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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Desert Safari

 Then the most awaited part of the tour came - the desert. It is perfectly contrasting to my native, Kerala, where we can see sand only in beaches. Here in desert you have to travel kilometers to find any significant greenery.

 I reached Jaisalmer at around 12o'clock in the noon. The train took around 12 hrs from Jaipur. Thar desert welcomed me when I woke up in the morning in train. One interesting stop in between was Pokhran - the place where India exploded the atom bomb. Anyway I couldn't see anything around, but only dry lands and some army men.

Khuri Sand Dunes

 Jaisalmer is a city completely dependent on tourism. It is quite a beautiful place. I will tell about it in the next post. The first thing I inquired, after getting a room was about desert safari package. The hotel guys offered me a package at Rs4000 which includes camel safari,  folk music in the desert and sight seeing in Jaisalmer on the next day. And they arranged a Toyota Qualis just for me. This seemed to be expensive but I took it as I didn't want to go out and search for a better deal. And I didn't want to miss the desert safari.


The camel safari was arranged at Khuri Sand dunes which is 52 kms away from Jaisalmer. The road was very good and only a very few vehicles crossed us. On the way we saw some
Westerners running through the desert. I was told that they were running from Khuri to Jaisalmer which is around 50 km. Running this much distance through the desert seemed to be an impossible thing for me. I could only admire their fitness and courage.



We reached Khuri at around 5 o'clock and saw the camels lined up for the tourists. The camel safari was arranged for 2 hours through the sand dunes. The plan was to see the sun set in desert and return to see some Rajastahni art forms arranged in a resort. I climbed on a camel having the name Lallu, which I learned later and started the journey through desert.

Some camels carrying tourists

Camels seemed to be very obedient and non-violent creatures. And the camel boy was very friendly. I tried to communicate with him using my broken Hindi. He desribed about his house, his family in a distant village and the life in the desert. There are not many jobs available except tourism industry. So many of the teenagers are into this camel job.

I traveled on this camel

Some kids trying to impress a tourist

We stopped in the sand dunes to see the sunset.  At sunset, the sand dunes can be seen in golden color as the solar rays will reflect on the surface. We could see many kids playing a kind of musical instrument  and trying to get some money from tourists. We could see many deers also, but at the sight of humans they would run for life. I was told that poachers used to kill many of them.

Sunset in dunes

We had stopped in  a desert village during the safari to get some rest for us and for camel. The camels refilled their stomach with plentiful of water and we had mingled with some kids there. One interesting thing is that only salt water is available in most of the desert areas. The potable water is available only in a few villages and it will be pumped to other areas. But the village people drink this salt water only, as they are used to this.

A remote village in the desert

On top of camel


A view from desert
 I controlled the camel on the way back to the camp. It seemed to be easy, but the camel knew the road back to the home. May be it was just following the regular route instead of obeying my commands. Some cultural events are arranged  in the night in a resort near to the dunes. It was mainly some dances and Rajasthani folk music.  A dance form in which a number of pots are balanced in head was particularly attractive. And they  were taking currency notes and even blades from the floor using their nose.


I returned to the hotel room at around 9 pm. We had even seen some wild camels on the way back to our hotel. They were roaming around in the desert and blocking the road at will. I had a sound sleep and mentally prepared for the Jaisalmer city tour on the next day.

The full set of photos are available here.


6 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  2. Your info is so great....i like it very much and it is useful for us.
    Desert safari

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  3. Dubai Desert Safari is very nice location for the trip i love it very much

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