Jaisalmer; a city in the heart of the desert. We'd arrived from Jodhpur by bus, feeling tired, overheated and in my case quite poorly. A tuk tuk driver brought us to our accommodation; a place named Hotel The Silk Route on the outskirts of the city. We walked along a path with makeshift houses on either side to our hotel, a beautiful honey coloured stone building. Our room was a delight, a huge double bed embellished with intricately designed cushions and throws, walls left natural in warm stone and an immaculate bathroom. It was definitely the best room that we had booked in India and probably in all of our travels and due to low season we got it at a bargain price. Despite the lovely surroundings I was still feeling weak and ill, while I rested in the room Craig went to the hotel roof terrace for dinner and a beer.
The next day my stomach upset had still not improved and I was starting to feel very low, when I'm feeling unwell my emotions seem to get the better of me, all I wanted was to be at home in my own bed. I couldn't face going outside and ended up spending the day indoors sleeping and trying my best to preserve the energy that I had as it had been a while since I'd eaten any food.
Finally, when I woke the following day I was feeling much better. My mood had improved dramatically from the day before and I was ready to face the world again. We left the hotel and walked into the city, along the narrow roads between the tall buildings to a temple which we admired for its carvings from the outside. Onwards we walked to the fort, we had decided to hire a guide as the fort is so big and has people living inside its walls. Our guide explained the quirks of the fort, one of which being that the road and gates leading up to the fort are in a special formation so if you're stood at one gate you cannot see the next one ahead. We went inside a Jain Temple and saw hundreds of little statues carved from stone, light dappled through gaps in the ceiling. Our next stop was at a viewpoint where we could see our hotel in the distance and the desert. We could certainly tell that we were in a city in the desert too, it was almost like the fort was made from sand and the temperature was over 40 degrees celsius. The alleyways inside the fort were decorated with paintings of elephants and colourful doorways but it was obvious that this was a well lived in community rather than a preserved museum like other forts and palaces that we had explored in Rajasthan. The guide walked us to another viewpoint which was much quieter and where we could have our photograph taken before leading us to a family owned workshop where jewellery was made. We didn't feel pressured to buy anything which was lucky and after a quick look around caught a tuk tuk back to the hotel, by this point my energy was waining and the heat and lack of food was making me feel faint.
We enjoyed a drink on the hotel roof terrace where we could see the fort lit up at night in the distance. Perhaps it was a mistake coming to the desert in the height of summer but the beautiful hotel had served as a perfect place to be when poorly and the city, our last stop in Rajasthan had been a hassle-free and tourist-free destination.
Next: A long journey back to Delhi and onwards to Amritsar; a city in the state of Punjab.
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Have you been to Jaisalmer? If so, what did you think? Maybe you're planning a trip? I've got tonnes of advice and tips I can share. Let me know in the comments below.
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