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Authentic Desert Life Experience

Discussion in 'Rajasthan' started by djtravels, Sep 25, 2016.

  1. djtravels

    djtravels Member


    I want to know how to get an authentic taste of the traditional desert life in Rajasthan?

    I mean I have seen people living in tents, eating traditional foodstuff cooked beneath the sand, and all the other stuff.

    Is there like a tour package or something that essentially provides you the whole experience?

    I know Hotels will get you out into the desert for like a couple of hours for dinner or something, but are there any immersive experiences of living a desert life?

  2. briannagodess

    briannagodess Well-Known Member

    Hello there!

    For the authentic desert life experience, I would recommend staying in the local home stays and also touring the desert through local guides. This is the most authentic way to experience the desert life in Rajasthan. There are also local tour operators that can guide you best in the different areas of the desert, the lesser explored ones. Camping under the stars without any luxuries is an experience in itself. There are tour packages that you can avail for this. Here's a few that I can recommend to you:

    1. Hacra Dhani - When it comes to local safaris for the desert, Gemar Singh and his co-villagers are very well-known. If you choose to stay within their village, you'd be sleeping in an authentic jhumpa, the traditional home of the locals. These are circular huts made of sand stone and roof straw. The more adventurous travellers even opt to sleep under the stars, with just tons of blankets to cover them. That's a good option too! Keep in mind that since you'd be living in a remote area of the desert, there would be no electricity, mobile signal nor internet. There is also no running water although you'd be given a bucket of water for taking a bath. The bathroom is a Western style one though so you won't need to worry about squatting. The food served to guests are all home cooked by the wife of the owner, her specialty is Marwari cuisine. For the safari, you can opt for jeep, camel or horse. You'd visit the more remote areas of the desert and pass by the sam dunes along the way as well. During evening time, you can watch the sunset, enjoy the folk music and dinner prepared for you. Nothing can get as authentic as this especially as you get to experience how to live exactly like the villagers of Osian.
    • Location - Osian in Jodhpur.
    • Tour Package Price - The price for their package is not clearly indicated on the website. But it averages between Rs. 3,000 to Rs. 4,000 per night, inclusive of the meals, camel safari and accommodation.
    • Inclusions - Meals, camel safari, accommodation and village tour.
    • Address - Hacra Dhani, Kerli Nadi Village, Post-Bhikamkor, Osian, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, 342303.
    • Contact Number - +91 9460 58 51 54.
    2. Sahara Travels - If you're not into the more commercialised tours offered by hotels, then do opt for Sahara Travels. They have been in the industry since 1989. They are well-known for their offbeat desert safari, taking you through an abandoned village and an oasis. They would also take you through real villages so you can see how people live in the desert. You can opt for a camel or jeep safari, it's your choice. By sunset, you can enjoy the views amidst the desert while a home-cooked meal is prepared for you. For sleeping, they have either the Deluxe Swiss Tent or Cottage for you. Both have attached bathrooms as well but have basic amenities. They do have a power generator although it would be turned off at 11:30 pm.
    • Location - Jaisalmer.
    • Tour Package Price - Rs. 1,700 for a 2 days and 1 night safari.
    • Inclusions - Meals (dinner, breakfast and snacks), camel safari, accommodation and cultural program.
    • Address - Near Fort First Gate, Gopa Chowk, Jaisalmer, 345001.
    • Contact Number - +91 941 431 9921.
    3. Bishnoi Village Camp and Resort - Staying in a real village and witnessing the rural life, that's what the Bishnoi Village Camp and Resort promises to guests. And that's what you get literally, you get to interact with the locals and see how they live their everyday lives. Aside from that, you get to stay in a mud hut, with limited amenities like a bathroom and bed. There's nothing more authentic than this, no television, internet nor shower. But you do get electricity and plumbing so that's an upgrade from the previous options. You get to tour the desert and the surrounding villages. And exciting part here is actually being able to see animals like antelopes, gazelles and birds like peacocks and dumessille cranes. Yet another exciting experience is being able to see how the locals create textiles. During sunset, enjoy the views while traditional Rajasthani cuisine is served to you. So if you'd like to explore more than just the desert, do opt for the Bishnoi Village Camp and Resort.
    • Location - Jodhpur.
    • Tour Package Price - Rs. 4,000 for a 1 night stay.
    • Inclusions - Meals (dinner, breakfast and snacks), morning jeep safari, camel safari, village tour and accommodation.
    • Address - Village Guda Bishnoiyan, Near Guda Lake, Jodhpur, Rajasthan 342802.
    • Contact Number - +91 291 2696744.
    4. Karni Kingdom Eco Friendly Stay - Here you get to enjoy staying in a remote area in the Thar desert. It's definitely far from the commercialised areas and luxury resorts located near the main cities. The home stay has about five huts, a common house with a kitchen and another common house with a fireplace. All the five huts have attached bathrooms although there are no showers and you have to make do with a bucket. They do have electricity but it is solar powered. During the day time, you can opt for a safari in the desert and you can explore the more remote areas. As soon as you get back to the home stay, a traditional meal would be prepared for you. You can also visit the nearby villages, about 10 minutes of walking away.
    • Location - Jaisalmer.
    • Tour Package Price - Rs. 3,000 for a 1 night stay.
    • Inclusions - Meals, safari, village tour and accommodation.
    • Address - Lakhamana Village, Fatehgarh Tehshil, Jaisalmer, 345027, Lakhmana.
    • Contact Number - n/a.
    I hope this helps you!

  3. djtravels

    djtravels Member

    Thank you for the detailed response. Hacra Dhani seems like it could be interesting. But, I see it has most of the things that my friends had done when they'd visited Rajasthan. You know the usual camel riding, village stay, etc. Also, the Bishnoi camp seems to be interesting as well, although I am not sure if I can stay without the internet for that long.
    briannagodess likes this.