Travel this November to the royal city of Jaisalmer (Rajasthan), the gem of the Thar Desert, India. You will be spoilt for choice once there—luxury camps, folk music and handicrafts,architecture, camel rides and more.
Jaisalmer is situated in the heart of the Thar Desert of Rajasthan. Besides staying in hotels in the city, you now have the option to stay in the middle of the desert in well-appointed luxury tents.
Camel safaris are the main attraction of the camping experience. These safaris can last from a couple days to a month, where you travel across the Thar on a camel and camp at different locations in the desert. A camel cart carrying food, tents and other utilities accompany your entourage. The safari is an excellent opportunity to see the remote villages.
Jeep safari is another alternative to explore the limitless desert.
The camps and resorts in and around the desert arrange for folk performances. Listen to the ballads and see the enactment of the love stories, the tragedies and the battles of yore.
The desert dwellers of Rajasthan are known for their art of puppetry and acrobatic skills.
The Sam sand dunes are a popular corner of the Thar Desert. Sunrise and sunsets are the best times to explore the dunes.
The Desert National Park is a great example of the desert ecosystem. It is home to migratory birds too. Some of the birds found here include the short-toed eagle, tawny eagle, spotted eagle, laggard falcons and kestrels. As for the animals, you are likely to spot the blackbuck, the Nilgai or blue bull, the desert fox, desert cat and the wolf.
Once found abundantly, the Great Indian Bustard is an endangered bird now. If you are extremely lucky, then you might catch a glimpse of the bird.
Jaisalmer city lies on the edge of the desert. The main charm of the city are its forts and palaces. The Jaisalmer Fort, also known as Sonar Quila, and the Khaba Fort are worth visiting.
The centuries old Jain temples—made of the golden sandstone—inside the Jaisalmer Fort are known for their carvings.
The intricate stone carvings—as fine as a lace—of the Patwon Ji ki Haveli leave visitors spellbound.
Bada Bagh means 'big garden'. It contains a dam, a garden, a tank, cenotaphs, and the Govardhan Stambh. The Govardhan Stambh was built to commemorate the dam and the tank. The cenotaphs or the chattris were built by the Bhatti rulers. There is a Vyas Chattri too, dedicated to the writer of the Mahabharata, sage Vyas.
When in Jaisalmer, do not forget to browse the local shops for the colourful souvenirs, all handcrafted to perfection.