From my camel: Our Thar desert safari

Our camel safari in the Thar Desert was one of the things we looked forward to most during our time in India and it reached and even surpassed our expectations.
Happy on a camel, Thar Desert
We spent a morning visiting Tripadvisor’s top four safari operators in Jaisalmer and chose a 3 day, 2 night trip with Adventure Travel Agency who turned out to be a great choice. In our opinion you only need a day in Jaisalmer: the morning to sort your safari and the afternoon to visit the giant sandcastle that is the fort.Jaisalmer Fort, The Golden City

The Thar Desert is not like the Sahara. You’re not going to see endless sand dunes but you will see some, interspersed with scrubland and impossibly dry farmland roamed by goats, sheep, cows and the occasional farmer. We were lucky and saw gazelle’s and a desert fox in the distance.Emptiness of the Thar Desert Desert silhouettes, Thar DesertDesert Fox, Thar DesertGazelle, Thar DesertFarmer's Huts, Thar Desert

Our camel safari started with sweet masala chai, an essential ingredient of the desert. It was so good that non-milk drinking Chris came back with a serious chai habit.Chai in the Thar Desert, Jaisalmer

Romeo and Michael seem unlikely names for camels but these two were our trusty ships of the desert throughout our journey, despite Michael’s reluctance to sit down which at times left Eliza stranded in mid-air, slowly sliding towards his neck as he lent forward but refused to put his back legs down.Camel, Modo, Eliza and Chris, Thar DesertThe slow rise of Romeo, Thar Desert
Occasionally we’d come across some female camels. As it was post mating-season the ladies were ‘out to pasture’ and this peaked Romeo and Michael’s attention.Lady camels, Thar DesertLooking for girls, Thar Desert

We took the camels for water, then spent the morning roaming across the sands as the sun beat relentlessly down. We stopped for lunch and a rest beneath a tree to avoid the hottest part of the day.Drinking camel, Thar DesertDrinking camels, Thar DesertLocal village children, Thar Desert

In the afternoon we continued on another two hour safari before setting up camp as the sun set over the dunes. The camel train, Thar DesertSan dunes, Thar DesertCamels across the desert, Thar DesertDesert sunset, Thar DesertFirst night sunset, Thar Desert

Warmed by the heat of the fire, we helped Kaspar and Modo as they prepared a dinner of vegetable curry, rice and the tasty chapatis cooked over an open fire and were joined by a nomadic shepherd for a cup of chai.Evening chai, prepared by Kaspar, Thar DesertNomadic shepherd, Thar Desert

Snuggling into our swags, we star-gazed the few stars that were visible. We visited on a full moon which was so bright that we joked about turning out the light. Even so we enjoyed a reasonably sound sleep. Another time, we’d love to go during a dark moon to appreciate the stars.Sunset in the desert, Thar DesertSilhouettes of the Thar DesertModo caught the sun, Thar DesertCamel & Eliza, TharDesert Before dark, Thar Desert Moon over the desert, Thar Desert

We awoke at sunrise to enjoy the beautiful colours over the horizon before setting off on our second day.Desert night, Sleeping in the Thar DesertBreakfast cooking, Thar Desert Packing up, Thar Desert Breakfast of porridge and eggs, Thar Desert

 

All to soon it was over but we’re already plotting a longer camel journey…Us on camels, Thar Desert

 

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