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Shubhyatra >> Punjab Yatra

Punjab Travel India

Location : Northern part of India
Capital City : Chandigarh
Famous Destinations : Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana
Mostly Visited For : Amritsar Golden Temple

Punjab - The Green Grainary of India

Sprawling Mustard Fields of Punjab
Sprawling Mustard Fields of Punjab

How about enjoying your holiday on a land that has its own colour, own aroma and a unique lifestyle that only finds its way to everyone's heart via fun and gaiety. It is a land that is drenched by five great rivers, their shimmering waters slicing the heart of the terrain and refreshing people with milk and honey. Welcome to the magical land of Punjab, a home to a robust, fun-loving people in the northern part of India. Through the centuries, Punjab has borne the quake of many foreign invasions and more recently, the trauma of India's partition. And yet, miraculously, the denizens of this virile land have always resurrected and rebuilt their lives, confident and optimistic. Wherever you go, you will find placards of their chivalry dotting the domain, cultural heritages standing on the fulcrum of time. Today, the Punjabis count themselves among the cheeriest and most lively of all Indians.

Cheer up your vacation with the people who know how to share the best. Bubbling with immense cordiality, they teach every tourist a lesson to live life. Besides, Punjabis are extremely industrious and respect the ladders of labour, making this one of the most prosperous states in India. One should not forget that Punjab is the first state that adorned itself with the colours of Green Revolution. With a massive public investment and a superb irrigation and modern agricultural methods, Punjab led the country's Green Revolution of the 1960s thereby earning for itself the onyma of becoming India's 'bread basket'. Visit their lush green farms and then refresh yourself with a glass of chilled 'lassi' (buttermilk). Don't forget to savour the delicious 'mah ki daal', 'sarson da saag' and the mind-blowing 'makki di roti'. With all these and much more to explore, Punjab attracts hundreds of tourists round the year to its golden temple at Amritsar with a promise of extraordinary culinary delight, fresh from home..

Dancers Performing "Gidda"  Punjabi Traditional Dance
Dancers Performing Gidda, A Punjabi Traditional Dance

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Sikh Religion - An Universal Cult of Brotherhood

The Sikh religion, which originated in Punjab, is based on the teachings of Guru Nanak, and is conceived as a monotheistic faith, whose adherents, the Sardars, at present can be found all over India and abroad too. Its insistence on the universal cult of brotherhood, its plea for equitable social and spiritual liberties for all types of men, its emphasis on the service of man on the road of strong moral codes and, above all, its recognition of the divinity of man and the need of meditation have made Sikhism a subject of great interest across the world. All Sikhs venerate the Guru Granth Sahib, a holy book that contains 'Gurbani', the preaching of Guru Nanak. If you happen to visit a Sigh marriage during your vacation in Punjab, you can see the bride following the groom four times round the Guru Granth Sahib while prayers are sung and hymes are read from the holy book.

Chandigarh - Portraying A Planned Demeanour

For decades, Chandigarh, the capital of Punjab, was known as an affluent but quiet, laid back city ideal for retired people that had little to offer beyond its modern town people and its relaxed way of life. However, it is the first city to initiate the concept of town planning in India. Designed by Le Corbusier, Chandigarh is strategically segregated into 61 sectors. The pollution free air, the wide tree-lined boulevards and avenues, the cool ambiance of Sukhna Lake and the plush interiors belying the dull exteriors contribute to making Chandigarh a haven for fun-loving tourists. Adding a cherry on top of the cake, the trendy city now has found a new way to celebrate life, reflected in its bustling shopping areas, spilling restaurants and spanking new malls. Visit any restaurant in the downtown (Sector 17) and savour on a traditional Punjabi menu in a luxurious ambience, an experience of a lifetime. For a terrific weekend action, drive to the outskirts of the city; at a newly opened mall (Fun Republic) with a multiplex at Mani Majra or to the picturesque Morni hills on Panchkula Road. The latter also houses a bird sanctuary and you can relax amidst lush forests and euphony of colourful birds.

Spend an afternoon at Rock Garden (Sector 1) to give your vacation a newer direction to enjoy. Famed as one of its kind in the whole world, this serene garden exhibits one man Nek Chand's genius to create exquisite works of art out of industrial and urban waste. Move at a stone's throw to echo to the call of nature at Sukhna Lake, a man made lake ideal for quiet communion with nature. One can also indulge into a number of water sport activities such as boating, canoeing and skulling to enjoy a holiday to its best. In the evening, visit Kalagram, a fantastic arts and crafts bazaar where eminent craftsmen from various parts of the country display their creations. A good place for shopping with a rich variety in Indian textiles on display and other handicraft items.

Amritsar Golden Temple

Golden Temple , Amritsar
The Dazzling Golden Temple of Amritsar In the Evening Sun

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Amritsar Golden Temple - Architecture With A Golden Outlook

Amritsar, the city of celebrated Golden Temple, is indisputably, the religious capital of the Sikhs. As naturally the Hindu's mind turns to Benaras, or the Muslim's to Mecca, do the thoughts of Sikhs turn to Amritsar where the Adi Granth, the original book is kept and incessantly read. The Golden Temple or the Harmandir Sahib nestles amidst the Amrit Sarovar (from which the city got its name) that attracts thousands of devotees round the world. The sacred tank is surrounded by a white marble pathway with a causeway leading across the water to the temple itself. A double storey marble structure, its dome is covered with gold, a placard of devotion of the people for whom offering a part of their earnings is very important. When inside, you will be overwhelmed to see innumerable brilliant multi-coloured patterns embellishing the marble surface and the ceililng. The abode of almighty God is open day and night to all visitors. The celestial melodious 'Kirtan' (prayer) from the 'Gurbani' penetrates deep into the minds of all devotees with its divine gospel.

Celebrate Life In Punjab

People who know how to celebrate life does not need any reason to do so. Yet in Punjab, you will find occasions that especially stand out for managing to capture the popular imagination to the extent of transcending the religion and faith it originated with, crossing over boundaries of caste and creed to bind the state in jubilation. Plan a holiday in April to be a part of Baisakhi, an occasion celebrated to commemorate the establishment of Khalsa by Guru Gobind Singh in 1699 AD. The Granth Sahib is taken in procession, led by the Panj Pyaras (five senior Sikhs) who are symbolic of the original leaders. Enjoy your hearts out at the 'Baisakhi da Mela' (Baisakhi fair), where you can behold the magical Bhangra Dance, marked by jaw-dropping acrobatic movements to the rhythmic beat of drums. Women in colourful attire lined with shimmering gold and silver threads only add to the beauty of the festival.

Drive Your Way

Punjab, situated in the northern part of the country is well connected to major destinations all across the country and is an easy access from many parts of the world. Indian Airlines connects Chandigarh to Delhi, Amritsar, Leh, Mumbai and Goa. One can also go for Jet Airways, connected to Delhi with regular flights. The airport is situated at 11 km from the city centre and taxis and auto-rickshaws are available to commute to the city. Chandigarh railway station is about 8 km from the city centre (sector 17). Shatabdi Express, Jan Shatabdi and Himalayan Queen provide train connections every day between Chandigarh and Delhi. Chandigarh Transport Undertaking and CITCO buses ply to and fro from the railway station to coincide with the arrival and departure of important trains. There is a pre-paid auto-rickshaw counter just outside the railway station, which has the city rates, printed on a board.

Chandigarh is very well connected by road to all major centres of the region and Delhi. The NH 21 (Ambala-Shimla) and NH 22 (Chandigarh-Manali) are the main roads linking chandigarh with the rest of the country. From Delhi (245 km), normally the journey takes around 5 hours, with most of the journey being along the NH 1, popularly known as the GT Road. Take a short break for refreshment at Oasis, a multiple facility arena managed by Haryana Tourism. The Inter State Bus Terminus (ISBT) in Sector 17 is a modern complex with restrooms, retiring rooms, food outlets and reservation offices of RTCs. The road transport corporations of Haryana, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh run deluxe coaches (some air-conditioned) to Chandigarh as do some private companies, including Indo Canadian Transport Company's deluxe coach services.

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Top 5 Reasons to Visit Punjab

Sikhs Outside A Gurudwara

Where Happiness Is A Way of Life
Punjabis are known for their cheerful nature and vibrant clothings. Women love to dress up in clothes lined with shimmering gold and silver threads. The whole state pulsates with the euphony of gala music all the time. Surely, there is no other place where you can have so much fun.

A Holiday in Chandigarh
Famed to be the capital of this patriotic state of Punjab, Chandigarh offers much more than political and economical news to her guests. And that is a promise of fun in its serene Rock Garden and picturesque Sukhna Lake.

A Celebration of Devotion
Plan a holiday trip to Punjab and feel the pleasure of visiting the Golden Temple in Amritsar, portraying an impeccable blend of architecture and devotion. Being the most sacred place for the Sikhs, the Golden Temple attracts hundreds of devotees from all corners of the world.

A Celebration of Fun
Plan a holiday in April to be a part of Baisakhi, an occasion celebrated to commemorate the establishment of Khalsa by Guru Gobind Singh in 1699 AD. Enjoy your hearts out in this colourful festival that injects life in the ambience of Punjab.

A Celebration of Taste
Savour a glass of 'lassi' (yoghurt churned with water and flavoured with salt, cumin seed powder and coriander leaves) and you can never forget the taste. Drive to an open-air cafe (dhabas) to taste a piping hot daal with maki-de-roti, a fragrance that will linger your memory for a lifetime.

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