What I Do In Jaipur When I'm Not At JLF: My Guide To Eating, Drinking & Shopping

    Suchita posted on 15 January

    What Makes It Awesome

    I've been going to JLF {Jaipur Literature Festival} for the past seven years. And though a majority of my day is spent in jumping around Diggi Palace {the venue for JLF}, I've made it a point to try new places in the Pink City. If you're a JLF noob, this guide, I hope, comes handy. I usually go for two nights and three days, and that gives me just about enough time to check out two-three restaurants and a few stores if I'm lucky. First things first, if you're hectic about JLF and have all your talks to attend mapped and chalked out, you're likely to spend 10am-5pm at Diggi Palace itself. Which leaves you with a small window to explore Jaipur. If you also happen to be a Jaipur noob, you must take out time to visit all the forts. If you've been there, done that as far as sightseeing is concerned, here's where I recommend you go: 1. Anokhi Cafe: Popular among locals and travellers, Anokhi Cafe does healthy, wholesome food. Their menu includes wraps and sandwiches, really good dessert and really good coffee. Space is a little cramped, and there's always waiting. It's nestled in an Anokhi store- don't forget to pick up one of Anokhi's block-printed products. PS: I've also heard awesome things about the Anokhi museum, where they have block printing workshops and classes. Find out the best time to visit them here: {https://lbb.in/kolkata/business/Anokhi-Cafe-jaipur-d744a4/} 2. On The House Cafe: This is my go-to for breakfast every Sunday morning, before my drive back to Delhi. Their pancakes, waffles and eggs are spectacular. I also always pack sandwiches and muffins from here for our six-hour road-trip. Super spacious, with indoor and outdoor seating, OTH delivers on quick service and a dynamite breakfast. For more information check out: {https://lbb.in/mumbai/business/On-The-House-jaipur-d744a6/} 3. 1135 AD: Located in Amber Fort, 1135 AD is where you go when you want to dine like a maharaja. They serve traditional Rajasthani and North Indian food {the latter, if I remember correctl}, with all the thrills and frills that you'd expect from a Royal meal. You really can't go wrong with this one. Reserve a table - this place packs up towards the evening. You can check them out here: {https://lbb.in/delhi/business/1135-AD-jaipur-d7449a/} 4. Jaipur Modern: No trip to JLF is complete for me, without a meal at Jaipur Modern. A restaurant/cafe-cum-store, Jaipur Modern kills it with their minimal, Indo-Scandi-esque decor. Their focus, similar to Anokhi Cafe to some extent, is healthy, wholesome food, though their menu is quite different and keeps changing. The last time I went here, they also had a whole menu dedicated to Quinoa dishes! Sip on a freshly squeezed juice, and don't forget to order any of their desserts. Find out more about them here: {https://lbb.in/delhi/business/Jaipur-Modern-Kitchen-jaipur-d74496/} They also have the coolest store as a part of the property- housing labels that are local/from Jaipur, and from all around India. 5. Bar Palladio: Possibly the best-designed bar in Jaipur and perhaps in India too, Bar Palladio is where most authors, writers and cool kids go for a drink post a long day at JLF. It's an IG-story-fiend's paradise! The vibe and decor cover up for their food and drinks, which I found to be just about alright {unless things have changed from the last year}. Find out if things have changed here: {https://lbb.in/mumbai/business/Bar-Palladio-Jaipur-jaipur-2c5f35/} There's a bunch of other really cool cafes and bars I've checked out, but these top the list. Three awesome hotels to visit if you get the chance are Rambagh {go here for high tea if you can}, Narain Niwas {this is where Bar Palladio's located} and Sujan Rajmahal Palace {It's stunning! The Penguin Random House party's hosted here}. For shopping: 1. Store at Jaipur Modern: A multi-designer store, Jaipur Modern's curation is exquisite. I love their collection of bags and jewellery! They have really cool shirts and Indo-western wear like tunics, printed dresses etc. I usually always end up picking up a pair of earrings and a tote/wallet from here. You can check out their range here: {https://lbb.in/delhi/business/Jaipur-Modern-Kitchen-jaipur-d74496/} 2. Teatro Dhora: This store can do no wrong! A modern edit of jewellery, clothes and accessories, curated from all over India, this store has the most exquisite collection. Shop Cord bags, Dhora jewellery, cotton Indian-wear, All Things' chocolates and more. Check them out here: {https://lbb.in/kolkata/business/Teatro-Dhora-jaipur-4d6f22/} 3. The shopping "complex" right outside Narain Niwas: As mentioned above, Narain Niwas makes it to my list of must-visit hotels in Jaipur. There's a complex to the left of the entry gate to Narain Niwas that has a bunch of really interesting locally-based labels, including my favourite- Kassa. I love their jewellery & leather bags. This compound/area has a bunch of other really interesting stores too- definitely worth browsing through. 4. Nidhi Tholia: My go-to for the few occasions I actually buy Indian clothes! I love the bright colours she uses for her anarkalis and her gota-patti work. She's got everything from sarees to suits and lehengas. Find out how to get there: {https://lbb.in/delhi/business/Saffron-by-Nidhi-Tholia-78e7f0/} 5. Amrapali's store in Tholia House/on MI Road: If your idea of Amrapali comes from their Khan Market store, get ready to get overwhelmed {in the best way!} Their store in Tholia House is massive - and has really stunning jewellery starting from INR 700. Tholia House, in general, is a great area to explore- there's also Kuber's Tholia, which retails semi-precious and precious jewellery. Their designs and workmanship are stunning! Definitely worth the visit if you're looking for investment purchases. Get a glimpse of their collection here: {https://lbb.in/kolkata/business/Amrapali-Jewels-jaipur-4d6303/} The pop-ups at JLF/Diggi Palace are really good, too. I always end up discovering really interesting brands and local businesses here.

    What's My Pro Tip?

    There is, of course, a lot more to see and do- these are places that I've been to and swear by. New on my list is 28 Kothi's {a boutique hotel in Jaipur} Kothi Cafe. I've seen a bunch of pictures, and it looks awesome. For JLF, hook yourself up with/buy a VIP pass. The VIP lounge is paradise for author spotting; the complimentary lunch and drinks {including their dynamite homemade ice-cream} deserves a special mention.

    Anything Else?

    I love JLF! It's crowded, crazy, a little frustrating- but worth it all. And that Jaipur's become such an awesome city to explore while there, is the cherry on top.

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      Location Details

      Jaipur, Rajasthan