Jaisalmer Fort – The Golden Fort in Jaisalmer
One of the top 10 Forts of Rajasthan, Jaisalmer Fort is unique for the Golden look on the fort especially when the sun’s rays reflects on the Fort. This has earned the Jaisalmer Fort the local called – Sonar Quila due to the gold look of the fort. It means ‘Fort of Gold’ traditionally.
It is one of the oldest forts in the state of Rajasthan that attracts several tourists from all over the world every year. They love to see the way the stunning fortress with an amazing visual appeal changes shades at different times of the day.
This ancient fort in Rajasthan dates back to the twelfth century built for the main purpose to give protection to the people of the city of Jaisalmer. The founder of the fort is Bhati Rao Jaisal which is how it got its name ‘Jaisalmer Fort’.
A visitor can also see several women and kids walking around especially carrying pots filled with milk. This gives a look into the living culture of the local people of Jaisalmer. This great fortress was officially declared as UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 2013.
There is great historical significance of Jaisalmer Fort. During the medieval times, the route was an important way for trade from various countries and continents. Arabia, Egypt, Persia, Africa and others were included. King Alauddin Khijli overtook the fort and ruled for nearly a decade long before Humayun took over the city of Jaisalmer. It is here that the Rani Padmavati did a Jauhar in order to escape the defeat of the invasion in the thirteenth century.
There are many stones of different shapes like round large scattered on the street. These are left there as they narrate tales about how the fort protected the invasion of enemies especially them coming in from Jodhpur. It is said that they tried to hurl the large stones which are scattered around.
The view of the Sonar Quila in different times of the day is an amazing thing for tourists and archaeologists, students etc. The sprawling structure is made from exquisite yellow sandstone that attracts a lot of visitors throughout the year. Spread across an area of 5.1 sq. km. at an altitude of 225 meters, there are several inside forts to look out for. Here is an overview of the structures within the fort.
The highlight of the amazing structure is the three – layered walls. The outermost layer consists of stone and the wall is made of such blocks. The middle layer is famous for its length as it defends the whole kingdom inside it. The third is the wall of defense for the soldiers to fight with the enemies.
Things to See inside Jaisalmer Fort
The outer part of the fort always amazes the visitors, photographers, historians, tourists, etc. However, inside the fortress there are amazing structures to explore. There are four major entrances to this fort and two are mentioned here.
This is a list below with the structures inside the fort with a brief description of each structure inside.
1. Gopa Chowk
This is the magnificent entrance to this great city that was a protection for the people under the King’s rule and his kingdom. Entrance through this gate is must to see the great inside.
2. Dusshera Chowk
There was a center courtyard for the meetings of the kings, people and other members that were held here. This is the center entrance of the Jaisalmer Fort.
3. Jain Temples
These 7 Jain Temples date back to the thirteenth to sixteenth centuries. These temples were also built using the yellow sandstone for construction material.
4. Ashtapadth Mandir
One special temple is dedicated to Sambhavanatha. The specialty of this is there are over 600 deities and sculptures inside this massive temple.
5. Lakshminath Temple
This temple is dedicated to the two deities Lakshmi as well as Vishnu and is a well known temple for visitors in the city of Jaisalmer.
6. Merchant Havelis
There are innumerable mansions that are famously called ‘havelis’. They are found here with great arches, balconies and entrances. They are built with yellow sandstone and display exquisite carvings on them from ornate sandstone.
7. Vyas Haveli
While some havelis still house residents and have multi-floors, there is one famous haveli that dates back to the fifteenth century. The relatives of the builder of this mansion live here.
8. Shree Nath Palace
This Palace has intricate and great sculpting of old wood on the doors as well as the ceilings. The Prime Minister of Jaisalmer once resided in this old mansion.
9. Raj Mahal
This is the highlight of the entire Jaisalmer Fort as this Palace was the residence of the Maha Rawal of the region of Jaisalmer.
10. Ghut Nali
This means the drain system of the fortress. It was architectural in a way to take out the excessive rain waters from the fortress to all outer directions.
Best Time to Visit
October to March is the best time as summer is too hot and monsoon gets wet.
Visitor Information, Visitor Timings & Entry Fee
Visiting time takes at least 2 – 3 hrs. to see the full fortress.
Entry fee for International Tourists – INR 70/-
Entry fee for Domestic Tourists – INR 30/-
Travel Guide @ Gopa Chowk – INR 400/- (Not Fixed)
6:00 am – 05:00 pm
Open On: All Days
Indian National – Rs. 50/-
Foreign National – Rs. 250/-
How to Reach
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Jaisalmer airport is 5 KM away from the city. The flights from Jaisalmer connects to the major cities of India such as Delhi, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur and Mumbai.
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