Rajasthan: The Majestic Thar Desert
Trek Grade: Easy
The Golden Sands of the Thar Desert at Jamba hold's many beauties, secrets, and mysteries. From living in luxury in an isolated retreat, which is the world's only luxury resort built on-top of hundred feet high sand dune, surrounded by rolling dunes on all sides to exploring the amazing tribal cultures of the Bishnois tribals who follow a way of life that teaches conservation to the world of today. These people were one of the first natural conservators of the world and their love for nature has made the desert a preserve of antelopes and birds. The most famous love story between humans and wildlife of the world belongs to this region where the Demoiselle Cranes flock from across Mongolia to Central Asia just to be fed buckwheat grain by a village.
The safari through the dunes to the Dhanis of these people to experience their life is exciting, colourful, and revealing while doing some exciting sand dune bashing, to get the adrenalin pumping a bit. Staying in the Dera Dune Retreat, a Golden Resort on-top of a Golden Sand Dune itself is to surrender oneself to the amazing beauty of the desertscape!
Combining the Thar Desert and its Golden Sands with the Desert Citadels of Jaisalmer and Jodhpur visiting the towering fortresses, temples, and Havelis is to see art which almost feels like poetry chiseled through the golden and pink sandstones found in these regions. The stories of valour and chivalry of the Rajputs who fought to keep their way of life alive through medieval ages is to learn the greatness of the history of these locations. The memories of the beautifully carven buildings with the colour of the people against the stark desertscape will always be etched into the memory of the travellers. This is another self-driven or, a driven holiday of explorations with friends and family.
- Accommodation in twin sharing basis
- All meals at Jamba
- Breakfast at Jaisalmer & Jodhpur Hotels
- Guided Tour of Jaisalmer (entrances direct payment)
- Visit Osian Temple (No Guide)
- Guided tour of Jodhpur city (entrances on direct payment)
- Excursions to Local Dhanis, Weavers Home in Jamba
- Dune drive Camal Safari in Jamba
- One Sundowner during the stay at Jamba (Snacks with tea/coffee)
- One Unique dining experience during the stay at Jamba
- All currently applicable taxes included
Jaisalmer is a former medieval trading center and a princely state in the western Indian state of Rajasthan, in the heart of the Thar Desert. Known as the "Golden City," it's distinguished by its yellow sandstone architecture.
In the distant reaches and vast expanse of the Thar Desert, far off the beaten tourist trail is the unique village called Jamba. It is located in Phalodi Tehsil of Jodhpur district in Rajasthan, India. This is a perfect place to get away from the big cities and enjoy the solitude of the desert life.
Located on the foothills of a sandstone hillock, the city of Jodhpur seems like an oasis in the vast desert. The city is known by three names as the "Sun City" for the bright, sunny weather it enjoys all year. It is also referred to as the "Blue City" due to the vivid blue-painted houses around the Mehrangarh Fort.
A rapidly growing metropolis, an industrial hub, an educational hotspot, and a city with a magnificent past – Ahmedabad is one of the most important cities in Gujarat and is fast becoming a very popular tourist destination as well. Home to a plethora of remarkable temples, intriguing museums, serene lakes, good restaurants, and classy market, with a little bit of colonial history attached to it, Ahmedabad is a great example of how a city can still retain every bit of its old-world charm while still rapidly progressing on the path of globalization and commercialization.
Ahmedabad - Jaisalmer (Approx. 536 Kms. / 9.5 hours drive)
Today drive from Ahmedabad to Jaisalmer.
OR fly Ahmedabad to Jodhpur followed by approx 4.5 hours drive to Jaisalmer (subject to operations)
Sector Flight Name & no. Timing Ahmedabad / Jodhpur Spice Jet - SG 2933 1405/1525 Ahmedabad / Jodhpur Indigo - 6E 6685 1530/1630
On arrival , check in to hotel.
Jaisalmer is the quintessential desert town, its golden, sand-colored ramparts rising out of the arid Thar like a scene from the Arabian Nights. Rampant commercialism may have dampened the romantic vision somewhat, but even with all the touts and tour buses, the town deservedly remains one of India’s most popular destinations. Villagers dressed in voluminous red and orange turbans still outnumber foreigners in the bazaar, while the exquisite sandstone architecture of the “Golden City” is quite unlike anything else in India.
Time permitting, on your own, you can explore the Gadi Sagar Lake, one of the major tourist attractions of Jaisalmer. Contrary to the popular belief, it is not an oasis but a water conservation tank made around 1400 A.D. This structure, just outside the city walls once acted as a reservoir that controlled the entire supply of water to the arid city! Here, you can buy some bread to feed the fish and see hundreds of catfish emerge to snatch the beard from each other. There is also a Desert Culture Centre, a museum located near the lake which preserves the culture, heritage, history, traditional art and music of the region, since its inception in 1997.
Lunch and dinner on your own.
Overnight at the hotel (No Meals)Accomodation
Today, after breakfast explore the key sights of Jaisalmer.
On a guide visit, explore Jaisalmer Fort, built in 1156 AD, which stands proudly amidst the golden stretches of the great Thar Desert, and has been the scene of many battles. Its massive yellow sandstone walls are a tawny lion color during the day, fading to honey-gold as the sun sets, thereby camouflaging the fort in the yellow desert. For this reason, it is also known as the "Golden Fort”. Wells within the fort still provide a regular source of water. Even today, you will find that nearly one fourth of the old city's population resides within the fort.
Also visit Jain Temple, situated in the fort, known for their exquisite work of art and architecture. The walls of the temple are built out of yellow sandstone and have intricate engravings on them. You will find these temples to be very old and high pilgrimage as well as archaeological value attached to them. These temples echo a sense of calm and serenity.
Explore the colorful Jaisalmer bazaar and the old mansions known as "Havelis” famous for the exquisite carvings and filigreed works which speak of the creativity and innovation of the craftsmen. Some of the popular havelis are Salim Singh Ki Haveli, Patwon Ki Haveli and Natmal Ki Haveli.
In evening, you can explore the sand dune to experience the magical brilliance of the desert.
Lunch and dinner on your own.
Overnight at the hotel (B)Accomodation
Jaisalmer - Jamba by Road (Approx. 170 Kms / 3 hours drive)
After breakfast at the hotel, checkout and drive to Jamba.
On arrival , check into Dera Dune - The Clement Retreat, a retreat, set atop a 130 feet high sand dune with panoramic views of the Thar Desert.
In the distant reaches and vast expanse of the Thar Desert, far off the beaten tourist trail is the unique and inspirational Dera Dune - The Clement Retreat. This is a perfect place to get away from the big cities and enjoy the solitude of the desert life. Magnificently perched atop stabilized sand dune, it is a wonderful base to explore this remote area of Rajasthan and, most importantly, to interact with the living cultures of rural India.
Spectacular sunsets from the sun deck call for a quiet moment with the rare colors that tint the western horizon. The eastern front is equally haunting in the early hours of the morning. Each is an individual experience with the superpowers of nature.
Lunch at the Retreat.
No visit to the desert can be complete without the mandatory camel ride, so be adventurous and make sure you give it a try. Take an exciting camel safari to nearby dune to for a witness the beautiful sunset while enjoying the sundowner.
Dinner at the Retreat.
Overnight at Dera Dune - The Clement Retreat (B, L, D)Accomodation
After breakfast at the Retreat, enjoy a desert jeep safari, an AC 4WD in the desert, to explore small village communities. This excursion will take you into the living cultures of Rajasthan’s desert, giving you a chance to see close up life in rural Rajasthan. The villages are built with painted adobe walls, and village life continues unaffected by the big cities nearby.
The Bishnoi tribes that inhabit this region are a fascinating community. All Bishnois follow the 21 (bis-noi) tenets laid down by the 15-century guru Jambeshwar. They fervently believe in the sanctity of animal and plant life so wildlife finds a natural sanctuary around their villages.
Interact with the weavers, specialized in making woollen rugs of camel hair and hand-knotted carpets have geometric motifs and formal designs.
Later, enjoy your Lunch at the retreat and relax by the Poolside.
Tonight the Retreat will offer you a unique dining experience.
Overnight at Dera Dune - The Clement Retreat (B, L, D)Accomodation
Jamba - Jodhpur by road (Approx. 150 Kms./ 2.5 hour drive)
Today drive from Jamba to Jodhpur.
En-route visit Osian town, popular due to its oasis-like appearance. This ancient township is dedicated to retaining the past. The most notable about Osian’s remarkable style is the great attractions of the fifteen beautifully preserved and sculpted temples. Created in the 8th and 9th centuries, no two temples are alike out of this incredible group. Wandering inside these breathtaking buildings, you’ll find some of the most beautifully decorated walls, shrines, sculptures and original use of stone.
On arrival in Jodhpur, check-in to the Hotel.
Later explore Mehrangarh Fort, which has been in existence since 1459 and is one of the most astounding constructions and architectural marvels from its day and age. The towering building has extremely high walls and gates. The closer it is explored, the smaller you begin to feel! Inside the fort is a network of courtyards and palaces including a museum that houses a splendid collection of items from the Maharajas, salvaged to display regally out of pride for their long bout of warding off attackers.
You can also explore the Jaswant Thada.
Lunch and Dinner on your own.
Overnight at hotel (B)Accomodation
Jodhpur - Ahmedabad by road (Approx. 445 Kms./ 8 hours drive)
After breakfast, checkout from the hotel and drive to Ahmedabad.
OR Fly from Jodhpur to Ahmedabad (subject to operations)
Sector Flight Name & no. Timing Jodhpur / Ahmedabad Spice Jet - SG 2934 1545/1700 Jodhpur / Ahmedabad Indigo - 6E 423 1400/1500
The flight cost is extraAccomodation