around Pushkar

I don’t think you could throw a rock in Pushkar and not hit a temple.  The seem to be everywhere.  I saw the domes of this temple (above) and worked my way through the city streets occasionally looking through the temples, hotels and apartments to the beautiful lake.

During and after my visit with the monkeys and my walk around Lake Pushkar, I did some exploring around town.  There are pilgrims from all over India who come to Pushkar as well as travellers from all over the world.  I met Americans, Brits, Australians (of course), Israelis, Spaniards, Germans, and even some Dutch.  The large population of western expats and Indian travellers gave the place a groovy international feel.  Of course, being a Hindu meditation and relaxation point, the mood of the place was very sanguine.  For the first time since I arrived in India, I didn’t feel “crowded.”  Most of the Indians seemed to be busy bathing in the lake, shopping, or eating.  The expats seemed to be doing a mix of touring, eating, smoking hashish, drinking, and just all around relaxing.  There were few beggars and most of the people just left you alone.  What Indians there were who interacted with the western travellers, most were selling something providing a service.  Aside from the initial assault of hotel hawks upon arrival, I found Pushkar to be a very relaxing and tranquil place.

I took the photo above at one of the many vendor stands that I encountered through town.  I am always taken aback when I see a swastika but then I remember that it’s a holy sign here, not a Nazi sign.  Below, some Indian women are buying fruit; I tried to shoot the photo on the sly so that they would look natural – it looks like the husband (far right of the photo) caught on to my photography.

The was a wonderful variety and assortment of food in Pushkar - so long as you could eat vegetarian.  There was no meat, no meat at all, sold in the town.  I found that I did ok, until I came home and realized that I had dropped 10 pounds in two weeks…

Pushkar is full of hotels, hostels, and guest houses.  I met many “budget” travellers that were touring India surviving on 5 quid a day (about $10 US).  This included their transportation, room, food, and  hashish.  It seemed that the low-cost of pot in Pushkar and other parts of India made drinking (beer or whisky) uneconomical.  I was glad that I had a stronger budged and could bypass the pot smoking altogether – LOL.

I caught this pious Hindu departing his hotel heading down to a bathing Ghat where he could revitalize his health in the “healing waters” of the lake.

It’s a dog’s life in Pushkar… cows aren’t the only 4 legged critters in town…

Where to begin with this guy?  We have here a “dole” pensioner from the UK.  This guy, I’m sure had psychophrenia.  Yeah, he was nuts.  I guess his government check goes a lot farther in India so he immigrated here and has become a world class pain in the ass.  He was well known in town, always hollering at the locals.  The Indian children harassed him and occasionally he would take his lazy rear end off of his “throne” cart and chase the kids with a stick.  The man in red is his “personal valet.”  I was really embarrassed for western society that we sent this fool as our “ambassador.”

Many vendors were selling water color paints.  I was half tempted to buy a small kit of the colors & a paint brush and try some post cards, but hey, I can’t even draw a stick figure.  I was content to taking photos of the beautiful colors.

A few more of the temples.  I passed so many in India that, just like the Cathedrals in Europe, they all start to blend together and I stopped even taking notes of their names…

This one though, did remind me of a temple in Singapore.  I’ll have to post photos of that one later…

Towards the end of the day, I started heading to my favorite restaurant for dinner.  I wanted to eat before the sunset circus that I knew would happen again.  Just as I came around the corner, I ran into this taxi service.  You just never know what you’ll run into in India…


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Pushkar Lake

I walked around to the south side of the lake and from here you can see the steps where everyone watches the sunset (tan steps in middle right of photo between two white buildings and below the tree line).  There are 52 bathing Ghats surrounding the lake that the pious Hindus dip into.  They believe that the water will cure skin ailments and has restorative powers to health.

Also known as Pushkar Sarovar, the lake is mentioned as a tourist site as early as 2,400 years ago when it was inscribed on coins of the period.  The number of travellers to the lake was also mentioned by Chinese traveller Fa Xian in the 5th Century AD.  In the 9th Century AD, a Rajput King, Nahar Rao Parkikar drove a white boar he was hunting to the edge of the lake.  There he put his hand into the water and a skin ailment that he was suffering from vanished.  He had the lake restored and it has continued to draw pious pilgrims in the centuries following.

The photo below is shot from the same location as the top photo but towards the left (northwest).  It is on the north and western shores of the lake that have the greatest concentration of Ghats.  You can also see the town of Pushkar, most of the “downtown” area is in the background of this photo.

 

Here is another shot looking towards the northwest.  This photo was taken from the southeast short of the lake near the pedestrian causeway.

In addition to the bathing Ghats, there are dozens of temples.  I visited a few of them and will post their photos later.  I shot this tall white spired temple on the east shore of the lake against the hills in the afternoon sun.


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Stories, posts, reports, photos, videos and all other content on this site is copyright protected © and is the property of Scott Traveler unless otherwise indicated, all rights reserved. Content on this site may not be reproduced without permission from Scott Traveler. My contact information can be found on the home page.

Back to home page: http://scotttraveler.com