A real travel enthusiast, digs deep into the culture and history of the places he travel, as he cannot be easily satisfied with just natural beauty and adventure. He or she enjoys equal doses of heritage, cultural and historical value of that place. And hence India makes a wonderful destination for a holiday trip to the historical places, where different religions, different states, and variety of cultures make it an authentic place.
You have a range of historical monuments to visit on an Indian holiday, like temples, churches, mosques, forts, palaces, caves, mausoleum and gurudwaras. A Gurudwara is a Sikh religious place, where you can trace the art and architecture, rituals, teachings and mythology associated with their religion. The Golden Temple, is one of the most popular gurudwaras and one of the top 10 pilgrimage destinations in India.
Golden Temple is one of the prominent Sikh gurudwaras, located in the state of Punjab, Amritsar city, which welcomes many tourists every day, and that too from all the religions. A throng of tourists also can be seen here, as it is one of the popular pilgrim destinations, and is considered a sacred place.
The original name of the Golden Temple is Harmandir Sahib, or Darbar Sahib, and was built from late sixteenth century to early seventeenth century, by Guru Ram Das and Guru Arjan Dev. The Adi Granth, holy scripture written by Guru Arjan Dev, was also finished at the same time, and then installed here. In 18th century it was rebuilt and in 19th century, the upper parts of the building were covered with gold.
Beginning in 1574, the construction of the building stretched on to many years, and was also renovated time and again, by various devotees. Besides the popular and gorgeous gold work on the upper floors, the entire structure is built in white marble. The 202 feet high Darshani Deorhi Arch is a brilliant sight, while watch towers were also added later to the complex.
This is the main part of the complex, where the prayers and verses from Adi Granth is recited every day. A structure having two floors, the upper one of which has been made in gold, the Harmandir Sahib can be reached through the bridge, built over Amrit Sarovar, and is a place floating in the serenity and peace of traditional rituals.
This is the sarovar, that surrounds the complex area, and one has to cross the bridge made over it, to reach the sacred spot. You can see amazing reflections of the temple in the clear water of the lake. The pilgrims also bathe in the holy water that surrounds the Gurudwara.
Literally meaning 'The Timeless', this is an important building of the complex, which stands opposite to the Harmandir Sahib. Here the highest council of the Sikhs, meet and talk about religious and important issues about their society and religion.
Langar Canteen :
This is a place where every Sunday, and on special occasions, the temple authority organize langars, that is, free food distribution. People come here on these days and be a part of the seva (services), to earn merit in the holy place by doing deeds.
Central Sikh Museum:
On a tour to this holy place, you can spend some time in the small museum cum library, built on the second floor of the temple, which treasures a lot of books, photographs, documents and other important things regarding Sikh religion and gurus.
Important information about the Golden Temple:
· You will also get small tokens and souvenirs, from various stalls surrounding the complex area.
· Tourists are supposed to take their shoes off, and submit at the counter at the entrance, before entering the complex area.
· Tourists are supposed to cover their heads during the entire time they are in the complex area.
· Many festivals, like vaisakhi, are celebrated on a grand level here, including the birthdays of the Sikh Gurus.
· You can volunteer for services at the temple at your own will, for such as serving meals, washing dishes and cooking. These services are believed to bring merit to you