In the state of Rajasthan in India, Jaisalmer, also known as ''The Golden City,'' gets its name from the sandstone used to build most of the city. Locals say that the ornate carvings that are distinctive to Rajasthani architecture are meant to adorn a building like jewelry adorns a person.
Local women take a break to gather together on the front step of one woman’s house to chat with one another.
Outside a ''haveli'', a mansion with a traditional architectural style, a dog sleeps in a hollowed pillar. The sign painted on the wall invites everyone in the town to the wedding of a family member. Wedding invitations are painted all over the walls of the city.
Sidewalk shops are set up outside of famous palaces and temples to appeal to tourists visiting the area. Tourism is one of the main industries in Jaisalmer, and the community relies on visitors, mainly from Europe and other parts of India, to purchase their handmade goods.
A Jain man dressed in traditional prayer attire leads his daughter into the main fort of Jaisalmer, where a Jain temple is housed. Jaisalmer is home to seven ancient Jain temples and serves as a site of pilgrimage for many followers of the Jain faith.
Kohl is applied around the eyes of babies and toddlers to ward off evil spirits and with the hope of making the eyes larger.
A couple in traditional Rajasthani clothes stand watching a celebration honoring the birth of a family member’s son.
Three Jain women put their shoes back on after visiting a temple. Almost all homes and religious areas in India require the removal of shoes in order to preserve the cleanliness and purity of the space.
A woman selling bracelets on the streets looks at a smartphone under her ''ghunghat.'' A ghunghat is a traditional headscarf worn by married women to cover their hair. In Rajasthan, most women who wear a ghunghat also cover their face.
A local man leads his camels over the dunes of the Thar Desert, the desert that separates India and Pakistan. Jaisalmer’s position makes it the site of a large Indian military base. In the background, the Jaisalmer fort is visible along with a few of the wind turbines used to power the area.
Jaisalmer sits on the edge of the Thar Desert. This oasis is one of the only natural water reservoirs in the area, and is revered by locals.