Historical, Heritage, Pilgrimage, Lake, Pushkar Festival
Hindi & Rajasthani
Pushkar is one of the oldest cities of India and known as city of temples. It’s a city steeped in so much legend and holiness you could almost fly a magic carpet across Arabia to get here. But if your carpet won’t take off, you won’t be stuck. Ajmer is about half an hour away and you can make the trip by bus or taxi. Local buses leave regularly from the main bus station in Ajmer. Pushkar features heavily in Hindu legend, and the town was a residence for many rulers during the Mughal Empire.
Temple viewing is an important activity in Pushkar. Many tourists come from all over the world and thousands of pilgrims visit Pushkar each year. Watching the life on the lake by the ghats is activity enough for some, and many of India’s festivals, from Diwali to the Holi Festival, take place here in full color.
Pushkar is a good place to buy beads, bangles, leather goods and textiles. Try the Sadar Bazaar for bargains. Try the Funky Monkey Café for a good place to relax and read. There are many foods in Pushkar, Daal Batti is a delicious dish containing Rajma beans. There are many opportunities to try yoga, massage or meditation while in Pushkar. Always look for a quality instructor; try following the recommendations of other travelers. You will see many holy men, or Sadhus, in Pushkar.
Near Pushkar is the Pushkar Yoga Garden, so tired travelers can get bendy, flexible, and hopefully rejuvenated. Not to be missed is the speactacular Pushkar Camel Fair. Hundreds of camels spread out across the sandy desert.
Men may approach you in Pushkar and invite you to take part in a puja. They may be looking to charge you for this service. As with anywhere in India, try to distinguish between those looking to make money and those being genuinely friendly. It pays to be alert in Pushkar. Be aware of pickpockets and do not accept food or even cigarettes from strangers as it may be drugged. It is also important to respect the sanctity of the town. Footwear should be removed thirty feet away from the ghats of the lake. By no means take alcohol to Pushkar as it is forbidden here.