Golden Temple also called Harmandir Sahib is a house of worship of Sikhs and one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Sikhism. Golden Temple is located in Amritsar city in Punjab (India) and easily reachable from any part of the world. It is not only a religious place, but also a symbol of human brotherhood & equality. Everybody come and pay prayer irrespective of caste or creed. The divinity of this place can only be experienced and not described.
The main center of attraction is ‘Holy Tank’ called ‘Sarovar’. Golden Temple’s glistering building is situated in this tank only. On the instructions of Guru Amar Das (3rd Guru of Sikhs), Guru Ramdas (4th Guru) started digging of ‘Pool’ in 1577 A.D. Later the building was bricked by Guru Arjan Dev (5th Guru) in 1588 A.D.
The four entrances of this holy shrine from all four directions represent that people who belong to any community are equally welcome. A ‘Holy Book’ called ‘Guru Granth Sahib’ is established in the Temple where thousands of devotees bow head and pay prayer. Golden Temple is visited by people from all over the world. In spite of thousands of people visiting this place, who come here for spiritual peace & religious fulfillment, the only voice you will hear in premises is silence and chants of Sikh prayers.
The other popular shrines & monuments situated in the Golden Temple complex are Sikh Museum, Ramgharia Bunga & Akal Takhat. Sikh Museum witness the persecution suffered by the Sikhs at the hand of Mughals & British. Ramgharia Bunga is protective forts topped by two Islamic-style minarets, used to surveillance the Amritsar city in the Mughal era. Akal Takhat is an authorized place of Sikhs, where all the orders of Sikhism are released to the community. Historical weapons of Guru Hargobind (6th Guru) and Guru Gobind Singh (10th Guru) are installed in Akal Takhat.
About World’s Largest Free Kitchen
A Dining hall was established in Harmandir Sahib Complex also called ‘Langar Hall’ (A Free Kitchen). The focus was to serve people with free food, who come for worship after completing long distance. The name was given to this free kitchen is ‘Guru Ramdas Langar’.
People come and sit on the floor in rows, which shows the sign of equality. Food is served to all regardless of Faith, Gender, or Economic background. Till now the community runs this free Kitchen where people enjoy fresh vegetarian food for free. Though the food is free, pilgrims often make donations with the intent to contribute to food. The stats say that around 1, 00,000 people are served with food daily.
Langar (Food) Timings: There is no restriction on time, the food is served 24 Hours.
Opening & Closing Time
The opening time & entrance starts at 3 AM while it ends at 11 PM for the purpose of maintenance. Opening & closing is for the main building situated in ‘Holy Tank’ while the campus is open 24 hours.
Best Time to Visit Golden Temple
The best time to visit Golden Temple in Amritsar is between November – March. Normally the weather is pleasant & ideal for sightseeing as the temperature may vary from 12 Degree – 18 Degree during this time. Sometimes the temperature may go down to freezing 2 Degrees.
However, the temperature between April-July can touch as high as 48 degrees. But between August-October, when Monsoon hit this city, brings some relief. The weather remains pleasant & cloudy during these days.