13th International Conference on Development of Drylands

About Jaisalmer (Golden City)

Jaisalmer

Overview

Jaisalmer also known as “The Golden City” of state Rajasthan, is located 575km (357 mi) from Jaipur (Capital of Rajasthan). It is the largest district in the state and by territorial region, it is the third largest district in India. The city is built on a ridge of yellowish sandstone, and ancient Jaisalmer fort is the crown of the city.

Sculptured sandstone was used to build many houses and temples of both town and fort. Thar Desert (the Great Indian Desert) surrounds the entire city, having a total population of 78,000 (fort’s residents included).

Geography & Climate of Jaisalmer

In terms of temperature, Jaisalmer is open to extremes, because of its arid desert region. In both summer and winter temperature of Jaisalmer hugely varies from day to night.

  • Summer temperature: Maximum - 49 °C (120 °F) Minimum - 25 °C (77 °F). At international border near Pakistam highest temperature in summer was recorded around 52.4 °C (126.3 °F)
  • Winter temperature: Maximum - 23.6 °C (74.5 °F), Minimum - 5 °C (41 °F) Lowest ever recorded temperature in winter was 5.9 °C (21.4 °F)

There is a scarcity of water in Jaisalmer so, rainy crops like bajara, jawar, motif, til etc. are grown and spring crops like wheat, barley etc.. are hard to find throughout Jaisalmer.

Tourist Attraction

Jaisalmer Fort

Jaisalmer fort

Bhati Rajput ruler Jaisal build this fort in 1156. Massive walls of the fort made by sandstone appear to be tawny lion color during the day and as the sun sets it turns into magical honey-gold. Located at Meru Hill and named as trikoot garh has witnessed many battles. Being the living fort, a quarter of the city’s population still resides inside the fort.

Raj Mahal (Royal Palace), Jain temples and the Laxminath temple are the main attractions inside the fort.

Jain Heritage of Jaisalmer

Jain Heritage of Jaisalmer

Jaisalmer is known for beautiful Jain temples. The temples are dedicated to the 16th Tirthankara, Shantinath, and 23rd Tirthankara, Prashanth.

The fort contains seven Jain temples built during 12th and 15th centuries.

Paraswanath Temple
Paraswanath Temple

It is the biggest, oldest and most beautiful temple in the fort among other temples. There are beautiful carvings of animal and human figure on the walls of the sanctum. Temple is crowned by an amalak and a waterpot consisting of a lotus flower.

Chandraprabhu Temple
Chandraprabhu Temple

Among the numerous temples this temple was constructed between 15th and 16th century dedicated to the 8th Tirthankara, Jain Prophet Chandraprabhuji.

Residing in the Golden Fort, built in red sandstone, the Chandraprabhu Temple is a wonderful marvel of ancient Rajput architectural style. The intricate carvings, imposing corridors and curved facades of the temple are sights to behold.

Rishabdev Temple
Rishabdev temple

The Rishabhdev Temple is dedicated to Rishabh Dev or Adinatha, the first of 24 Jain Tirthankaras. Build at the beginning of the 16th century the temple stands as the beautiful piece of craftsmanship and architectural design. Amazing corridors and beautiful carvings make it the topmost tourist spot.

Havelis in Jaisalmer

Havelis in Jaisalmer

There are numerous Havelis in Jaisalmer which offer various types of architecture such as Rajputana and Islamic architecture. The havelis are constructed using yellow sandstone and have stunningly carved facades and are beautified by oriel windows. The beauty of these havelis is truly unmatched. Some of those popular havelis are listed below:

Patwon Ki Haveli In Jaisalmer
Patwon Ki Haveli In Jaisalmer

Wonderful architecture of the bygone era, In the city of Jaisalmer Patwon ki Haveli is the main attraction can look for. Patwon ki Haveli is a bunch of five small havelis, the exterior of the haveli looks like it has been dipped in an enchanting shade of gold.

Salim Singh Ki Haveli
Salim Singh ki Haveli

Rajasthan is among the most sought-after tourist place in the world. It has a perfect blend of historical importance and natural beauty which makes it a perfect tourist destination. In Rajasthan, Jaisalmer is one of the most important destinations for tourists. Many visitors come to Jaisalmer to get a glimpse of the ancient havelis.

Salim Singh ki Haveli is 300 years old marvelous piece of architecture. Being said that its the most popular haveli of Jaisalmer. During your tour to Jaisalmer do visit this amazing marvel without which your tour is considered incomplete.

Nathmalji Ki Haveli
Nathmalji ki Haveli

Build by 2 Muslim brothers in the 19th century, Nathmalji ki Haveli situated in the heart of Jaisalmer, Nathmalji Ki Haveli is highly known for its amazing architecture and intricate carvings. The haveli was used as a residence of the then Prime Minister of the city Diwan Mohata Nathmal.

Desert Festival

Desert Festival

The most awaited festival of Jaisalmer that dominate the sand of Rajasthan. Held every year in the month of February is most famous cultural and colorful event which includes Camel races and turban tying competitions. Rajasthani folk music and dance are also showcased in the Desert Festival of Jaisalmer.

To witness the various performing arts like Kalbelia dance, folk song, and music, this is the best time to visit Jaisalmer. Popular Gair and Fire dancers are the major attraction of Jaisalmer’s Desert Festival.

Museums

  • Jaisalmer War Museum
  • Desert Culture Centre & Museum
  • Baa ri haveli culture centre & 450yrs old haveli in fort
  • Jaisalmer Folklore Museum
  • Government Museum
  • Jaisalmer Fort Palace Museum
  • Jaisalmer War Museum
  • Akal Fossil Park Museums
  • Cactus Park Museum, Kuldhara
  • Tanot Museum,Tanot

Nearby Places

Kuldhara Village

Kuldhara Village

Kuldhara an abandoned village located near Jaisalmer district of state Rajasthan, was once also known as Paliwal Village because it was once prosperous lived by Paliwal Brahmins. Early 19th century for no reason the village was abandoned, possibly because of no water supply or as locals says mistreatment by the Jaisalmer State's minister Salim Singh. The previous year a study claimed that Kuldhara and its neighboring villages were abandoned due to earthquake.

As the years passed Kuldhara acclaimed reputation as a haunted place, and in 2010 the state Government of Rajasthan decided to develop it as a spot of tourism.

Lodurva

Lodurva

Lodurva is a village in Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan. Famous for Jain temples and other historical monuments, Lodurva is one of the top places to visit in Jaisalmer. Lodurva was the ancient capital of the Bhatti dynasty till 1156 AD.

Today, it is a popular tourist destination, known for its architectural ruins and Jain temples. The temples at Lodurva exhibit some more fine examples of intricate craftsmanship on yellow stone. The Parshvnath Temple is the oldest and the most beautiful of the Jain temples. The temple is dedicated to 23rd Tirthankara, Parshvnath. Rishabhnath Temple is the second Jain temples at Lodurva, located near the ruins of the palace of Moomal.

Sam Sand Dunes

Sam Sand Dunes

Sam sand dunes, is one of the most authentic desert dune site in whole India, where you will find 30-60 meter tall sand dunes, you can enjoy Desert Safari on camels or jeep, Sam is 45 km west from Jaisalmer city. Sand dunes are eternal but keep shifting with the movement of the winds, which marks as one of the nature's most interesting and picturesque phenomena.

Sunsets in the sand dunes are divine and marks the time to get lost in the various cultural programmes organized for the tourists, which provide you with an opportunity to glimpse into the rich culture of the land.