India at its most exotic. One of the pearls of Western Rajasthan, Jaisalmer is a fairytale of a place, a great inland port perched amidst the vast golden sea of the Thar Desert. The ancient fort’s honey-coloured turrets spear the air, visible for miles around and sheltering within the walls a riddle of narrow, winding streets and markets, as busy and lively as the desert is serene. Walking the lanes and exploring the grand mansions is a window on to a world utterly distinct from your own, at times seemingly preserved in aspic for centuries, and all the more fascinating and charming for that. Jasailmer casts a spell on all who enter its golden gates, and it’s one that stays with you long after you’ve left.