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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

India : Ajmer & Pushkar - An Harmonious Blend

Rajasthan is the second largest province in the country. It is the driest part of India and contains geographical features form deserts, semi-deserts areas, hill ranges and forests. The state also boasts of rich flora and fauna.

Ajmer is beautified by the majestic Aravalli mountain ranges, this is the land of the legendary Rajput rulers whose tales of gallantry, loyalty and love have been woven into ballets and folklore. Be it arts and crafts or be it music and dance, the Rajasthani creative genius is unparalleled.

Rajasthan is the ultimate destination of most tourists as it offers glimpses into its rich heritage and friendly people.

Ajmer and Pushkar are two such cities of Rajasthan. Here the two cultures meet, temples and mosques, within a short distance of each other. The harmonious blend of Hinduism and Islam give these town a unique character.

How to reach: In terms of connectivity, these destinations are well defined by all means of transport be it air, rail or road.

AJMER

By Air - The nearest airport is Jaipur 138 kms and is well connected to Delhi, Mumbai and other major places in India

By Rail - Shatabdi Express runs between Ajmer and Delhi via Jaipur, other trains to Jodhpur, Udaipur, Agra, etc.

By Road - There are RSTC buses to and from Jaipur and regular bus services for Delhi 395 kms, Jodhpur 198 kms, Udaipur 302 kms, Mount Abu 377 kms, Ahmedabad 570 kms and Agra 162 kms.

Ajmer Map : Map Source (Ajmer)


Ajmer Fairs and Festival:

Urs Mela held every year in the seventh month of Lunar Calender. The Dargah attracts people of all sects and regions during the six-day celebration of the Urs or death anniversary of the Khwaja.

The temple of Anted Ki Mata, amid the beautiful surroundings, is the site of a fair held every year on Raksha Bandhan in August.

A Badshahi procession festival is celebrated on the day next to Holi, every year at Beawar (54 kms). People make merry and throw gulal on one another.

Shopping at Ajmer:

One can go on buying spree for various kinds of items representing Rajasthani culture and style. Silver and gold ornaments, jewelery, tie & dye textiles, hand block printed textiles, embroidered Jodhapuri shoes (Mojari) are some of the specialities available on the shelf. The ittar (perfume) is a major speciallity of Ajmer, as the town is well known for its pink roses. Ittar was popular here during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir.

TOURIST INFORMATION CENTER : AJMER

Tourist Information Center,
RTDC Hotel, Khadim, Savitri College Road, Ajmer,
Tel No. : 2772040

MONEY CHANGER CENTER : AJMER

State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur
Tel No. : 2429646

Punjab National Bank
Tel No. : 2429696

IMPORTANT TELEPHONE NOs. : AJMER

Railway Enquiry - Tel No. : 2432535
J.L.N. Hospital - Tel No. : 2625509 / 00

PUSHKAR
Pushkar lying 11 kms west of Ajmer, a small sacred town which is also a tourist attraction, because of the cattle fair one of world's the largest annually held here, it is a most sacred place for the Hindus and referred to as "Tirth Raj" or the king of all pilgrimage centers, According to the Hindu religious text, the Padam Puran, Lord Brahma, or Lord of Creation, dropped a lotus from his hand which fell on the Earth and water gushed forth from three places and one of these was Pushkar, Once Pushkar was surrounded by 500 temples and 5 palaces.

Pushkar place was constructed 400 years ago by the Maharaja of Kishangarh on the edge of the lake. A beautiful view of the 400 temples, banks, sand dunes and the magnificent Aravalli hills can be enjoyed from here.

The Man Sarovar, Bindu Sarovar, Narayan Sarovar, Pampa Sarovar and Pushkar Sarovar together constitute the "Panch Sarovar" or five sacred lakes of Hindu mythology.

It is believed that one dip in the waters of this lake on Kartik Poornima is equal to performing yagnas for several hundred years. It is a semicircular lake around which there are 52 Ghats.

The water around each ghat is supposed to have special powers. The Naga Kund is believed to give fertility, Roop Tirth gives beauty and charm, the Kapil Vyapi Kund water helps in curing leprosy, and a dip in the Mrikand Muni Kund grants the boon of wisdom. The other important ghats are the Varah Ghat which is considered very sacred, as Lord Vishnu is believed to have appeared here in the form of a boar, the Brahma and Gau Ghat

Pushkar Fair:

A bustling fair full of life and zest, it is one of the largest cattle fair in the country held every year at Pushkar on Kartik Poornima (October-November). The 12 day affair is considered to be the most colorful animal fair in the world. As the fair has a religious significance too, pilgrims and tradesmen come in thousands from far and near. Hundreds of horses, camels, cows and bulls are brought here to be sold. Camel-cart races, parades and other cultural events are organized, which are full of fun and gaiety, After an eventful day, as the sun sets down, the entire atmosphere reverberates with the ringing of bells and prayers in the temples. At night, hundreds of small oil lamps are lit and placed on green leaves and floated in the lake after the Arti Puja (prayers). This act of worship is called "deepdan", and the entire lake is illuminated.

By Air - Nearest airport is at Jaipur 145 kms which is connected to other parts of the country by Indian Airlines and Jet Airways.

By Rail - Nearest railhead is at Ajmer 11 kms which is well connected to other parts of the country.

By Road - Well connected by frequent bus services to and from Ajmer, Delhi 403 kms, Jaipur 145 kms, Udaipur 289 kms, Mumbai 1120 kms, Agra 377 kms, Chennai 1992 kms, Jodhpur 214 kms.

Pushkar Map : Map Source (Pushkar)

Shopping at Pushkar:

Shopping is a delightful experience in the Pushkar Fair. A wide range of handicrafts are displayed on the roadside stalls making shopping irresistible. A bewildering variety of souvenirs, curious and trinkets are up for sale, Beads, Bangles, embroidered shoes, clothes, shiny brass utensils, belts studded with brass, cloth covers for camels embroidered and embellished with mirrors, colorful saddies and beautifully woven blankets and camel leather goods etc., can be purchased.

TOURIST INFORMATION CENTER : PUSHKAR

Tourist Office, Hotel Sarovar, Pushkar, Tel. No. : 2772040

MONEY CHANGER CENTER : PUSHKAR

State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur
Tel No. : 2429646

Punjab National Bank
Tel No. : 2772027

IMPORTANT TEL NOs. : PUSHKAR

1. Police Control Room (Tel No. : 2772046)
2. Government Hospital (Tel No. : 2772029)
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