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Destinations :: Jaisalmer Vacations
Rising from the heart of the Thar desert like a golden mirage is the
city of Jaisalmer. A commanding fort etched in yellow sandstone stands
with all its awesome splendor, dominating the amber - hued city.
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The city has an intresting legend assocaited with it, according to
which Lord krishna - head of the yadav clan foretold Arjuna that aremote
descendent of the Yadav Clan would built his kingdom atop the Trikuta
Hill. His prophecy was fulfilled in 1156 A.D. when Rawal Jaisal, a
descendent of the Yadav Clan and a Bhatti Rajput,abandoned his fort
at Lodurva and founded a new capital -Jaisalmer- perched on the Trikuta
The weather is either extremely hot or pretty cold given that Jaisalmer
is located in the desert region of Rajasthan. Besides, it's very close
to the trouble-prone Indian border with Pakistan. the life within
the citadel conjures up images of medieval majesty visible in its
narrow lanes strewn with magnificent palaces, havelis, temples and
offcourse skilled artisans and ubiquitous camels. The setting sun
turning Jaisalmer into beautiful golden brown is a spectacular sight.
Folk dances, exciting competitions an contests, especially the turban-tying
contest. Mr. Desert contest and camel races enliven the festivities.
Colorful craft bazaars are set up for the occasion and a sound and
light spectacle is organized wit folk artists performing against the
splendid backdrop of the famous Sam sand dunes on the full moon night.
Surely a not-to-be missed event.
Palaces to Visit
The golden fort hued fort is sentinel to the bleak desertscape from
its 80 metre high perch on the hill, housing the entire township within
the ramparts. it has enchanting cow-web of narrow lanes dotted with
some lovely havelis, three beautifully sculptured Jain temples of
the 12th-15th century and five interconnected palaces. The fort is
apprched through four gateways - Akhaiya Pol, Ganesh Pol, Suraj pol
and Hawa Pol. The fort seems to rise out of the desert haze, its yelow
sandstone walls and bastions taking on a golden hue in the afternoon
when sun reflects on the fort. In fact at whatever time of the day
you look at the Sonar Kila or Golden fort it looks like a fairy tale
is an artificial water body that stores rainwater – in the harsh desert
landscape. A scenic rain water lake with numerous beautiful shrines
around and a spectacular avian variety. The lake is an idyllic spot
A pagoda like structure looming up from the "Badal Mahal" with beautiful
Taazias' - ornately decorated bamboo, paper and tinsel replicas of
a bier, carried out in processing during Moharram by the Muslims.
Nathmal ji ki Haveli
The late 19th century haveli with intricate architecture a display
of sheer craftsmanship. The left and right wings of the mansions,
which were carved by two brothers, are not identical but very similar
and balanced in design. The interior walls are ornate with splendid
Patwon ki Haveli
The most elaborate and magnificient of all the Jaisalmer havelis.
It has exquisitely carved pillars and exquisitely carved pillars and
extensive corridors and chambers.
One of the apartments of this five story high haveli is painted with
Salim Singh ki Haveli
This 300 year old Haveli of Jaisalmer's Prime Minister to Maharaja
Rawal Gaj Singh Salim Singh, has a beautiful blue cupola roof with
superby carved brackets in the form of peacocks. This extraordinary
mansion in yellow stone is covered with intricate carvings and has
an elaborate projecting balcony on the top storey.
The mansion is one of the most notables of the array of havelis.
The fort has three exquisitely carved Jain temples dedicated to the
Jain Tirthankara-Rishabdev, Sambhavnath and Parswanath
Lodurva, the ancient capital of Jaisalmer and an important
Jain pilgrim centre lies 16 km to the west.Among the ruins of the
city is a complex of magnificent Jain temples with ornate archway
at the entrance, perhaps the finest of its kind in Rajasthan.
The Akal Wood Fossil Park (17km) on the road to Barmer is an
interesting stop to the fossilised remains of a forest that grew 180
million years ago. Not far from there is another prehistoric site
at Kandiala where different kinds of fossils are found – still older,
but undated fossilised rocks, with tiny sea shells embedded in them,
that show that this sandy desert wasteland was once part of the ocean
The Sand Dunes at Sam : No trip to Jaisalmer is complete without
a visit to the sand dunes at Sam, 42 km away, on the edge of the Desert
National Park. The varying patterns, ripples and waves that the wind
creates on the undulating, ever changing dunes is awesome to behold.
The sunsets at Sam are particularly beautiful, with the desert changing
into a kaleidoscope of red, orange and copper before darkness engulfs
the desert in a blanket of sheer black.
The Desert National Park (45km) stretches across 3000km of
protected biosphere, where the fragile ecosystem of the desert is
preserved in its natural environs. The native flora consists of cacti,
thorny shrubs, bushes and trees and vegetation that survives in the
dry and arid soil grow here and some of the local fauna- few animal
species like the monitor lizard, desert foxes, porcupines and herds
of black buck live in this protected park.