When you’re visiting Rajasthan, do remember to stop by one of its most famed destinations — Pushkar. It is a town layered with culture, be it the deep mythological significance, modern-day hippie charm, amazing nearby sights for day tours and plenty of great food to fuel your adventures. This isn’t a town for simply sightseeing though; it’s all about getting out there and doing things, or completely unwind and contemplate.
As you tick off the best things to do in Pushkar one by one, you’ll realise just how much the town grows on you. Whether it be walking around the lakefront or having a quiet moment in the sanctum of a temple, whether you’re climbing up a hill or sipping on a chilled beverage overlooking town views, every activity is more memorable than the next. With that, here’s our list of top things to do in Pushkar so that you can hit the ground running and make the most of your stay.
Walk along the edges around the sacred Pushkar Lake, especially during the evenings when the weather is pleasant and a beautiful sunset the natural occurrence. Along the way, you’ll see plenty of quintessential Pushkar sights like priests offering prayers, temple bells ringing and birds happily floating by. You’ll need to be barefoot for this activity, as is a local custom. Once you’re done, make your way to one of the lakeside cafés for a coffee or quick bite at dusk, with the glistening waters never leaving your line of vision. Truly one of the nicest things to do in Pushkar.
There are over five-hundred temples for you to choose from, which is why this is the most popular activity of Pushkar sightseeing. The main ones include the Brahma Temple, a glowing example of traditional Hindu architecture. The others are all great in their way, be it the Varaha Temple, Raghunath Temple, Apteshwar Temple or Rangji Temple. Most of these places of worship were built during the medieval era, giving you a glimpse into life back then, just as much as leaving you with an uplifted spirit.
You might have seen many temples in the town already, but Savitri temple that sits atop Ratnagiri hill is a visit to make for multiple reasons. You’ll get good exercise climbing up the 650 steps to the temple, but if you do it early in the morning the weather is pleasant, and the sunrise from the top is truly special. Alternatively, there’s a cable car that can take you up as well. Keep those phones or cameras charged and capture the ideal panorama.
If you want the best view of Pushkar, this is one activity not to miss — a hot air balloon ride. Though you’ll have to plan your trip around the annual fair. That’s a small inconvenience when you’re floating in the sky, looking down at the earth below, surrounded by the gentle hues of sunrise. This requires planning, so if you’re interested, do look to make your bookings early.
This ancient city just an hour’s drive away is a big part of Pushkar sightseeing. The town is rich with architectural gems, from temples to palaces. And since it is the birthplace of Meera Bai, there’s a museum here chronicling her life and times that’s an absolute must for history buffs. Another popular activity that visitors enjoy here is the Aarti or prayer ceremony at Charbhuja temple that’s held in the early dawn hours. It’s worth waiting up early for, as these aren’t common experiences you can have on other holidays.
It’s no surprise that camel rides are one of the big things to do in Pushkar, as the animals are native to the dunes around the city. It’s not just the novelty of the ride, it’s also talking to the local camel men, peering into the desert lifestyle and witnessing the colours of the desert in the best way you can.
One of the most fun things to do in Pushkar is to visit its different markets, like Sarafa Bazaar, Kedalganj Bazaar and Bada Bazaar. All of them are super colourful and full of little shops that are stocked to the max with an eclectic mix of items. Rajasthani handicrafts are well-known for their kitsch style and handmade feel, be it clothing, leather goods, trinkets and a whole lot more. Feel free to bargain to the best of your ability, and you can walk away hands full and pockets not that empty!
Join thousands of travellers in making a Pushkar visit around the time of the famed cattle and culture media. While animal trade might have been the primary objective of this event, nowadays it is a riveting display of all things Rajasthan, from performances to competitions to delicious food. This is the authentic experience you’ve been waiting for.
With so many exciting activities to do during your time in Pushkar, a memorable holiday is a given. Now all you need to make it better is a great deal on travel and stay, which you can find at SOTC.