Golden Temple – The Pride Of Punjab
Three days in Amritsar is what we had – enough time to experience the city, in and around, twice over. My agenda was clear, to spend as much time as possible at the Golden Temple and experience the religious customs, practices, and of course, the vibe of the place, of which I’d heard a lot from everyone. It was time for sunset as we walked inside for the evening prayer recital, ardaas. What an amazingly peaceful experience it was!
templeSpend a few hours in Golden Temple, a beautiful holy place in Amritsar
And the way this place is managed is indeed incredible. From people who helped me understand prayer recitals to over a 100,000+ visitors fed every day with unlimited wholesome food and tea – the temple management, and their love, makes sure no one in Amritsar goes to sleep hungry.
It’s a celebration out there, the celebration of the higher, and without a care of worldly matters. I experienced it all, at sundown when the lights came up, at early morning prayer recitals, in the day when the sun lit up everything golden leaving me blinded, and underneath the rain clouds as I saw the skies turn incandescent. But there’s a lot more to Amritsar, as we found out the next day.
Other Places To Visit
Just a few minutes’ walk from Golden Temple is the great Jallianwala Bagh. A place of national importance, the garden is associated with the Indian Freedom Movement. With efforts being made to preserve the place for what it was half a century ago, the place is now a full-fledged garden with pathways, and has a light and sound show too.
No trip to Amritsar is complete without attending the ‘Lowering of the Flags’ ceremony at the India-Pakistan Attari Border Crossing, popularly known as the Wagah Border. Soldiers make efforts to outdo the ones on the other side, and crowds cheer on with slogans like Vande Mataram and Jai Hind. We drove 65 kilometres (back and forth) to see a show that was full of patriotism.
What’s Punjab Without Food?
Back to Amritsar, one of the top foodie destinations in India, we went all out on the food for the next two days. Kachoris, aaloo kulchas, Amritsari naans, chur chur naan, punjabi lassi, kheer, mithaais, jalebi, matthis and more – the food in Amritsar was the highlight of the trip!
jalebiJust one word for jalebis – yum!
Kaku di Lassi gave a great buzz after a round of kachoris from an unnamed vendor (you’ll be able to find it easily!), both located in the bylanes of Durgiana Temple, one of the famous places to visit in Amritsar. The stuffed kulchas at Bharawan ka Dhabha were delightful. I binged on everything I ate in Amritsar. Guilt followed, but I didn’t care. We also tried makki di roti and sarson da saag – truly heavenly! At Kesar da Dhaba, all your diet control plans can go for a toss. Mine totally did as I hogged on everything I laid my eyes on. Oh, the firni! One came and many followed, but my tastebuds stayed insatiable.
While in Amritsar, praise the timeless (Sat Sri Akaal), enjoy parikramas of the Golden Temple, feast on the langar, and eat everything Amritsari you can find under the sky.
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