Monkey Temple- Jaipur, India – Galtaji

Monkey temple India is a group of iconic temples at the holy place of bath Galta, a peaceful retreat amid nature offering mesmerizing views of the Aravali hills and green and serene environment. This complex is also known by the name Monkey Temple, for it is here that resides large colonies of macaque monkeys which are a major attraction of the place along with the striking temples decorated with fresco paintings inside out. Situated in the mountains pass Galtaji, is naturally so vibrant with mountains on all three sides, two ponds one for the ladies at the top and another one below for the gentlemen. Small dunes on the way to the Galta group of temples keep off one from the chaos of the bustling city of Jaipur. A visit to this place of pilgrimage with peace and calming energy is a must when in Jaipur – The Pink City, these temples provide picturesque views, with herds of cows and the majestic macaque monkeys which can be spotted at each place scattered all over the premises.

Baby Monkey at Monkey Temple

Baby Monkey at Monkey Temple

Monkey temple India is popular among foreign as well as domestic tourists for its beauty and the peaceful aura of the holy place. Home to macaque monkeys for the availability of trees in the near-by protected forest land, the clean water straight from the mountains and comfy and cozy shelter provided by the Aravali mountains make it a perfect place for the monkeys of the pink city, which wander throughout the city during the days and return to Galtaji Temple by evening. The story of Jaipur monkeys is well documented in the National-Geographic series – Monkey Theives the series which captured the activities of the macaque monkeys residing here at the temple. Mostly during the days, they can be found in the Pink City – Jaipur,  still on any other day, one can find decent numbers of human-friendly monkeys which are well taken care of at the premises by the visitors as well as the locals who feed them on regular basis providing enough food to the monkeys making Galta a perfect habitat for the macaques.

A dravidian style tower

Dravidian style tower at Monkey Temple

Galtaji Temple Jaipur was the center of Ramanadi sect since the 16th century and most of the temples at Galta date back to the 17th century. Decorated with colorful fresco paintings, pavilions, and round roofs making the place an architectural marvel. Some of the latest addition to the Galta Group of temples was done during the 18th century by Diwan Rao Kriparam one of the courtiers of Late King Sawai Jai Singh Second. To date, one can find saints, sadhus and holy men clothed in Saffron colored dhoti’s or white Kurta Payjama, which are also the caretaker and ticket collectors and they can sometimes charge you some nominal fees ranging from 10-100 INR, as per my belief it is okay to pay for the holy men are maintaining the place by keeping it clean and managed and also sustaining the heritage of these heritage buildings from the past.

The coupled tanks at monkey temple India are fed by a natural stream originating through a crack in the mountains, covered with a marble sculpture of a cow’s head as if the water is being poured from the cow itself. The water is filled into two major ponds known as the bath Kunds, the one on the top is meant for the gents and the larger one beneath is for the ladies.

Water pond.

The Tanks

Certainly, the water is not so clean always to take a dip but during rains, the ponds are cleaned and refilled so one can take bath after the pond is cleaned. The place is holy and said to have the power to take away your sins and cure one of the diseases as per the people’s belief. And a large number of locals gather from nearby villages and cities on special occasions to bathe in the holy waters, one can witness the Hindu devotees as they throng the ponds in order to bathe, cleanse their sins and attain a place in heaven. On regular days one can see local boys escaping the Indian summers by diving into the waters of Monkey Temple.

The drivable path to the temples via Jaipur – Agra Highway is an old and vacant street that remains deserted now. The old homes are designed and decorated by beautiful Jharokah/ Window with balconies which are painted with beautiful images of animals, humans, gods, and goddesses.

Decorated houses on the way

Decorated houses on the way

Some precautions while visiting Galtaji –

  • Don’t carry small handbags rather use a backpack, as small bags are a signal of food for the monkeys which they might try to snatch.
  • Keep calm when you are walking past a monkey or vice versa as sudden reactions can make them scared and
    you might end up getting hurt
  • If you want to feed the monkeys it’s better to keep the edibles someplace where they can see and ultimately they will come and eat on their own instead of feeding them by hands it’s safer.
  • Avoid getting any thread or powder on the forehead from priests cause once you get the priest can charge you as per their will.
  • If possible be in the company of some locals who are daily visitors and have a good bonding with the monkeys of Galta.

When in the pink city visit this wonderful homestay in Jaipur.

Feeding Monkeys at Monkey Temple

Feeding Monkeys at Monkey Temple