Amritsar, the holy city of Punjab, is home to some of the most significant historical places in India. From the iconic Golden Temple to the tragic Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar has a rich cultural and historical heritage that attracts tourists from all over the world. If you are planning a trip to Amritsar, here are the top 5 historical places you must visit:
1. Golden Temple
Also known as Sri Harmandir Sahib, the Golden Temple is the holiest shrine of the Sikh community. It is located in the heart of the city and attracts millions of devotees and tourists every year. The temple is made of marble and is adorned with gold-plated domes and intricate carvings.
The temple complex also has a large tank called the Amrit Sarovar, which is believed to have medicinal properties. Visitors can participate in the evening prayers or take a tour of the temple and learn about its history.
2. Jallianwala Bagh
This historical site is a must-visit for anyone interested in India’s freedom struggle. Located near the Golden Temple, Jallianwala Bagh is a garden where a tragic massacre took place in 1919 during British rule. Thousands of unarmed people had gathered in the garden to protest against the Rowlatt Act, when British soldiers opened fire, killing and injuring several people. Today, the garden has been turned into a memorial with a museum that displays photographs and artifacts related to the massacre.
3. Gobindgarh Fort
Located in the heart of the city, the Gobindgarh Fort is a symbol of Punjab’s rich cultural and historical heritage. The fort was built in the 18th century and served as a military base for Maharaja Ranjit Singh.
Today, it has been transformed into a museum that showcases the history and culture of Punjab. Visitors can take a tour of the fort and learn about the various exhibits on display, including weapons, coins, and manuscripts.
4. Gurudwara Bir Baba Budha Sahib
Located about 10 kilometers from Amritsar, the Gurudwara Bir Baba Budha Sahib is a revered shrine for the Sikh community. It is named after Baba Budha Ji, who was one of the oldest and most respected figures in Sikhism. The Gurudwara is known for its beautiful architecture and serene atmosphere, and it attracts thousands of devotees and tourists every year.
5. Summer Palace of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
Located on the outskirts of Amritsar, the Summer Palace of Maharaja Ranjit Singh is a stunning example of Mughal architecture. The palace was built in the 19th century and served as the summer residence of the Maharaja.
Today, it has been turned into a museum that showcases the royal lifestyle and cultural heritage of the Maharaja. Visitors can take a tour of the palace and learn about the various exhibits on display, including weapons, coins, and manuscripts.
6. Wagah Border
Located on the India-Pakistan border, the Wagah Border is a popular tourist destination. Every evening, a ceremony known as the ‘Beating Retreat’ takes place at the border, where soldiers from both countries put on a spectacular display of military prowess. The ceremony is attended by a large number of tourists and locals.
7. Akal Takht
The Akal Takht is the highest seat of authority for the Sikhs. Located in the Golden Temple complex, it is a symbol of the Sikh faith and a place of great importance. Visitors can learn about the history of the Akal Takht and the role it played in the Sikh faith.
8. Durgiana Temple
The Durgiana Temple is a Hindu temple located in the heart of Amritsar. It is dedicated to the goddess Durga and is a popular tourist destination. The temple is known for its beautiful architecture and is a must-visit for tourists interested in Hindu culture and religion.
9. Jama Masjid Khair Uddin
This historic mosque is a must-visit for tourists visiting Amritsar. Located in the old city, the mosque was built in the early 19th century and is a fine example of Mughal architecture. The mosque is known for its intricate carvings, colorful frescoes, and stunning marblework.
10. Punjab State War Heroes Memorial
Located on the outskirts of Amritsar, the Punjab State War Heroes Memorial is a tribute to the brave soldiers who fought for India’s independence. The memorial features statues of famous freedom fighters and displays artifacts related to the freedom struggle. It is a great place for tourists to learn about the history of India’s independence movement.
In conclusion, Amritsar is a city that is rich in history and culture. If you are planning to visit the city, be sure to visit these 10 historical places to get a taste of the city’s past.