Ever since Kabir was born, the family has wanted to do a trip to the Golden Temple, Amritsar. The Golden Temple is a place of worship for the Sikh Community where people go to find peace, solace and some clarity of thought.
Personally, Pavan and I aren’t religious by nature. We do believe strongly though, in the energy of the universe. My previous experiences with big, religious temples has been, well, different to say the least. Which is why the Golden Temple took me by surprise.
Here, nothing is imposed, nothing is forced, everybody is welcome and the atmosphere is soothing, to say the least. The energy of the place is what stood out the most for me. With the most calming Shabad and Kirtan (hymns) in the background, scores of people wait in queue with a calmness and patience quite unheard of.
A quick google search threw up some interesting facts about the architecture of the Temple. It is built at a lower level than the surrounding land to signify humility and the four entrances from all four sides is to welcome people from all directions and walks of life.
Kabir patiently waited through the enormous queues although there is a separate line for families with children, which we realised only much later. Also if you want to brave the heat, try going in the afternoon where crowds are significantly less as compared to mornings or evenings. And definitely do go there once late at night, when its all lit up and peaceful.
Amritsar is a wonderful, colourful, vibrant city with so much more to offer than just the Golden Temple.
- Walk the streets of the colourful market and buy yourself some juttis (local shoe) or a brightly coloured Salwar Khameez.
- Take a walk down history at Jalianwala Bagh. It is very close to the Golden Temple and transports you to a time long ago. Seeing the bullet marks on the walls, you can almost relive the massacre. A sombre visit indeed.
- Drive a little further and watch the changing of the guards at the Indo-Pak border – Wagah Border.
- Eat. Amritsar is foodie paradise. Hot, fresh, dhaba style punjabi food being served in a number of places is something you would back there for. Our favourites ?
Bharawan Da Dhaba
Kesar Da Dhaba
Gian Chand Milk Bhandar
Giani Tea Stall
Amritsar was made even more special this time because we went with family. The bond between a grandparent and grandchild is truly special. Their love is a unique one. And to see it throughout this trip was a blessing.