Khimsar is a small hamlet nestled at the edge of the Great Thar Desert in the state of Rajasthan. In the midst of the sandy dry desert, this village has a water body which is a picturesque oasis. The serene beauty of the desert village is incomparable. The village has been put on the tourist map for its magnificent forts, palaces, temples, and the endless magical desert. Midway between Jodhpur and Bikaner, it was once a royal dynasty of the Rajputana. Tales of galore still linger in the ambiance. Witness the magnificence of the days past.
The history of Khimsar dates back to the Rajputana era. The town was founded by Rao Karamsiji, the 8th son of the Jodhpur founder, Rao Jodha. Thakurs ruled the area as an independent kingdom under the house of Jodhpur. The Khimsar fort is a relic from the earliest history of the town. It was built to guard the Khimsar kingdom against enemy attacks. Till date, the Thakur dynasty lives in the magnificent place.
Attractions in Khimsar
Khimsar has numerous fascinating attractions. The town is the marvelous site of the sand dunes of the Thar Desert. Safaris are intriguing and a cherished experience of the golden sands. Visit several of the renowned ancient Jain and Hindu temples.
Sand Dunes Village
The Sand Dunes Village is located at a distance of 6 km from the Khimsar. Surrounded by golden sand dunes, a luxurious retreat has been created for the guests. The typical villages offer an insight into the lives of the residents of the desert. Witness the alluring arts and crafts. Enjoy lavish stay in typical desert camps. Jeep/camel safari into the nearby sand dunes or villages is also wonderful. Spend the evening under the bright sheet of stars warming yourself by the bonfire.
Perched on the edge of the great Thar Desert, The Khimsar Fort was constructed in the 16th century. This fortress has witnessed many battles of the bygone era. Tourists can see the evidences of war on the walls of the fort. The well-preserved magnificent mansion is spread over 11 acres of sprawling lawns, orchards and open courtyards. It is one of the spectacular heritage hotels in India.
Dhawa Doli Wildlife Sanctuary
The Dhawa Doli Wildlife Sanctuary in Khimsar allures tourists to spot blackbucks, partridges, desert fox and blue bull or Nilgai at this sanctuary.
The Sacchiyamata temple is in a decrepit state but still revered among devotees. Pay respects to the ancient spiritual site.
Panchala Black Buck Reserve
The Panchala Black Buck Reserve is home to native inhabitants of the desert. Three species of antelope- the Blackbuck, Chinkara and Bluebull are found abundantly in the lands. The Demoiselle cranes are also popular species calling the reserve their home. They migrate from southern Europe and north Asia between October and March.
A visit to Khimsar is complete after you have explored the Nagaur Fort. Built in the 10th century, the Nagaur Fort is larger than the Mehrangarh Fort of Jodhpur. With mentions in the Mahabharata, the fort is of great historical importance.
Places to visit around Khimsar
Osian is a small town situated around 27 km off Khimsar. It is well-known for its sixteen ruined Jain and Hindu temples. These shrines date back to the eighth and eleventh centuries. The Sachhiyamata Temple and the Jain Temples are absolutely breathtaking. The Hindu temples are in a dilapidated condition, ruined with the passage of time. The Jain temples are well preserved and are till date visited by the pilgrims.
Nagaur is around 43 km away from Khimsar. The town is mostly popular for the famous cattle fair. Thousands of people bring camels, bullocks, and horses for sale. Camel races and other sporting events are organized at this fair. The city comes to life during the festival held in January-February.
Mandore is an ancient town 43 km from Khimsar. It is replete with heritage of architectural glory, majestic rule and incredible experience. Founded as early as the 4th century, traces of history remains lingering in the ambiance.
Jodhpur is the largest city in the entire Marwar region. The Blue City is also one of the most famous tourist destinations in Rajasthan. There are many tourist allures in the city which include the Umaid Bhawan Palace, Mahendragarh Fort, Jaswant Thada, and Mandore Gardens. Marvelous architecture, amazing shopping, delicious dining, and the famous hospitality of the Rajputs creates a memorable experience.
Khimsar comes alive during the spectacular Nagaur Festival. Between the months of January and February every year the Nagaur Festival is celebrated for four days. The second largest animal fair in India is a colorful extravaganza. It rivals the Pushkar Fair. The impressive kaleidoscope of animals, crafts and people is amazing. Nagaur's famous puppeteers create dramatic shows in the fair. They bring alive popular Rajasthani legends and folklore. The typical cattle fair allows visitors to enjoy camel races, bullock races, and folk music and dance forms of the region. Tug-of-war, camel races, cockfights etc are worth your time. Savor the incredible experience.
How to Reach
To reach Khimsar by air, the nearest air base is the Jodhpur Airport. Regular flights are available from Jaipur, Mumbai, Delhi and Udaipur to this airport. Khimsar is is 92 km away from the air terminal. Cabs, buses and private vehicles ply on this route.
The closest railhead to Khimsar is also located in Jodhpur. Jodhpur Railway Station is linked to various cities by express and passenger trains. From the railway station, abs, buses and other private vehicles can be taken to reach the desert town.
Khimsar lies on the Jodhpur-Nagaur-Bikaner Highway. It is convenient to reach Khimsar by buses from its neighboring cities. State owned buses and deluxe air conditioned rides are easily available. Taxis and private vehicles also provide a comfortable ride.
Best time to visit
Khimsar being nestled at the brink of the Thar Desert experiences extreme climate for the most part of the year. The best time to travel to Khimsar is during winters. The pleasant season commences in the month of November and last till March. The summer season starting from April is very hot with unbearable temperatures. The rainy season occurs during the month of June to September with sparse rain. Those who like rainy season can venture to this region in these months. It is also worth visiting Khimsar during the Nagaur Festival as one can participate in the spectacular extravaganza.