Perched on the Trikuta Hill in the westernmost corner of Rajasthan, Jaisalmer is a fairytale fortress city from which to explore the mesmerizing beauty of the desert. Founded in 1156 AD by Prince Jaisal as a staging post for camel trains, the amber-hued city boasts a commanding fort etched in yellow sandstone that inspired renowned filmmaker Satyajit Ray to make a film named Sonar Kella or Golden Fortress set around the fort. Jaisalmer also boasts its assembly of some extraordinary painted medieval havelis.
If you're anywhere near Jaisalmer in January, don't miss the Desert Festival, one of Rajasthan’s most flamboyant parades.
One of the largest living forts in the world, the Jaisalmer fort encompasses within it palace, temples, restaurants, handicraft shops. Founded in 1156 by the Jaisal and renovated by later rulers, Jaisalmer Fort is home to Raja Mahal, (Maharaja's Palace), Jain temples and Laxminath Temple.
Jaisalmer is known for its Havelis, famous for the delicacy of their relief carvings, lacelike screens and jarokhas,and filigreed windows. These Havelis are scattered all over the city. Most impressive of them are Patwon ki Haveli, Salim Singh ki Haveli, Nathmalji ki Haveli. Patwon ki Haveli also houses Basant Art Emporium where you can shop for exquisite handicrafts.
Built by Maharawal Gadsi Singh in 1367, this lake has temples and a chhattri (cenotaph) around it. In close proximity to the lake is the Folklore Museum which houses handicrfsts.
One of the places of interest in Jaisalmer, Amar Sagar is a lake located 5 km northeast of the town. Around the banks of the lake are a palace and a Jain temple.
Located 6km north of Jaisalmer, Barra Bagh has a collection of old and recent cenotaphs to Jaisalmer's Rajput rulers.
16 km from Jaisalmer and 10 km north of Barra Bagh, Ludruwa (Lodurva or Lodarva) was the seat of power for Bhatti Rajputs from the 8th to 12th century. Ludruwa was sacked by the army of Muslim invader Mohammed Ghori. The Jaina shrines found here are known for fine carvings.
Jaisalmer is known for camel safari. 42 km from Jaisalmer are Sam Sand Dunes where tourists can enjoy the camel safaris. Here you can stay overnight in a desert tent for a surreal night.
45 km from Jaisalmer and an hour drive from the town, Desert National Park is home to a variety of wildlife including deer, black buck, chinkara, desert fox, the rare long-necked bird called the Great Indian Bustard.
Air: Nearest Airport is at Jodhpur, 300 kms from Jaisalmer. The airport is connected by flights with different cities.
Rail: Jaisalmer is connected by direct train from different cities and places in India.
Road: Jaisalmer is connected by motorable roads with diffent cites and places in Rajasthan. Some of the cities and places in Rajasthan connected with Jaisalmer are Barmer (153 km), Jodhpur (290 km), Bikaner (330 km), Udaipur (563 km) and Jaipur (638 km). Delhi is 897 km from Jaisalmer.
Finding an accommodation in Jaisalmer is not an issue because the place is a pouplar travel destination and is filled up with lots of resorts and hotels catering to the needs of everyone.
Hotel Dhola Maru, Heritage Inn, Hotel Himmatgarh Palace, Narayan Niwas Palace, Hotel Priya, Hotel RawalKot (Taj Group), Deoki Niwas Palace, Fort Rajwada, Gorbandh Palace, JawaharNiwas Palace, Hotel Nachna Haveli, Rang Mahal, Hotel Bhaiya Palace, Hotel Fort View, Hotel Haveli, Hotel Jaisal Castle, Hotel Neeraj, Hotel Jaisal Palace, Hotel Payal, Hotel Sona, Hotel Swastika and Hotel Moomal are some of the well-known hotels of Jaisalmer.
Jaisalmer is a great place to shop for souvenirs. Number One (aka "First Fort") Gate is the place where you can find Jaisalmer puppets. Several government-run Khadi Gramodyog stock richly patterned hand-loom shawls and woollen blankets from the villages of Rajasthan.