OUR REPRESENTATIVE will receive you at the Delhi airport and transfer to the railway station to board train for Amritsar. Reach and check into the hotel.
Amritsar, home to the Golden Temple is one of the most ancient and fascinating cities of India. It is an important seat of Sikh history and culture. Being the gateway for travelers coming to India on the overland route from central Asia it soon became the centre of various commercial activities. There are various historical and religious sites - see Amritsar City Map. The most famous of them all in the Golden Temple which was founded by the fourth Guru of Sikhs, Guru Ramdas and completed by his successor Guru Arjan Dev. There are a number of cotton, woolen and art silk textile factories besides other industries dealing with electric goods, sewing machines, auto parts, carpets. The milk processing plant at Verka about 6 kms from the center is the second biggest project of its kind in the country. Amritsar is Indias leading exporter of goods to the Middle-East, leading distribution centre of dry fruits, tea and condiments. It is also a shoppers paradise and a gourmets delight. Amritsar is the worlds leading centre of Punjabi publications.
Overnight will be at Amritsar.
Breakfast will be served at the hotel.
Proceed for a full day sightseeing with excursion to Golden Temple and in the evening to Wagah Border, during the gate closing ceremony.
GOLDEN TEMPLE: Sri Harmandir Sahib, also know as the Golden Temple in Amritsar is the holiest shrine of the Sikh religion. Also known as the Shri Darbar Sahib, it is in the center of the old part of Amritsar. The Golden Temple sits on a rectangular platform, surrounded by a pool of water called the Amrit Sarovar from which the City is named. The entrance to the Golden Temple complex is through an ornate archway with intricate inlay work. Verses from the Granth Sahib are inscribed on the doorway. The main north entrance is under a Victorian clock tower. Known as the Darshani Deori, the entrance is up a flight of steps and down again to the temple and holy tank. The temple is a two storey marble structure reached by a causeway known as Gurus Bridge. The lower storey is in white marble with the walls decorated with inlaid flower and animal motifs in the pietradura style of the Taj Mahal. The architecture of the golden temple is a blend of the Hindu and Muslim styles. The temple building has four entrances instead of the usual single entry. This is symbolic of the openness of Sikhism and indicates that followers of all faiths are allowed inside. The walls within are decorated with carved wooden panels and elaborate inlay work in silver and gold.
The Adi Granth, compiled by Guru Arjan Dev, rests on a throne beneath a jewel-encrusted canopy. Priests conduct continuous recitation of verses from the holy book in 3-hour shifts. A complete reading of the text stakes 48 hours. The original copy of the Guru Granth Sahib is kept under pink shroud in the, Golden Temple during the day and at around 10 p.m. each day is ceremoniously returned to the Akal Takht (Sikh Parliament) building. The morning processional ceremony takes place at 4 a.m. in summer and at 5 a.m. in winter, when Sri Guru Granth Sahib is bought from Akal takht Sahib in a procession to the Sanctum Sanctorum, which is washed with milk. The Akal Takht, next to the Golden Temple, is the seat of the Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee, the religious governing body of the Sikhs. The building of the Akal Takht was begun by Guru Arjan Dev and completed in 1609 by Guru Hargobind. If you miss the early morning or evening processions, the palanquin that bears the Adi Granth can be seen in the treasury room on the first floor of the Akal Takht. The palanquin is set with precious stones and has silver poles and a gold canopy.
WAGAH BORDER: The international border between India and Pakistan. The pomp and pageantry of the Beating Retreat and the Change of Guard within handshaking distance of the Indian and Pakistani forces makes for a most charming spectacle.
Overnight will be at Amritsar.
Have breakfast at the hotel.
Enjoy visit to Summer Palace of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Jalian Wala Bagh during the day.
SUMMER PALACE OF MAHARAJA RANJIT SINGH: Is situated in the middle of a beautiful garden called Ram Bagh. This garden is laid out on the pattern of Shalimar Bagh at Lahore. Only its architecturally unique Darshani Deorhi has remained intact. A museum after the name of the Maharaja is set up here displaying oil paintings, miniatures, coins, weapons relating to the Sikh period.
JALLIAN WALA BAGH: Amritsar Massacre: This place noted for its most notorious massacre under British rule. It is 400 meters north of the Golden Temple. The British General Dyer was the Lieutenant Governor of the province in 1919. He banned all meetings and demonstrations led by Indians against the economical set back by World War I. On 13 April 1919, pilgrims poured into Amritsar to celebrate the Baisakhi festival, a holiday in the Sikh calendar. In the afternoon thousands of people gathered at Jalian Wala Bagh to celebrate the Baisakhi. This ground surrounded by high walls on all sides has only a narrow alley for access. General Dyer personally led the troops to the sight and ordered his men to open fire without any warning. It resulted in the death of 379 and injured more than 1200. India was outraged by Dyers massacre. Gandhiji called for a nation wide strike and started the Non-cooperation Movement, which became an important mile stone in the struggle for Indias Independence. Today this ground has been changed to a park and it has a pleasant garden.
There is a narrow path between the houses which leads to the lawn of the park. At the entrance there is a memorial plaque which recounts the history. There is a well on the north side in which many people who tried to escape from the bullets were drowned, and remnants of walls have been preserved to show the bullet holes. At the east end of the garden there is a large memorial built in memory of those who died here.
Later in the evening, you will be transferred to the railway station to board train for Delhi. Reach Delhi and will be transferred to the airport / hotel for onward journey with sweet memories of the Golden Temple.
We have successfully returned from India and are back in Texas. I have finally downloaded my photos and I`m am thoroughly enjoying the editing process as I relive my wonderful experiences in India. If our children had been with us, we would have stayed a month more. My favorite thing in all of India-- more esteemed than the food, the architecture, or the religious and cultural learning--was the people. India is its people--warm, gracious, friendly and open.
I wanted to take a moment to tell you how pleased we were with everything that pertained to our trip. The guides in each town were very knowledgeable and unique in different ways. Some were spiritual, some political, some very worldly--regardless, it was refreshing to go to another town and have a different perspective from each guide.
We cannot say enough good things about our driver, Mr. Kulmant Singh. As you are aware, it takes a lot of bravado and luck to get from point A to point B in India. We are thankful we did so without incident and that we got to experience India "as close to a local experience" as possible. I think the only way to have traveled more like an Indian would have been to put all four of us on one motorbike!
I cannot wait to return to India. I would return to Varanasi to be part of the mass of humanity that lives and breathes with a city that encircles all of life. I would return to Jodhpur and Udaipur to spend more time in the streets, the markets, and with the people of India. I liked the smallness and openness of these cities. (I have to admit, we gave our guides some work trying to keep up with our random wanderings down side streets and off the tourist path!) I would return to Jaipur if only to stay at the Rambagh Palace again. It was my favorite hotel as was the Imperial. My husband`s favorites were the Oberoi`s in Udaipur and Agra. The Orchard hotel was quite a surprise and we would return if only to sit and visit with the host, a most gracious man.
Once again, thank you for your help in preparing our trip. I look forward to working with you again when we decide to travel to the south!
Question : Health advice for UK citizens
Answer: Vaccinations are not required when you travel in India; however anti malaria medication is strongly recommended. If you have visited or transited a yellow fever area ten days prior to your scheduled trip to India a yellow fever inoculation certificate will be mandatory. Like all tropical countries, there are precautions that need to be followed while travelling. Indian medical professionals have reputably high standards. Should you need to consult a doctor; most hotels have doctors on call. We would be happy to assist you in visiting the specialist, although appointments are likely to be limited to a certain time of the day. Should you be using prescription medicines, please carry adequate supply - what you use may not be locally available and substitutes may not be suitable. In the unlikely event of hospitalisation, primary and secondary metros offer very high standards of health care. As a primary precaution, always drink bottled water. Ensure your liquid intake is consistent throughout the day. We always recommend that you consult your personal physician prior to any travel. We advise you to consult your doctor or the British Airways Travel Clinics, allowing at least 4 weeks before the date of travel for all medical advice. Some areas including Bhutan and Nepal may be at high altitudes so please check with our staff before confirming your itinerary. You can also check health advice for UK citizens at below link: Http://www.fitfortravel.scot.nhs.uk/destinations/asia-(east)/india.aspx
OUR TOUR INCLUDES:
Accommodation at mentioned hotels,
Buffet breakfasts at the hotels,
Sightseeing tours as mentioned in the itinerary,
Ac vehicle for all transfers & sightseeing as per the itinerary,
Local english speaking guides for all mentioned tours,
Assistance at the airports/railway station on arrival / departure,
Internal train fare for the sector delhi -amritsar delhi,
Monument entrance charges,
All applicable taxes and service charges,
All road taxes, government taxes and driver allowances.