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Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara – Spiritual Bliss

Located in the western Indian state of Punjab, Anandpur Sahib is a sacred town receiving thousands of Sikh Pilgrims throughout the year. Best known for the countless gurudwaras or Sikh temples located here, it is bordered by the majestic Sutlej river on one side and the towering Shivaliks on another. The Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara is the primary reason for tourist interest in the place. However, both the bristling river and the snow-capped peaks add an aura of natural charm to the city.

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Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara

Guru Tegh Bahadur arrived at Anandpur Sahib in the June of 1665 as he moved away from other Sikh sects residing in Kiratpur. About a decade after he moved to Anandpur Sahib, he died after intense persecution. His death was seen as martyrdom by his followers in the region and his son; Guru Gobind Singh became the tenth guru of Sikhs. Guru Gobind Singh’s popularity grew over the years, and the small Anandpur village turned into a bustling town, with a devoted population of Sikhs. For a short while, religious intolerance wreaked havoc on the city, causing various battles in the region. The city, however, healed from the wounds of the war and turned into a stunning reminder of Indian diversity. Today, the place houses several Gurudwaras that are constructed beautifully and offer peace to every soul.

Gurudwaras at Anandpur Sahib

Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara

The momentous events in the life of Guru Tegh Bahadur and Guru Gobind Singh have been commemorated throughout the city in the form of gurudwaras. There are a total of 10 Gurudwaras in and around Anandpur Sahib. 

1. Gurudwara Takht Sri Kesgarh Sahib

This Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara is one of the most important in India. It is where the Khalsa and the Five Takhts or the Five religious authorities of Sikhism originated, making it a crucial pilgrimage point for Sikhs. Between 1936 and 1934, this Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara, perched on a hillock, was constructed on a massive 30 sq m land. The glowing courtyard has a striking white building and a Takkht office. The gurdwara building has relics from Guru Gobind Singh’s Khalsa – these include his weapons and the Sikh scriptures. The Miri and piri aspects of the Sikh faith are reflected beautifully in the sanctum of this gurudwara. You can visit the Gurudwara to enjoy the holy langar feast or meditate in the calm complex of the place. You can also stay here in the Dashmesh Niwas rooms and refresh yourself with a dip in the gurudwara’s holy Sarovar.

This Gurudwara will never disappoint history lovers, for there is a small religious museum called Virasat-e-Khalsa. This museum has several artefacts that highlight the founding, history, culture and chief practices of Sikhism. 

2. Gurudwara Sisganj 

Gurudwara Sisganj is an Anandpur Sahib gurudwara that commemorates the death of Guru Tegh Bahadur. The exact spot of Tegh Bahadur’s cremation is where guru Gobind Singh built a shrine and platform, later entrusting Gurubaksh to protect the place. After falling prey to the damaging effects of time, the Gurudwara was renovated in the 1970s to make it larger. Right under the pinnacled dome of the gurdwara lies the sanctum. A circumambulation path surrounds the building constructed out of marble stones and pillars. 

3. Gurudwara Bhora Sahib

An edification of Guru Tegh Bahadur’s residence, this Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara contains three remarkable stories. As you explore the lower floor of the place, you will witness a small room where Teg bahadur once spent hours introspecting his religion and meditating in peace. The sanctum of the Gurudwara contains the holy Guru Granth Sahib, a prominent Sikh scripture. You will learn plenty about Sikh history and culture here. 

4. Gurudwara Thara Sahib

Guru Tegh bahadur provided refuge to some Kashmiri Pandits, including Bhai Ram Dutt at this place and fought to maintain religious freedom. The walls of this Gurudwara emanate unparalleled bravery. Do not forget to eat some Langar or lend a helping hand in the community kitchen.

5. Gurudwara Akal Bunga Sahib

Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara

At the Akal Banga Sahib Gurudwara, Guru Gobind Singh delivered an impactful sermon after completing the last rights of his father, Guru Teg Bahadur. This Anandpur Sahib gurudwara will give you a deep insight into Sikhism’s philosophy of peace and justice.

6. Gurudwara Damdama Sahib

The octagonal building of this Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara was where Guru Tegh Bahadur met followers of Sikhism and those wanting to understand or debate the religion. Located within the complex is another iconic gurdwara, Bhora Sahib gurudwara. Do not skip spending time admiring the striking white building and a calm atmosphere.

7. Gurudwara Shaheedi Bagh

Dedicated to the martyrs of the conflict that existed between the Sikh army and the Bilaspur army at one time, this gurudwara is a tribute to valour. Come here to delve deep into India’s historical polity or offer prayers at the sanctum.

8. Gurudwara Mata Jit Kaur

This place is dedicated to Guru Gobind Singh’s wife, who had a premonition of her young sons being tortured. She was said to have a divine eye. Sikhs from all over the world come here to offer prayers. 

9. Gurudwara Guru Ka Mahal

As the name suggests, this place is the parent building of Damdama Sahib, Manji Sahib and Bhora Sahib. It encompasses all the residences of guru teg bahadur and is a place of great religious significance for Sikhs.

10. Gurudwara Manji Sahib

Located a little distance away from the Shri Keshgarh Sahib Takht, this place was once the playground and sports complex for Guru Gobind Singh’s sons. Do not skip eating the tasty Langar, a symbol of Sikh hospitality.

The various  Gurudwaras in Anandpur have the Sutlej river flowing quietly in the background. The Shivaliks stand tall cradling the town in their foothills. As you tread through the gurudwaras, you will witness incredible cultural diversity. The thing that draws the eye most to the level of diversity in these gurdwaras is the Nihangs, a Sikh army dedicated to Lord Shiva, in whose honour they don blue coats. Tales of sacrifice are reflected on every wall of the Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara, and as a tourist, you will experience absolute contentment here.

Other Places to Visit Near Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara

11. Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Sikh Museum

Constructed in 1983, this museum will acquaint you with some of the most cherished belongings of the Guru Tegh Bahadur Singh. The relics and artefacts housed here are an excellent reminder of the struggle of Sikhs throughout history.

12. Jhajjar Bachauli Wildlife Sanctuary

No wildlife lover can miss visiting the Jhajjar Bachauli wildlife sanctuary. Here, you will witness some of the most exotic local wildlife, including jungle cats, monitor lizards and blue bulls. Above all, this place makes for an unrivalled photography opportunity. 

13. Naina Devi Temple

One of the most important Hindu Shakti peethas, Naina Devi temple can be dated back to the 8th century when Raja Bir Chand completed its construction. It is devoted to the goddess Shakti and is believed to be one of the most sacred places in India. As a tourist, you can experience one of the temple’s elaborate rituals or photograph the picturesque hilly surroundings.

Eating Near Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara

Traditional Punjabi food involving urad dal, chana, and Kabuli chana is very famous in the region. You can also try special bread such as Kulche or Bhature. Himachali cuisine is also available in plenty in the area. You will not find fine-dining options easily, but ditch them for spicy street food, and you won’t regret it. 

Celebratory Spirit

Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara

You can witness the Holla Mohalla here, a special kind of Holi celebration marked with vibrant colours, festive lighting and an impressive martial arts display. Traditional Hindu Festivals like Holi and Diwali are also celebrated in the region with great enthusiasm. Most gurudwaras hold festive feasts and fares on Guru Nanak Jayanti, serving excellent local dishes and organizing exhibitions.

Shopping in Anandpur Sahib

Leather shoes, bags, woollens, copper and brass jewellery, and handicrafts are some choicest items you can take home from Anandpur Sahib. You may also shop for copies of Sikh scriptures or books detailing the history of the place. Take back with you a few miniature souvenirs made of marble to immortalise your vacation. 

How to Reach Anandpur Sahib?

Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara
  • For travel via flight, board a plane to the Chandigarh International Airport and then book a cab to reach Anandpur Sahib
  • If you are travelling using trains, boarding one to Anandpur Sahib or Ambala Railway stations is a right choice. 
  • Anandpur Sahib is connected by road to the surrounding Punjabi and Himachali cities. You can take a bus or rent a car to travel by road to Anandpur Sahib.

Cameras and Mobile phones

Unrestricted usage of cameras and mobile phones is not permitted within the sanctums of the gurdwara. However, you should not face troubles photographing the Sarovar and the marvellous building of the Anandpur Sahib Gurudwara.

Anandpur Sahib gurudwara is more than just a spiritual retreat. As a tourist, you will experience pure bliss when you get here. The pride of Sikhs, this place is a melting pot of their heritage and history. As you venture through the beautiful Shivaliks and walk around the lush green surroundings of the Gurudwara, you will find yourself in a traveller’s paradise.

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