Pushkar Camel Fair is a perfect time to visit Pushkar, even though at that time it is jam packed with travelers, live stock traders and pilgrims, because that is when this sleepy Rajasthani town comes alive and becomes much more than a quiet temple town famous amongst backpackers.
While there are plethora of activities at Pushkar Mela and everyone has their favorites, here are 5 things I believe you should do at Pushkar Camel Fair, based on my experience of having attended this wonderful fair, four times till now (heading there soon for the fifth time).
Watch the sunset at camel ground: As cliché as it sounds, there is something magical about sunset at Pushkar, and it is must watch for everyone, irrespective of whether you are a photography enthusiast or not. In fact there are even machans at the camel ground to help you watch the sunset from a vantage point.
In case you are a photography enthusiast, stick around after the sunset and pitch your tripods for some lovely long exposures.
Participate in the jhanki (parade): In a bid to promote tourism during Pushkar Camel Fair and provide activity for tourists, Rajasthan Tourism, along with locals organizes a jhanki, which passes through the main bazaar of Pushkar and finally culminates at the fair ground. While it is extremely crowded during the jhanki in the narrow streets of Pushkar, it is a wonderful and lively experience, that locals and travelers alike enjoy and for photographer, it is perfect opportunity for street photography.
Visit the only Brahma Temple in the World: Pushkar has the only Brahma Temple in the world and although you have to leave your shoes, camera and even mobile phone outside (there are cloakrooms at parsad shops) or better yet, at your hotel. It is certainly worth visiting, since the primary religious significance of Pushkar is due to this Temple.
Try out international cuisines: Pushkar has numerous restaurants and cafes serving delicious vegetarian cuisines from around the world (non-veg food is not allowed in this holy town), especially the middle-east, thanks to the huge bagpacking crowd it attracts. Not only is the food delicious and clean, it isn’t all that expensive either, making it a perfect place for foodies. (See My favorite places to eat in Pushkar for restaurant recommendation)
Watch the Circus and Maut ka Kuan (Death Pit): While Circus and Maut ka Kuan has all but disappeared from large cities and metros, however at fairs like these; few remaining hardy performers attempt to eke out a living by entertaining the crowd for a meager sum and let you enjoy things, you might have seen when you were a kid. In my view, these are a must see for all visitors to Pushkar Camel Fair, especially photographers equipped with fast primes :).
Maut Ka Kuan
Bonus Tip for the Rich, Hot Air Balloon Ride: If you are rich enough to spend US$ 250 per person for a 60 minute balloon safari across Pushkar, then you would be happy to know that Sky Waltz conducts regular flights during the Pushkar Camel Fair, giving you a bird’s eye view of the fair and perfect opportunity for aerial photography.
These were the 5 (6 if you are rich) things I feel you should do while visiting Pushkar Camel fair, in case you have any tips you would like to share with me or any queries about Pushkar Camel Fair, please leave a comment below.