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An Ultimate Guide To Travel Golden Temple Amritsar

Golden Temple

Posted on Friday, October 22nd, 2021 by MTI Team

About The Golden Temple

It comes as no surprise that the Golden Temple in Amritsar, also known as Sri Harmandir Sahib, is India’s most visited and searched-for temple. Sikhism, one of India’s many faiths, results from its ten holy Gurus’ teachings. Although this gurudwara is celebrated as a prime spiritual hub in Sikhism, it welcomes people from all walks and faiths of life with open arms. In fact, Contrary to what you might expect from a religious shrine, Sri Harmandir Sahib has four entrance door architectural designs that depict a warm welcome to anybody who wishes to visit or seek blessings regardless of caste, creed, or any other biases.

The Sri Harmandir Sahib shines through its privilege of being the city’s major highlight while sitting in the heart of Amritsar. In fact, Amritsar is now known as the pride of Punjab because of two reasons. Firstly, the existence of the golden temple in Amritsar and secondly, how it has risen stronger above its worst circumstantial downfalls. The great Maharaja Ranjit Singh was the founder of the Sikh empire. He ordered to enclose the pilgrim center’s upper stories in 750kgs pure gold sheeting. Even though Guru Ram Das Ji initiated the idea of the Golden Temple, the temple’s first foundation was laid by Guru Arjan Dev Ji- the first Sikh martyr.

With its unique architecture and intricately carved gold, the prime shrine is surrounded by the holy pool, ‘Amrit Sarovar,’ also known as the Pond of Nectar. In fact, the devotees are also welcome to take the holy dip in this pool water. Since its inception, the temple has provided free accommodation and daily Langar (food) for thousands of pilgrims and visitors, and hence, it is renowned as the epitome of harmony and sheer humanity. Apart from the main pilgrim center, the whole temple complex comprises various buildings like the Langar kitchen, dining halls, administration office, and other miscellaneous shrines. This pilgrim center is unquestionably a must-see destination for those who seek peace and contentment.

Adding on to the enchantment of the temple, the holy ‘Ardaas’ (Prayer) is sung and heard at and around the site throughout the day.  While on the premises, you may notice people with buckets and a broom cleaning the pathway. These devotees especially take time out to work for the welfare of the temple and other devotees. This act of volunteer participation is known as ‘Seva’ in their faith.

Did You know/ Stories:

  1. This man-made pool was built long before the construction of the main temple. In fact, after 300 years of the main shrine’s formation, the upper floors of the ‘Golden Temple’ were covered with a 750 kg of 24k gold sheet under Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s ruling orders. Ever since its formation, the mighty shrine has been destroyed and reconstructed time and again.
  2. Legends have it that the pious ‘Amrit Sarovar’ water holds supernatural sacred healing powers. Adding on to this belief, you may notice the walls around the temple tank scribbled with mystical stories of various ailed devotees healing through the water as a record of real-life incidents.  
  3.  A keen reader might know that the arrival of Gautam Budha at the shrine’s site has been registered in the historical books. Reportedly, the area was just a piece of land with a dense forest surrounding an ancient lake during that period. To Buddha, it was an ideal spot to meditate for his quest regarding the true meaning of life and indeed! It still is…

Best Time to Visit Golden Temple: 

November to March –  The weather at this time is relatively temperate and calm. If you wish to avoid neverending queues, you can choose the early morning 4 AM time slot or the late-night time slots.   

How to Reach Golden Temple :     

  • By Air: You can book your flight to Amritsar Airport (Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport) as it’s only 13 km away from Golden Temple.  
  • By Rail: Amritsar Railway Station(ASR) is approximately 2 Km away from the temple.     
  • By Road: The Management Committee (Golden Temple) extended its 24/7 toll-free 24/7 bus service from the Amritsar Bus stand directly to Golden Temple. The distance between the two is just 2 km.   

Golden Temple Tour Guide:

While you’ve previously made arrangements for all the needed travel requirements, you should not miss the minute details that will help the process boost. For instance, an ideal Golden Temple tour guide suggests you to keep a verified tab of all the distances you’d have to cover and then plan accordingly. Yes, which means you must know the exact amount of distance difference between the destination, i.e., Golden Temple, and the place of your departure. 

In an attempt to help you through the research process, MyTicketsToIndia brings you the list of distance differences between Golden Temple and the most famous Indian cities of interest. 

Distance To Golden Temple Distance by RoadTraveling Time
Delhi to Golden Temple Amritsar448.9 km (via NH 44)7 hr 51 min 
Mumbai to  Golden Temple Amritsar1,743.1 km (via NH 48)31 hr   
Chennai to  Golden Temple Amritsar 2,645.8 km (via NH 44)46 hr 
Bangalore to Golden Temple Amritsar2,613.6 km (via NH 44)45 hr  
  Hyderabad to Golden Temple Amritsar2,022.3 km (via NH 44) 36 hr 
Ahmedabad to Golden Temple Amritsar 1,218.8 km (via NH62)22 hr 11 min

Nearby Places to Visit:

  1. Jallianwala Bagh: Falling under a kilometres’ radar, the Jallianwala Bagh is an elongated garden that is now preserved as a memory. At this place, the British army carried out the nefarious act of widespread bloodbath on the 13th of April 1919. Tourists visit this spot and the massive memorial stone in a bid of respect to the innocent victims. Visiting this place shall evoke the emotional turmoil of sadness, confusion, anger and melancholy. This place never fails to remind its visitors about the brutality that mankind is capable of.  
  1. Wagah Border: Another tourist highlight of Amritsar, Wagah is special for being the only road border intersecting between India and Pakistan. The site is just 30 Km away from the Golden temple and is easily reachable through public and personal conveyance. The routine of the rich military ceremonies for their respective countries inspires a sense of patriotism amongst the spectators. If you are planning to visit Amritsar, you must include this place in your travel itinerary.
  1.  Akal Takht: The glorious temple was built as an old form of law court that resolved temporal issues and served justice. The temple was established by the sixth Sikh guru, Shri Har Gobind Sahib Ji, and it still represents Sikh’s political sovereignty as ever. Going in literal senses, “Akal Takht'” symbolizes the ‘throne that is eternal one’. The place is within walking distance from the Golden temple.
  1. Tarn Taran: With a distance difference of around 22 Kms from Golden Temple, the Tarn Taran Sahib is another auspicious pilgrim centre for Sikhs. The fifth Sikh Guru, Shri Arjan Dev Ji, constructed the gurudwara, which is said to have the largest holy pool(Sarovar) in the world. In essence, the Sri Darbar Sahib Tarn Taran is the main shrine at this religious site. Every month, the Tarn taran is jam-packed during Amavas (New-Moon Day).
  1. Maharaja Ranjit Singh Museum:  Maharaja Ranjit Singh was profoundly known as ‘The Lion of Punjab’ for earning Punjab’s freedom back from the Mughal’s claws. Once a summer palace of the Sikh ruler, the museum is located at Lawrence Road, about 3 Km away from the temple. It depicts Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s heroic history along with all the wars he fought and conquered. You may get across his swords, paintings and other personal belongings of the great legend, as you’ll see. The light and sound show is the highlight of the whole visit as it takes you back in those days while displaying a real-time representation of the war circumstances with its exclusive visual and sound effects.  

The Golden Temple is Famous for:

-Its intriguing architecture comprises a manufactured pool, Amrit Sarovar (Pool Of Nectar).

-The whole upper half of the temple is covered in a 24 karat gold plate.

-Its Community Kitchen feeds over 10k visitors for free every day.

Timings:

The Golden Temple Amritsar is open 24/7 and serves langar throughout the day.

Time Spent: With long queues on ordinary days, it may take up to 2 hours to enter the main shrine and offer prayers. In fact, it may take even longer on holidays and weekends.  

Itinerary:

  • Witness the holy departure of Palki Sahib from Sri Akal Takhat Sahib. 4.30 a.m.
  • Be a part of the First Hukamnama and Ardas of the day 5.00 a.m
  •  Take a seat by the Sarovar for a few moments and relish the temple’s aura.
  • Participate voluntarily in ‘Gursewa’ and get a deeper insight into the welfare workings of the temple for their devotees and visitors.
  • Take the holy dip in the ‘Amrit Sarovar’ followed by a shower in the bathing area.
  • Partake of a meal served at the Guru ka Langar.
  • Apart from the main shrine, Sri Harmandir Sahib, visit other mesmerising places in the temple complex Like Akal Takht, Dukh Bhanjani Beri, Beri Baba Budha Ji, Gurudwara Baba Atal Rai and others.
  • You may visit the nearby tourist attraction of Amritsar for the remaining time of the day and visit the temple one last time in the evening as it’ll be totally different and quieter than the morning visit.

Things to Carry:

  1. Keep a scarf or handkerchief handy, as visitors have to cover their heads before entering the shrine. Various supplementary cloth pieces are kept at the entrance in case you forget to bring yours. 
  2. The visitors are instructed to keep their mobile phones switched off till they’re in the temple complex. Photography is allowed only at the outer parikrama and under the mentioned rules of the temple. In fact, for professional photography in parikrama, one has to take special permission from the authorities. 
  3. Carrying intoxicants to the shrine is strictly prohibited.
  4. Although one can take a holy dip in the ‘Amrit Sarovar’, using any type of soap is not allowed. However, if you wish to shower after it, you may proceed to the temple washrooms. Also, post water dipping, one has to deposit their wet garments in the Wet-Clothes-Room. 
  5. Outside eatables are not allowed in the temple parikrama. 

Where to Stay:

  1. Hostel Madpackers Amritsar – 1km from Golden Temple
  2. Hotel Heaven View – 50m from Golden Temple 
  3. Vrinda Apartments – 500m from Golden Temple
  4. 4N Homestay -100m from Golden Temple
  5. Hotel Infa – 100m from Golden Temple
  6. Sukhmani homestay – 300m from Golden Temple
  7. Marriott Amritsar Hotel – 100m from Golden Temple

Things to do:     

  • Meet-greet the local sikhs and learn closely about their heritage and history. 
  • Try their special langar which is also one of the world’s largest free kitchens. 
  • Volunteer to work in Langar as a part of ‘Gurseva’.    
  • Witness the Vaisakhi Celebration (13 January) in the temple.
  • If not the holy dip, wet your hands,feet and face in the ‘Amrit Sarovar’ as a token of participation in the religious ritual.
  • If you have sufficient time, try visiting the temple in different segments of the day and experience its mystical aura each time.  

FAQ’s

Q 1: What are the best places to visit around the Golden Temple, Amritsar?

Ans: Here is the list of top places you must visit around Golden Temple-

  • Jallianwala Bagh – War Memorial.
  • Wagah Border – Beating Retreat.
  • Akal Takht – Historical Significance.
  • Tarn Taran – Holy Pilgrimage.
  • Harike Wetland – Scenic Beauty.
  • Maharaja Ranjit Singh Museum – Brush Up Your History.
  • Durgiana Temple – Explore Inner Peace.
  • Harike Wetland – Scenic Beauty.

Q 2: What is the dress code for Golden Temple?
Ans: There’s no dress code as such! However, there are a few premises rules and guidelines that the visitor must follow. 

  1. Cover your head with a scarf or handkerchief till you’re in the temple premises.
  2. Avoid wearing sleeveless clothes, or anything that’d seem out of place in accordance to the temple.
  3. Wearing hats doesn’t fall under covering heads. You may have to cover it properly as guided.
  4. Avoid wearing socks as the temple has several feet wetting puddles on the way. The premises is completely marbled and is cleaned several times, so walking barefoot in the premises would not be a problem. 

Q 2: Which places should you visit in Amritsar at night?

Ans: One Must visit places at night such as-

  • Golden Temple: The magical aura of the temple at night will leave you awestruck with its quietude, beauty and serenity. 
  • Durgiana Temple: The evening aarti is theday’s highlight in this temple.
  • Celebration Market: This market is famous for being the latest fashion accessories hub. 
  • Rani Ka Bagh Market: The shopping enthusiasts may stroll here to explore ample of options to buy. From hosiery, textiles, and little home decors, to its special cuisines and street food, you can shop everything here.

Q 3: How far is Wagah border from Amritsar?

Ans: The site is just 30 Km away from the Golden temple and is easily reachable through public and personal conveyance.

Q 4: Who gave gold for the Golden Temple?

Ans: In 1830, the founder of the Sikh Empire, Maharaja Ranjit Singh had donated the gold (worth Rs 16.39 lakh ) for Golden Temple as ‘Sone di Sewa’.

Q 5: What time is Langar open at Golden Temple?

Ans: The temple premises serve langar and is open throughout the day (24*7). The temple successfully feeds more than 10,000 visitors every day.

Q 6: What are the best things to buy in Amritsar?

Ans: The best things to buy in Amritsar include Shawls, carpets, dress materials, phulkari embroidery work clothes, Pakistani juttis, sarees, Chinese lamps, dry fruits, imitation jewelry, handicrafts, and Pashmina shawls.

Q 7: What is the best time to visit Amritsar?

Ans: The best time to plan a trip to Amritsar is November-March as the weather is relatively pleasing and is the best for day-long sightseeing. 

Q 8: What is the most popular dish in Amritsar?

Ans: Amongst the North India dishes, the ‘Chole Bhatoore’ is the quintessential Punjab Street food and is a must-try for anybody visiting Amritsar.

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Tour and Travel package:

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About Ankita | View Posts

Ankita Awasthi has been a content writer for over half a decade now. She seeks to satiate her writing urge by charting creative blogs with up-to-the-minute information. In true wordsmith spirit, she believes that a creative head never sleeps! Her blogs constantly aspire to inspire readers to live their travel dream. Her writing genre covers Indian tourism destinations, offbeat locales and travel guides with focus on its rich art history, culture, heritage, nature trails and travelling attributes.

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