The Harmandir Sahib, famously known as the Golden Temple, is the most important shrine of the Sikhism. It draws millions of tourists of different faiths from around the world. The stupendous Gurudwara is located in Punjab's capital Amritsar, and is among the most visited destinations in the country today.
Amritsar is around 450 kms from New Delhi by road and aerial distance between the two cities is around 400 kms. There are direct flights from Delhi to Amritsar which take no more than one hour.
While you are about to land, you can see magnificent Harmandir Sahib prominently from flight. I regret, that pic is missing.
An astonishing fact to note about Gurudwara is that its foundation was laid down by a Muslim sage called Mian Mir.
The Golden Temple stands gloriously in the middle of the Amrit Sarovar, which is the man made holy water tank. Commonly, pilgrims who visit the shrine take a dip in the sarovar; for the water is known to have special healing powers.
The temple is architecturally located on a level below the ground level to imply that one should be humble and down to earth to attain spiritual enlightenment which is the goal of humanity. This design is exactly opposite of that of the Hindu temples, which are built at raised level.
One has to stand in long queue before final darshan of Guru Granth Sahib. Such queues don't deter faith of people and they don't mind standing for hours. Senior citizens and physically challenged can skips these queues by using different lane meant for coming out.
The main hall of the Harmandir Sahib houses the Guru Granth Sahib, the sacred scripture of the Sikh religion. The Guru Granth Sahib is also called the eleventh Guru of Sikhism; for it is a sea of knowledge and can answer all the questions and doubts of devotees. It is placed on an elevated platform under a preciously bejeweled canopy. Photography is prohibited inside.
The Sarover is home to good number of fish. They are varied and colourful.
Over a lakh of people have langar (holy food) in Golden temple on daily basis. This food is prepared by volunteers who are pilgrims from different parts of the country. In the picture above, one can see women peeling garlic for curry to be cooked.
This is just a small portion of plates collection. There is more to it. This piling looks never ending.
Golden temple is not a tourist destination, it is a source of peace and inexhaustible blessings of God.