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Amritsar, Punjab

Hotels in Amritsar:-
»Hotel M.K.
Address :- Dist. Shopping Centre, Ranjit Avenue, Amritsar - 143 001.
Location :- 7 kms. from Raja Sansi Airport, 3 kms. from Amritsar Railway Station.

»Hotel Ritz Plaza
Address :-  45, The Mall, Amritsar - 143 001.
Location :- 11 kms. from Raja Sansi Airport, 1.5 kms from Amritsar Railway Station.

Introduction:-
Amritsar, the gateway for travelers coming to India by land from Pakistan, is the holy city of the martial race of the Sikhs. Known for its agricultural produce, woollens, spices and dry fruits. In the year 1579, Amritsar became home to the Golden Temple, the most significant of Sikh shrines.

Amritsar at a Glance :-
General Information

Area

114.95 sq km

Altitude

234 m

Temperature

Summer : Max 34ºC, Min 15ºC.

Winter : Max 18ºC, Min 0ºC

Rainfall

59.2 cm

Languages

Hindi, Punjabi and English

Season

October to March



History :-
Founded in 1577 by Ram Das, the forth guru of Sikhs, Amritsar is both the center of Sikh religion and the major city of Punjab state - where the majority of Sikhs live. Amritsar, or pool of Nectar, is the name of the sacred pool by which the Sikh's Golden Temple is built. The original site of the city was granted by the Moghul emperor, Akbar, but in 1761, Ahmad Shah Durani sacked the town and destroyed the temple. It was rebuilt in 1764, and in 1802 was roofed over with copper-gilded plates by Ranjit Singh and became known as 'the Golden Temple'. It is Amritsar where the smoldering surge of Independence of our country burst into a full fledged "Flame of Liberty" in the form of Jallianwala Bagh massacre in which about two thousand people were killed. In December 1919 the All India Congress Committee held its session at Goal Bagh in Amritsar, in which most of the National Leaders participated. The Muslim League also held its session in Amritsar in 1919. Many buildings were constructed during the British rule.

Festivals :-
Baisakhi
Baisakhi, the festival of spring, is celebrated here every year on 13th of April. It is all the more auspicious because it is on this day that Guru Gobind Singh founded the Khalsa panth. Through out the city the atmosphere is of gaiety and colour. The Guru Granth Sahib is read in all the Gurdwaras and a procession is carried out in the city. People enjoy be dancing the Punjabi folk dance bhangra. It is believed that wheat crop is also ready for harvesting and on this day, farmers start reaping the harvest for which they have waited patiently. So the occasion is of happiness.

Guru Nanak Jayanti
The festival falls in the month of October. The day commemorates the birthday of Guru Nanak Devji Maharaj. The Guru Granth Sahib is read and langars are organized in the Gurdwaras and at homes.

Gurupurabs
On the full moon of Kartik the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak is celebrated by the devotees with great ardor. Two days earlier a non-stop reading of the Adi Granth is started. At different places religious congregations are held and hymns from the Granth Sahib are chanted. Large processions and are taken out through the towns. At night buildings are illuminated. The birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh is also celebrated in a similar manner. The third important Gurupurab is the one associated with the martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev.

Lohri
Lohri, which comes on the last day of Poh (December-January), is another extremely popular festival. This is a special day for making offerings to fire. When fire is lit up in the evening, orthodox men and women go round it, pour offerings into it, and bow before it in reverence. The first Lohri for a new bride, or a new-born babe, is enthusiastically celebrated, and sweets are distributed.

Maghi
Next day after Lohri comes Maghi, also called Makar Yonkranti (entry of the sun in the sign or Capricorn). It is very popular with the punjabis. On this day fairs are held at many places. The people go out for a holy dip and give away a lot of charity. The special dish of the day is kheer cooked in sugarcane juice.

Holi
The most colorful and hilarious of all the festivals, which are celebrated in, Punjab is Holi, celebrated on the full moon day of Phagun. Holi is a festival of colors. The revelers embrace their friends and relatives, and go out in groups, embrace their near one another with liquid colors and gulal. A big fair known as Hola Mohala is held at Anandpur on the next day after Holi. People come from far-off places to join it.

Best Seasons :-
Amritsar has an extreme climate with very hot summers and very cold winters. Monsoon hits the city around the first week of July and brings average rainfall. The best time to visit Amritsar is between October and March