Jaisalmer nick named as the golden city is one of the most sought after tourist destinations of Rajasthan. Lies in the heart of Thar Desert it is famous for its magnificent forts and monuments. There are various amazing places that one can explore on a sight seeing tour to Jaisalmer. Some of the must visit places on Jaisalmer tour are as given velow:
Jaisalmer Fort: The Jaisalmer fort is the second oldest fort in Rajasthan after Chittor that is situated 250 ft high perch on the hill. Sharp turns on the road topped by high defensive gateway made it invincible. At the highest point of the place can be seen an umbrella-Meghadamber symbolic of Krishna. Music and dances soirees were held here for royal ladies. From the balconies you get a terrific view of the mammoth ramparts below guarding the small city. The fort contains one third of the city's population within the small houses on the narrow lanes. Many houses provide budget accommodation to visitors and house curio shops.
Jain TemplesWithin the fort are the three most exquisitely sculptured Jain temples dedicated to Rishabhdevji, Sambhavanathji and the Ashthapadi . The ornamentation done on these temples is in the style of the Dilwara temples at Mt. Abu which makes it simply marvelous. The emerald icon of Mahavira is an unparalleled gem.
On a sight seeing tour of Jaisalmer one can not afford to miss the famous havelies. These havelies are the pride of Jaisalmer architecture, a part of the national heritage. Some of the magnificent havelies of Jaisalmer include
Salem Singh Haveli
Salem Singh haveli is situated at the eastern end of the city, is an Arabian Nights structure, which, like a wild flower, blossoms at the top.
Patwon ki Haveli
Near the city center is the Patwon ki Haveli, built by Guman Chand Patwa and his five sons, dealers in brocade, gold and silver embroidery with business stretching between Afghanistan and China. The balconies are so delicately chiseled you and mesmerized you by the splendor of it. Oblique sunrays create enchanting and dramatic shadows on this grandest mansion in Jaisalmer, a veritable museum piece in the open.
Nathmal HaveliThe third haveli belongs to Nathmal, a later day prime minister who gifted it to the Rawal and was allowed to retain it. Built by two brothers in 1885, this haveli has two identical looking portions, which are in fact two different parts united by a common fašade. So ethereal, so charming the carving never looked better. A perfect example of jeweler's art applied to stone carving. If only for viewing these havelis travel to Jaisalmer is more than amply rewarded.
Excursions from Jaisalmer
The most picturesque dunes are located some 40 km from Jaisalmer. No travel to Jaisalmer is complete without a visit to these fascinating dunes. The dunes can be extremely treacherous since they can sink to a few feet the moment you step over one. Occasionally you can see the dunes shifting with the strong desert winds-an astonishing feat of nature. Watching sunrise and sunset on the dunes can become etched on your memory as an unforgettable spectacle.
Lodurva, the ancient capital of Bhattis is 16 kilometers from Jaisalmer. Mostly in ruins, it is visited for the great Jain temple, which contains the most exquisite jail work screens, grand ceiling and a magnificent triumphal arch at the entrance. The original carriage for the deity, made in 1675, is still preserved. The most interesting object dart is Kalpataru, a mythical tree of wish fulfillment. Lodurva has a great number of peacocks, which hover around the temple walls lending spectacular color to the dry and stony landscape. Here once flowed the river Kak. Along its banks had flourished the romance between princess Momal, and prince Mathendru of Amarkot. Their tragic end is the theme of folk songs. When the lovers perished, the river Kak stopped flowing.
From Lodurva, the road to Jaisalmer passes through Amar Sagar, which has a grand artificial reservoir for water, a temple and a promenade on the bank. Bada Bagh, cenotaphs of the Jaishalmer Rawals, has some magnificent chattris (canopies) set amidst an oasis of greenery. It is indeed a great place for a stopover and photography. Another beautiful place is the Gadi Sagar Tank, the main source of the city's water supply.
One of the most interesting places is Kuldhara village. This is among the 84 villages inhabited by the rich, hard-working Paliwals. The Paliwals deserted their houses overnight with the curse that anyone who removed even a stone from the houses would come to grief and perish. Howling winds rush through empty streets and skeletons of houses now exposed to the elements remains of the village.