India is a diverse land of people with different religions, culture, caste, and beliefs. The true beauty of the place lies in the unity of the country and unbelievable diversity. Along with other religions like Hinduism, Islam, and Christianity, Sikhism is an important religion which is spread across the country. Initially, it was limited to some regions of Punjab but as time took its trail, its roots were spread to the entire nation.
Sikhism was founded by Sri Guru Nanak in the 15th century. It is the youngest of the world’s religion which is barely 500 years old. Sri Guru Nanak spread a very simple message ‘Ek Ong Kar’ which means we are all one created, by one creator and the only god that we all have is ‘Sat Nam’, the truth. It is only the paths that are different for all of us. In his teachings, he used to oppose superstition, injustice, and hypocrisy through his songs which inspired his followers. These songs were recorded and later became the beginning of the holy and sacred book ‘Siri Guru Granth Sahib’.
Sikh Pilgrimage sites are mostly situated within the territory of Punjab which is mainly Sikh dominated state but apart from that, there are Pilgrimages in the other parts of the country too which are visited by several devotees from all around the world.
- 1 The Golden Temple, Amritsar
- 2 Sri Anandpur Sahib, Chandigarh
- 3 Sri Fatehgarh Sahib, Patiala
- 4 Sri Damdama Sahib, Bathinda
- 5 Sri Hemkunt Sahib, Uttarakhand
- 6 Sri Patna Sahib, Patna
- 7 Takht Sri Hazur Sahib, Maharashtra
- 8 Sri Tarn Taran, Amritsar
- 9 Sri Gurudwara Ber Sahib, Kapurthala
- 10 Sri Goindwal Sahib, Taran Taran
- 11 Sri Baba Bakala, Amritsar
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The Golden Temple, Amritsar
The Golden temple which is also known as Har Mandir Sahib is the holiest shrine of Sikhism. The architecture of the temple is a combination of Hindu and Muslim styles. The entire upper half of the temple is inlaid with copper covered with gold plates. The original holy book of the Sikhs ‘Adi Granth’ is kept inside the temple as the main attraction for all the devotees coming over.
Sri Anandpur Sahib, Chandigarh
Anandsahab or Takht Sri Keshgarh Sahib is one esteemed pilgrimage for Sikhs which is located at a distance of 80 km away from Chandigarh. It is said to be the birthplace of Khalsa Panth. The place is significant to Sikhism as it has witnessed many important events such as the foundation of Khalsa Panth and establishment of the council of five wise men, who govern religious affairs of Sikhs. Some festivals are celebrated here too like Baisakhi and Holla Mohalla.
Sri Fatehgarh Sahib, Patiala
It is a significant Sikh pilgrimage which is also referred as a town of victory. The story behind it is that more than 1500 Sikhs demolished a fort which was built during the rule of Balban. It reminds of the martyrdom of the two sons of Guru Gobind Singh Ji – the 10th guru of Sikhs. There is another place Gurudwara Jyoti Saroop Sahib where cremation ceremonies are held in honor of deceased Sikh Martyrs.
Sri Damdama Sahib, Bathinda
It is one of the five takhts of Sikhism. Takhts is the seat of temporal authority in Sikhism. At Sri Damdama Sahib, Raja Ajmer Chand with two Mughal accomplices attacked Guru Gobind Singh but was beaten badly. After this incident, the Mughal general became the devotee of Guru Ji. On the same place, Guru Gobind Singh Ji completed the holy book of Sikhism ‘Siri Guru Granth Sahib’. It has several other shrines along with the main Gurudwara like Tibbi Sahib, Jand Sahib, Gurusar, and Likhansar.
Sri Hemkunt Sahib, Uttarakhand
Sri Hemkunt Sahib is the highest Gurudwara on earth. Hemkunt is mentioned in the autobiography of Guru Gobind Singh Ji but it existed even before that. It is mentioned in some parts of Ramayana. It is situated at a perfect destination amidst the gorgeous surroundings of Uttarakahand overlooking Lake Hemkund Lake or Lokpal Lake.
Sri Patna Sahib, Patna
Situated at the banks of Ganga River, Sri Patna Sahib is the place where Guru Gobind Singh Ji was born in the year 1666 which is why it holds a great importance to Sikhs all around the country. The two greatest Gurus of Sikhism Guru Shri Nanak Dev Ji and Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji paid a visit to this holy Gurudwara.
Takht Sri Hazur Sahib, Maharashtra
It is amongst the five sacred takhts if Sikhism. The place holds a special significance in Sikhism as it is the same place where Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji took his last breath. It was built on the order of Maharaja Ranjit Singh on the banks of Godavari River.
Sri Tarn Taran, Amritsar
Shri Guru Arjan Dev Ji laid the foundation of Sri Tarn Taran Sahib temple. The water in the Sikh tank is said to have some healing properties and restorative properties for minor skin ailment. The temple was constructed by Ranjit Singh Ji and on every Amavasya night of the month, fairs are held at the temple.
Sri Gurudwara Ber Sahib, Kapurthala
Sri Gurudwara Ber Sahib is the place where Guru Gobind Singh Ji would go for a bath before meditating. One day while bathing, Nanak disappeared for 3 days and is said to be in a holy communion with God. When he returned, he returned with a mission to preach Sikkhism all his life. He planted a tree seedling on the spot which has now become a large tree and which is why the name became Sri Gurudwara Ber Sahib.
Sri Goindwal Sahib, Taran Taran
Sri Goindwal Sahib was the first Sikh pilgrimage which was established by the third guru of Sikhism, Guru Amar Das. He stayed at Goindwal for 33 years. It is believed that if you recite Japji Sahib on every step on every step of the 84 steps after taking bath in the Baoli situated in Goindwal, you can attain Moksha (salvation).
Sri Baba Bakala, Amritsar
Baba Bakala is a renowned historical town closely associated with 9th Sikh Guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur. It has a very interesting tale behind it.
When the 8th Sikh guru, Guru Harkrishan was asked the name of his successor on his deathbed, he uttered the name of the town Baba Bakala. The people of the town then started claiming themselves as the Guru. Meanwhile, Baba Makhan Shah Labana, a trader got stuck in the sea and asked for help from Guru Gobind Singh Ji. He told that he would give 500 dinars against his protection. By God’s grace, he safely reached the land and was shocked to see the people there claiming themselves as Guru. He said that he would give 2 dinars to whoever claiming to be the successor. The people who agreed in 2 dinars were false people while only Tegh Bahadur knew that he promised 500 dinars in the sea and this way he became the 9th Sikh guru.