Backpacking Jaisalmer: a waning moon desert experience
Backpacking Jaisalmer (an in-fact, all of charming Rajasthan) should be on your list for sure if your trip happens to fall between October and February. Jaisalmer offers much to the backpacker. Charming sand dunes of the Thar Desert, sparkling cultural performances, brilliant havelis, palaces reeking of ancient times and history.
Sandy, dusty and tiny, Jaisalmer is a touristic city with a meagre population of 80,000, most of who only stay during the 4 month touristic season, and leave afterward, seeking employment at one of the bigger cities around. Jaisalmer survives on touristic income.
Give them a chance, the hard and beautiful people of the desert may just win you over.
Where to go & stay
Stay at one of the permanent tents out in the desert (at least for a night). Places of interest include Jaisalmer Fort, Patwaon-Ki-Haveli and the War Museum. Also rent an ATV (all terrain vehicle) and go for a spin in the desert, if that’s your thing.
Weather & when to visit
The desert summers here are hot. Scalding hot. The best time to visit is between October and March, when it is cooler than the summer months. Late December and early January are perfectly cold, with night temperatures dipping to 1 or 2 C during the coldest nights.
Read more about backpacking the history rich cities of Rajasthan, namely Jaipur, Udaipur, Jodhpur and Pushkar. If you are looking for an itinerary through Rajasthan, check out my 12 day trip through Rajasthan itinerary.
Read about Rajasthani festivals, here. See if you can schedule your trip to be around for one of these. Holi in Pushkar or Diwali in Jaipur, or the Kite Festival (Sankrant/Makar Sankranti) in Jodhpur.
Hope you enjoy the many delights of Jaisalmer!