Jodhpur is home to many famous attractions including the Blue City and Mehrangarh Fort.
However, if you’re in Jodhpur for more than a couple of days, you should definitely sign up for a Bishnoi village safari.
The Bishnoi people are a religious sect who live in Western Rajasthan. Bishnois (bis means 20 and noi means 9) follow 29 religious principles. In particular, they believe in protecting the natural environment. In fact, they can be deemed the original tree huggers.
According to local history, in the 18th century, Amrita Devi and 362 Bishnois hugged their village’s sacred khejri trees to protest the maharaja’s command to fell them for construction of a new palace.
It is claimed that Amrita Devi said: “Sar santey rookh rahe to bhi sasto jaan. If a tree is saved even at the cost of one’s head, it’s worth it.”
She and the others were beheaded by soldiers until the king ordered the killing to stop.
Bishnoi villages are located in the Thar desert, some kilometers away from the city center. Here are a few highlights of our day trip.