When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer

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Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal
Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer by Roma Kandpal

Jaisalmer

So, an entire film crew had landed up in Udaipur from France and Mumbai and we stayed there for almost 20 days. While everyone from the crew chose to go back home, a friend (also a crew member) and I decided to do something exciting since we were really wanderlusting. 

Of all the possible places everyone suggested, we were dying to go to Jaisalmer. And there it was. We hopped in one of the production management guys' car and drove all the way to Jaisalmer from Udaipur. The journey seemed to be a little impossible cos we left our hotel from Udaipur on the 27th morning. At 6 a.m. And it was freezing. AND it was foggy. We couldn't possibly see a man on the road. We chose to take a halt for about an hour at a dhaba on the way, waiting for the fog to settle down. And the three of us were so sleepy we could've slept on the cot at the dhaba. What amazes me about Rajasthan is the food you get even at the places you wouldn't possibly except to find. And this place served the best parathas and chai. 

So. The fog settled and we were set to experience on hell of a trip. We reached Jaisalmer at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon and straight away drove to Sam Sand dunes. Cos we just weren't ready to slow ourselves down by taking up a hotel and later decide what to do. We'd planned a two day trip keeping in mind the budget and time. Also because we didn't want to end up spending on things which we didn't want to. 

The sand dunes were magical and so was the sufi evening we spent near the dunes. All thanks to the man who brought us here. 

Spent the night at Surja Palace lodge inside the Jaisalmer fort. YES, a FORT. 

The next morning, after witnessing a beautiful sunrise, a hotel experience we will never forget and the bets breakfast ever; we went out to start exploring the city. While roaming around the street, I came across this place: 

Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer 1/2 by Roma Kandpal

An authorised bhang shop. Which also sells marijuana. In open. I was quite shocked in the beginning. But turns out, it isn't the kind of stuff you would get caught with. Why? You got to go there and know it. 

The next stop was us parasailing. Well, not that exciting. But you could try it out if you're a rookie!

We then chose to drive to a 'so-called' haunted village Kuldhara. Which actually, wasn't haunted at all. As rumour has it, the entire village was apparently cursed and over night all the families of the village had to move out. The ones who stayed, either died or something like that. Major downer this was. 

Photo of When two days weren't enough for us – Jaisalmer 2/2 by Roma Kandpal

We ended our day with a typical rajasthani thali and ended up getting so stuffed that we couldn't move. 

Towards the evening, we got on a bus to Udaipur and came back to our senses since we were in a state of trance experiencing the trip. 

Jaisalmer gave me something I will never forget. It's been a year, and i still think of the place and keep urging to go back there. Well, someday soon hopefully I will. So should you!

So, Surja Palace was by far the best place I've stayed in. We reached Jaisalmer fort at about 11 o'clock in the night and apparently everything pretty much shuts down at that hour of the day. And what appeared to us at first was this place that was dingy, unsafe and not something we should go ahead with. Strangely every member of the staff was fast asleep except one of the guys who showed us two rooms, out of which we chose to stay in the one which luckily was on the top floor and thats the only thing we thought could save us. We somehow managed to get sleep at about 2, until what we saw the next morning that took our breath away. I've never a prettier sunrise and a view of the entire city, the way it looked from our window. We quickly went on the cafe on the roof-top as we were starving and picked up the basic items to order as we were skeptical about the food. But turns out, they had the best breakfast!! We ended up hogging so much that we weren't able to move!!! And all of this was totally under budget. Before i forget, this place had free wifi for all the guests! Hotel Surja is a place for the ones who aren't very finicky about luxury. This place is magical because it will give you something you might take with you and always cherish. Like I did. You're on your own. You will not have room service, but the best service from the cooks. They will make you fall in love with the place!
Photo of Hotel Surja, Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, India by Roma Kandpal
BEST RAJASTHANI THALI. Ever. That says it all. You've really got to go to this place and know how amazing the food is. We literally passed out after eating the thali.
My first desert safari. We chose to take the camel safari instead of the jeep one, cos, you know we're cool like that. We were two enthu cutlets who were excited to try every possible thing that isn't conventional and something we would take back home and remember it throughout. We paid around Rs. 1800 and got ourselves the best ride ever. Saw the sun go down and then headed towards the cultural program that happens every night. You can choose from the package the kind of things you wanna do. Mostly the entire package comes with a safari ride and a dinner/drinks evening. It was luckily a sufi night and we were served an authentic Jaisalmeri food for dinner.
Photo of Sam Sand Dunes, Major District Road 53, Kanoi, Rajasthan, India by Roma Kandpal
Photo of Sam Sand Dunes, Major District Road 53, Kanoi, Rajasthan, India by Roma Kandpal
Photo of Sam Sand Dunes, Major District Road 53, Kanoi, Rajasthan, India by Roma Kandpal
Photo of Sam Sand Dunes, Major District Road 53, Kanoi, Rajasthan, India by Roma Kandpal
The last day of the trip, we chose to walk and drive around the city and ended up parasailing. Parasailing with a jeep. The place is just few kilometres before the Sam sand dunes. Good for people who try it for the first time. But for the ones who've already done a lot of parasailing, it might not be that exciting.
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