While many regard Mehrangarh as Rajasthan’s ultimate fort, the Jaisalmer Fort is not far behind. The fort dates back to the 12th Century, and is fondly referred to as Rajasthan’s “Golden Fort”. It is one of the pinnacles of Rajasthani architecture, and is an absolute treat to behold at night. The old city is housed within the fort walls, and while you may find its narrow alleys a bit too chaotic for your liking initially, you can’t deny it; old Jaisalmer certainly has a charm of its own! Lined with palaces, temples and shops, the fort is a living, breathing citadel that is home to over 4,000 people!
Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur
The Umaid Bhawan Palace, perched atop a hill, is yet another tourist hotspot in Jodhpur. The palace dates back to 1929, when a whopping sum of ₹11 million was spent to build it. Designed for Maharaja Umaid Singh by Henry Lanchester, the renowned British architect, the palace took over a decade to be completed, along with the efforts of 3000 labourers. The fine Burmese teak and Makrana marble are highlights of the palace’s highly acclaimed architecture. The majority of the palace premises has been converted into a luxury hotel, and is off-limits to casual visitors. However, you can definitely visit the museum, which is known for its vintage automobile collection.
The Thar Desert, Jaisalmer
Jaisalmer has many iconic landmarks, but most visitors to the city are more interested in spending time in the Thar Desert. The desert provides a unique backdrop to the city, and camel and jeep safaris are readily available for interested tourists. Camel safaris are recommended for those who want to take it slow and immerse in the desert landscape. An evening camel safari in the Thar Desert is something you would remember for the rest of your life. Several cultural festivals are held in Jaisalmer’s vicinity in February and March, which offer the best opportunities to experience Jaisalmer’s culture and people, up close and personal!
Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park, Jodhpur
The natural side of Jodhpur is often overshadowed by its royal architecture, but if you are a nature lover in Jodhpur, the Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park is where you would want to be. The diverse natural beauty of Jodhpur is in full display at this excellent ecotourism hub. The park is home to numerous crisscrossing walking trails that provide a respite from the chaotic affairs of the main city. As you walk along one of the many trails, you would come across a vast variety of the region’s flora and fauna. An early morning visit is recommended as the temperatures stay low in the early hours of the day. If you are more than just a casual tourist, don’t hesitate to hire a guide for extra insight into the park.
Jain Temples, Jaisalmer
As far as Jain temples go in Rajasthan, the most famous and prominent temples are situated in Mount Abu, but the ones are Jaisalmer are stellar in their own right. The seven temples date back to the 15th century and are renowned for their exquisite carvings and sculptures. While the temples stay open throughout the day for followers of the Jain faith, you should definitely check the timings if you are a non-Jain, as they are notorious for their frequent changes. Chandraprabhu, Rikhabdev, Parasnath, Shitalnath, Sambhavnath, Shantinath and Kunthunath; no matter which temple you choose to spend time in, you would be amazed by the architectural splendour. Like all other Jain temples, leather items are prohibited within the premises, along with cameras and phones.
A Jodhpur Jaisalmer tour is bound to be amazing if the aforementioned destinations are a part of your itinerary! Have a grand time.