Pushkar, a small town in Rajasthan is a backpacker and traveller heaven! Pushkar is chilled (for India!), it’s cheap, it’s spiritual, it’s easy to get around, there are plenty of places to eat in Pushkar and plenty of things to do in Pushkar however unlike many other places in India you and mainly there’s no need to feel like you need to tick lots of iconic things off a list during the day and night like in many other places in India, which is why Pushkar is one of the best places to visit in India in my opinion!
Things To Do in Pushkar
1. Pushkar Lake
Pushkar Lake sits in the middle of the town, it’s the biggest Pushkar attraction, it’s very special and one of the top things to do in Pushkar! The history of Pushkar Lake is it’s said that Lord Brahma, the Hindu God of Creation dropped a lotus from his hand and a Lake emerged in that place, because of this Pushkar is a very important place for Hindu’s and they are blessed in the Lake Pushkar which is interesting to see as you walk around.
It’s possible to walk all the way around the Lake crossing the ghats along the way. It seems tricky sometimes to know how to pass but there will be steps somewhere close by.
It’s really nice seeing the whole lake as some parts are busier than others, best of all it’s totally free to enter Pushkar lake.
SIM CARD FOR INDIA
I really recommend having a sim card in India as it makes travel in India so much easier! You may have heard that it’s hard to get a sim card in India but you can get a sim card in Delhi Airport, read this post to see how to buy a sim card in Delhi Airport or if you fly in elsewhere 3 ways to buy a sim card in India and you’ll be connected in just a few hours!
WHAT TO WEAR IN INDIA
If you are a woman, here’s what I recommend you pack and wear in India. Technically you can wear what you like in India in most places but to get fewer stares and feel more comfortable, read my post!
DON’T GET SCAMMED IN DELHI
Be sure to take your shoes off before you go down to the lake (if you don’t you’ll soon be told off by locals). I’d recommend carrying them with you so you don’t have to go back to the same place you left them. Watch out for the cow food and cow dung when walking barefoot as cows are allowed to roam around here and get fed well!
Also, make sure you have dressed appropriately with your knees and shoulders covered.
For another more things to do in Pushkar, go down to Pushkar Lake at night. It is very quiet and peaceful then. I found this was the best time to visit Pushkar Lake as I could really soak in the spiritual vibes of Pushkar.
Related Post: 7 Things To Be Aware Of When Visiting Pushkar!
2. Brahma Temple in Pushkar
Brahma is one of the most important Hindu Gods and along with Pushkar Lake, the Brahma Temple is very special to Hindu’s too in Pushkar. In fact, it’s only one of a few Brahma Temples in India and the most prominent one.
Visiting the Brahma Temple in Pushkar as a foreigner is a bit stressful I found because it’s a top tourist places in Pushkar, so take note of the below:
Firstly you need to leave your shoes outside and no big bags or cameras are allowed in, they need to be put in a locker for 10Rs outside. I was given a flower outside, I reluctantly accepted as I’m always cautious that nothing is for free but I didn’t get asked for any money and was told the flower is for the temple, not for me anyway.
I had a guy attach himself to me straight away in the Temple who wanted to show me around. I think he knew I was cautious and said he was a good person. To be fair without him I wouldn’t have known where to go in the Temple and wouldn’t have known what I was seeing. After this, he took me to the lake for a blessing.
Related Post: Around the Lake and around Brahma Temple be cautious of people scamming you! Here’s what to look out for and other things to be aware of when visiting Pushkar.
You definitely can visit the Brahma Temple without a guide so if you want to walk around on your own firmly decline their offer but it is only a small temple and by walking around on your own it will only take a few minutes.
3. Pushkar Cafes
If you’re a bit over Indian Food by the time you reach Pushkar you’ll be pleased to know that when it comes to where to eat in Pushkar, there are so many cafes and restaurants in Pushkar all serving International and Western Food and it feels acceptable to be eating this in Pushkar so make sure you fit meals in between your Pushkar sightseeing.
Not only that but fresh salads and juices are abundant in Pushkar which is just what I was craving after only a few weeks in India because I found safe salads and juices hard to find in Rajasthan. My favourite cafe was The Laughing Buddha Cafe in Pushkar!
Related Post: The Best Places to Eat in Pushkar!
In addition to this note that Pushkar is fully Vegetarian with no eggs. It is meant to be alcohol-free too but you can find alcohol in many of the western cafes in Pushkar now.
4. Pushkar Food Tour
Talking of food, Pushkar is known for its food and its street food as being some of the best in Rajasthan. To help you get a better understanding of the food in Pushkar, the best places to eat and for one of the things to do in Pushkar, I recommend taking a food walking tour in Pushkar with a local. Book it here!
5. Savitri Temple
Savitri Temple is another famous Pushkar Temple as it is dedicated to Lord Brahma’s Wife. You’ll be able to see Savitri Temple from wherever you are in Pushkar and although it looks very high, and it is, it’s possible to walk all the way to the top.
It is an amazing place for sunset in Pushkar and although it is very good with an incredible view, I didn’t like it that much because of how many monkeys are at the top!
It’s a good hike in Pushkar if walking is on your list of things to do in Pushkar, it is paved with steps from the very bottom (which is also where the cable car leaves from if you’d rather take that) all the way to the top and although the steps do get big with a steep incline towards the top it is pretty manageable.
6. Pap Mochani Temple
Pap Mochani Temple is another one of the places to visit at Pushkar and things to do in Pushkar, it’s a small-ish hill with Savitri Temple on top and an incredible view.
The base is close to the centre of Pushkar town and from the base, it is a 15-20 minute walk up along a path which has rock and stone steps but it’s easy to navigate and not too hard.
At the top is Pap Mochani Temple, if you sit by the temple or walk around it remember to take off your shoes. Alternatively, just opposite the temple is a wall you can sit on perfect to watch the sunset from.
I really like watching the sunset in Pushkar from Pap Mochani Temple as the views are awesome, it’s not too far from the town, it isn’t too busy and I’ve never seen any monkeys up there!
7. Jaipur Ghat
For one more place to watch the sunset in Pushkar and what to see in Pushkar, head to Jaipur Ghat on Pushkar Lake and you’ll watch the sun go down directly in front of you into the town.
Be warned that you will get a lot of hassle here from locals trying to sell you things or play music by you for money, they aren’t too pushy though and are generally friendly so just politely decline and they will leave you.
BOOKING TRAINS IN INDIA
India is best travelled by train because its the quickest, cheapest and best way of getting to know the country. For an EASY option of booking trains in India use 12GO to search and book trains really easily. If you’ll be in India for awhile, you can use the local booking system, it’s a bit tricker but possible, here’s my post on how to book trains in India as a tourist.
BEST ACCOMMODATION IN INDIA
I always use Booking.com to book my hotels in India and Hostelworld to book my hostels. India has a great range of accommodation with brilliant hostel chains like Moustache, Zostel and Backpacker Panda as well as homestays to luxury hotels.
GUIDED TOURS IN INDIA
Many cities in India are best seen with a guide, even if it’s just a half day tour on your first day. Cities in India are chaotic and complex and what better way to taste the food and get to know the city than with a local. I recommend Get Your Guide & Viator for the best tours in India!
I’d recommend staying until once the sun goes down and it starts to get dark as there’s usually music playing and people practising their fire twirling. It does attract a bit of an interesting crowd but it’s good to see.
Just remember if you go close to the lake to take your shoes off!
8. Thar Desert
The Thar Desert is a must-visit place in Rajasthan and if you don’t plan to visit Jaisalmer to see it, don’t worry as you can visit the Thar Desert from Pushkar on a Jeep Experience! You’ll get to see local village life in the desert and experience the sand dunes of the desert!
You will need to book a trip to the Thar Desert with a guide and to ensure you book with an operator and guide who has good reviews, I’d recommend booking online on one of these highly-rated options as one of the great things to do in Pushkar!
9. Pushkar Shopping Street
The shopping in Pushkar India is another one of the top things to do in Pushkar because it’s so good!
The market shops in Pushkar sell so much from clothes, books, crystals, CD’s, bags, scarfs, everything you could ever want and need, plus more! The people who work in them will call you to look in but they are friendly and not overly pushy at all.
The reason I think Pushkar is the best place to shop in India is that it’s easy to see all of the shops and it’s really cheap! I got a pashmina for 150Rs and another more basic scarf for 70Rs and long, baggy trousers for 300Rs. These items are so much more expensive in other places in India. Pushkar Rajasthan must be the cheapest place to shop in India!
10. Yoga and Meditation Class
Why not get in the Spiritual vibe and go to a yoga and meditation class. I found that there are 2 main places to do yoga in Pushkar and one of these also combines a lot of meditation into the class.
Related Post: Check out this post on where to do Yoga and Meditation in Pushkar!
11. Watch the Evening Aarti at the Lake
At Varah Ghat on Pushkar Lake just after sunset, an evening aarti ceremony starts. It is aimed at locals and Hindu’s so you may be the only foreigner but you can sit on the top step away from it slightly and observe.
Aside from Varah Ghat, you will also see many small aarti’s happening around the lake by locals.
12. Get an Ayurvedic Massage
There are a few places offering massages in Pushkar and from my experience it will be an average massage. But for one of the really relaxing things to do in Pushkar, I recommend you go to Deepak Ayurveda Massage Centre Pushkar who offer Abhyangam (Ayurvedic) Massages as well as Reflexology, Deep Tissue Massage and Traditional Rajasthani Massage.
Deepak’s massages are more expensive than the others you’ll see around the town but that’s because you are paying for a much higher quality service and it is totally worth it!
HELP WITH YOUR INDIA ITINERARY
I’ve spent many months travelling India in the last few years visiting over 50 places around the country, here are my recommended itinerary posts for India to help you plan your trip!
How to get to and from Pushkar?
Pushkar does NOT have a train station and Ajmer is the closest city with a train station 16km away however Ajmer is connected by train to Delhi and many other cities in Rajasthan. From Ajmer to Pushkar a taxi will cost about 400Rs and take 30-40 minutes.
There is a local bus from Ajmer to Pushkar which is very cheap and runs regularly however from Ajmer train station you’ll need to get a taxi or tricycle to Ajmer bus station.
I recommend booking trains in India in advance because they book out quickly. You can book trains online in India using 12Go Asia:
It’s possible to get a bus to and from Pushkar too and this way you’ll end in Pushkar town rather than Ajmer. Jaipur to Pushkar or Pushkar to Jaipur is a popular bus route as it takes just 3 hours.
Pushkar is not as easy to get to as a lot of the other popular places in India but I always say that the harder places are to get to, the better they are!
Best Accommodation in Pushkar
One of the best hotels in Pushkar is Inn Seventh Heaven. It’s right in the centre of town and is named perfectly because when you walk through the gap in the big door and into the courtyard you literally feel like you have stepped into heaven! It’s so beautiful and the best high-quality hotel in Pushkar!
If you’re looking for a Pushkar Resort with some luxury, Ananta Resort Pushkar is the place to go!
Check for the best hotels in Pushkar here on Booking.com. I use Booking.com for all of my bookings as I love the flexible cancellation options and the ease to extend bookings, just in case my plans do change!
If you are visiting Pushkar Camel Fair, make sure you book your accommodation early as it gets very busy and hotels in Pushkar book up fast!
To SEE Pushkar, watch my YouTube video here!
- Have a read of these posts to help you see more of Pushkar and India!
- 7 Things To Be Aware Of When Visiting Pushkar, India!
- Best Places to Eat and Drink in Pushkar!
- 10 Delhi Travel Tips to See & Enjoy Delhi as a Tourist!
- The Best Way To See Jaipur aka The Pink City of India!