Jaisalmer Fort is one of the largest fortifications in the world. It is listed as a World Heritage Sites and is located in the heart of the ancient city of Jailsalmer. It was built nearly a thousand years ago in 1156 AD where the whole population of the city lived within the walls of the fort. It stands among the rocks and sand of the desert and was the site of many battles during Medieval times. During the day, the fort’s color is beige lion color but changes to honey gold shimmer as the sun sets. The name given to it during Medieval times was Golden Fort .
This site had a major role in ancient trade route to Persia, Arabia, Egypt and Africa.
Here is a shopping area image by http://www.india.travesphoto.com in the heart of the Golden Fort.
Royd photogrphing, Jaisalmer, August photography Royd, Matt photographing Royd and August, then Dbell photographing them all !
Jaislamer still is strategically significant as seen during India/Pakistani wars in 1965 and 1971. The Pakistani border is just across the desert and Jaisalmer is the last Indian city before the border.
Surprisingly and sadly there are new threats to the ancient fort and not huge Medieval armies. The threat is two fold. There are 500-600 thousand tourists who visit each year because it it one of Rajasthan’s most popular sites. There is an increase of people living inside the fort with plumbing and water needs. There is an usual fact about its construction on soft sand foundation which allows water seepage which damaging to the stability of the whole structure. The success of the old fort is also its nemesis.
We had about two hours to wander “aimlessly” through the windy, narrow streets often no wider than a pathway. It wasn’t long before I had this thought that I had been here before and of course I hadn’t. But being an association learner who compares and contrasts ideeas, places, and people in my search for understanding, I thought how similar the Golden Fort was to both Venice and the hill towns of Tuscany. Venice happens to be my favorite place in the world, my world, anyway, because of its mystery, beauty, and uniqueness. I never thought I would find a place that was similar but here it was. The vendors selling from small shops and displaying wares on blankets along the narrow winding streets opening to piazzas or other narrow streets all were similar. So I have uploaded some images from Google Public Domain that I hope will give you a glimpse of what I discovered !
The Golden Fort. . .
Venice. . .
Siena. . . .Tuscany
Venice. . .
Women in the Golden Fort visiting with their neighbors . . . . . .
The Golden Fort and Golden City of Jaisalmer as the sun sets! (From Wikepedia)
Oh, I have been so blessed to visit so many fascinating places and meet so many amazing people. Dbell is always chiding me when I complain about this or that. . . . mostly about his relentless touring! He says, “Architecture has been very, very good to you !” And of course he is right!
I would love to hear from my readers. . . .
images from Wikipedia, Google imges from Public Domain and India travel photo