Pushkar is a sacred town for the Hindus, situated 11 kms. to the North-West of Ajmer , Rajasthan. The charm of this sleepy, lakeside settlement so captivated the great Indian poet, Kalidas, that it found a place in his classic, Abhigyan Sakuntalam. The Great Hindu epics of Mahabharat and Ramayana make references to this religious place regarded to be Adi Tiratha. Evidence points to its having existed during the fourth century B.C. lake in the inhospitable surroundings of a desert is no less than a miracle
The Pushkar Camel Fair is one of the largest in India and the only one of its kind in the entire world. During the fair, Lakhs of people from rural India flock to Pushkar, along with Camel and Cattle for several days of live stock trading, horse dealing, pilgrimage and religious festival. This small town, becomes a cultural phenomenon when colourfully dressed devotees, musicians, acrobats, folk dancers, traders, comedians, sadhus and tourists reach here during Pushkar fair. According to Hindu chronology, it takes place in the month of Kartika (October or November) beginning on ashtmi 8th day of Lunar Calendar and continues till full moon (Poornima). The Camel and Cattle trading is at its peak during the first half of festival period. During the later half, religious activities dominate the scenario. Devotees take dips in the holy “Sarovar” lake, as the sacred water is known to bestow salvation.
This small town is transformed into a spectacular fair ground, as rows of make shift stalls display an entire range of objects of art to daily utility stuff. Trading of cattle, camel races and dazzling displays of bangles, brassware, clothes, camel saddles and halters make the fair colourful. Necklaces of glass beads from Naguar, pottery, printed textiles from Jodhpur and Ajmer are all on sale here. Farmers, cattle traders and breeders buy and sell their animals, leather whips, saddles etc. There are facilities for camel rides also. This livestock fair coincides with the climaxing of a religious celebration. Pushkar is among the five main places of pilgrimage mentioned in the Hindu scriptures. It has a large number of temples including one of the only two temples dedicated to Lord Brahma in India. Hundreds of thousands of devotees take a ritual dip in the holy Pushkar Lake on the day of the Kartik Purnima (full moon night of the Kartika month) and worship at the Brahma temple (Jagat Pita Shri Brahma Mandir). Pilgrims flock from all over India to be in Pushkar at this auspicious time. They also believe that all the 330 million Gods and Goddesses are present at Pushkar Lake during the occasion. Each evening brings different folk dances and music of Rajasthan, performers delivering live shows to the roaring and applauding crowds.
Pushkar fair has its own magic and it’s a lifetime experience for travellers. It has featured in numbers of travel shows, films and magazine. According to lonely planet -“Its truly a feast for the eyes. If you are any where within striking distance at the time, Its an event not to be missed.”
Situated in the Thar Desert of Rajasthan, Pushkar offers an extreme climate. During summer months, the mercury, sometimes, rises as high as 45°C while in winters it plummets to as low as 10°C. Like all other parts of the Thar Desert, Pushkar also does not get much rain during the monsoons. That is the reason why the period between October to March is considered the best to visit Pushkar.
Places of Interest
Brahma Temple –
The Brahma temple is an important pilgrim centre for the Hindus. It is nestled in the Pushkar valley which lies beyond Nagaparvat and the Anasagar lake. This place, full of natural beauty, holds a special place in the hearts of Indian for it is believed that Lord Brahma, together with all the gods and goddesses, performed a Yagya here. Legends also has it that the ancient lake Sarovar had appeared miraculously, when a lotus fell from the hands of Lord Brahma and dropped into this valley.Brahma Temple The most famous temple in Pushkar, this is the only temple dedicated to Lord Brahma (the creator of the universe according to Hindu mythology) in the entire country. You can identify it by its red spire and by the image of a hans(the goose considered sacred to Lord Brahma).This temple built with marble is decorated with silver coins and there is a silver turtle on the floor of the temple.
Savitri Temple –
The temple is dedicated to Savitri, the wife of Lord Brahma and located on the top of the Ratnagiri Hill. According to the legends when Lord Brahma performed a Yagna (holy fire devoted to gods) along with Gayatri, a local milkmaid, furious Savitri cursed her husband that he would never be worshipped anywhere except in Pushkar and that too only once a year. Savitri left for the Ratnagiri Hill after cursing her husband and immolated herself there. There is beautiful statue of Goddess Savitri inside the temp
Varah Temple –
Originally built in the 12th century, Varah Temple was, like many others, destroyed by the bigoted Emperor Aurangzeb (who , it is said , was particularly upset by the huge idol here of Varah, the god with the body of a man and the head of the boar.) Reconstructed BY Raja Sawai Jai Singh II of Jaipur in 1727, the temple has an interesting and richly ornamented image house.
Mahadeva Temple –
A beautiful temple built in the 19th century .It was described by a British traveler of the time as “by far the most remarkable, for the elegance of its structure and the nature of its ornaments, of all the temples Pushkar boasts of” . It is also noteworthy for its white marble Mahadeva image, with its five Faces.
Ramavaikunth Temple –
In 1920, this temple was built with great taste and delicacy, and is also one of the largest temples in Pushkar. A team of masons from south India were specially called to build the outer gopuram (arch) over the entrance. Another stone gopuram bears beautiful sculpted images of not less than 360 different deities
Pushkar lake –
It is surrounded by hills on three sides and desert on the other side. The cave of Saint Agasthya was located on the snake mountain here. There is one belief that Kalidasa, the Indian counterpart of Shakespeare, had this place as his locale for his Sanskrit drama, Shakuntalam. According to a legend, the lake was formed when Lord Brahma wanted to perform a yagna here. A temple dedicated to him can be seen here.
The Pulsating beats of vivid images of the Sacred Brahma land, Pushkar Festival brings alive the rich tradition of Rajasthan enhancing the glory of the golden sand. Spectacular Fair Ground in the month of Kartik with bedecked Camels, decorated cattles, adventures competitions, breathtaking events, jostling rustic crowd, meditating sadhus, holy dip, vivid stalls, exotic fair, colorful desert, so typical, so obvious, It can be nothing else but Pushkar Fair.
Getting there and Around
By Air –
The nearest airport is at Jaipur, which is 131 km away.
By Rail –
Ajmer, situated at a distance of 11 km from Pushkar, is the nearest railhead. Ajmer an important destination on its own right, Ajmer is well connected with major places in Rajasthan.
By Road –
Pushkar is home to two bus stands. The Marwar bus stand, in the north of town by the post office, has buses to some long distance places including Delhi, Jodhpur and Bikaner while the Ajmer bus stand is located east of the Pushkar town and offers bus services to Ajmer and Jaipur. Pushkar is well connected to Ajmer by bus.
The holy town of Pushkar offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit every budget and traveli
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