Jaisalmer Fort – Overview:
The magnificent Jaisalmer fort is located in the Golden City Jaisalmer. It is also called Sonar Quila meaning Fort of Gold. It is called so due to its tawny lion colour and the fact that whenever Sunlight falls on the fort it makes it look like liquid gold. Jaisalmer fort is by far one of the largest forts of Rajasthan and in fact of India as well.
Jaisalmer fort was built by an emperor called Rao Jaisal (a Bhati Rajput) in 1156, who also founded the city of Jaisalmer. The city of Jaisalmer is also named after Rao Jaisal.
What makes this fort so unique is the fact that a considerable (about one fourth) population of the city still lives inside the fort; it is perhaps the only living fort in the world.
Standing in the middle of the sand dunes of Thar Desert, over the time the Jaisalmer fort has played many roles in significant historical moments. Jaisalmer fort has faced many attacks including attacks from Muslim invader Allah Uddin Khilji and Mughal emperor Humayun.
During the Indo Pak war, Indian army used Jaisalmer fort to keep the people of this area safe. In order to ensure the safety of the locals Indian army accommodated people of the city into the fort.
Jaisalmer Fort Architecture:
From its location to its history and architectural style there is a lot about Jaisalmer fort that makes it special. As per a legend Rao Jaisal decided to come here and make a fort at this site on the advice of a wise hermit.
Perched on top of Trikuta hill, Jaisalmer fort has the length of 1500 feet and a width of 750 ft. The Jaisalmer fort is built using yellow sandstone. This massive fort has a height of 250 feet and is protected by strong and thick fortified walls. There are a total of four entrances to the fort one of these used to be protected by canon. Out of 99 citadels of the complex 92 were constructed between the years 1633- 1647.
Jaisalmer fort has a basement with 15 feet high wall that acts as double line defence. Citadel of the fort makes a chain of about 30 feet. The fort has a device is installed on top of fort wall was used for weather assumption purpose.
Jaisalmer fort reflects fine blend of Rajput and Islamic styles of architecture. The beauty of the fort increases multi folds during the night when the entire complex is beautifully lightened up.
Jaisalmer fort was built in 1156 but over the years’ modifications to the fort were done by different rulers in their era hence some parts of the fort are older than others making them little more historic than others. Beautiful and expansive Havelis of the complex incorporate most intricate techniques. The rooms are adorned with beautiful arches, balconies, windows, and doors.
Main Attractions of the Jaisalmer Fort:
Major attractions of the fort include Maharawal’s marble throne, beautiful five storey Tazia Tower, Maharawals palace, Jawahar Palace. Other than these, the parts of Jaisalmer fort that never fails to amaze visitors include four entry gates of the fort namely Ganesh Pol, Hava Pol, Bhoota Pol, and Rang Pol. All these gates crafted very tastefully, the design, pattern every bit of it is simply gorgeous.
The enormous Jaisalmer fort houses many beautifully crafted structures such as palaces, temples. There are five interconnected palaces in the fort; the notable feature of these places is their splendidly carved Jharokhas.
Some structures of the fort hold a much higher and special place and these should not be missed when you are on the tour of Jaisalmer Fort. These special structures include the Jain temple, Raj Mahal and Laxmikanth temple.
The temples of the complex are highly revered by their respective communities. Especially the Jain temple of the complex, which still attracts devotees from all around the world. Inside the fort, there are various shops from where you can buy souvenirs for your loved ones.
Apart from all the historical significance, the fort makes an excellent location to click some great pictures. Sunset and Sunrise from here look no less than a dream from here. Shutterbugs you are going to love it here!
The fact that people are still living inside the fort is the reason to be worried about its safety. It has become a great threat to its existence. Various parts of the fort are prone to serious damage. Water seepage and drainage are among serious issues that this monument is facing.
Also read about other amazing places to explore in Rajasthan Mehrangarh Fort, Amer Fort