Yesterday, 14th November was “Gurpurab“, the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak ji – the first Sikh guru and founder of Sikhism; and thus it was an opportune time for me to share this photograph taken by me on my trip to Amritsar, that of ‘Gurudwara Sri Harmandir Sahab ji’, popularly known as the Golden Temple.
We undertook a 2 day trip to the city of Amritsar in Punjab and below is a quick recap of how we spent those days there:
The most comfortable way of reaching Amritsar from Delhi is to take the early morning New Delhi-Amritsar Swarna Shatabdi Express and that is how we reached Amritsar by afternoon. They absolutely stuffed us with food on the train journey!
Then we headed to the area near the Golden Temple and booked ourselves in one of the many good budget hotels that dot the periphery of the Golden Temple.
A quick bath later we boarded a Taxi to reach the Wagah border town in time to witness the “lowering of flags” ceremony in the evening that is held daily at this place on the International border between India and Pakistan.
A nice Punjabi dinner at a Dhaba followed and we hit the bed early so as to wake up, get ready and do an early morning darshan at the Golden Temple the next day, which we successfully did.
We then went to the Museum on the first floor of the Gurudwara to understand more about the History of Sikhism and the famous-infamous story of Bhindranwale and Operation Bluestar that was carried out by the Indian Army in the Golden Temple itself!
Please note that while in a Gurudwara, you need to cover your head, whether you are young, old, man, woman or a child. There are scarves available in baskets at the Gurudwara entrance to help you do that. The prasad given in a Gurudwara is called ‘Kada prasad’ (wheat halwa) – it is absolutely mouth-watering! If you have the time, you can go ‘chak’ (eat) the ‘langar’ as well in the Gurudwara premises. ‘Langar‘ is a free for all meal that is served round the clock in most Gurudwaras.
A breakfast of delicious Amritsari Naan Paranthas followed at a stall outside the Golden Temple and then we undertook a much-needed walk through the local market to the historical Jalianwala Bagh, and sombrely saw the Martyr’s well and the gunshot holes in the walls over there…
Our lunch was in two instalments- one dish at the famous “Brother’s Dhaba”, followed by with a quick bite at the next door “Brahwan da Dhaba“…these used to be one restaurant but are now split by two brothers into two restaurants with similar names (One has an English word “Brothers” in its name while the other has a Punjabi word ‘Brahwan’ for it).
With our stomachs filled to the brim with food, minds filled with history and hearts filled with patriotism – we headed to the Amritsar railway station to catch our afternoon Shatabdi back to Delhi and with that, an eventful 2-day trip of ours came to an end.