Amritsar is a holy city of the Sikhs. The Golden Temple or Harmandir Sahib, Akal Takht, Guru ka Langar, and other such religious sites and aspects show the pious religious tenor of the city. Read on to know more.
Amritsar as a place is the religious core of Punjab. It is also known as Ramdaspur and Ambarsar. The city is most popular for the Golden Temple or the Harmandir Sahib which is the most prominent Gurudwara of India and center the Sikh religion. Every year millions of people visit Amritsar and the Golden Temple. The statistics for religious tourism in Amritsar is very high. Hotels and guesthouses remain thoroughly occupied yearlong and become full during winters.
Hyatt has its own 5 star hotel and usually it is the 3 star hotels in Amritsar that see most of the takers. People visit the city for many reasons and one of those is that Amritsar is also a heritage city of India since it is part of the Hriday scheme that is run by the central government throughout the country and aimed at preserving the essence of all the heritage sites. If you plan to visit this holy city anytime soon, it is better to make advance bookings. For economy or long vacation, 3 star hotels in Amritsar are the most suitable choices.
Since the Sikh shrine of Harmandir Sahib is immensely popular, the number of visitors to this city is far more than that of the people who visit the Taj Mahal in Agra. This fact alone shows what charm and faith Amritsar commands among the people.
The city of Amritsar was founded by the fourth Sikh guru, Guru Ram Das, in 1574. Fourteen years later in 1588, Guru Arjan Dev designed the Harmandir Sahib and Sufi saint Sai Hazrat Mian Mir laid its cornerstone. In 1604, Guru Arjan Dev completed the Adi Granth, the holy book of Sikhism, and it was installed in the temple.
Guru Granth Sahib, the holiest text, is also kept inside the Gurudwara. Amritsar is also home to the highest seat of the Khalsa known as Akal Takht. Besides religious tenor, Amritsar also is place for commercial trades such as carpets, fabrics, farm produce, light engineering, handicraft, etc. The city can be reached directly via rail, road, and air.
There are a number of tourist attractions in Amritsar. Most of the sites are religious, such as Mata temple which is believed to bless the devotees with better fertility, Guru ka Langar that feeds more than 50,000 people everyday, Baba Atal tower of 1784, Sri Durgiana temple of the 16th century, Ram Tirath temple that is associated with Valmiki and the period of Ramayana, the Sikh Museum, Town Hall, Amrit Sarovar, etc. Amritsar hotels are situated in the center of the city and hence accessing these tourist sites is not difficult. You can easily spend two-three days in the city and explore the attractions and culture at your own pace. Amritsar is one of those cities of India which are a must-visit for pilgrims and religious tour.