Jaisalmer is a beautiful city located in northern India. The city, sandy-colored, is located at the entrance of the Thar Desert, an amazing place where you seem to be in the Sahara, not in India, with camels and oases. The town is dominated by an imposing fortress, which along with the rest of the city was built in the twelfth century and is part of the heritage of the world. The fort served to protect the ancient medieval city against invasions from the north. Now it is a rather messy and woefully neglected. There are numerous temples and houses, and the palace, which is the most charming place in the city. A inside the fort, people still live, and some families offer board and lodging. Entrance is free.
Situated in western Rajhastan, Jaisalmer is a city where tourists do not tend to venture, but it is a spectacular city, known as the city of the desert. It is a place great to spend a few days and experience desert life, if you are lucky enough you will see remote villages in the desert. The best area to stay is certainly within the fort, in the old city, although the lonely planet recommended not to stay because of the water problems, but I can tell you, there is no problem. The fort is a tremendous place to stay, in addition to its spectacular views there is also a famous desert festival
The largest and most elaborate haveli is Patwon Ki haveli (mansion of brocade merchants), which was constructed in the year 1805 by Guman Chand Patwa, a merchant and banker who had 300 malls between Afghanistan and China. The works of this 5-story building, constructed for his 5 children, lasted over 50 years. It is located in a cul de sac, behind a door with bows. The entire outside is artistically sculpted, and 60 latticed balconies seem more like stone. Inside there are still ancient murals. Outside I took a photo with the man who must have won the award to have the world´s longest mustache .
After strolling and browsing all day for Jaisalmer, we decided to hire a rickshaw to visit the royal cenotaphs on our own (negotiate the return trip). It was a good choice, because at that time of day, the tour groups are no longer in the area, and there are only some children and youth groups who gather to watch the sunset. I recognize that the time was unique, as the sun reflects off the stones of the cenotaphs, and the light is special. I loved walking quietly and almost alone among the monuments, and enjoyed the silence.
The havelis are multi-storey high houses, most of them are hotels, which belonged to middle-class families just a few centuries ago, in the great era of the Maharajas in the North of Indian. Today they are half abandoned because these families left in order to go and live in the city. The Salim Singh Ki haveli was the property of the minister of the town, at the time when Jaisalmer and its region were independent. Today you can visit the haveli, you have to pay an extra euro if you want to take pictures of the frescoes inside. The inside, although it is rather neglected, is very beautiful and you can imagine the splendor and parties that used to take place here. All of the people who came to the palace for weddings and other family events.
The top of the Jaisalmer Fort is wonderful: It is small and easy to navigate, there is a flat area to get to the square, then you have to go down. It isn't very big if, but considering that everything is a work of art, it can take hours to traverse. Everything down to the smallest detail will leave you open-mouthed, and there are millions of them each beautiful. It's quite a journey to the "pleasure" of luxury in Rajasthani architecture. Built in the twelfth century it is magnificently preserved despite everything that has suffered in wars, storms and other adverse conditions in the middle of a huge desert that forms the border between India and Pakistan. If you ever come to Jaisalmer do not hesitate to stay inside the fort, there are several hostels and the perception of the city completely changes you.
North of the city and above the mountains, there is a wall and a watchtower that has been abandoned. From the top of this tower there are great views of the city and of the fort of Jaisalmer. If we add the beauty of my then partner Mika Tokyo, what more could I ask for!? To arrive you'll have to leave town towards the north and climb a steep road. You will not get lost, because on the way you'll see tons of kids that will take you to the top. It is a recreational area for local families and they usually come every day to enjoy the breeze from the north, which often cannot be found in the city. They stay until sunset and then go back home.
This town is just a few kilometers from Jaisalmer and was once was the capital of the region. Popular, unique and interesting, this village has some ancient temples which were rebuilt in the 70's making them lose some charm. The area is full of thieves, looking to charge you for everything. So many rupees to take a photo, a lot more for a video etc. Well, true to my style of not spending anything, I went for a walk through the village hoping I would find somethng worth seeing.
In this magic square, rajastanís women come daily to sell what they have grown in their gardens. Obviously, since it is a desert, there is only a little water scattered around. When I saw them, I thought that it was incredible to be able to sell what you have grown yourself. They only sell seasonal products. Restaurant owners and other businesses usually come here to buy what they need as it is such good quality.
Khuri is a desert village, next to the dunes, 48 km west of Jaisalmer. The huts are traditional of the desert regions of Rajasthan, and are magnificent examples of architecture, by functionality (they can resist 50 ° C and winds of 135 km / h) as must as the aesthetic result. They are made of clay and dung, and each cabin has many functional spaces surrounding a central courtyard. It looks like one big piece of clay.