Naila-A village tucked away in time | Walkthrough

When someone mentions “Naila” in Jaipur it usually means Naila school or night parties at Naila House – Club Naila.  Naila House New Year Parties are quite famous among the party crowd in Jaipur. If you find clubbing pictures with the crowd reveling at heritage building with a pool in Jaipur, then it has to be Club Naila!

There’s a history behind Naila House too but I will stick to Naila village in this write-up. The Rajput family of Naila House (usually called Thikana in local language) has its origins from Naila Village – Naila Thikana. Technically it was part of Jaipur state (before India’s independence) but it was an estate assigned to a family member of Jaipur royalty. This family was called Thikanedaar in the local language.

Naila village located about 30 km from Jaipur first shot into limelight when US President Bill Clinton visited this quaint village in the year 2000. Projected as a model village, the media highlighted Naila but now it’s far from reality.

This post is not a guide to Naila. It’s just a photo journey. I haven’t captured much of local life in the following pictures; just the surroundings and built heritage. Here I go..

Approaching Naila Village, near Jaipur
The beautiful gate of Naila ruined by billboards and advertisements.

Surprisingly, the rampart which surrounds the village is still in a very good condition. Intended to protect the village from attacking armies as the first line of defense, the fortification runs all around the village, including the Naila fort perched on the hill-top.

Naila Fort History

This fort was built to provide protection to the Naila village and the settlement around. The Fort was built by Champawats after they moved to Jaipur in 1849 AD. They were part of  Rathore Rajput clan originally from Peelwa which was part of Jodhpur. In Jaipur court, Naila was an important and influential “Thikana”.  Thakur Fateh Singh Naila and Thakur Roop Singh Naila were influential and held important posts in Jaipur state.

Naila Fort on the hilltop
Thin curvy road with steep incline leads to Naila fort. It’s a private property owned by the hotelier Oberoi group


The Naila fort is now owned by Oberois; it was sold to the owner of the famous Indian hotel chain Oberoi by its original owners. Though privately owned, the guests at the Oberoi Rajvilas Hotel in Jaipur can experience a visit to Naila Fort. The hotel offers a sunset experience for their guests. Other than this, the fort of off-bounds for the public since it is a private residence. The fort is built in an English style castle.

Naila Palace

This is a picture of the palace in Naila village, constructed and once owned by the erstwhile rulers of Naila estate. It conjures up two different sets of emotions.

Beautiful Palace in  Naila village now owned and managed by the government.

The first one is excitement on finding a lovely heritage building dating back to 1875 AD. The second one is a feeling of let down looking at its condition. Advertisement on its facade is a bummer. The saddest part is the fact that now it is run by the government as a primary health center. It could have rather been a beautiful heritage hotel; it’s just waiting for things to fall apart.

Neglect and lack of attention is evident everywhere in this palace at Naila village

I’m not sure how this beautiful property ended up with the government but the current state of the building is quite sad.

Naila estate was part of Jaipur. Jaipur merged with other smaller states to form a bigger state Rajasthan.fatehgarh-palace-in-naila-indo-european-architecture-style-building-jaipurthrumylens   The architecture is a unique amalgamation of European and Rajasthani style which was prevalent post-1850 AD.

Notice the beautiful fusion of Rajasthani and European styles. Naila Village
The wild creeper adds to the dated look of this heritage palace. Naila village
servant quarters…. probably. Naila village
Beautiful stone carvings influenced by Mughals and Araish work in  Gokhaas. Naila village

You end up thinking about the sad state; destruction & decay of heritage, architecture, and history is no one’s concern unless it generates revenue. The Araish work as shown in the above picture (white marble-like polished surface with black border) is impossible to reproduce today to the same level even though we know the processes because of expensive labor and lack of skilled workers;  we are simply allowing it to decay!!

Read Sunrise in Naila 

New housing structures being erected just outside Naila village.

While the old Naila town has heritage houses and Havelis, new housing structures are coming up fast in the vicinity. Seen above, the vacant area next to the village giving way to the residential quarters!

Bhomia Ji temple on the hilltop. Naila village

You can look at the surrounding views of Naila village in the above picture. Probably these views are short-lived as plotting for dwelling units has already started.

Hawa Bungalow, Naila village


Kanota Hawa Bungalow. Naila Village

Hawa Bungalow at Naila village also referred to as Kanota Hawa Bungalow. It is well known among the party crowd in Jaipur. The owners of Hawa Bungalow also run paintball facility and were first on to offer paintball in Jaipur. Of course, now even Tao experiences also offer Paintball in Jaipur. Who is offers the best paintball in Jaipur among two? I think the one in Naila village offers better terrain. More on Naila Village, Naila Fort, and Hawa Bungalow some other day. In Jaipur, when someone mentions the word “Naila” it generally means parties at Club Naila or the lounge elephant Naila Bagh.

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197 thoughts on “Naila-A village tucked away in time | Walkthrough

  1. Thank you for blogging about these amazing forts around Jaipur! All my life I had imagined Jaipur to be home to very well maintained, touristry forts. Don’t get me wrong there! I am all for preservation and restoration of ancient structutes and especially ones with history. But I have a strange fascination for these obscure forts which have been ravaged by time but are still standing on their own.
    Your posts are making me push Jaipur up the lists of cities I want to visit! 🙂
    Keep blogging!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi! There is no doubt that Jaipur has some of the best palaces and forts in our country. Despite this we have many small forts around Jaipur which are abandoned, or have no use…anymore. Many of these were meant as forward defense outpost and cannot be converted into a hotel. Hence these have been abandoned and left to their fate! I think you should definitely visit Jaipur! I’m sure you’ll like it. Do let me know, if there is any way I can help you with it. You have an excellent blog. Just followed your blog to be updated with your trekking adventures! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I think because people feel this has nothing to do with their future. What is old is “Khandhar” /ruin and it should die! There is apathy towards our heritage especially the built heritage. That’s the reason people choose new and glitzy over old.
      What people don’t realize is that many countries have been able to create steady revenue from heritage buildings…i.e. Europe!


    1. There’s a lot to discover and enjoy in Rajasthan, if you love offbeat! Unfortunately, people don’t like to step out of comfort zone. Their loss! Let me know if you need any help since you have been thinking offbeat.


  2. After reading your posts for some time now, I realise Jaipur is way underrated. I did a quick google search and the results are not making me want to visit it, but after reading your posts it seems like a place that people shouldn’t miss. You captured such beautiful moments, monuments and places

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Anamaria. I think there are two sides of Jaipur. First one is touristy and commercial. That’s how the world knows the city. But beyond this is yet another Jaipur. I’m also uncovering the city. What you see in my blog is how I look at my city. Let me know if there is some way I can help you if you are visiting Jaipur. Thanks for visiting and sharing your thoughts here Anamaria 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I hope someday someone finds it worthy enough for a movie setting. It’s not a typical village that one finds around Jaipur. 😃 Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Lise.


  3. As you have pointed out Arv it would make a great setting for a movie It is such a shame when beautiful places are not upkept and preserved it happens a lot here as well 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I guess it’s a universal issue. Probably it’s a fund issue or too many places with little resources. I really have no clue what can be the best option. Thanks for the information and insights, Carol

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think so Arv…it happens here as well …I think local co-operatives are sometimes the best when older buildings are upkept and used as a venue for locals 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Arv.
    Thanks for this article on Naila, lovely photos to go with it too.
    I’m coming back to Jaipur early next year and am hoping to spend a day or two away from the city centre. Could you please confirm – tourists can not stay or even visit the inside of Naila Fort. It’s privately owned (just like Moti Doongri fort).

    Many thanks

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi James, happy to hear that you are visiting Jaipur. Naila is privately owned which means visitors are not allowed. Villagers informed me that one can visit the fort but we were not allowed entry. There are other forts where you can visit like Samode by paying an entry fee. You can even spend a night at couple of others near Jaipur – two hours drive away. Neemrana, Dadhikar, Tijara are some of them.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Arv.
    Tijara fort palace looks awesome, I didn’t know about that one, wish I was heading that way from Jaipur. At the moment, I’m looking at forts near Bhangarh, there’s a few that interest me – Ajabgargh & Pratapgarh forts are a must at the moment.
    I’ve jotted down Tijara Fort though just incase my route/plans change, so thank you for mentioning that… actually I’ve noted down Dadhikar Too! 🙂

    Best wishes

    Liked by 1 person

    1. James all these are in the same districts. Some of these are not fit for the hotel. Your options are a bit limited. See what catches your fancy. 😃


  6. Ita really sad to see a once upon a time rich heritage being wasted and corrupted by present day apathy.
    The pic of the magnificent gates with advts stuck all over is really jarring!
    Very nicely put together articles Arvind, as usual.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Radhika. I wrote this 4 years ago and this pretty much sums up how people treat heritage. Partly because of apathy, ignorance and lack of education; the other part being government not doing its part. Have you ever been to any such place in India?


  7. This is an amazing place with these beautiful heritage structures. The current state of the place really saddens me. At least the buildings could have been saved and well maintained if it was under some hotel chains.


    1. Sarmistha, I couldn’t agree more. The owners of the palace must have handed over the premises hoping it’ll be used for a benevolent cause but the maintenance is quite bad. There are many such properties that are beautiful heritage hotels. Rajasthan is known for having a large number such hotels. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

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