The first thing that comes into our mind when we think of Pushkar is the Camel fair. And then, men with big moustaches, ghats and sandy, arid desserts. Which pretty much sums up the attractions of the town but, visiting Pushkar and living these very things— is a different experience altogether.
Pushkar— a town in the Ajmer District of Rajasthan, is known country wide for the Pushkar Camel Fair celebrations and is a major pilgrim site in India where people flock to, every year, to offer their prayers in the many temples that the town holds.
Part of the Thar, lined with Aravalli on one side, Pushkar which means blue lotus in Sanskrit, is a town, painted in blue, wears a necklace of temples around its lake and the colours give it a certain vivacity that holds the attention of the visitors right from their first foot in the place. For us Pushkar was a break through point. This is where most of our participants made a transition from shooting in Auto mode to Manual mode which, albeit difficult, was a transformation that gave their images a definite depth.
The environment of Pushkar made it cracking into the culture even more difficult. The people were far more reserved in this part of the country than we had ever experienced. Most of the people wanted money for getting their pictures taken and out of all of them, the kids of Pushkar were the ones who managed to steal our hearts.
The tour was physically challenging for us too since we were all waking up at wee hours, dragging our feet through miles and miles of sand and retiring completely exhausted by the end of the day. Only to wake up and repeat the same. Even then, we all returned with some amazing shots. The best assets of the trip were invariably the camels and their traders. We also got to practice silhouttes, night photography and candids.
The food of Pushkar deserves a special mention. We binged to our hearts extent on kachodis, woke up to aloo parathas and ended our meals with the best rabdis and malpuas that India produces.
Words by Mohana Ganguly– Content Writer at GoodShotz who day dreams about her next trip when she isn’t penning down her thoughts.