Programme and venues
As part of the great gathering, an official programme of events is arranged by Rajasthan Tourism and Pushkar Mela Vikas Samiti. People arrive from all over Rajasthan to make the pilgrimage, visit the temples and attend the fair; it's the year's biggest festival for surrounding rural communities, and everyone enjoys the fun. More and more people arrive each day. The fair is busiest during the last three days.
MELA GROUND Most official events take place at the Mela Ground, a large stadium. There are races, traditional rural sports, turban and moustache competitions and displays during the day, and cultural programmes and concerts each evening. There's always plenty going on.
EXHIBITION GROUND Agricultural events usually take place at the nearby Cattle Exhibition Ground (just across from the Mela Ground). This is an important part of the mela, and local farmers take a keen interest.
ADVENTURE ACTIVITIES There are Hot Air Balloon flights daily at 06.30am and 16.30pm, as well as adventure activities such as paragliding in the Adventure Zone.
SHILP GRAM Rajasthan Tourism run a crafts bazaar.
AROUND THE MELA GROUND you will find the fairground and bazaars, a sea of colour with street vendors and stalls selling chaas, nimbu pani, paan, ice creams, household articles, agricultural implements, jewellery, devotional items and festival decorations. Men gather at chai (tea) stalls which spring up along the roads.
For authentic camel souvenirs, don't miss a visit to Camel Charisma. At their stand you can find camel dung paper and notebooks, camel wool shawls and other products made by the people of the Raika and Rabari communities who have traded their camels at Pushkar mela for centuries. This year Camel Charisma are launching camel cheeses and cheesecakes from the Kumbhalgarh Camel Dairy near Ranakpur (all made with camel milk, of course!). See more about Camel Charisma >
SAROVAR As Kartik Purnima is an important religious festival, the programme includes spiritual events around the Sarovar (sacred lake) and ghats at the heart of the town; Deep Dan is celebrated with candle lanterns floated on the lake and there are spiritual walks, evening Maha Aarthi ceremonies and Vedic chants, classical music performances and bhajans (hymns).
TEMPLES Temples such as the atmospheric Old Rangji Temple in the town are the venue for some folk and classical dance performances.
CONCERTS Concerts featuring leading fusion bands, including Advaita and Prem Joshua, and performances by some of Rajasthan's finest folk musicians will take place alongside the mela.
The official Programme of Events for 2016, published by Rajasthan Tourism, will be available throughout the period of the fair, either at your accommodation or at the fair. There can be changes to events and timings, so be sure to obtain the latest full programme details on arrival.