5 places to visit in Jaisalmer- the Golden City

The Golden City of Jaisalmer was founded by Raja Rawal Jaisal, a very remarkable Bhatti Rajput ruler who has carved his name out in the Rajputana history. Jaisalmer sits in the heart of the Thar desert and is known for being home to the rich heritage of Rajasthan, the customs and traditions of the local Rajasthani folk.

If you are planning a trip to Rajasthan, Jaisalmer has to make it to your travel list. Here are things to do in Jaisalmer and a small guide to where you can find super accommodation in the Golden City.


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Things to do in Jaisalmer:

1) Visit the Jaisalmer Fort
Fondly called the Sonar Qilla by the locals of Jaisalmer, the Jaisalmer Fort is also popularly known as the ‘Golden Fort’ across India and all over the world. The fort was built by Rao Jaisal, a Rajput ruler who utilized the fort to fight a number of battles. The fort is nestled on the Trikuta Hill and is made out of yellow sandstone, making it look like it is shining in the scorching Rajasthani sun.

Originally, the fort was the residence of the royal family of Jaisalmer but is now occupied by a thousand local families. When you go inside, you will see the Gyan Bhandar library, the Jain temples, the Laxminath Temple, the Raj Mahal, havelis for the merchants and four humongous gateways.

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COURTESY: https://www.rajasthantourplanner.com/blog/jaisalmer-fort-tour/

2) Watch the sunset at Bada Bagh
Bada Bagh means big garden, again, built with yellow sandstone, the Bada Bagh has intricate architecture which displays the creativity of the artists and craftsmen of Rajasthan. Watching the sunset at Bada Bagh has to be on your list of things to do in Jaisalmer as you can see the fiery shades of orange and yellow turn into a starry noir, changing the complete look of the garden.

The Bada Bagh also has the cenotaphs of the royals and will leave you wondering about man’s mortality and about how our lives are only relative to time.

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3) Visit the Gadisar Lake for some down time
A little away from the city of Jaisalmer, lies the Gadisar Lake, a spot that most travellers frequent, in search of peace and calm. The lake is perfectly positioned around many temples and shrines that give out very tranquil vibes, adding to the calm and spiritual ambiance of the place.

If you happen to visit in the winter months from November to February, you will also get to see a lot of migratory birds around the lake area.

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COURTESY: https://www.tourpackagejaisalmer.com/gadisisar-lake.php

4) Admire the majestic Surya Gate
The Surya Gate is located within the Jaisalmer Fort and is one of the four gates that are famed for their architecture and the intricate works of art on them. The other three gates are the Akhai Gate, the Ganesh Gate and the Hawa Gate. The Surya Gate however, is majestic and is decorated with some of the best designs that represent Rajasthan’s craftsmanship.

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5) Visit the Khaba Fort
The Khaba Fort is definitely not for the faint hearted as it is said to be one of the haunted forts of Jaisalmer. The Khaba Fort is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Jaisalmer as it is also home to the ruins of Kuldara. The Khaba Fort was occupied by the Paliwal Brahmins but was suddenly found deserted on a strange night. If you like hearing spooky stories, speak to the locals in the area about the Fort and they will be spinning yarns about it in no time.

You might see very few people around the fort, making it the perfect spot for an elaborate photography session, as an add on, you can also have peacocks in the background as the fort is frequented by lots of peacocks, all through the year, especially during the monsoon months.

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Where to stay in Jaisalmer?

1) WelcomHeritage Mandir Palace
WelcomHeritage Mandir Palace is a two-hundred year old palace that is converted into a hotel and is a combination of old-world charm with top-notch modern amenities. The main part of the Mandir Palace was built during the reign of Maharawal Jawahir Singh and is a marvellous spectacle for tourists as it represents the opulent Rajasthani culture. The hotel also has a tower like structure called ‘Badal Vilas’ within the premises which happens to be the tallest structure in Jaisalmer city. A stay at this hotel in Jaisalmer is sure to transport you back in time, making you relive Rajasthan’s royalty.
Where? Gandhi Chowk, Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.
Price Range: Rs.15,000/- to Rs. 17,000/- per night.

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2) Hotel Royal Haveli
Hotel Royal Haveli is the ultimate escape into royalty for those who are looking at staying at a property that resonates with Rajasthan’s royal inheritance. The Haveli has regular rooms as well as suites, both of which guarantee utmost comfort to guests. The service at this Jaisalmer hotel has always been the best and they also offer free pick-ups and drops to guests. If you are looking at touring Jaisalmer, you must check out their special packages that include sightseeing and various meditation experiences in Jaisalmer.
Where? Near Desert Boy’s Dhani, Air Force Circle, Dhibba Para, Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.
Price Range: Rs.3800/- to Rs. 4600/- per night.

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COURTESY: https://www.yatra.com/hotels/hotels-in-jaisalmer/hotel-royal-haveli

3) Hotel Shahi Palace
If you are looking for a relatively reasonable hotel in Jaisalmer, Hotel Shahi Palace is the one good place to stay in Jaisalme. This Jaisalmer hotel is run by a local family and is made completely out of pure sandstone. The architecture and decor of this hotel is representative of Rajasthan’s culture, giving you an insight into the brilliant artistic abilities of the local artisans. The hotel has comfortable rooms and an in-house rooftop restaurant that serves vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian options for guests and visitors.
Shiv Road, near State Bank of Bikaner & Jaipur Bank, Jaisalmer, Rajasthan.
Price Range:
Rs.1300/- to Rs.1500/- per night.

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Best time to visit Jaisalmer
The best time to visit this beautiful city is from the months of November to March. The weather in these months is pleasant, making outdoor activities more enjoyable. You can also visit the full moon festival in Jaisalmer that is held every year in the Magh month that is, in the month of February.

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COURTESY: https://www.jaisalkot.com/jaisalmer-history/

Reaching Jaisalmer
Jaisalmer is very well-connected by road, rail and air.
Road: There are lots of inter-state buses that run from Jaisalmer to Jaipur and vice-versa, making it easier for tourists to travel from one city in Rajasthan to the other.

Rail: If you are looking at travelling by train, do take the ‘Palace on Wheels’ train which is one of the luxury trains in India that offers a unique travel experience to tourists. If not for the luxury train, there are lots of other trains that run from major Indian cities and reach you to the Jaisalmer train station.

Air: The Jaisalmer airport is only about 5 kilometres from the main city where flights from all major cities fly in, making it easier for tourists to visit Jaisalmer.

You could read more about few of Rajasthani regions like Udaipur, Pushkar and Jaipur in their respective links. Which of these is your favorite? You favorite didn’t make it to this list? Do let me know so I visit the place as soon as I can!

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