The vibrant backdrop of India is just as central to The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel as its endearing characters. If you fell in love with the sights and sounds of the subcontinent in the film, you may be wondering where specifically it was shot.

In short, while the story is set in Jaipur, the majority of filming took place elsewhere in Rajasthan and around India. Iconic sites like the City Palace and Amber Fort provided swoon-worthy scenery. Read on for an in-depth look at the real filming locations that brought the fictional world of the Marigold Hotel to life.

Jaipur as the Backdrop

Jaipur, the vibrant capital city of Rajasthan in India, serves as the breathtaking backdrop for the film “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.” With its rich history, stunning architecture, and colorful culture, Jaipur adds an enchanting charm to the movie.

Known as the “Pink City” due to its distinctive pink-colored buildings, Jaipur is a city that effortlessly blends tradition and modernity. The filmmakers were captivated by Jaipur’s unique beauty, which is prominently showcased throughout the film.

The Magnificent Palaces

One of the standout features of Jaipur is its magnificent palaces, which make for stunning filming locations. The iconic Hawa Mahal, also known as the “Palace of Winds,” is a five-story palace with intricate latticework and numerous small windows.

Its grand facade and architectural details make it a visual spectacle in the film.

The Amer Fort, another majestic palace in Jaipur, is also featured in the movie. With its impressive ramparts, ornate gates, and intricate interiors, the Amer Fort provides a regal setting for several key scenes.

The Bustling Bazaars

The bustling bazaars of Jaipur add a vibrant and lively atmosphere to the film. The filmmakers took advantage of Jaipur’s famous markets, such as Johri Bazaar and Bapu Bazaar, to capture the essence of the city.

These bustling marketplaces with their vibrant colors, aromatic spices, and intricate textiles create a sensory experience for both the characters and the audience.

The filmmakers also incorporated the iconic Jaipur City Palace into the film, showcasing its stunning architecture and rich history. The City Palace, a magnificent complex of palaces, courtyards, and gardens, serves as a backdrop for several memorable scenes.

The Cultural Festivals

Jaipur is known for its lively and colorful festivals, and the film beautifully captures the spirit of these celebrations. The filmmakers were able to showcase the splendor of the famous Jaipur Literature Festival, an annual literary extravaganza that attracts renowned authors and literature enthusiasts from around the world.

Additionally, the film features the vibrant and energetic Gangaur Festival, which celebrates the union of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. The festival is known for its elaborate processions, traditional dances, and stunningly adorned idols of the deities.

Udaipur’s Stunning Architecture

One of the most captivating aspects of the film “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” is its stunning filming locations in Udaipur, India. Udaipur is known for its rich cultural heritage and breathtaking architecture, which adds an extra layer of beauty to the film’s narrative.

A City of Palaces

Udaipur is often referred to as the “City of Palaces,” and for good reason. It is home to several magnificent palaces that have stood the test of time and continue to amaze visitors with their grandeur. One such palace is the famous Lake Palace, located on the picturesque Lake Pichola.

This white marble marvel appears to float on the water, creating a surreal and magical ambiance.

Another architectural gem in Udaipur is the City Palace, a sprawling complex that showcases a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architectural styles. Its intricate carvings, majestic courtyards, and stunning views of the city make it a must-visit attraction for tourists.

The Iconic Jag Mandir

Jag Mandir, also known as the “Lake Garden Palace,” is another architectural marvel that makes an appearance in the film. This stunning palace is located on an island in Lake Pichola and offers a serene retreat for visitors.

With its beautiful gardens, marble pavilions, and intricate stone carvings, Jag Mandir is a true testament to the architectural brilliance of Udaipur.

The Majestic Monsoon Palace

The Monsoon Palace, also known as Sajjangarh Palace, is yet another architectural wonder that adds to the charm of Udaipur. Perched on top of a hill, this palace offers panoramic views of the city and its surrounding countryside.

Its distinctive white structure stands out against the lush green hills, creating a mesmerizing sight for visitors.

Udaipur’s stunning architecture serves as the perfect backdrop for the heartwarming story of “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.” The filmmakers made excellent use of these architectural marvels, capturing their beauty on screen and immersing viewers in the rich cultural heritage of Udaipur.

If you want to learn more about Udaipur’s stunning architecture, you can visit the official website of the Udaipur Tourism Department at

Jodhpur’s Regal Fortress

One of the most stunning filming locations in the movie “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” is the regal fortress in Jodhpur, India. Known as Mehrangarh Fort, this majestic structure dates back to the 15th century and offers a breathtaking backdrop for this heartwarming film.

Perched on a hilltop, Mehrangarh Fort is an architectural marvel that showcases the rich history and culture of Rajasthan. Its imposing walls, intricate carvings, and expansive courtyards transport visitors to a bygone era.

The filmmakers wisely chose this location to capture the grandeur and opulence of the fictional Marigold Hotel, creating a visually stunning setting for the movie.

Visitors to Jodhpur can explore Mehrangarh Fort and immerse themselves in its regal charm. From the moment you step inside, you are greeted with an awe-inspiring view of the city below. The fort houses a museum that displays a vast collection of artifacts, including royal costumes, weapons, and paintings.

Exploring the various chambers and galleries is like taking a journey through time.

One of the highlights of Mehrangarh Fort is its stunning architecture. The intricate detailing on the walls and ceilings is a testament to the craftsmanship of the artisans who built it. As you walk through the fort, you can’t help but marvel at the skill and precision that went into creating this masterpiece.

The fort also offers panoramic views of Jodhpur, with its blue-painted houses and bustling streets. It’s no wonder that the filmmakers chose to showcase this picturesque city in “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.”

The contrast between the ancient fort and the vibrant cityscape creates a visually stunning backdrop for the film.

If you’re a fan of the movie, visiting Jodhpur and exploring Mehrangarh Fort is a must-do. It’s a chance to step into the world of “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” and experience the magic of this enchanting location firsthand.

Bustling Mumbai Brings Life

One of the most captivating aspects of “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” is its stunning filming locations, and one of the standout settings is the bustling city of Mumbai. Known as the financial capital of India, Mumbai is a vibrant metropolis that never fails to impress with its energetic atmosphere and diverse cultural heritage.

A City of Contrasts

Mumbai is a city of stark contrasts, where towering skyscrapers stand next to slums, and luxury shopping malls coexist with bustling street markets. This stark contrast is beautifully captured in the film, as the characters navigate through the city’s busy streets, revealing its vibrant and chaotic nature.

Iconic Landmarks

Mumbai is home to several iconic landmarks that have become synonymous with the city’s identity. The Gateway of India, a majestic arch overlooking the Arabian Sea, is a popular tourist attraction and a prominent feature in the film.

The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, another iconic landmark, serves as the backdrop for some of the most memorable scenes of the movie.

Bollywood Influence

Mumbai is also known as the heart of the Bollywood film industry, and its influence can be felt throughout “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.” From the lively dance sequences to the colorful costumes, the film pays homage to the vibrant and glamorous world of Indian cinema.

Fascinating Neighborhoods

Mumbai is a city of diverse neighborhoods, each with its own unique charm. From the upmarket area of Colaba to the bustling streets of Juhu, the film captures the essence of these neighborhoods, showcasing their vibrant street life, bustling markets, and rich cultural heritage.

The Spirit of Mumbai

But perhaps what truly brings Mumbai to life in “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” is the indomitable spirit of its people. Mumbai is known for its resilience and the warmth of its residents, and these qualities shine through in the film.

The characters’ interactions with the locals and their immersion in the city’s vibrant culture create a sense of authenticity that adds depth to the storytelling.


Though set in the pink city of Jaipur, the on-location filming for The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel spanned various corners of colorful Rajasthan and India. The sights of Udaipur, Jodhpur, and Mumbai added vibrancy and authenticity to the fictional tale.

Fans can walk in the footsteps of Evelyn, Muriel, and the gang by visiting these evocative destinations. India’s lush architecture, dynamic cities, and warm culture shine through in each scene.

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