There’s no doubt Pushkar was on the list to visit in India, the most relaxed city in the Rajasthan state. I was looking for a place to get away from the hustle and bustle, and Pushkar seems to be the right choice. Of course, India has so many beautiful places to visit, but with our little time impossible to see them all.
Thus, after spending two nights in Jaipur, we move on to this sleepy town. We have two weeks itinerary, and I know this will be dragging bags daily in and out of the car. And thanks to our driver Hamal who patiently with us in good and bad times. All the long rides we have since we started on this trip from Delhi.
The chaos I’ve seen in India was unbelievable: the traffic and the endless car horns you hear everywhere. I’m fortunate to have my headphones with me, or else I probably get headaches by the end of the day. It’s a land of extreme! I have visited so many countries in Asia, but nowhere to compare with India. I’m pleased we’re not the one behind the wheel, and we made the right decision to hire a car with a driver through Namaste India Tour.
Where To Stay In Pushkar
There is plenty of accommodation to choose from budget guesthouses and comfortable hotels. Some of it has a lake view while others provide tents. But that is not startling, Pushkar is a city close to Thar desert most hotels foresee with glamping tents. I’m stunned when I saw inside that these were like a regular hotel room. Besides, it gives a bit of a desert feeling.
We were residing at Resort Heli Pushkar, a newly built hotel beyond the center. But just a short walk to the famous sacred lake and other sights, Pushkar is pretty small, everything is walking distance.
The resort has friendly staff, one thing I like here, they treat foreign guests as a regular Indian tourist. In comparison to other hotels we had in India, the personnel urges a tip every time they help us.
It’s a perfect place to stay in Pushkar. The quiet and beautiful environment it’s so relaxing. There’s a swimming pool on the premises overlooking the mountain. Additionally, free internet works pretty well in the whole area. The breakfast included in the room rates. I recommend trying their glamping tents to experience the coziness.
The Best Time To Visit Pushkar
Any time of the year but ideally during the camel fair in November. It gets busy at this time of the year, but that’s an exception, also to experience the cultural event.
The best months to visit Pushkar are November, December, January, and February, with pleasant weather to explore the city. The temperature drops down around 20 to 26 degrees, and almost no rain falls during these months.
In April, May, and June, it can get scorching with temperatures above 40 degrees. The most rain falls in July and August.
The Holy City Of Rajasthan
The city’s religious importance attracts a large number of pilgrims. Many temples in Pushkar dedicated to Brahma, a Hinduism god. For other reasons, Pushkar Lake is a vital devotee place for Hindus to purify themselves from their sins bathe in the lake.
And for the non-Hindu visitors, the yoga and meditation retreat in Pushkar is one of the main reasons, which they are known for it.
On top of that, the town draws all kinds of visitors, mainly the backpackers. The serene and relaxed vibe fetches them to Pushkar. In eight cities we have visited on this trip, this was the only place where I feel comfortable walking it feels like we’re not in India.
This place genuinely reminds me of Port Barton Philippines and Caye Caulker Belize. A town where I could linger around by just doing nothing. But I’m just a horrible wayfarer, wants to see a lot in a short time; therefore, always going on a journey with a cram plan.
Meandering Through The Town Center.
It’s bizarre to walk around what a big difference comparing to Agra and other cities we have visited in India. The streets have nicely organized that lead off each other to markets and shops.
Of course, shopping is abundant where you find a blend of handloom and various kinds of stuff—so relaxing without being annoyed by hawkers.
Pushkar’s accuracy is different than other places we have been on this trip. The engaging culture is enough to attract your attention, the only city we haven’t encounter any intrusive sellers. You can browse and swap at leisure between stalls, and the sellers just let you alone.
I’m grateful we’re able to visit this place despite the crammed planning we had. It feels good to get away from the crowds for a while, even only for one day.
The Sacred Lake
Pushkar Lake meant to be the most important pilgrimage site of pilgrims who visit the lake for performing their rituals and customs. The lake is one of the highlights in Pushkar, an only sacred lake in the Rajasthan State.
Our walk took us to this area, and it turns out to be an awful experience. Given the religious significance of the place, you have to walk around barefoot.
I have no problem with walking between the trash as long as I’m wearing shoes or slippers. But barefoot? Hmm, it’s easy to say wash your feet on the lake afterward, but it’s forbidden.
It takes me for a while before removing my footwear. There are signs everywhere (no shoes). But nobody was complaining until we meet an older man. The first thing he looks at me is my feet pointed out to walk barefoot.
Truthfully, walking makes so uncomfortable, pigeon, dog, and cow poop everywhere. In India, it’s customary that cows are roaming around. It’s a holy beast for Indian people, just like a pet in the house.
But that’s quite a big coddle to keep in the house – the street is their home. And sometimes they cause traffic and accidents. However, the congestion in Pushkar is not bad than elsewhere more cows in town than vehicles.
Unexpected occurrence and never thought of a scam can happen, not something I would experience again. We never intimidated during our walk at the market. But at the lake the conman seeking for foreign visitors to earn his money.
We have a relaxing walk by the lake – a man approached me with flower petals, and I accepted. I have no idea where the whole thing goes, as I’ve seen the local people doing the same thing.
He starts with his spiritual level, asks so many questions where you from, and what is your country’s currency and how many families you have, and donation amount blah, blah, etc.
I was dazzled answered all of his questions. It took me a while to realize that the whole thing was money extortion. I draw up and walk away, and he was so furious.
I never have seen someone so mad and shouting with threatening behavior, what an aggressive man, just because he didn’t get money from us.
To not ruin your walk around the lake never accepts anything. These men were so friendly and irresistible. A simple NO and walk away, it’s enough to convince them that you’re not interested.
Like any place, plenty of shopping opportunities in Pushkar. Here you can take a look without being annoyed. In the long shopping street, you will find everything from clothing, drugstores, or a local souvenir.
It’s enjoyable to shop in Pushkar; you can touch and try things without feeling obligated. It’s not like in other places, even you just passing through, they pull you off inside their shops.
And I have weakness in jewelry that glitters, India was the place for it. I wanted to buy this bling from the beginning when we were in Delhi, but I didn’t get the chance. I don’t like the way the vendors treat you. You can’t even touch and tried because they push the items to your face, and I don’t have the patience with obtrusive people.
Here I got my opportunity to purchase these beautiful bracelets. However, bargaining is a good practice overall as the foreign tourists never get the present rate as the local Indian.
Dine At One Of The Rooftop Restaurants
Many of the restaurants in Pushkar has a rooftop with Lakeview. Therefore, you must lift-up your head sometimes while looking for the roof terrace.
Don’t be surprised if you can’t find meat and alcohol on the menu. As a sacred place, Pushkar is 100% vegetarian. Many people in India are strictly vegetarian for religious reasons, but meat is still available on the menu to serve in rice and curries.
In Pushkar, you will not see meat at all on the menu. I am not entirely vegetarian; I am, in fact, a difficult person when it comes to food, that is my problem sometimes when traveling. But I found the food in Pushkar was the best in India. Lots of restaurants compiled with western menus.
About alcohol, you may never see the beer on the menu list, but as for foreign visitors mumbling to the server, he understands you. It seems they’re not allowed to sell alcohol on public, so it never stated on the card or display. Sometimes they’ll ask you themselves. Imagine what the backpackers would do without alcohol.
Don’t Miss These Out Below
- Camel Ride Pushkar lies in a desert province of Rajasthan known for its annual Camel Fair. Therefore a camel ride is another fun thing to do. Experience the peace and serenity where you only hear the birds chirping. Try to get on a camel ride in the afternoon to see the sunset.
- The Brahma Temple Pushkar is known for many things, include temples. Many of these are old ones and destroyed. The Brahma temple is one of very few existing dedicated to God Brahma. According to the myths, Brahma is the god of the creation of this earth, and the four heads symbolize his presence everywhere. This remarkable building located in the center of Pushkar. A pleasant place to observe believers making their prayers.
- Savitri Temple The temple sits on the mountain. It takes an effort to get there by walking, which is almost an hour to go up. However, to make things more accessible, there’s a cable car going up and down for 120 rupees. The temple itself is not worth in terms of architecture—but the spectacular view over Pushkar is excellent. The best spot to see a sunset.