Jaisalmer, popularly known as “The Golden City” is an exotic city in the Thar Desert.
Proximity with Pakistan border, Camel trade, architectures of Forts, Ornate Havelis and pavilions makes the city in everyone’s must-visit place list.
With its rich culture and heritage, the city has a lot to offer.
Whenever I used to think of Jaisalmer, the two pictures which used to come to my mind was: One Huge Havelis and Mirch Seth (a character from the famous Bollywood movie Sarfarosh trading in the desert with camels).
The trip to Jaisalmer was one of our shortest planned trips. From finding and finalizing a place, searching hotels, to booking safaris and taxis in this pandemic era, all happened in just 2 days.
This was a much-needed break for all of us from our routine.
Day 1 – Sam
The thought of going somewhere was so exciting this morning. We left for the airport to catch our flight to Jodhpur. From Jodhpur airport, we directly headed to Sam which was approx. 5 hours journey.
We were a bit tired by the time we reached our resort in the evening. So, we decided to take some rest and ordered the yummy dinner in our room.
Day 2 – Sam
We were super excited as the day started. We first went to the battlefield of Longewala.
The Battle of Longewala was fought in the year 1971 between India and Pakistan. It is an open-air museum that displays army tanks, vehicles, rifles and ammunition used during the war.
It is almost an hour drive from Sam but the road journey is beautiful. Along the route, we spotted many army hiding spots at the time of war.
Next, we went to visit another popular devotional faith place Tannot Mata Mandir. People come from faraway places only to seek blessing. It is also the nearest point to the Indo-Pak border where the Indians can go.
In the second half, our most awaited adventure started. The Sam Sand Dunes.
We first did Jeep Safari followed by Camel Safari in the dunes. Playing in the dunes was an experience in itself. We were rolling and running on the huge dunes. Watching sunset while, sitting on a sand dune inthe middle of the desert was so serene.
Many superhit Bollywood movies like Bajrangi Bhaijan, Rudali etc are filmed here.
Mesmerizing is the only word that I can think of for describing this place.
Our evening came to an end with an amazing folk dance performance.
Day 3 – Jaisalmer
The day we started with little adventure Parasailing behind the jeep. The desert view from the top was delightful.
Our next exciting stop was Abandoned Village- Kuldhara.
There is an interesting story about this village. The village is an abandoned village since the early 19th century. The village was once full of inhabitants. But the villagers got disappeared in just one night due to atrocities committed by Salim Singh (powerful minister).
The inhabitants had cursed the village due to which it remained uninhabited ever since.
I honestly loved this place. And you can spend anywhere from 15 mins to – a couple of hours wandering in this place. You can get amazing photos here.
Post lunch we checked into our hotel in Jaisalmer.
The second half of the day went into exploring our rich heritage and culture.
We started with Badaal Mahal. Also known as Mandir Palace or Tazia Tower.
It is one of the famous tourist attractions points in the middle of the city.
The most exciting thing about this 5-tiered splendour is the “Maharawal” (king of Jaisalmer) and the royal family resides here. The third is converted into a museum for the public to see, and some part is converted into a hotel, while the rest is kept for residence.
Our next stop was Gadisar Lake. You can enjoy boating here or simply witness the sunset from here. Even though it is situated in the city, it is a relaxing and quiet place to spend some time.
Tip: Enter the lake from the mandir side and not from the market/boating side to spend some quiet alone time.
Our last point for the day was the famous Jaisalmer Fort
It is the only living fort in India. It houses over 500 families, hotels, restaurants, shops and 7 Jain temples.
Tip: Go in the morning, as Jain temples are open for everyone to visit from inside. In the evening, it is only people following the Jain religion can enter.
Choosing a guide is a good option. They charge a nominal amount of Rs 100-200 and tell you the interesting history and show you all the spots.
Day 4 Jaisalmer
We were looking for someplace to visit as we had the entire day free. After a lot of searching and researching, we concluded to visit Akal Wood Fossil Park.
Is a National Geological Monument of India. It was interesting to see how wood got converted into hard stones.
The highlight of this place was the 3 Emus. I never knew Emu’s are this friendly.
They were walking with us, we could touch them, feed them.
This place was definitely worth going to.
Post lunch we went to visit Pathwon Ki Haveli
Is a cluster of 5 small ancient Havelis. It took nearly 60 years to built and has an exemplary architecture of stone carvings. Many movies have also been filmed here.
Tip: No need to take a guide. You can very well explore yourself.
Tip: Shree Jee Excellency is a better restaurant to have lunch than Delight. The place is spacious, the food is good in taste and the overall service is also better.
What a wonderful trip it was!