Many individuals visit religious sites in search of solutions to questions that make life meaningful to them. Some people find temples, dargahs, cathedrals, and monasteries appealing because of their inner serenity. The Golden Temple in Amritsar, also known as the Harmandir Sahib (“The House of God”), was one of the best highlights of India. It’s a stunning site in the northwest state of Punjab, close to the Pakistani border, and the ideal spot to learn more about Sikhism.
Darbar Sahib’s exact meaning is “Abode of God,” and this Sikh shrine is open every day.
Surprisingly, Amritsar’s Golden Temple attracts a comparable amount of visitors as the Taj Mahal. Pilgrims from all over the world come to pay their respects, and tourists get captivated by the temple’s beauty, mirrored in the water pool.
A Brief Recap
The establishment of Amritsar city took place in 1577 by the fourth Sikh Guru, Guru Ram Das. Amritsar, “pool of the nectar of immortality,” is the name given to the artificial pool of water surrounding the Golden Temple today. The city sprang up around this pool, and the sixth Guru, Guru Arjan, constructed the temple. Construction began in 1581, and the temple took eight years to complete.
Guru Arjan put the Adi Granth within the temple after the completion of construction. This is Sikhism’s holy scripture, and Sikhs see it as the everlasting living guru, which is why the temple is so dear to them. The Golden Temple in Amritsar is a gurdwara, which means “gateway to the guru” in Punjabi. People of various religions and countries are welcome, as it is the primary site of worship for Sikhs.
The Temple’s Entrance
The travellers begin their trek to invoke God’s blessings with folded hands and a veiled head. There is generally a long line to enter the temple, but the volunteers and staff handle it admirably.
The masterpiece has Indo-Islamic architecture and white marble floors. The temple is even more beautiful on the inside, with hanging chandeliers aiming to brighten our lives to the fullest.
Best Time to Visit:
- The gurudwara and its surroundings exude tranquillity and happiness; every minute is a pleasant experience.
- The delightful winters of Amritsar are suitable for a holiday between November and March. It is prudent to have warm clothing because the cold weather might be hazardous to your health if you do not layer appropriately.
- However, the early morning time frame of the Palki procession has its beauty. During this time, the usage of palki takes place for carrying the Granth Sahib, and devotees accompany the procession while chanting Gurbani.
- Visiting Hours: The Harmindar Sahib is open daily to worshipers from 4 a.m. to 11 p.m.
The Way to the Golden Temple
- By Air: Fly to Amritsar Airport (Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport), which is only 13 kilometres from the Golden Temple.
- By Train line: Amritsar Railway Station (ASR) is around 2 kilometres from the shrine.
- By Road: The Management Committee (Golden Temple) has expanded its toll-free 24-hour bus service from the Amritsar Bus Stand to the Golden Temple. The distance between the two is only 2 kilometres.
The Golden Temple’s Holy Tree
- The Holy Tree is one of the Sacred places in the Golden Temple. After resting under a bush, Baba Budha Ji, one of the most respected Sikh Gurus, laid the foundation of the Golden Temple.
- He camped under this identical tree, which still stands now, in 1506. Many others also stop paying their respects.
The Heavenly Pond
- Construction of a moat, also popularly known as the sacred tank, that surrounds the temple. It then gets the addition of magic water, and people bathe in it to wash away their sins and stay healthy.
- Men bathe in public, whilst women bathe in private. After bathing, people stroll across the most to the central temple, the Harmandir Sahib.
Tourism in the Neighborhood Zone
After or before paying obeisance at the Golden Temple, there are other locations to explore in Amritsar. This city never sleeps since constant activities, events, and flea markets go on all year.
- Jallianwala Bagh: The Jallianwala Bagh Memorial Park will make you pray for the souls of those who attained death by the Britisher. This historical place is a must-see for everyone who wishes to honor India’s liberation battles.
- Partition Museum: The Golden Temple’s location in Amritsar is ideal because it is close to various historical and cultural sites. The Partition Museum, housed in the renowned Town Hall structure, is barely five minutes away from this Gurudwara.
- Chowk Mani Bazar is home to the ISKCON Temple, also known as the Sri Gaur Radha Krishna Temple. It is one of the most popular Hindu temples in Amritsar, especially among Hare Krishna devotees.
- Wagah Border: Amritsar is an experience that every Indian should enjoy at least once in their lives. The patriotic energy that one feels here is absolutely unparalleled.
Largest Kitchen and Free Langar
- The golden temple’s Langar region includes one of the world’s largest kitchens, serving thousands of people daily.
- The vegetarian meal, which often comprises Prasada (roti), langar dal, and rice, is free for all guests and is available 24 hours a day. They also provide sweet rice, rice pudding, and desserts on special occasions.
- Another distinguishing feature of langar Seva is the altruistic service provided by innumerable volunteers.
Things to Bring:
- Visitors must cover their heads before entering the temple, so bring a scarf or handkerchief.
- No cell phone usage is tolerable when within the temple compound. Photography allowance is only on the outer parikrama and following the temple’s guidelines.
- It is very forbidden to bring intoxicants to the temple.
- Although anybody can take a sacred plunge in the ‘Amrit Sarovar,’ there’s no soap usage policy.
Touring the Golden Temple in Amritsar is an experience everyone should have at least once. So, don’t miss out on a life-changing adventure and book your vacation right away!