Situated at a distance of around 40 km from Jaisalmer (Rajasthan), Desert National Park is counted amongst the largest parks of India. Geographically, this park covers an area of 3162 sq. km extending from the borders of Jaisalmer, the park boundary reaches close to the Indo-Pak border. You can expect everything here that a Desert ecosystem has to offer you. There are craggy rocks, intermedial areas, compact salt lake bottoms, and fixed dunes. In fact, the dunes makeup to almost 20% of the area under this park. Amongst the wild flora of the Desert region, you get to see Desert plants, cacti, and other thorny bushes. An adventure-filled safari will be the best way to take a 360-degree tour of the Desert ecosystem here. Besides jeep drive, if you are really adventurous, you can indulge in camping and bonfire activities here. Being located within the close proximity of the Thar Desert, the park re-defines all parameters of stereotypical transitions exhibited by flora and fauna there. Even though the Desert ecosystem at the Desert National Park is harsh and fragile, it shelters a plethora of wildlife.In fact, bird researchers tag this place as a haven for migratory birds. If you are an avid lover of the rare bird species, get your binoculars and DSLRs on as you have The Great Indian Bustard to spot here. If you take a keen interest in exploring the Desert National Park, you will come across some remnants dating back to the era of Jurassic times. So, be ready to stare at the remnants of the dinosaurs dating back to around 6 million years.The park has also got animal and bird fossils dating back to 180 million years. So, get set and go as you and your DSLR has got a lot of hard work here. Flora and Fauna at Desert National Park –Excited to know more about the Desert National Park? Let’s peep into its flora and fauna first – 1. Animals – Desert monitors, deadly vipers, spiny-tailed lizards, Krait, and sandfish are the prominent members of the wildlife family. If you are fortunate enough to be there on time, you can even spot on Desert and Bengal foxes munching on some fresh berries. Apart from these key animals, the Desert National Park also shelters Vulpes, Blackbuck Antelope, Gazelle gazelle, Desert Cat Felis Libyes, and Cervicapra Rajputana Chinkara. 2. Birds – As stated early, this park is never-ending heaven for all bird lovers. Desert National Park of Jaisalmer is known to house 150 different varieties of residential and migratory birds. It is a common phenomenon to locate endangered species of The Great Indian Bustard. Amongst the other common species you have – Demoiselle, Eagles, Falcons, Partridges, Bee-Eaters, Vultures, Larks, Shrikes, Macqueen’s Bustard. As you move on to the next section of the park, you will come across some ponds and waterholes. Larks and wheatears are common species to be located here. 3. Reptiles – Not all, but Desert National Park has surely got several reptile species to exhibit before you. Monitor lizard, Spiny-tailed lizard, Russell’s viper, Saw-scaled viper, common krait are few of the reptile species to be traced here. 4. Vegetation – Although a sparse one, you still can find a variety in the vegetative species at the Desert National Park. Prominent amongst the vegetative species are aak shrub, sewan grass, and cacti. It has got a well-diversified desert type of landscape where you have small salt lake bottom, fixed and shifting dunes, and craggy rocks. While strolling through the park, do not forget to raise your head high above the sky. You will be surprised by the number of vultures soaring high to present a delightful sight.
Located at an equal distance both from Lodhruva and Jaisalmer, Bada Bagh is one of the most significant relics of our country. Featuring a series of cenotaphs, Bada Bagh portrays illustrious past of Rajasthan. Gleaming through the desert regions of Jaisalmer, Bada Bagh once was wrapped within a coat of lush green gardens. The famous golden cenotaphs at Bada Bagh are located at a distance of 6 km from the northern region of Jaisalmer.According to the Hindu literature, the term ‘Bada Bagh’ signifies a big garden. While the structure was first constructed, it had a beautiful garden encircling it. This might be the reason as to how and why the place came to be known as Bada Bagh. Perhaps today, you won't mark the presence of any garden there. But for sure, the site is quite peaceful with golden cenotaphs arising from the golden stretch of land. It has been said that every single cenotaph here is honored to be constructed in the memory of either a king or a queen from the royal family that stayed here. These cenotaphs are nothing but tomb shaped structures which are locally referred to as Chhatris. The art of constructing Chhatris began somewhere around the 17th century and lasted until the 20th century. The first cenotaph that marked its presence here was erected as a tribute to the Maharaja Jai Singh II. After that, different Chhatris were constructed, which differ widely in their sizes. Today, you could see them standing tall in two rows reflecting the power quotient and the social status of the members of the Royal family. If you look closely at the top of each Chhatri, there’s a small stone inscription there with the date and the name of the person to whom it has been commemorated. Very few of them have brief descriptions, as well.History of Bada BaghThe credit for the construction of this piece of land goes to the Maharaja Maharawal Jai Singh. He started his work by constructing a dam in the desert region so that it could serve the purpose of a water tank for the nearby villages. Soon, the water from this dam brought unparalleled glory to the entire periphery, and the region witnessed a surprising bloom in both its flora and fauna. This delighted every boon of efforts that Maharaja Maharawal Jai Singh invested into the construction of his venture. With his death on 21st September 1743, it was his son to commemorate him with the construction of a Chhatri here. The creation of this commemorable structure in the immediate neighbor of the lake laid the foundation of a new tradition for all the Bhatti dynasty rulers. After that, to recognize and valor the contribution of each of its Bhatti dynasty rulers, a new cenotaph came to be constructed. It was in the year 1947 when this tradition of cenotaph construction was discontinued on account of the sad demise of one of the princes who passed away after suffering from a mysterious disease. This death was considered to be a reflection of lousy omen amongst the Royals. Hence, they inanimate on the discontinuation of the tradition.The Chattris at Bada BaghBada Bagh witnessed a tradition of constructing Chattris somewhere around the 17th century, which lasted until the 20th century. The first Chattri or cenotaph, which came to be built here, was that of Maharaja Jai Singh II, who ruled the region between 1688 to 1743. He made immense contributions as a ruler during his reign in Jaisalmer. The major one was the dam construction, which was aimed at uplifting both flora and fauna in the community for the betterment of the society. After his death, his son decided to commemorate his valuable contribution towards social development by constructing a cenotaph near to this water body. This laid the foundation of a new tradition in the Bhatti dynasty. Later, it was decided that upon the demise of every royal king and queen of the Bhatti dynasty, a new cenotaph would be constructed here in his or her memory. However, this tradition came to be discontinued by the mysterious demise of Maharaja Jawahar Singh. Every single chhatri at the Bada Bagh has got its own height and appear in two different rows. They are built in such a way that each one reflects the power quotient of the ruler to which it has been associated with. In short, the more powerful a king or queen stood during his reign, the tall his Chhatri would stand. At the top of each Chhatri, there’s a stone inscription reflecting the date and the name of the king or queen to whom it has been honored to. On some of them, you would even witness a brief description, as well.
Known as the golden city of India, Jaisalmer is a beautiful city in Rajasthan. Among all the things that make this city popular, “Patwon Ki Haveli,” also known as the Mansion of Brocade Merchants tops the list.Patwon Ki Haveli is a cluster of five large havelis in Jaisalmer. Built in 1805 by Guman Chand Patwa, it took the workers almost 55 years to complete the first haveli. With an interesting history, Patwon Ki Haveli is actually the first and the largest haveli to be constructed in Jaisalmer. History says that Patwa was an extremely wealthy man and a well-known trader of his time. Due to his riches, he could afford to build a luxurious palace and thus ordered the construction of separate stories – one for each of his five sons. The entire family dealt in gold and silver threads that were used in embroidering clothes and so, there was no dearth of money in the family. Once home to the Patwa family, today the cluster of havelis is occupied by the Rajasthan government’s art and craft department. Its beautiful architecture, creative mirror work, intricate carvings, lovely paintings, and its rich goldish yellow color is what makes this cluster of havelis a favorite among tourists and locals alike.