Amritsar - Land of Martyr(s),Border and Golden Temple


Amritsar - the name on hearing takes us back to the land of Legendary Bhagat Singh, Jalianwala Baugh, Golden Temple and yes Wagah Border.

Right from the day India started its journey towards a complete independence the city has been a witness to many things. Martyrs ready to sacrifice their lives for country, Golden Temple the holiest place of Sikhs, the infamous Jalianwala Baugh, Border shared with neighboring country to the various things it has been witnessing till date.

The association of the place with history intrigued me an my fellow companions to visit the place and find out exactly what effect does a city has and experiences after going through a lot of things and then shine like "Gold", which has to go under a hammer before it is shaped into a master piece of an art.

Starting our journey from Mumbai to Amritsar, we chose the train which travels almost across 7 - 8 states and time of about 36 hours before it reaches Amritsar. Passing through the prominent states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi every halt is an experience. People boarding and getting off some for work, some for visit, some for family functions and some for funerals. The journey though long never felt boring due to this co-passengers sharing experiences, thoughts and yes "Food" items.

Amritsar station is just like another railway station in India, people moving in and out. Auto drivers wooing passengers asking for destinations, negotiating on fares and taking them on desired destinations.

Amritsar literally means city of lake bearing Amrit (a pool of divine water), we checked into an hotel nearby the market and rested for the day as the journey though exciting , but had been a less exciting for our backs and legs. After a good sleep of around 3-4 hours the hunger in our stomach forced us to venture out of hotel and feed ourselves on local available cuisines around.

Second Day morning feeling fresh and energized we began our journey. Our first place on map was

Day 1

"Jalianwala Baugh"

A small entrance gate blocked by the walls on both the sides lead us into the place. It felt like a Deja Vu, the bullet ridden walls brought all the memories of the brutalities people gathered inside might have gone through. Still one can find the same entrance from where the bullets were fired on innocent people, the well where many females jumped into to make an effort to save their kids and their lives. It just makes hairs stand on your end hearing the stories of people finding the ways to escape the bullets and the impact of the event which gave birth to Legendary Bhagat Singh.

Walking out of the gate with a memories of event, our mind just was not able to get over what we have heard from our local guide. Walking down a few distance from Jalianwala, we saw the first sight of the Shining Golden Temple.

"Golden Temple"

The holiest place of Sikh community is really a place to visit and experience, and am sure that every time one makes a visit it is a new experience altogether. Now one needs to cover their heads with a cloth before entering the place. Once you enter you see a large lake of water considered a Divine one, people often take a dip into it with a belief that it washes away all the sins, misdeeds making purifying the soul.

The reflection of the Shrine in Lake water is sight to watch, moving towards the shrine you come across the various ways Gold offered by devotees has been utilized in and around the surroundings. The Langar (Prasad) is the most tastiest thing have personally come across till date.

The visit to Temple helped us to get over the memories of our previous place of visit, stepping out with the slight drizzle it was now time to visit the famous Wagah Border.

"Wagah Border"

Sharing our bitter sweet relationship with neighbors for years, this place is a must visit for every Indian to at least have a glimpse of how exactly other country looks like. The moment you step out of your vehicle patriotism is in the air. People occupying prime spots to watch the Flag ceremony of both the countries, waving flags, Soldiers and patriots from both side of country just unknowingly takes you to a new place altogether.

March Past ceremony is one event to be watched. The way Army Jawans perform it and the attitude they bear surely reconfirms that yes it is because of them we are safe at our homes. The cheers of "Bharat Mata ki Jay", "Vande Mataram" just fill the air and the proudest moment of standing for National Anthem at that place is one experience.

Post ceremony it started to get dark but the excitement never went down, a handshake or two with soldiers and the moment we got to know that some of them belonged to the same state, the conversation just got a bit extended. It is really difficult to stay without our loved ones for a day or two, but these guys are staying away just for the sake of the country and the attachment they share with it is just mesmerizing.

Bidding a good bye and thanking them we started to move towards city, reaching the place we went out to the market for some local delicacies and gorged upon Chole Kulcha, Butter Chicken and a big glass of Lassi.

There are two timings of visiting Golden Temple one in day light and one when sun sets and it is lit by thousands of lights.

The best time to visit Wagah Border is in in evening.

The place is a shopping paradise for females interested to buy Cotton apparels/ clothes, Punjabi Suits, Ornaments etc. For Males sweets, namkeens and cuisines are the stress buster items post shopping spree by their female counterparts.

Enjoying two days of pure Punjabi hospitality we were nor prepared to move on to our next destination Jammu to visit "Vaishno Devi", but that all in my next article till then enjoy travelling...............

P.S.: In the article above have not shared any places to stay or where to eat and all, because the place is best explored when you personally find out and see the things.

Golden Temple, Amritsar

Photo of Wagah Border Stadium, Grand Trunk Road, Wahga, Punjab, Pakistan by Prathamesh sathe

Entrance to Wagah Border, Amritsar

Photo of Wagah Border Stadium, Grand Trunk Road, Wahga, Punjab, Pakistan by Prathamesh sathe

Ceremony, Wagah Border, Amritsar

Photo of Wagah Border Stadium, Grand Trunk Road, Wahga, Punjab, Pakistan by Prathamesh sathe

Jallianwala Baugh, Amritsar

Photo of Wagah Border Stadium, Grand Trunk Road, Wahga, Punjab, Pakistan by Prathamesh sathe
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