Known as the “The Golden City” of India, Jaisalmer is a city located in the middle of “The Great Indian Thar Desert”. The city has derived its name from the structures and buildings built out of yellow sandstone. Jaisalmer Fort, preserved as UNESCO’s World Heritage sites, sits on a hill as the Golden crown of the city. Besides the fort, Jaisalmer is beautified with lakes, Jain temples, and heritage Havelis. Desert camp and a camel ride are also some unforgettable experiences one can get on their visit to this glorious city. The golden city is a perfect mixture of Indian desert culture, rich heritage, and some great adventures. Here is a list of some of the great places and activities to make your trip to Jaisalmer a wonderful success.
Places to visit in Jaisalmer
Built on a height of 250 ft, Jaisalmer Fort is one of the largest forts in the world. The premises of the fort are still a residence of more than three thousand people. Popularly known as ‘Sonar Qila’ or ‘Golden Fort’, Jaisalmer Fort is not just a fort but a town with shops, Havelis, and temples. The height of the majestic Fort provides visitors with some of the most beautiful panoramic views of the city of Jaisalmer. There are seven Jain temples in total which are located within the Jaisalmer fort. You’ll need to pay 100 rupees extra to take your camera inside.
Jain Temples of Jaisalmer Fort
Known for their exquisite work of art and architecture that was predominant in the medieval era. These temples are build from yellow sandstone and have intricate engraving on them. The structures of these temples are what make them popular among tourists. Here are some of the recommend temples to visit while visiting the Fort of Jaisalmer.
Patwon ki Haveli
Patwon Ki Haveli is a famous tourist attraction in Jaisalmer. It is a cluster of five small havelis build by a rich trader in the 19th Century. It still possesses several artifacts and stonework that give a glimpse into the lifestyle of the Patwa family. This building comes under the Archaeological Survey of India and is recognized as a famous architecture as well as a historical site. With over 60 balconies, the pillars and ceilings of this golden architecture are carving in detailed design and miniature works. This ancient piece attracts a lot of visitors and is definitely on the list of the must-visit places of Jaisalmer.
Amar Sagar Lake
The Amar Sagar lake is an oasis near the palace of Amar Singh located on the outskirts of the city of Jaisalmer. There are a series of steps and a pavilion beside the palace that leads to the lake. An ancient Shiva Temple is also build in the complex of the palace, as Amar Singh was a follower of Lord Shiva. This 300 years old location is a place to check on your visit to Jaisalmer.
The beautiful Gadisar Lake is an artificial reservoir built by Raja Rawal Jaisal to meet the water needs of the people of the city. Gadisar Lake offers scenic and picturesque views of the lake and the adjacent fort. Lake offers a peaceful environment. To get more out of your visit to Gadisar lake, you can take a boat ride or have a peaceful walk on the banks of the Lake.
Nathmal Ki Haveli
This haveli is a marvelous piece of architecture located in the heart of the Golden city. This haveli is yellow sandstone architecture. As the name suggests, the architecture and carvings that beautify the fort of Jaisalmer are mostly yellow sandstone. Thus when the sun rays fall on these structures, they shine like gold. Apart from the extraordinary paintings using 1.5kg of gold leaf and carvings on walls, this merging of the Islamic and Rajput style of architecture has a captivating sight.
Jaisalmer has the biggest windmill farm in India. This massive windmill farm attracts a lot of tourists and is a place to visit because of its massive significance.
Activities to-do While in Jaisalmer
Desert Safari in Jaisalmer
Jaisalmer is locatedd in the middle of the golden sand Thar Desert. Desert safaris are fun activities to do there. Usually, the safaris are conducted in jeeps, but you can also take a camel ride on the Sand Dunes of Sam. It is said that the Dunes of Sam are a replica of that of the Great Sahara Desert. These safaris are done in the early morning or late evening to avoid the hot temperatures of the desert. In camel safari, a camel rider is needed for the safari tour of 90 min. The same can be hired for a ride from a local tour operator. In a jeep safari, one needs to travel 45 km to Sam Sand Dunes.
The golden sand under a starry sky with a bonfire makes a perfect combination for camping. A camping tour is a must on the bucket list of anyone who wishes to dig deeper into the real culture of Rajasthan. The evenings are mostly to enjoy the Rajasthani culture with music and dance reflecting the rich cultural heritage.
Quad biking is an exciting sport to do on the dunes of the golden sand of the Thar Desert. This heart rushing activity offers rides on ATV quad bikes. It costs approx Rs 800-900 per person for the ATV rides.
Parasailing in Jaisalmer
flying over the golden sand, parasailing is another exciting and thrilling activity to do while you are in Jaisalmer. It is a service provided by the camps and resorts in Jaisalmer.
Best time to visit- November To March
Ideal stay- 2-3days