The fort’s center is Dussehra Chowk and towering over this square is the 11-storey palace that served as the private residence of the rulers. A part of the palace stands over Hawa Pol (Gate of Winds) and offers views of the square that was (and remains) the center of most activity within the fort. Quite like the buildings of its time in Rajasthan the windows of the zenana or the women’s chambers are designed such that they offer the person inside unrestricted views of the goings-on below without being spotted in return. Almost all the rooms have quite small doorways, built for the express purpose of forcing the entrant to bow and stoop as they enter.

Within the palace is Rang Mahal the excuisideely painted and mirrored room that served as the bedroom of Mulraj II and is without a doubt one the biggest attraction of the palace. Other attractions in the palace include a gallery of sculptures, a display of stamps of the erstwhile states of Rajputana and a balcony that served as a venue for the drummers who would raise an alarm to alert the populace of an advancing enemy.  Note that the audio guide is compulsory here.

Fort Palace, Jaisalmer Fort timings: (April to October) 8am to 6pm; (November to March): 9am to 6pm