A Night In Thar Desert. My Camel Safari experience in Jaisalmer, India

What are the chances for a tropical jungle girl from Costa Rica to ride a camel safari through a desert and spend the night under the stars? Well, I just did it while I visited Jaisalmer in India, and it was one of the most incredible experiences I ever had! Since I came to India six months ago, I thought of going to the Thar Desert, also known as the Great Indian Desert. I am big on deserts! But as I wanted to have an enjoyable experience in the desert, planning an excellent season to visit it is much better. You don’t want to be in the middle of dunes at over 50 degrees Celsius, right?. So, I patiently waited weeks for the chill temperature to visit this place, as the best months are October and November. In the meantime, I was spending the beautiful summer in the Himalayan Mountains of RishikeshManaliVashisht, and Parvati Valley. Once the winter hit, I decided to do a two-month Rajasthan tour through Jaisalmer, Jaipur, Jodhpur, and Udaipur.

Thar Desert

The desert I visited is called the Thar Desert, and it’s outside Jaisalmer in the State of Rajasthan. This desert shares borders with Afghanistan and is an immense desert. Still, the part of the sandy dunes is relatively tiny. 

To reach the Thar desert, you must go outside the city by car or other means of transportation, but don’t worry because options are everywhere! That’s one of the things that was part of my initial concern. Which of all the options was the best to take? 

Camel Safari in Jaisalmer

When I stayed in Jaipur, the first city I visited in Rajasthan, I volunteered at the Elephant Sanctuary. Rahul, the owner of the Sanctuary, told me his good friend from The Real Desert Man Safari provides an excellent tour to visit the Thar Desert riding with Camels. When I entered his website, I saw all his good reviews, plus Rahul told me that he takes good care of the camels and the whole team behind. Long story short, I went with them, and the reviews were correct! This team is fantastic. They are all locals who know the place well and are professional. I highly recommend them as they take care of everything so you can enjoy this extraordinary adventure (I mean, it is not every day that you ride a camel to the desert and sleep under the stars, right?). Also, the group was small (we had around 10 people in total). 

Desert Life

For me, this experience was just fantastic!. The tour began with a Jeep ride through the desert, and it was so cool because you passed by some desert villages to get an idea of how people live. Desert living is very different from any other type of living I have ever experienced. For example, I saw some ladies walking and carrying a container filled with water on their heads. This experience made me realize once again how lucky I am to live where water is easily accessible. Never for granted!

Camel Safari

After one hour of riding through the desert in the jeeps, we reached the camels. My camel’s name was Bablu, and he was a sweetheart. I hope in Bablu’s back, he was lying on the floor, so you can jump in quickly. It feels so weird when it gets up! First, the back legs and then the front legs: you must hold on tight! And to do this, you have just one horn in front of you to hold on tight, and that’s it. In the beginning, I have to say that it was a challenge; it moved a lot! I am not used to it, but eventually, you start getting much more comfortable.

We ride the camels for one more hour until we strictly reach the desert dunes for sunset. This is the magic hour, the golden hour, when all girls want to have their pictures taken, right! Lol, and OMG, the colors in the sky were so beautiful and intense. There is something about the desert and sunsets that carries so much intensity.

The boys in charge served us tea and chai as usual here in India, and it was perfect as it started to get colder. I sat by myself at the top of a dune to watch the ray of sunshine sunset and meditated before the night entered. 

Magic, or may I say, alightment instead?

You know that feeling of surrendering to the beauty and presence surrounding you. Magic, I like magic…

A Night in the Thar Desert

When the night came, the temperature dropped significantly. Still, the guys from the safari managed to keep us warm with a campfire. They cook a fantastic dinner packed with rice, dal, vegetables, and chapati for us. It was delicious! We sat by the fire and sang and danced for some hours. Oh, I almost forgot, we even got a cold beer; what are the chances? 

Around around 10, I went to bed (just a mattress) and lay under the nets of the most unforgettable stars in the sky. It was one of the most memorable nights I have seen! I stared at the sky for at least a couple of hours before my eyes fell asleep. The truth is that describing the size and brightness of the stars would never make them real justice.

The following day, we woke up for the sunrise, and although it was freezing, I hopped out of bed and started walking to the top of the dunes. The sky began to be more explicit, and it was crazy beautiful! The boys told me breakfast was ready when the sky was more transparent. We eat fruits, oatmeal porridge, biscuits, bread, and chai. While eating, the boys managed to prepare the camels for our way back. With our belly complete, we start our journey back!

If you want to see this crazy adventure, my video has more details.

If you are in Jaisalmer, I recommend doing the Camel Safari in Jaisalmer tour; trust me, it’s worth it all the way!

Much love,

Pia

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