Padharo Mhare Desh ... Welcome to Rajasthan !
This time Rajasthan was on our itinerary and we planned to visit Ajmer and Pushkar. Ajmer is well known as city of shrines. Thousands of tourists flock every year to visit Ajmer-e-sharief dargah. Adjoining is the famous holy city of Pushkar, well known for the only temple in India dedicated to Lord Brahma.
Day 1 -
We chose the rail journey, booked New Delhi Ajmer shatabdi and hopped for an exciting trip. The journey was quite eventful. As always we were late and finally had to ask our driver to overspeed so that we could catch the train. It was nothing less than a roller coaster ride, zig zag trails, barging the red lights finally we reached the station on time - "We sat and the train started!"
Reached Ajmer at around 2PM. Blistering sun right over our heads, we headed towards the IRCTC restaurant - Cafe Delight, for grabbing a quick lunch. We had booked our resort - The gateway resort by Taj, which is in middle of both Pushkar and Ajmer. In interest of time, we planned to visit the dargah prior checking into our hotels. We submitted our luggage at the cloak room (Rs 16 per package)and left for the dargah. Do ensure to lock your luggage else it wont be accepted by the cloak room authorities. There are ample of auto rickshaws that can take you to the shrine. You definitely need to bargain well, as they can easily sweep some handsome amount. The autos will leave you at a distance of some 500mtrs close to the main gate of the shrine, post which one needs to walk. One can take flowers, chadar and some sweets to offer at the shrine. You can leave your shoes at the same shop and proceed. It would take approx 1 hour for you to visit this place. Later on our way to the resort we captured some glimpses of the Ana sagar lake.
1. Since Amjer sharief dargah is always crowded, do not wear any expensive ornaments as there are high chances of theft.
2. Beware of pickpockets at all the times until you are back at your base location. You will be followed by lots of beggars, ignore them and keep moving forward.
3. Remember to cover you head always. This is a must for both men and women. One can wear western clothes as well, however head needs to be covered all the time while you are at dargah.
4. Parking is a major issue, hence do not take your own vehicles there, rather commute in an auto.
5. Do not come under the influence of any local guys wearing white kurtas who would offer a short route to reach the main place. They would rather take you to their head and one ends up donating thousands of rupees even if you wish to or not.
6. Luggage, camera, DSLR etc are not allowed inside, hence prefer visiting empty handed.
7. In case of any emergency feel free to contact the cops immediately.
8. Dargah is closed in the noon from 3-4PM for cleaning purpose.