India has always been on the radar for us , but since we've spent some time there already it was kept on the back burner. Finally we decided to visit a part of India neither of us have been before .
First we have to get there.
Early morning flight.
Madam stocking up on food.
Finally , time to fly.
Great service .
The last good meal we're going to have.
Nothing beats Malaysian food.
5 hours later we reach .
The smog filled capital.
We got into our car and head to our digs.
Sights along the way.
I used to travel in these many years ago.
Traffic. 0.000005cm gap :-0
A common sight ,street children.
And their families.
1.25 billion people !!!!!
Another common sight.
This is the capital city huh .
Traffic lights cum clothes line :-)
Squatter homes next to the road.
At least they have a home...many don't.
Our hotel in Delhi.
The outside looks like a cesspit.
But this is in the heart of the main shopping area in Delhi.
See the scanner ?
The outside. !!
Since we are early we planned to visit one place today.
Sights along the way.
Many many homeless people .
The ubiquitous Ambassador .
Many old monuments.
Many new cars too.
We are headed there .
Its a huge temple complex.
Unfortunately photos are not allowed inside.
And security is very tight. Body checks ,pat downs and scanners.
Also police with sub machine guns .
So all the photos are borrowed from the internet .
Its a huge complex.
In our whole tour , this was the only modern place we visited.
But it was worth it .
This is what Angkor Wat would have looked like in its hey day.
Such an amazing place.
In the evening there was a musical fountain show .
Now its back to our hotel...
Camels .Main roads of the capital huh.
Outside our hotel :-)
I think maybe a bit more :-)
What a day .
Our Indian tour is of 3 states.
But mainly of Rajasthan.
Sights along the way to the airport.
We will tour Delhi properly on our way back .
Nice quiet airport .
The internal flight to Jodhpur .
We will be going to see that !!!
Mehrangarh Fort of Jodhpur .
A short 1 hour plus flight .
Streets of Jodhpur , nothing like the madness of Delhi .
Same view different place .
Today we'll drive to Jaisalmer.
At almost every traffic light .
We will see more and more of these .
The car and driver will be with us for the whole trip .
Colours of Rajasthan .
Out of the cities ,the roads are quite quiet .
Bunnies delight :-)
Houses of sheep herders .
The communal watering hole .
Typical Rajasthan colour - Red !!
Madam comfy .
Even with the sun out it was quite cool ~ 17C
This is a common sight ,truck stops .
We start our official tour today .
Typical Rajasthani outfits .
For once i can relax and not drive or ride .
Small towns along the way.
Splendor and squalor ,side by side.
Adventurer and explorer. When she is awake that is .
Colours of India.
Today its about a 5 hour drive .
Besides the earlier truck stops , these are restaurants of a higher quality .
A short break for masala tea .
My ride for the next 13 days.
This is where we are .
Eat and sleep :-0
See it ?
Traditional Rajasthani murals
Back on the road and the scenery changes .
Unique architecture .
Nice quiet roads .
Fully loaded .
With this weather it will be really nice to ride .
Not too far .
Literally in the middle of nowhere .
Soon after another small town.
Nice huh :-(
Semi arid desert .
Do you see what she's carrying ?
Dried cow dung. A valuable fuel source .
Lots of Indian Army activity as the border to Pakistan is quite near .
Soon it gets to evening.....
...as we approach Jaisalmer .
My hotel .
Traditional Indian furniture .
Its modern but built as a replica of a palace .
Dinner out in the open .
Temp ~ 10C
Nice place .
Nice huh .
The outside looks like a fort .
It is after all the country of Rajas .
Traditional silks .
Dinner next to a fire . Very cold .
Today we tour proper .
First look in the day .
Not too bad .
Then time to leave soon .
Its going to be a long day.
Don't ask ;-)
Streets of Jaisalmer .
For later .
Cool huh .
Holy men / sahdus
Captain chairs are better than bench seats .
Our first stop.
A man made lake .
Very nice .
This is just the beginning of the day .
As small island
The bank of the Gadsisar lake is sorrounded by artistically carved Chattris, Temples, Shrines and Ghats -internet info 1
It was the only source of water for the Jaisalmer city in the olden days -internet info 2
This was built in 1156 AD :-0
Now to the main buildings...
Catfish . many of them.
The splendid gateway that is the most prominent feature here was built by a courtesan who was called by the name Tilon.
The small temple on the top center-
According to a legend, Tilon asked permission for construction of the gateway from the then Maharaja and was even ready to pay for it. But Maharaja didn't agree to her suggestion, considering it be a task much below his dignity. Also, he didn’t like the idea of passing through the gateway whenever he would visit the tank. Despite rejection, Tilon built it in his absence. To avoid its destruction by him, she crowned the gateway with a temple of Lord Krishna.
Nicely decorated everywhere .
What a face :-)
The Jaisalmer fort .
As we were leaving .
Colours everywhere .
We're headed there now .
At the base of the fort .
Read what it says on the 3 carpets -click to zoom .
Imagine wanting to attack this .
My neck hurts ;-P
Ha ha ha ha
Catch a child and put him in a press ha ha ha
I'm sure it is :-P
The market place is overshadowed by the fort .
That's the main entrance
Part of the royal palace .
As we walk up...
Very intricate .
ha ha ha ha
Time to go in .
The first gate ....
There are a few more along the way .
People are still living in the fort .
Look at the size of the door .
The 2nd gate .
The height is for elephants to pass .
Bazaars between the 1st and 2nd gates.
We continue on our way .
The inside of the fort.
Its called a living fort as people still live here .
Houses of noblemen.
See the terrace in the middle ?
The white seat is for the king and the rest are for the ministers .
Amazing architecture .
Shops and residences .
Imagine hundreds of years ago...
The exact same scene .
A tiny entrance .
Rich colours everywhere.
We stop at this temple for a visit .
A Jain temple .
It has amazingly decorated pillars .
Worn smooth by centuries of use .
To the second floor .
Look at that !!
Really amazing .
The celling .
...and the 2nd floor balcony .
Its quite big...
and very cool inside .
The theme continues on the 2nd floor .
As i make my way around...
more and more carvings .
And each one has a meaning .
Finally the outside...
Wonder why that guy is so happy :-P
Time to leave .
Back to the fort interior.
So we walk and take in the sights .
This is a modern building with the olden design .
Yup ,cows everywhere .
Another tiny entrance .
This was the only way i could call home as a student 20 years ago .
Narrow streets .
We come to the ramparts .
The view to the side.
And below .
Time for a cup of tea :-)
Past more shops .
To this simple doorway .
Walking up the stairs .
Bay windows .
Still upwards .
Why all the stairs ?
For this !!!!!
Tea and a view .
and what a view .
those round balls.....
are to drop on attackers .
The water in the distance is where we started our tour .
Time to sit.....
...enjoy the view .....
...and take in the moment .
ha ha ha ha
What an experience .
We make our way out slowly .
Past the markets...
And houses of the residents .
And the inside of the locals house .
More narrow streets .
Till we come to the main square .
Peddlers on the way out .
Kya pose hai ....
What a place
.Jaisalmer Fort-known as Sonar Quila or the Golden fort .
Is the tour over.....
Not by a long shot.
Bhang.... marijuana mixed drink .
More locals .
Now we are headed to the ancient town proper .
Holy cows .
Right next to the drain huh...
We took our shots before coming .
Again colours everywhere.
Bikes use these streets , even with pedestrians on it.
Nice carvings .
We reach our destination .
The houses of the wealthy traders .
The Patwon Ki Haveli
Time to check out the inside .
Such splendour .
Real gold in the paintings .
A small souvenir shop inside .
Portraits of royalty from years ago .
Wanted to buy some for the neighbourhood kids. Wife said no !! :-(
Now we're going to visit a bigger Haveli
Haveli is generic term used for a traditional townhouse and mansions in India, Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh usually one with historical and architectural significance
More colours .
THAT is someone's house :-0
Our 2nd Haveli
5 stories high .
And on both sides of the street .
Look at the intricate designs .
Lets take a look shall we ...
We'll start on the left .
Yup , just a simple house :-P
So ornate .
Study of the nobleman .
Traditional Rajasthani colours .
See how small the doors are ?
The central courtyard .
Old school safe .
The lady of the house's room .
Even the cellings are decorated .
Funnily enough the kitchen is on the top floor .
The dining set .
I wish my living room was this decorated .
With this celling .
Bang & Olufsen ???? ;-P
My room is ''almost '' like this :-P
My favourite song by Aerosmith is - Dream on , by the way ha ha ha
Now we're at the top .
With a view of the Golden city .
And the fort .
We were down there earlier .
Smaller houses all around .
A long day .
We head back to our hotel .
Also ''Golden'' :-)
Time for a drink .
But not the coke !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Nice bar .
Yes, another typo .
No child beer though ,damn .
I haven't had this drink in almost 20 years. Time to get plastered .
Wife napped , i imbibed.
Then its back on the car ...
For the final tour of the day .
Houses along the way .
We're headed to the Khuri Sand Dunes
Another hotel .
Villages in the evening .
Such nice roads.
Haaaaaaaaaa...... This is India .
My ride. Cute huh :-P
We'll ride to the sand dunes.....
...to watch the sun set over the desert .
My eye level next to the bus. That's how high the camel is .
Those who don't want to ride have this option .
Happy bunny .
Our convoy .
The Indian desert .
Nice huh .
So we will pick our dune .
....for a good view .
Madam will decide .
The desert keeps going on and on .
Local colour .
Imagine its actually coldish .
And it begins .
Other tourist .
And we watch.....
...as the sun sets on the .....
.....Great Thar desert .
What a day man, what a day....
To be continued .