Cradled amongst the barren hills, Ajmer in indeed a green oasis with an interesting past. The city was named after its founder, Raja Ajai Pal Chauhan, who founded it in the 7th century. Since then, Chauhans reigned over Ajmer till Prithviraj Chauhan lost the city to Mohammed Ghauri. Nonetheless, the culture and traditions of the city were strongly influenced by its rulers and one can see the indelible imprint of various cultures on the city. Just like old days, Ajmer continues to be a popular pilgrimage centre for both Hindus and Muslims. Dargah Sharief, the tomb of the Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti, is equally revered by both the communities and Urs fair attracts thousands and lakhs of pilgrims every year.
Ajmer has hot summers and cool
winters. The maximum temperature in summer (from April to June) is
around 45ºC. In winters (from November to February), days are sunny
and pleasant but nights are bit cooler.
HOW TO REACH
By Air: The nearest airport to Ajmer is
situated in Jaipur.
By Train: You can find a train to Ajmer
from all the major cities of India. From Delhi, you can catch
Shatabdi Express, The Pink City Express and Chetak Express.
By Road: Ajmer is well connected by the
network of roads to Delhi, Agra and all the major cities of
WHERE TO EAT
Ajmer has a range of multi-cuisine
restaurants and hotels that offer an assorted mixture of traditional
Indian and Mughlai food and fast food. There is no specific cuisine of
Ajmer but Rajasthani delicacies with their spicy, tangy flavor can be
found in abundance.
FAIRS AND FESTIVALS
Fair is held during the first six days of Rajab (seventh month of
the Islamic calendar) on the death anniversary of Sufi saint Khwaja
Moin-ud-din Chishti, whose remains lie buried and are held in held in
great reverence by devotees of all communities in 'Dargah Sharif' in
Ajmer. Khwaja had come from Persia and established Chishtia order of
'fakirs' in India.
Pushkar Fair is held in the
month of Kartik that usually falls in October or November at Pushkar,
which is 11 kms away from Ajmer, Rajasthan. One of the most sought-after
fair in Rajasthan, a lot of tourists come to Pushkar Fair on pilgrimage
as well as to see the display of a mystifying array of items. With the
picturesque sand dunes as its backdrop, the camel fair and camel, horse
and donkey races are the featured events of the fair. People indulge
themselves in body tattooing as the villagers from distant places come
here to trade their wares.
At Ajmer, one can look for items
which have Rajasthani fervor and which echo the old-world mood of the
area. The splendid silver jewellery with traditional old designs is the
main tourist craze. The other things to be purchased are antiques,
curios, mesmerizing contemporary gold and silver jewellery, colorful
tie-and-dye sarees and fabrics, and embroidered 'jutis'. There is also a
beautiful display of local colorful handicrafts at the annual Urs fair.
WHAT TO WEAR
In summers, light cotton clothes are
advisable while you will need light woolen clothes in winter.