Jaisalmer is a former medieval trading center and a princely state in the western Indian state of Rajasthan, in the heart of the Thar Desert. Known as the "Golden City," it's distinguished by its yellow sandstone architecture. The city was founded by The Bhati Rajput ruler Maharawal Jaisal Singh in 1156 Ad and it gets its name from the golden sands of the Thar Desert and the same golden colored sandstone used in the city’s architecture. The unique feature about the city of Jaisalmer is its architecture. It was built as a walled city which makes it one of the largest forts in the world. The dominating feature of Jaisalmer is the Jaisalmer Fort, or Sonar Qila, which is still an inhabited space. Unlike virtually every other fort in India, Jaisalmer is completely functioning, and within the fort you’ll find private residences, shops and even restaurants. In the town below are a number of "havelis," or traditional Rajasthani mansions. The Patwon Ki Haveli is a notable example, adorned with carved balconies and arches. Gadsisar Lake is surrounded by small temples and the Folklore Museum, a trove of local arts and crafts. The city is also a hub for scenic camel safaris through the nearby sand dunes.