Blogs from Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, India, Asia

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Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer March 30th 2014

Monday 24th Had a well earned lie in after 2 weeks of partying in south india and early starts for flights. Left the brothel, sorry I mean hotel, at 10am and jumped in taxi to the airport to meet Zoe. The journey started eventfully as I jumped in the taxi, the taxi driver jumped out to chat to someone, meanwhile the taxi, with me in it, started rolling back into the road. Luckily I yanked up the handbrake saving the day, it didn't end there though! The driver nonchalantly hopped in and then reversed straight back into the road and drove the wrong way up a slip road to the main road! Entertaining! Anyway, met Zoe and we jumped in a taxi from Delhi Airport to Karol Bagh area. The taxi driver was a grumpy bastard ... read more
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Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer March 23rd 2014

Hello you lovely lovely peeps. Yo. Happy Sunday! Just a quick update from lil ol me. Sorry it has been so long since my last post, I have been oddly busy. Well.....Delhi. I am not going to go in to huge details about Delhi as I went in to great detail on my last post about the joys of a big Indian cities. I observed that even among the filth and poverty you could find beauty and the same applies to Delhi but admittedly you have to dig a bit deeper. There does seem be a harder edge to Delhi, but like all these cities it really comes down to where you go. Delhi has some of the most expensive real estate in the world, which I visited, it is just mixed in filth and poverty. ... read more
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Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer December 19th 2013

The first time I used an ATM in India, I got a preview of Indians' different standards for privacy. It was one of my first days in India, and I was very concerned about security. Meg and I entered the walk-in ATM by our hotel in Delhi. I took my ATM card out of my wallet (the geeky kind that straps around my body underneath my shirt). As I was entering in my information, another man entered the tiny room. In the US, privacy is very respected around ATMs. People give you the space you need, especially when entering in your information. Not so in India. The man was all up in my space, standing inches behind me and to my right, with full view of the screen and keypad. Sometimes, people do things that are ... read more

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer September 23rd 2013

I have never ridden a motorcycle before, and the chaotic streets of India aren’t exactly the first place that I would opt to try. That’s why the title of this blog should in fact read, “Motorcycling AND SCOOTERING in the Thar Desert.” The Thar, or “Great Indian” Desert occupies an area of over 200,000 km2 and forms a natural boundary between northwest India and Pakistan. It is home to a wide variety of wildlife, notably Indian gazelle that are practically tame because they are fed and protected by Bishnoi tribes. The Bishnoi are a Hindu sect that cherish all forms of life. Remarkably, some Bishnoi women have even been known to breastfeed and raise young baby gazelle’s that have become lost from their parents. The Thar Desert is on the tourist map for it’s desert forts ... read more
Me in the Thar Desert
Hanuman Shrine in the Thar Desert
Thar Desert Shaman

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer September 8th 2013

The desert state of Rajasthan might just be the most touristy in all of India, famous for its gem scams and pesky touts, but this comes as no surprise since it contains some of the most breathtaking sights in the subcontinent. Chief among them is the 857-year-old sandstone fort in Jaisalmer, in the isolated far western corner of the state only 40 kilometers from the India-Pakistan border. In this blog, however, I’d like to stray away from history and focus on my real, on-the-ground experience of the “Golden City” and its magical fort. The most shocking aspect of my stay in Jaisalmer, besides the mere sight of the living fort and the splendor of the ancient havelis and other crumbling structures within it, was the oppressive heat. July in Rajasthan is Asia’s version of the Death ... read more
View of the Golden City from the Fort
Buried in the sand to cool off
Residents of the Jaisalmer Fort

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Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer April 22nd 2013

The 22 day long tour I'm about to start is with Intrepid Travel, called 'North India Unplugged'. It's one of their basic no frills trips. We sleep, eat and travel like a local. View Intrepid's website for my itinerary, if you're interested. On Sunday morning everyone is packed up, suitcases downstairs, and gathered in the lobby by 8.30am. Luggage was stored until we left for the train station later in the afternoon. We accompanied Bishal, our Indian tour guide, to the metro station. First stop was Jama Masjid, the mosque I was turned away from the previous day due to prayers starting. We left the metro at Chawri Bazar Station, one stop before Chandni Chowk, so approached the mosque from a different gate. Entrance was free unless you wanted to take your camera in. For that ... read more
Jaisalmer Rooftops
Garsisar Lake
Garsisar Lake

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer March 24th 2013

So so, endlich komme ich dazu, den versprochenen Blog anzufangen!! Sascha und ich befinden uns in Jaisalmer, ca. 100km suedwestlich von Pakistan. Eigentlich wollten wir ja direkt von Kolkata nach Darjeeling hoch und dann rueber nach Nepal, der Plan hat sich jedoch geaendert! Was bisher sogar gut war, denn wir haben jede Menge von Nord Indien gesehen und erlebt... Der Grund fuer die Planaenderung(en) lag hauptsaechlich darin, dass wir an einem Projekt teilnehmen wollen, bei dem wir die Wirkung von Solaranlagen in Einzelhaushalten untersuchen und die Haushalte besuchen etc. Der genaue Termin, wann wir da mitkoennen stand lange nich fest, also mussten wir oft improvisieren und waren in der Zwischenzeit schon in den Staedten Varanasi, Khajuraho, Agra und Jaisalmer. Heute Abend fahren wir weiter nach Jodpur, danach Jaipur, dann Delhi und irgenwann fuer das Pr... read more

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer March 24th 2013

*** Arr, hab gerade mitbekommen, dass keiner außer ich meine Einträge lesen kann... ganz so egoistisch will ich dann doch nicht sein und versuche es nochmal ;) hier also nochmal die ersten beiden Einträge! *** So so, endlich komme ich dazu, den versprochenen Blog anzufangen!! Sascha und ich befinden uns in Jaisalmer, ca. 100km suedwestlich von Pakistan. Eigentlich wollten wir ja direkt von Kolkata nach Darjeeling hoch und dann rueber nach Nepal, der Plan hat sich jedoch geaendert! Was bisher sogar gut war, denn wir haben jede Menge von Nord Indien gesehen und erlebt... Der Grund fuer die Planaenderung(en) lag hauptsaechlich darin, dass wir an einem Projekt teilnehmen wollen, bei dem wir die Wirkung von Solaranlagen in Einzelhaushalten untersuchen und die Haushalte besuchen etc. Der genaue Termin, wann wir da mitkoennen stand l... read more

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer March 19th 2013

When we got off the train in Jaisalmer, the owner of the guest house we'd booked, Hotel Mirage, was waiting for us with a big smile and a sign that said "Kelly Hepo." In Agra, it was Hoda...Scott said I'd better get used to people butchering my name, haha. In any case, our new host introduced himself as Ba, paid for our rickshaw and accompanied us to Jaisalmer Fort, where the guest house was located. Though the Fort is quite old, it still functions like its own little neighborhood, with homes, hotels, and alleys lined with shops. Our driver dropped us off at the Fort's gate and Ba carried my heavy pack the rest of the way. He then showed us to our room, which was very nice, especially for only 250 rupees a night, and ... read more
Sunrise in the desert
Jaisalmer Fort
View from our guesthouse terrace

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer March 13th 2013

Jaisalmer is in the very west of Rajasthan, in the Thar Desert. There is, once more, a fort on a hill above the city, this time all in yellow, the same colour as most houses have. So while Jodhpur is the Blue City, Jaisalmer is the Golden City. On Tuesday morning, Mizzi and I visited the fort that dates from the 17th century. What makes it different from all the other forts we had seen so far is the fact that it is still inhabited. This means that there is a part of it that has been turned into a museum, but the rest of the fort is full of shops and restaurants as well as temples, and of course there are people who live there. This turned it into a lively place, and after our ... read more
The Fort in Jaisalmer II
The Fort in Jaisalmer III
Haveli in Jaisalmer




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