Jaisalmer: Your Personal Guide & 3 Days Itinerary

Rajasthan, meaning the ‘Land of Kings’, is the largest state in India and is located in the western part of the country. It has a very rich history dating 5000 years, and has been ruled by different empires including the Rajputs, Marathas and the British. Hence the name of the state. The Thar Desert covers a large part of the state, giving rise to unique flora and fauna. Rajasthan is also home to two National Tiger Reserves where tigers can be spotted in good quantity especially in the wake hours in the summers.

Rajasthan is famous for two unique aspects: Its Forts/Palaces and the hospitality of its lovely people. Its tourism tagline ‘Padhaaro Mahre Desh’,  or ‘You are truly welcome to visit my land’ depicts the sense of hospitality of the locals.

During our short trip to Rajasthan, we decided to visit the city of ‘Jaisalmer’ also known as the ‘Golden City’, Golden being the primary color everywhere in the city. It is located on the westernmost frontier of the country and borders Pakistan. Due to its location and historical importance, it offers an opportunity to experience great architectures, palaces, royalty and amazing food.

The Beautiful Jaisalmer Fort: What You See is Not Even 10% of the Fort!

At a Glimpse

  • Best time to visit: November to early March
  • Desert festival happens in Feb every year. Do look out for the dates online as this is the most vibrant time of the visit.
  • Hydrate yourself very well.
  • Balance the trip with leisure and tourism. Jaisalmer offers opportunities to immerse yourself in the ocean of hospitality
  • Variety of options are available for accommodation including tents in sand dunes, palaces converted to hotels and airbnbs. We stayed in Fort Rajwada.
  • Do spend time to see Bada Bagh garden complex and Khuri village for sand dunes.
  • My 3 days itinerary included:
    • Day 1: Jaisalmer Fort, Jain Temple & Gadsisar Lake (Guide services are highly recommended)
    • Day 2: Tanot Mata Temple, Sand Dunes (Saam Village), Desert Safari
    • Day 3: Patwa Ki Haveli

Day 1: Jaisalmer Fort, Jain Temples & Gadsisar Lake

We started our day with a visit to the Jaisalmer Fort. Built in 1156 AD,  it is one of the world’s largest “living” fort as it presently houses over 3000 people.

The fort is made from yellow sandstone which is unique to this city. Even today, the modern architectures here (like houses, temples etc.), are built from this sandstone, to maintain its ‘Golden Heritage’

Jaisalmer Fort and Extended View of the City of Jaisalmer

In addition to the intriguing architecture, the fort houses plenty of ancient articles and weaponry including the canons. These canons made from cast iron were located in the strategic locations in the fort to prevent enemy attacks.

Posing with the Cannon: Not too Bad!

Jaisalmer fort houses quite a few beautiful and historic temples. The most notable being the interconnected necklace of 7 Jain Temples. You will be amazed to see the innate carving on the Yellow sandstone dating back to 11th and 12th century AD. Do not miss it for anything in the world! These temples are active religious places and are open for tourists from morning till 12 Noon. I recommend you to wake up early, to avoid the crowd and experience the grandeur architecture.

Look at this extraordinary work! These structures are carved out of stone and are absolutely ‘Flawless’!
This is the Ceiling of One of the Jain Temples Delicately Made from Yellow Sandstone

As you walk across the streets, you can find plenty of beautiful temples spread across the city.

Hindu Temple

This part of the world is know for some of the best and unique delicacies. These include ‘Daal Baati’, ‘Churma’, ‘Onion Kachori’, ‘Green Chilli Pakoda’, ‘Sweet (Mawa) Kachori’ etc. Most of the roadside shops will prepare these, giving you an opportunity to try them fresh. Do mention your preferred level of spice while ordering food.

We ended our day with a trip to the Gadsisar lake. This artificial lake, named after Rawal Gadsi Singh in 14th century and has been named after him. It used to be the only source of water in the city at that time. People used to fill earthen pots with water from the lake for their family use.

We spent our evening walking around on the streets and waited for the sun set. At dusk, the entire fort is lighted up with yellow lights. Yellow sandstone, shining in yellow lights is an amazing view.

Ghadisisar Lake: Manmade Lake which is now a Recreation Spot

Day 2: Tanot Mata Temple, Sand Dunes (Saam Village), Desert Safari

Tanot Mata temple, located at the Pakistan border, is next to ‘Longewala’, a battle ground for Indo-Pakistan war of 1971. There is a legendary story behind this temple. During the 1971 war, some of the Indian soldiers had to take refuge in the temple, while awaiting support from Border Security Force. Pakistani army dropped  over 3000 bombs, targeting the temple and the soldiers inside it. Miraculously, none of the bombs exploded and the soldiers were safe while the Border Security Force arrived for rescue. Till date, this temple holds the force together and is visited by various followers from around the country. It is now maintained and protected by the Border Security Force.

Post the visit to the temple, one can visit the highly sensitive ‘India-Pakistan’ Border and see the reminiscent of the 1971 war.

Then came the most awaited experience of the trip. The desert safari in the Sand Dunes at the Saam Village! Camel, also known as the ‘Ship of the Desert’ is a proud possession in this part of the world. The owners beautifully adorn the camels with colorful clothing and frills, which in itself is an amazing sight.

We jumped onto the camels and started our rickety rickety ride through the barren desert. It was one of my best rides ever!

There are plenty of tent accommodation in the sand dunes, which indeed is an adventurous way to spend a night or two. We missed this opportunity but I highly recommend it, to experience the desert life! After the desert safari, we saw the traditional and vibrant Kalbaliya dance and Fire performances by the local artists. Overall, another incredible day with lots of exciting experiences!

Look! How Beautiful these Camels Are! Absolutely Loved Them

Day 3: Patwa Ki Haveli

This day was quite relaxing for us. After a heavy breakfast, we went on to see, ‘Patwa Ki Haveli’. ‘Haveli’, in Indian context is a large mansion with very elaborate architecture owned primarily by rich businessmen.

‘Patwa ki Haveli’ is one of the most famous Havelis  in India and is a cluster of 5 different havelis. Guman Chand Patwa, a famous jewelry and fine brocade trader, constructed this haveli in the 1805 over the span of 50 years for his 5 sons.

This is Just the Window! Imagine How the ‘Haveli’ Would be!

The compound retains its authenticity and has preserved the articles used by Patwas in their time. The royalty of their living can be witnessed by the adorable architecture, incredible yellow stone carving and historic wall paintings.

The Compound Area of the Haveli
Our Home for 2 Nights: Fort Rajwada

In summary, these are just few of the things which we decided to see, but there is a lot more to explore in the ‘Golden City’ of Jaisalmer. We went on a leisure vacation so we didn’t try to squeeze everything in this short trip.

Millions of tourists visit this royal city of forts and palaces every year. If ever you ever plan to come to this incredible country, do visit this warm and welcoming city of Jaisalmer!

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58 Comments Add yours

  1. lydia says:

    I’ve never been but wow, Rajasthan is gorgeous! The architecture was absolutely amazing.

  2. I can’t get over the architecture – it’s so amazingly intricate. Absolutely stunning photos.

  3. This place looks super cool. I am going to have to find my way here someday. I have always wanted to visit India anyhow.

  4. HilLesha says:

    I have been to India, but I hope to visit there someday! It’s actually one of top few places on my travel bucket list. 🙂

  5. What a beautiful visit. I would love to go with my daughters when they are old enough to appreciate the culture and historical sites. The temples are stunning and I’m sure the architecture is breathtaking.

  6. Amanda Love says:

    Amazing and stunning. Each place is unique and will give you a lovely and memorable experience. These are all worth exploring.

  7. rahulk376 says:

    Jaisalmer is a piece of India beauty. It has so much to explore that even 3 days would be less. I have to plan a trip here soon and would surely cover the places you have mentioned. Great Read! 🙂

  8. deekolb31 says:

    India is a place I’d love to go visit – your photos make it look absolutely stunning!

    1. Sona Jain says:

      Thank you! ☺️

  9. priti says:

    These pictures are amazing. Makes us wanna go and visit now.

  10. I think India is beautiful. My in laws visited once, to tutor children and they, too, were beautiful!

    1. Sona Jain says:

      Wow! That is such a noble thing that your parents did! ☺️

  11. Jeanine says:

    These photos are just truly stunning. I would love to visit Jaisalmer someday! Looks just stunning.

  12. Jessica Joachim says:

    What a beautiful place to visit. I would love to go sometime and take the kids as well. Traveling with kids is great because they get to experience things at such a young age.

  13. Been searching for places that will uplift my spirit and I think this is perfect. Hope I could visit this place in the near future!

  14. This looks like such an awesome trip and you managed to squeeze in so much during this three day itinerary x

  15. Kristina says:

    This is beautiful! When I’m older and kids are grown I want to travel the world. This is a place I’d love to go.

  16. darmarq says:

    I have always wanted to go there! Wow these pictures are amazing! breathtaking.

  17. A living fort sound amazing! I love all your photos, the place looks beautiful. I’ve always wanted to ride a camel! Maybe one day.

  18. Oh wow! What a gorgeous place! I love the travel tips also, it’s always good to know what the best time of year is to visit a destination.

  19. Thank you for the informative trivia about Jaisalmer Fort. Love your insta worthy shots of the place. It’s really lovely!

  20. Krystle Cook says:

    This looks like such a lovely place to visit. I am seriously considering going!

  21. The stone work is incredible. I can’t believe how intricate everything this and the attention to detail is amazing. Thanks for sharing such an informative post that details the area and your experience.

  22. The Everyday Mom Life says:

    This place looks so beautiful! I hope I can go there sometime. I love how the homes look like they’re rising right out of the moutain.

  23. wow this place does have lots of fort type buildings and makes for amazing photos though doesn’t it?

  24. Jaisalmer appears to be very fascinating! Thanks for sharing your pics! I have not yet been to India, but I definitely need to see this place when I do go!

  25. reesann723 says:

    Wow your photos are stunning! What a historic city! I will probably never get to visit here, so I loved reading your post!

  26. Carolyn says:

    Wow, the architecture is amazing. I will add this place to my list of places to visit and will especially want to take a ride on a camel. They use such pretty colors for the blankets.

  27. OvenStruck says:

    So many friends have traveled here and all with such amazing stories when they return home. I would love to be that up close to the stone carvings. They are magnificent!

  28. India is on my bucket list of places I want to visit! Your pictures are so sumptuous! Makes me want to book my trip now!

  29. Lydia says:

    I would love to visit India! It looks so gorgeous and a fun place to visit

  30. Kristin says:

    What an amazing experience that must have been! The lake is absolutely beautiful!

  31. I have to admit Jaisalmer is my favorite spot in Rajasthan. Rajasthan also happens to be my favorite state for tourism in India.

  32. Stace Werner says:

    Rajasthan looks like it was an unique trip. I love the camels also.
    And it is good to know there are still good reservations out there for tigers.

  33. nmetolen75 says:

    Your pictures make me want to visit there so badly. I love any place that still has ancient structures like that. I feel like so much of the world lost its history.

  34. This looks like an amazing place to visit. I am always looking for new travel destinations to try to go to.

  35. Oh my! This place looks amazing! I love how you added an awesome itinerary! I will have to add this to my bucket list!

  36. Wow! What an amazing place to travel to! I really hope to visit places like this someday, this would be a dream come true for me!

  37. cvnxena says:

    we’ve never been here before but it looks beautiful! We will have to add it to our travel bucket list when the kids are bigger!

  38. It looks absolutely insane! I’ve never been but would go tomorrow if anyone got me a ticket haha! My friend is in India right now – fingers crossed he gets to visit this place! x

  39. Anil M. says:

    That was a great read! Definitely gave me some ideas and tips for when I do my 5-week trip to India 🙂

  40. Heather says:

    India looks so beautiful! I studied interior design in college and we studied the architecture of India extensively. It was one of my favorites and I dream of visiting one day! Your photos are gorgeous and Iove those colorful camels!

    1. Sona Sethi says:

      Thank you Heather! I am so glad to hear that you studied Indian architecture. Mughal architecture is indeed one of the best that I have seen from all my travel experiences across Europe, Asia and Americas.https://vacationbegins.wordpress.com/wp-admin/edit-comments.php?p=2629#comments-form

  41. Such stunning photos! I would love to be surrounded by those beautiful camels!

  42. planningthemagic says:

    Can’t wait to one day visit India it looks so great. What was the most common way you got around?

    1. Sona Sethi says:

      Thank you! We used a chauffeur driven car which is quite affordable. This helped us to have a local guide with us full time.

  43. Ana De-Jesus says:

    I am in love with the Jaisalmer fort , it seems like it is a place that is rich in history and culture. The artificial lake is beautiful as well x

    1. Sona Sethi says:

      Yeah! Rajasthan has many more fascinating forts and palaces and I highly recommend if you are into history and architecture. 🙂

  44. Oh my goodness what a view from the fort! Literally can see for miles and miles. What an amazing trip!

  45. I love your photography. It makes me want to visit so bad. There is so much beauty in the world I haven’t seen up close and personal!

    1. Sona Sethi says:

      Thank you Kecia! Would surely recommend you pay a visit to this part of the world.

  46. morgancunnin says:

    First, I was blown away by your pictures and all the architecture and then absolutely melted at the camels. Looks like you had a wonderful experience.

  47. My boyfriend’s sister spent a lot of time here and has convinced me I should definitely go! It looks really amazing. I’ll return to this itinerary!

  48. GlamKaren says:

    Wow – what an amazing trip! I really loved reading about the desert safari in the Sand Dunes. With the adorned camels it sounds just magical!

  49. Sounds like you had a very nice trip. I love seeing all the beautiful historical type buildings they would be studying for my Instagram photography. But I seldom ever leave even the state I live in to travel .

    1. Sona Sethi says:

      If you are into history and architecture, I surely recommend Rajasthan and Delhi in India. Both have architectures that date back to 10th century and above. You will surely fall in love with it

  50. robin masshole mommy says:

    My stepson just got back from three weeks in India. I am not sure exactly where he was because he said he was all over India, but he LOVED it there.

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