Pushkar Tourism Images

About Pushkar Tourism

A peaceful pilgrim town of lakes and 400 temples, Pushkar derives its name from pushpa and kar after a legend that claims its lakes were created from the petals that fell from the divine hands of Brahma the Creator. Today, life revolves around its lakeside ghats, temples and vibrant, colorful bazaars, and it is this harmonious mix of spiritual and commercial that draws people to Pushkar.

Sightseeing Places in Pushkar, Rajasthan

The Pushkar Fair
In the Hindu month of Kartik, ten days after Diwali, this peaceful town and its environs become alive as the much anticipated annual cattle fair begins. Tents and campsites suddenly spring up to accommodate the thousands of pilgrims, tourists, and villagers with herds of cattle, horses and camels who come here to participate in this spectacular event. Pushkar has always been the region's central cattle market for local herdsmen and farmers who buy and sell camels and indigenous breeds of cattle. Over the years, this trade in livestock has greatly increased in volume. The Pushkar Fair is now one of Asia's largest cattle fairs, and it transforms the quiet little village into a bustling market.

Pushkar Lake and its ghats
The Pushkar Lake is the cynosure – in the town, on the religio-mythic map, and in the visitor's itinerary. Lined by pure white ghat buildings, encrusted with pearly grey pigeons and with white ducks and geese, filled with mysterious dark green waters, with the smoky hills receding at a distance, it provides a singular monochromatic aesthetic experience. Only the devotees in their quest for purification and the Brahmins in search of a living provide splashes of color here. Even after your holy dip is over, you would want to be near the lake, ruminating on the changing colors of life, or just of the day. The lake, according to legend, was created by Brahma by combining the waters of the four places of pilgrimage sacrosanct to Hindus – Badrinath, Jagannath, Rameshwaram and Dwarka. According to the Padma Purana, Brahma was searching for a place to perform a yagna when the lotus he was holding fell from his hand and landed in Pushkar. He resolved to perform the yagna there and then, but when his wife Savitri failed to join him, he married a local damsel and completed the formalities. When Savitri arrived, she discovered Gayatri and, enraged, ticked off Brahma saying that Pushkar would be the only place where he'd be worshipped. Today, you will see a floating chhatri in the centre of the lake, built in 1791 by the Thakur of Khimsar to commemorate Brahma's yagna spot.

Temple trail
Pushkar is a microcosm of celestial and mortal society. It represents the Hindu Trinity with all its attendant gods and goddesses, but Pushkar also has shrines that have special significance for different castes. Rajputs, Rawats, Jats, Gujjars, Malis, Loharias, Kalbelias, Mochis, all have their own shrines where they worship the same gods. Another unique feature of its older temples is the embedded silver coins found at the entrance to the shrines. Among the abodes of the Trinity, the temples of Brahma, Varaha and Aptaeshwar are considered the oldest and the most sacrosanct. All three are said to have been in existence around the 10th century AD though not necessarily in their present shape or look. At Brahma's Temple, on the ghat of the same name, look for the four-faces icon of the lord accompanied by his shy bride, Gayatri and the silver turtle in front of the shrine's entrance, all three probably installed in 1809 when the temple was rebuilt. At the Varaha Temple, while taking a round of the shrine, don't miss its different layers. The temple is said to have suffered destruction at Aurangzeb's hands. At the Aptaeshwar Temple is an underground shrine where a lingam has been installed. Another imposing temple in the city is the Dravidian Rangji Temple, first built in 1844, run by the Tamilian Vaishnava sect founded by an 11th century saint, Ramanujacharya. No foreigners or non-Hindus are allowed within its precincts.

Song and Dance
Even if you're not going during the fair, it's difficult to get bored in Pushkar, a fact underlined by the absence of TV sets in most hotels. Like Varanasi, Pushkar has its own ways of passing time. For those wishing to do some yoga, there are a number of gurus, among whom Yogacharya Yogesh Bharati is the most respected. He can be found at Gwalior Ghat. Those interested in listening to fine classical music, vocal or instrumental, can contact Brajesh Kumar Devder aka Birju at Badi Basti, a highly accomplished young artiste. Or you can request local Lohar and Gujjar folk performers, who you will see all around the city, to perform for you – at a price of course.

How to reach Pushkar

By Air
Nearest airport is Sanganer Airport, Jaipur.

By Rail
Nearest railhead is Ajmer Junction

By Bus
Pushkar is on NH89, 11 km off NH8, which connects Delhi to Mumbai via Jaipur, Ajmer and Ahmedabad.

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