A unique confluence of music and divinity brings travellers from around the world to The Shree Cement Scared, Pushkar festival each year. As dates for this year’s edition are released, we revisit the festival scene of 2017 year to find out why this may be the next big thing on your travel checklist. By Avinash Verma
On a sublime afternoon, I arrive in Pushkar to the immediate realisation that this may just be the most underrated places in the country. Fifty-two ghats adorn this historical town as modernity and tradition intermingle in a bid to catch up to the contemporary times.
As the sun sets in the horizon, the atmosphere takes on a euphonious turn. At once, The Sacred, Pushkar Festival is in full swing, and popular musicians and ensembles such as Arushi Asgaonkar, World Ethnic Music Ensemble, Bhanwari Devi, The 3G of Percussion, Kavita Seth take the stage with their mesmerising performances.
While in Pushkar, travelling to the surrounding areas connects you further to the festival and enlightens you deeply about the culture and heritage that the festival is set in. Enjoy the performances in the evening, and the following morning, tour the city of Ajmer with quick stops at the Taragarh Dargah and the ruins of the Prithviraj Chauhan fort with an expert guide provided by the festival organisers. Here, you can be educated about the history of the town over a meal fit for royals at a popular restaurant advised by the event organisers.
Come back to join the festival in the evening and appreciate the enigma of having the country’s most renowned musicians perform. As the festival comes to a close, you can roam the adjacent market, buy locally-made leather and handloom products from small-scale businessmen, or just sit idle by the Jaipur Ghat and allow yourself to be at one with your thoughts.
This year, the festival takes place on October 13 and 14. For more information, Click Here.
TOP FIVE THINGS TO DO IN PUSHKAR
· Since it is a holy city of temples and ghats, visiting both is recommended. The main attraction is the Brahma Ji Temple along with temples of Gayatri Mata and Savitri Mata.
· The Ghats are what make up a major part of Pushkar Ji. A stroll around the Sarovar during the evening aarti, at dawn or dusk is always a bliss.
· Famous for its infusion of crafts from all over Rajasthan, shopping at the main market for various products of leather, handicrafts, furniture and antiquities is one thing you shouldn’t miss out.
· The place is a hit among foreigners, hence trying out foods and drinks from around the world- Italian, French, Israeli, Cantonese and Rajasthani to name a few, is always fun. Also, everything out there is pure veg, so it’s a big plus for all you vegetarians out there. [Specifically *Recommended- La Pizzeria and Sunset Cafe]
· A nice camel cart safari is something no one should miss out. It will take you through the rustic forms of life settled around village peripherals of Pushkar.