The charisma of the ghost villages is very different from that of the ruined fortresses. The ghost villages give us a chance to look closely into the lives of the people who once resided there. Rajasthan has no scarcity of such villages. Two of the most famous ghost villages is Bhangarh and Kuldhara, probably because of the folklore associated with them. Almost 18 kilometers from the beautiful city of Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, Kuldhara Village is most conspicuous for being deserted by all the villagers in just a single night.
About 200 years ago in an era of powerful kings and ministers, Kuldhara was home to Paliwal Brahmins. It was during this time that Salim Singh, the Diwan of Jaisalmer, who was known for corruption and unethical practices of collecting tax from the villagers, had set his eyes on the beautiful daughter of the village chief and to have her he told all the villagers that if they will come in his way, he will charge them with heavy taxes. And in fear of Diwan, the residents of Kuldhara village fled one dark night leaving behind their homes and everything, and it got abandoned by its own people. Now generations have passed and no one knows where Paliwals have settled, and what is known is that they cursed the town- that no one would ever be able to settle in down on Kuldhara village. From the date it has been deserted, the village remains barren, lying same like the villagers had left it centuries ago! It is believed that people who try to stay in the area during the night-time, experience strange paranormal activities.
The story of this village dates back to the 1800s when it was a prosperous village of the Paliwal Brahmins. According to the popular folklore, the villagers were supposed to pay the taxes levied on them to the minister of the state, Salim Singh. While visiting Kuldhara, Salim Singh’s eyes fell upon the chief’s beautiful daughter and he expressed his desire to marry her. He threatened the Kuldhara villagers that if they refused to give him the girl, he would levy exaggerated taxes on them. Instead of marrying his daughter to the minister, the chief of the village along with those of 84 adjoining villages decided to leave behind Kuldhara and migrate to some other place. No one saw the villagers leave nor did anyone know where they all went. But how could so many villagers vanish in a single night? This still remains a mystery!
Another probable reason can be the huge amount of taxes levied on the villagers by Salim Singh. The taxes became heavy-handed to the extent that the villagers decided to migrate to some other place. But who doesn’t love a tingle of mystery and romance? This is what makes the former story more popular!
Kuldhara Village is almost 18 kilometers away from Jaisalmer, Rajasthan. So once you reach Jaisalmer you can easily take a taxi or take your own car. For reaching Jaisalmer from Delhi, Mumbai or Bangalore, you can pick any of the following mode of transportation.
By Air The Jaisalmer airport is located at a distance of 5 kilometers from the city and is well connected by air from Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore. This airport is managed by the Indian Air Force and is only functional from September to March. The best alternative is Jodhpur airport which is at a distance of almost 285 kilometers. The nearest International Airport is in Delhi.
By Train Almost 2 kilometers away from the city is Jaisalmer’s railway station. It is well connected with Delhi and other major Indian cities including Mumbai and Bangalore.
By Road Buses by Rajasthan State Road Transport Corporation run to and fro from Jaisalmer on daily basis. The main bus stands in Jaisalmer are Roadways and Golden Bus Terminals. Travellers can easily avail taxi services from here on.
By Air Not all airlines fly to Jaisalmer and the ones which do, only operate during September to March. So if you are planning to visit Jaisalmer by air, you can fly to Jodhpur and then take a taxi to Kuldhara.
By Train Some of the main trains from Delhi to Jaisalmer are Jodhpur Jaisalmer Express, Delhi-Jaisalmer Express, Lalgarh Jaisalmer Special and Howrah-Jaisalmer Express. Once you reach Jaisalmer station you can easily take a taxi or a bus to Kuldhara.
By Road It takes almost 16 hours to travel from Delhi to Kuldhara Via Jaisalmer. The approximate distance between Delhi and Kuldhara is 788 kilometers via Bikaner. You can also take a bus from Delhi but unfortunately there are no direct buses to Kuldhara. You can take a bus to Jaipur and then switch a bus to Jaisalmer.
By Air There are no direct flights from Mumbai to Jaisalmer. You can take a flight from Mumbai to Jhodpur and can then take a train 04801, a bus or can even hire a taxi from Jodhpur to Jaisalmer. On reaching Jaisalmer you can take a taxi to Kuldhara Village.
By Train Unfortunately, there are no direct trains between Mumbai and Jaisalmer. You can take Ddr Bikaner Exp from Mumbai to Jodhpur and then take the train 14704, bus or hire a taxi to Jaisalmer. From there, you can hire a taxi to Kuldhara Village.
By Road There are no direct buses from Mumbai to Jaisalmer. You can take Karnavati Exp from Mumbai to Ahmedabad then take a State transport bus from Ahmedabad to Jaisalmer, from where you can easily take a taxi to Kuldhara Village.
By Air There are no direct flights from Bangalore to Jaisalmer. But, you can easily take IndiGo flight from Bangalore to Ahmedabad then take bus from Ahmedabad to Jaisalmer. From there on you can hire a taxi to Kuldhara Village.
By Train You will not find any direct train between Bangalore and Jaisalmer. You can take a flight from Bangalore to Jaipur and then the train 14059 from Jaipur to Jaisalmer. From Jaisalmer you can then take a taxi to Kuldhara Village.
By Road There is no direct bus between Bangalore and Jaisalmer. But, you can take Vivek Exp from Bangalore to Ahmedabad then take a bus from Ahmedabad to Jaisalmer, from where you can hire a taxi to Kuldhara Village.
Staying in Kuldhara If you are planning a trip to Jaisalmer, then Kuldhara Village is must visit. Take some time out and see for yourself, what made this Paliwal Brahmin’s pride symbol into a spooky place! About 11 kilometers from Jaisalmer and 5 kilometers from Kuldhara Village, you can stay in Kuldhara Heritage Resort.