Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Indian Desert

Your enthusiasm about burlap in India was wonderful! I have a couple of more posts coming up about my mother and sister's trip... I hope today's will transport you completely!

Jaisalmer is called the Golden City because of the sandstone everywhere. The palace and forts look like giant sand castles out in the great Thar Desert. It was from this little jewel of a town, 30 km from the border of Pakistan, that my mother and sister set out on an adventure never to forget: a camel safari! They took a jeep miles away from anywhere and then trekked by camel an hour into the desert. Yes, that's my little sister!
In this remote setting they watched the sun set across the dunes...


...ate mutton stew around a bonfire of burning tumbleweeds, and slept under the stars on red striped mattresses. They awoke to a stunnning sunrise on Christmas morning in the middle of the desert... to the smell of chai brewing on the camp fire and the sound of camels munching their breakfast.

It is so dry in this region that there are barely any trees, and dishes are washed in the sand without water. The villages nearby are fairly nomadic, and the people build with what's on hand... like this ingenious barn made of sticks.




The contrast of the tinkling camel bells with the ringing of cell phones (every camel herder communicated with one!) were the sounds that accompanied them on their ride back. Pin It

21 comments:

  1. did your sister's children go, too?

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  2. How did they book this trip? Did they use an organized travel group for the trip through the desert? A guide? Whom did they use?

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  3. Wow-ee. What a trip. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. incredibly beautiful. thanks for sharing.

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  5. gosh that sounds like an amazing adventure. what an experience.

    Annie
    OnceUponAParent.blogspot.com

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  6. Awesome photos!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Oh that sand...love the lines, the shadows, the people. And the bit about the cell phones is a hoot. HOw do they get reception out in the desert??? Amazing! What an idea for a trip. Wow!

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  7. I'll check in with my mother about the details. I do know that they departed in a group of a couple of dozen. They tend to do a little planning and a little fly by the seat of your pants traveling... mostly on a shoestring.

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  8. A friend of mine and her boyfriend at the time made this excursion too. And the thing is that it started raining in the middle of the desert in that moment! So it was all rainy and humid and foggy and they couldn't see a thing two feet from them. She told me that she was suddenly frightened that they were alone in the middle of the dessert with people that spoke a language that they didn't... But everything turned out fine, bonfire and all when the rain stopped.

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  9. Wow - amazing! I've been away from the blog world for a bit and am so tickled to get back and see photos like this.

    That has got to be a life-changing excursion. Stunning photos - can't wait to hear more!

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  10. Such amazing photos! India is such an incredible country - like stepping back in time. We went there for our honeymoon, and I'm dying to go back again one day with the children. Thanks for your wonderful blog. I get so much joy reading it!

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  11. These are really nice snaps. I agree that India is a beautiful country and had variety of places as well as culture. I used to sat anyone go there will have sweet memories for lifetime. Share your mother and sisters review about India..

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  12. Amazing! Thanks so much for sharing. I want to go there! :)

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  13. i could stare at these pictures all day
    the photographer's captured so much more that just a beautiful travel picture

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  14. It is such a burning sand so intense heat and water is much scarce feels like much thirsty and weary.The photographer has done an excellent job captured this great picture for us.

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  15. The Hotel Shahi Palace in Jaisalmer arranged our camel safari. It was a Christmas Eve special and well worth every penny in terms of authenticity, comfort, safety and the adventure of a truly remote desert location. There are many camel safaris to choose from in Jaisalmer, but for two women traveling alone, there was definitely safety in numbers as well as the deserved reputation of the extremely caring and friendly Shahi brothers and cousins! The Shahi Palace was one of the highlights of our trip...clean, inexpensive rooms and the fabulously delicious and relaxing rooftop restaurant overlooking the fort!

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  16. Thank you for sharing these precious and beautiful photos!

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  17. i was in india (Hyderabad) last feb for a wedding. im going back next feb and was wondering where they flew into....there isnt much around there. was it directly into Jaisalmer? I have to do this when i go back!
    Also i was curious what kind of camera was used.

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  18. The airport in Jaisalmer has been closed for the past few years because it's so close to the Pakistan border. We took a train from Jodhpur that took about 6 hours.

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  19. Wow! That looks like an amazing experience.

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  20. An example of pictures being worth a thousand words! I am sure this trip has left your mother somewhat speechless at times. I am going to see if I spot her and your sister in the next issue of National Geographic.

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  21. Jaisalmer is absolutely amazing. I am so glad that someone enjoyed it as much as I did!

    Did you know that the man that handles the equipment for the camel tour stays there all day every day by himself, in the middle of the desert?

    http://elenajatia.com/work/travel/index.html#10.jpg

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