Discover the Spiritual and Cultural Heart of Punjab: A Guide to Amritsar
Amritsar, located in the northwestern Indian state of Punjab, is a city with a rich history and cultural heritage. It is also the spiritual and cultural center of the Sikh religion, and home to the Harmandir Sahib, also known as the Golden Temple.
Golden Temple – The Harmandir Sahib, commonly known as the Golden Temple, is the most popular tourist attraction in Amritsar. The temple is a beautiful golden structure that sits in the center of a large holy pool. It is the holiest shrine for the Sikh religion and attracts millions of visitors every year.
Jallianwala Bagh – This memorial is a reminder of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre. The garden contains a memorial, a museum, and a wall with bullet marks from the tragedy.
Wagah Border – The Wagah Border is a border crossing between India and Pakistan, which is famous for its daily flag-lowering ceremony. The ceremony is a display of the strength and pride of the two nations, and is a popular tourist attraction.
Durgiana Temple – This temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Durga, and is a beautiful structure with intricate carvings and artwork.
Partition Museum – The Partition Museum is located in the city center and is a tribute to the millions of people who were affected by the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947.
History of Golden Temple
The Golden Temple, also known as Sri Harmandir Sahib or Darbar Sahib, is the holiest Gurdwara and the most iconic landmark of Sikhism. Located in the city of Amritsar in the Indian state of Punjab, it attracts millions of pilgrims and tourists every year.
The foundation of the Golden Temple was laid in 1588 by the fifth Sikh Guru, Guru Arjan Dev, who designed it as a central place of worship and unity for the Sikh community. The construction of the temple was a massive undertaking that involved the contributions of thousands of Sikh devotees from all over India, who helped in the excavation of the holy tank (Amrit Sarovar) and the laying of the foundation stone.
The temple was completed in 1601, and it was immediately established as a place of spiritual and cultural significance. The temple was built at the center of a large sarovar (holy tank), which was fed by the Ravi River. The sarovar was designed to be the focus of the temple, and its calm and serene waters were believed to have healing properties.
Over the years, the Golden Temple became the spiritual and cultural hub of the Sikh community. It was a place of worship, where Sikhs could come together to pray and celebrate their faith. It was also a place of education, where the Sikh scriptures (Guru Granth Sahib) were taught and studied. The temple was also a place of community service, where free meals (langar) were provided to all visitors, regardless of their caste, creed or religion
Amritsar is famous for its delicious Punjabi cuisine, which is a blend of Indian and Pakistani flavors. Some of the most popular dishes in Amritsar include:
Amritsari Kulcha – This is a type of stuffed bread that is usually served with chana masala (chickpea curry) and is a popular breakfast dish in Amritsar.
Tandoori Chicken – This is a marinated chicken dish that is cooked in a tandoor (clay oven) and is one of the most popular dishes in the city.
Lassi – This is a refreshing yogurt drink that is often served with breakfast or lunch.
Makki di roti and sarson ka saag – This is a traditional Punjabi dish made with cornbread and mustard greens. It is a popular winter dish in Amritsar.
Amritsar is well-connected to other parts of India by road, rail, and air. The city has its own airport, which has regular flights to major cities in India and some international destinations.
The city also has a well-connected railway station, with trains to major cities in India such as Delhi, Mumbai, and Kolkata.
Local transport options in Amritsar include buses, taxis, and auto-rickshaws. The city has a good network of local buses that are cheap and convenient. Taxis and auto-rickshaws are also available for hire, but it is advisable to negotiate the fare before starting the journey.