The land of mustard fields, energetic Bhangra music, mind-blowing food and a rich culture welcomes you with open arms. Here are our the places you should visit in the vibrant state of Punjab:
The Sri Harmandir Sahib or the Golden Temple in Amritsar is the holiest of gurudwaras for the Sikh faith and an important pilgrimage site. It sits glistening in gold leaf surrounded by a man-made lake of holy waters. The ornate golden detail and domes, the placid waters and the cool marble makes it one of the world’s great sights. It is a two-storey structure with an elegant lower level made of marble, adorned with flower and animal motifs. A second level of gold panels is topped by a dome gilded with 750kg of gold. The continuous chant by priests adds to the beautiful atmosphere. It is one of the most peaceful places you will see.
As the sun sets, the Golden Temple is bathed in beautiful yellow and blue lights. You can actually spend the entire night at the Golden Temple. Just get a sleeping mat and lie down on the marble around the holy lake and enjoy a blissful night.
The crowds cheering boisterously while the soldiers march into neat formations and the patriotic songs playing in the background. Wagah Border is not just a place. It is an emotion. Every day, just before sunset, a flag lowering ceremony takes place as the border between India and Pakistan is closed for the day. The atmosphere is absolutely electrifying with the women dancing, hollering, and radiating their pride for the country. The competitive cheering between the two nations, with each shout getting louder on both sides will give you goosebumps. The atmosphere is intense and filled with nationalistic fervor, one you would have never witnessed before.
You must have read about the famous Bhakra Nangal Dam in school. Well, it’s time to take a trip there. Located in the Roopnagar district, this is one of the offbeat places to visit in Punjab. The Bhakra Nangal Dam provides ample of water for irrigation and hydro-electricity to the adjoining states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan. This man-made magnificent gigantic structure is a perfect getaway to spend some time with your loved ones. Visit the beautiful Gobind Sagar Lake which has one of the most serene spots for indulging in picnics. You can also try your hand at the many activities offered here like boating, water skiing, kayaking, and sailing. The beautiful Shivalik Hills make for that perfect backdrop.
Anandpur Sahib is a sacred town receiving thousands of Sikh Pilgrims throughout the year. Known as the “Holy City of Bliss”, it was the birth place of the Khalsa (Sikh brotherhood). There are many magnificient Gurudwaras where people come to pray and seek blessings. You will also find five forts around the city which remind us of the city’s military history. Anandpur Sahib is nestled between the majestic Sutlej river on one side and the towering Shivaliks on another adding a natural charm to this beautiful city.
Step back in time to Punjab’s royal past at Patiala. Patiala was once an independent Sikh kingdom and one of India’s richest princely states. The city is graced with numerous heritage buildings, gardens and parks. The monuments here showcase a blend of different architectural styles such as Mughal, Rajput and Punjab. Visit Moti Bagh Palace and explore the complex of Qila Mubarak. Go for a guided heritage walk to get to know the cultural roots and visit the old town for experiencing the pulse of the city and gorging of finger-licking local delights.
The city is also famous to shop for authentic Punjabi items such as juttis, parandas and more. And how can you leave Patiala without a Patiala Peg? Cheers or as they say, Burrah!