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Why you should explore Jaisalmer as a ‘traveller’ and not a ‘tourist’

Jaisalmer Fort. Photo by Vrunda Upadhyay.

Have you ever dreamed of stepping into a fairytale? Imagine wandering through narrow alleyways adorned with intricate carvings, surrounded by golden sandstone walls that whisper tales of centuries past. That is Jaisalmer, the golden city of Rajasthan, India, where every corner is steeped in history and beauty.

From the moment you set foot in Jaisalmer, you’re welcomed by the warmth of its people. Unlike any other travel destination in the world, the residents of Jaisalmer are genuine and friendly. The unmatched hospitality instantly makes you feel at home. It’s a place where smiles are plentiful, and strangers quickly become friends. As a female traveller, particularly in India, this warmth and openness create an inviting atmosphere that makes exploring Jaisalmer an absolute charm.

It is a living fort.

At the heart of Jaisalmer lies its golden jewel – the magnificent Jaisalmer Fort. Unlike any other fort in India, Jaisalmer Fort isn’t just a historical monument; it’s a living, breathing city within a fortress. As you wander through its tangled alleyways, you’ll find vibrant markets, bustling bazaars, and ancient temples that stand as a testament to the city’s rich heritage.

Patwon Ki Haveli

Step back in time as you visit the elaborate Patwon Ki Haveli, a cluster of five grand mansions that showcase the opulence of Rajasthani architecture. Adorned with intricate facades, ornate balconies, and stunning frescoes, these historic dwellings were once home to a wealthy merchant family in Rajasthan.

Gadisar Lake

For a serene escape from the bustling city streets, head to Gadisar Lake. Here, you can enjoy a leisurely boat ride or soak in the tranquil atmosphere as you watch the sun dip below the horizon, casting a golden glow across the water.

Desert Safari

No trip to Jaisalmer is complete without going on a desert safari. Cross the rolling dunes of the Thar Desert atop a camel or jeep and witness the surreal beauty of the desert unfold before your eyes. Travel tip: try to book a tent to catch a breathtaking sunset and sunrise against the backdrop of the golden sands!

Staying within history

One of the unique aspects of Jaisalmer is the opportunity to stay within the confines of its ancient fort. Hostels and hotels within the fort offer an unparalleled experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in the city’s rich heritage. Imagine waking up to panoramic views of the city below, with the fort’s towering walls standing sentinel against the sky!

Immersed in views of Jaisalmer city from atop the fort. Photo by Vrunda Upadhyay.

Travel tip: Book your stay at hostels so that when the day draws to a close and the stars blanket the sky, you can gather around a crackling fire with fellow travellers and locals alike. Sharing stories, laughter, and perhaps a cup of chai, you may make connections that transcend language and culture.

Crossing boundaries around a bonfire. Photo by Vrunda Upadhyay.

Jaisalmer is more than just a destination; it’s an experience that lingers in your heart long after you’ve bid farewell. From its fascinating architecture to its welcoming inhabitants, every moment spent in this golden city is a testament to the timeless allure of Rajasthan.

Make your dream of living like royalty come true in this 868-year-old non-living fort that is, ironically, full of life!

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