exploring each and every part of the Monkey Temple in Jaipur will not break you into a sweat. Although the temperature inside the temple complex is a little cooler than other parts of the city as it is perched on a hill, the summers can still be a little harsh. To see the monkey in action, the best time is during dusk when they walk around the temple in groups containing four females and one male. You can offer them bananas but be careful about your personal belongings.

Things to Do in the Area 

The Monkey Temple in Jaipur is surrounded by several other attractions inside the main complex that you can visit. Galta Kund is one of the seven holy troughs present here is also considered to be the most important one. It is believed that water inside this tank does not dry up. There are a number of temples situated inside the Shri Galta Ji Peetham complex in Jaipur dedicated to Lord Ram, Lord Hanuman. The only Brahma temple in the city is also found in this complex. If you are in the mood to hike, then the Chour Ghati trek can be a good option for you. It is very close to Jaipur’s Galta Gate and can be reached by taxi, private vehicle, or state bus. Although it has nothing to do with chours or thieves, the trek is fairly dangerous because of the presence of leopards in the forests. Thus, there are a lot of things to do in Jaipur while visiting the Galtaji Temple part of town. The Pink City is approximately 10 km from the Galtaji Temple, so you can plan a visit to other tourist destinations such as the Hawa Mahal, City Palace, and other such attractions after paying respects at this holy shrine on the same day itself. It would be best to rent a car or private taxi so that visiting all these places is easy.

Street Food and Fine-Dining Options 

Since this temple is visited by the followers of the Vaishnava tradition, food and beverages are purely vegetarian. However, this does not mean that your options are limited. Mouth-watering Vaishnav thalis can be relished at street food joints. Along with this, there are restaurants within a 3 km radius of the Galta Devi Temple in Jaipur such as Grunge - The Fern Hotel, Meerut Walo ka Dhaba, Meena Restaurant, etc. Rajshree Resorts that is located on the main Jaipur-Delhi road, NH8, is very popular among tourists who like to relax and unwind whilst on their journey to other parts of Rajasthan. Khandelwal Sweets and Namkeen Bhandar situated on Galta Road, Galtaji Temple in Jaipur should be on your itinerary. They sell the most delicious namak paras, moong dal laddus, mawa rolls, malai chaap in the area.

Visiting Jaipur is always such a pleasure, isn’t it? So, do not delay any further and plan your vacation to this beautiful city right away!

March 16, 2021

Author

Veena World
Veena World

We are an Indian travel company founded in 2013 and excel at domestic and international tour packages including guided group tours, specialty tours, customized holidays, corporate MICE travel, inbound travel and destination weddings.

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