I have seen all my friends from India and abroad coming to Rajasthan and wanting to see the Pushkar fair. For some, it may be experiencing a culture, art or just to take some beautiful pictures. For me, it was to leave things behind for a while and take a break.
Pushkar for me is only one and half hours drive from my hometown Jaipur and I have been many times to the place but never been part of the Pushkar fair. Maybe because I am so scared of crowded places. Also growing up in Rajasthan I have seen the handicrafts, Rajasthani culture, camels on streets, (so much that once I was enjoying ice cream and was pushed down by a camel cart, and got fractured!). And this being the reason I never felt excited to be a part of this most famous and largest camel fair in the world. It was only when my friend suggested me and I wanted to go somewhere, anywhere for the weekend, that we planned a 3 days trip.
As soon as I reached Pushkar, my first reaction was 'God why didn't I come here before.. !!'
This is one place where people from all over the world come to see the traditions, religion, unique customs, architecture and it is worth traveling for. One must see this at least once in their life! For photographers, its a paradise.Perfect location, vibrant colors and so much happening in one place.
Pushkar fair is held every October / November during Kartik Purnima (the celebration of the full moon) in Pushkar town in the Ajmer district of Rajasthan. It is considered to be the best time to receive Bhrama’s blessings. The fair gives you a chance to witness the vivid, bright and colorful culture of Rajasthan.
The narrow lanes which take you to the Brahma temple is crowded at this time of the year with shops selling the handicrafts of Rajasthan like puppets, leather products, embroidered umbrellas and bags, beaded jewellery, tie-dye dresses and much more...the streets are scented with incense stick, vibrant Holi colors and sweet delicacies of the place.
I was more excited to see the camel accessories, which I found to be made of good material and in the most beautiful color combinations.
Camels decorated with colorful dresses, laces, jewelry, and tattooed is a sight to watch.
One goes to Pushkar and not visit the Ghats is like eating vegan cheesecake!!
Pushkar Lake is surrounded by 52 bathing ghats, where pilgrims come in large numbers to take a sacred bath. One can see sadhus taking a dip in the lake, as per Hindu traditions taking a dip in this sacred lake cleanses one sin. And Kartik Purnima is considered to be the best time to receive Bhrama’s blessings.
The experience of being there with priests doing their daily arti, with lights floating in the lake, hundreds of people worshiping standing all around the lake, the sound of bells echoing. The atmosphere is so strong that you feel powerful, inspired. it takes you into some other zone.
We went to see the aarti in the evening and sat there for quite a long time I think it was midnight when we came back. just looking at people, their devotions, it was peaceful and the perfect end of my short trip.
The highlights of the fair:
Camel beauty contest
Matka phod competition
Bride and groom competition
Hot air balloon rides
Photp Credits : Shweta Sukhani & Swati Gupta