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Monday, 6 January 2014

Christmas 2013, Rajasthan Road Trip, Day #4 of 12 -- Mount Abu to Jaisalmer Sam Dunes

24-12-2013
We leave Mount Abu for Jaisalmer, the first destination in Jaisalmer is Sam Dunes. We checkout of hotel and get ready to leave. Following was the route that we had planned.
6:45 AM Start from Mount Abu.
7:28 AM Reach the foothills of Mount Abu. It is a two lane road, but being early morning the drive is smooth.
7:43 AM Somewhere around Ganka, the road turns bad, it is just a two laned road with occasional pothole on your or the oncoming side of the road and you have to make sure nobody is coming on your lane while trying to avoid a pothole.

8:25 AM Somewhere near a town called Varman, there is a toll and the road surface condition improves significantly after that.

9:42 AM Cross Sanchore, this is the point where we join NH-15. I believe this road is maintained by BRO and it extremely good quality. Actually this is one of the best roads that I have seen. The best part is that there are no tolls on this road. Traffic is very less.

11:30 AM Stopped at a restaurant called The Goodhall just before Barmer.
From literature present in the place, it looked like they are a chain based off Ahmedabad. Anyway the place was decent with clean toilets etc. So a nice place for a break if one is travelling with family.
12:00 PM Left from the restaurant for onward journey. Barmer bypass was quick and without much traffic. We continue on NH-15 with similar condition of roads and very sparse traffic.
1:49 PM We reach Jaisalmer. Since our destination was Sam Dunes, we have to go across the town and continue on the road to Sam Dunes.
The road that takes one to Sam Dunes is also pretty good. Although it is narrow, at times you may not even have two full lanes but traffic is not too much here and one can make quick progress. One has to be careful on this road. There are many vendors here who are present for camel safari and jeep safari and they are very aggressive and at times try to block your way. See in the video below at 1:45.

2:40 PM We reach the Royal Desert Camp. Here is my review of the place.
Interior of the restaurant

Swiss tent exterior

Exterior or restaurant
We went to desert jeep safari. Basically they take open top jeeps and drive you around on sand dunes. It was an interesting experience.

Tracks

Jeep Stuck

Dunes

Another Thar in action

Silhouettes of people 

Finally the sun sets

In the evening the resort organised bon-fire, music and folk dances.
Professional dancers

Guests joined in

Musicians
It was a pretty cold night, we went to sleep with as many layers of woolen as we could find.

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