Think Rajasthan, think of the mighty Thar Desert aka the Great Indian Desert. No trip to this colourful vibrant Rajputana state is complete without visiting this desert. It’s never mundane. The gateway to experience the mighty Thar starts from Jaisalmer also called the Golden city known for its more than 800-year old “living fort”. A city that has been etched in yellow sandstone almost makes one feel that it has risen from the Thar Desert.
A little ahead from the city lie two of the most famous sand dunes – Sam and Khuri. They both are in opposite direction to each other and it takes around 40 mins to 1 hour from Jaisalmer to reach them. If you like a peaceful setting, not the usual song and dance, then don’t think twice; just head to Khuri – a small and beautiful village known for its barren landscape. Traditional-style mud hut, clay-and-dung walls, kids playing around will welcome you here. The sand dunes here are pristine and beautiful enough to keep you awestruck. Badal Singh- known for his warm hospitality will give one of the best desert village experience at Khuri. His house makes for the best stay option in Khuri and won’t even pinch your pocket.
From here the real adventure of sleeping under the moon without any tent starts as he arranges for a camel ride which takes the guests to the sand dunes around 2km from his house. As you reach the dunes all arrangements from your bedding to dinner will be made. A vast stretch of empty and barren landscapes is all one can see, and at the backdrop of the setting sun, the bright golden yellow hues on the dunes makes it look like nothing less than a heap of gold.
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A few dunes are almost around fifty feet high, shrubs all around and cold chills brush passing you and touching you, the feeling is ultimate. With the bright golden sun in full fancy, the sight is a photographer’s delight. Dinner will be simple – Dal Bhaati Churma with loads of ghee.
As the hues turn dark and stars peep (lucky if you get a full moon) the feeling is totally ethereal. No fancy crockery, no fancy bed, no fancy bathroom, just simplicity at its best. Sleeping on the dunes wrapped in sleeping bags and blankets you won’t even know when you fell asleep.
The next morning before you leave, Badal Singh makes sure you get the most rustic breakfast- Cheeni ka paratha, freshly made right. Sipping your tea as you dig into those parathas say a little for life being so humble to you.
Note: This trip is more suitable for solo travellers and adventurous couples without kids.
Delhi to Khuri – 250 kms
Budget places to stay in Jaisalmer:
•Hotel Haveli- Near Fort and Market
•Mariyan Jaisalmer – Near city centre
•Bohemian Guest House- Near Fort
Cafes to dig in the city:
•Cafe The Kaku
Rates for stay in the desert (including to and from Jaisalmer)- Rs 3500 per person. It is suggested to check once before booking.