The stories behind the mythological city of Kurukshetra are classic epics in themselves. The mystical origins of the Bhagavad Gita can be traced here. It is a place where wise Rishis compiled the Rigveda and Samaveda. This city was the epicenter of the historic Mahabharata battle. Famous and controversial texts such as the Manu Smriti were chronicled here. So, history buffs thinking of visiting this town, prepare to be transfixed by the sheer number of ancient places to visit in Kurukshetra.
Kurukshetra’s legacy is as old as the history of India itself. The city attracted venerated visitors such as Lord Buddha and several Sikh gurus to its hallowed gates. Today, Kurukshetra is an imperative pilgrimage destination not only for the Hindus but scores of Buddhist and Sikh devotees as well. Several archaeological sites found across Kurukshetra only add to its rich historical tapestry. Do remember to book hotels in Kurukshetra to enjoy a hearty vacation.
But this incredible city isn’t stuck in the past. Kurukshetra is also home to some of the finest planetariums, science centers, and museums in the country. The city promises to redefine and elevate your idea of what a great travel destination should be. Here’s a list of some of the best places to visit in Kurukshetra. Get your hands on the best hotel in Kurukshetra to experience the hospitality of north India.
The Shaktipeeth Shri Devikoop Bhadrakali Mandir is one of the most popular pilgrimage destinations in Kurukshetra. According to the scriptures, Devi Bhagwati committed Sati when she was unable to bear the tarnishing of Lord Shiva’s name and reputation. A distraught Shiva paced the lengths and breadths of the universe with her dead body. Lord Vishnu decided to chop her dead body into 52 parts with his Sudarshan Chakra to spare Shiva the extended agony.
The different parts of her body scattered across the world. The sacred ‘Shaktipeeth’ sites today are the places where Maa Sati’s body parts fell to the earth. It is believed that her right ankle fell at the current location of the Shaktipeeth Shri Devikoop Bhadrakali Mandir in Kurukshetra.
According to legend, the Pandavas stopped to offer prayers at the temple before marching off to fight the epic Mahabharata battle. They also donated some of their horses as an offering to the temple. It is a tradition that lives on today. Devotees from across the country still bring miniature horses of silver or mud as offerings to the temple, depending on what each one can afford. Go for the best hotels in Kurukshetra and enjoy a memorable stay in India.
Jyotisar or the famed birthplace of Gita is the most revered tirtha in Kurukshetra. The Mahabharata battle reportedly began at Jyotisar. Visit this sacred destination for a splendid light and sound show that is put on every evening in both Hindi and English.
The Brahma Sarovar is an ancient pool of water long associated with Lord Brahma, the creator of the Universe. The tank was first excavated by King Kuru, an ancestor of the Kauravs and Pandavas. This stunning and venerated location is one of the most famous places to visit in Kurukshetra. According to legends, Yudhistar constructed a tower in the middle of the Sarovar to celebrate his victory during the Mahabharata. This stunning island also includes a shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva located on its northern banks. The Shiva Linga in this shrine was installed by none other than Lord Brahma himself. The island complex also houses an ancient and beautiful Draupadi Kupa.
The Sarovar is exceptionally beautiful in the winter months! Several migratory birds stop at the Sarovar to quench their thirst en route to their destination. The tank is surreal during Gita Jayanti when its waters glow in the gentle flames lit for the evening Aarti. The Sarovar is believed to contain exceptionally powerful spiritual energies. A dip in the clear waters of the Sarovar during a solar eclipse is considered equal to a thousand Asvamedha Yajnas!
The Tirupati Balaji temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu is a new addition to Kurukshetra. It was constructed especially for Lord Tirupati Balaji devotees in Haryana and North India. Devotees in the northern parts of the country no longer need to go all the way to Andhra Pradesh to seek blessings from Lord Tirupati. Remember to book hotels in Kurukshetra near the temple to experience peace like never before. Remember to book hotels in Kurukshetra near the temple to experience peace like never before.
The Gurudwara Mastgarh was originally a mosque built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in 1630. The mosque was converted into a Gurdwara much later. Its minarets were demolished but other elements such as the dome and Mehtab were left completely intact. The transformation was completed by hoisting the Nishan Sahib (Sikh flag) over the structure and placing the Guru Granth Sahib inside.
Sheikh Chaheli’s tomb is a fascinating complex containing two tombs, a Mughal Garden, and a Madrassa. The primary tomb in the complex belongs to Sheikh Chaheli, a Qadiriyya Sufi master from the court of Mughal Prince Dara Shikoh. The tomb’s design is reminiscent of architecture popular in Persia. It overlooks the madrasa and stands on an artificial terrace. The tomb is magnificent with its exteriors made of sandstone and a pear-shaped dome of white marble.
The memorial to the saint is placed in the center of the chamber while his grave is located in the lower chamber. Antiquities recovered from excavations at Harsh ka Tilla and Bhagwanpura are also displayed in two small museums within the Madrasa. Go for hotels in Kurukshetra to make the most of your stay in Kurukshetra.
The Sri Krishna Museum in Kurukshetra is one of the most unique places to visit in Kurukshetra. The museum endeavors to showcase the mystique of Lord Krishna. It seeks to uncover his multifaceted personalities and adventures as depicted in the Mahabharata and the Bhagavata Purana.
The museum is divided into two blocks with three galleries in each. Some of the most fascinating items on display are stone sculptures, leaf etchings, miniature paintings, bronze castings, clay pottery, and terracotta artifacts.
The Dharohar Museum is housed within the campus of the Kurukshetra University. It was established to exhibit the rich architectural and archaeological heritage of Haryana. The museum also contains an open-air theatre for cultural performances.
Raja Harsha ka Tila is a significant archaeological site in Kurukshetra. Archaeological excavations in this area have uncovered the existence and remnants of a couple of ancient city settlements. The excavated material dates back to cities that existed as far back as the 1st century AD. Antiquities discovered at Raja Harsha Ka Tila were instrumental in piecing together the histories of six historical and cultural periods. This area is one of the most fascinating places to visit in Kurukshetra.
The Kurukshetra Panorama and Science Centre is an innovative learning space that combines the best of science with religion. One of its prime attractions is a life-like rendering of the epic battle of Kurukshetra. Stories from the Mahabharata are interspersed with scientific evidence that supports events depicted in our sacred texts. The paintings depicting this epic battle are 34 ft high and document the eighteen-day confrontation between the Pandavas and the Kauravas in its entirety. What makes the experience even more immersive is the play of light and chanting of the Gita in the background. Remember to book hotels in Kurukshetra near the science centre as soon as possible.
The center also contains an intriguing exhibition in its lower level called ‘India: A Heritage in Science, Technology, and Culture’. The exhibit comprises interactive installations on ancient Indian concepts of matter, the structure of the atom, geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, medicine, and surgery.
Kalpana Chawla Memorial Planetarium pays homage to Dr. Kalpana Chawla, a famous astronaut from India who died on board the ill-fated space shuttle, Columbia. The planetarium was developed to impart non-formal education in astronomy. It was established in 2007 by the Haryana State Council for Science and Technology.
A wonderful Science Park is located right outside the center. The compelling exhibits in the park offer everyone a fun way to learn science. The park is popular not only with children but adults as well.
The planetarium is popular for its astronomy shows, galleries with various exhibits, and Astro Park. It plays a crucial role in igniting scientific curiosity among children and young adults. This wonderful center dedicated to learning is one of the most inspiring places to visit in Kurukshetra.
Thanesar is a place of immense archaeological importance located close to Kurukshetra. The Thanesar Archaeological Site Museum is a first-of-its-kind museum in Haryana devoted to the history of Thanesar. The museum showcases a variety of objects such as clay and terracotta sculptures, ritualistic objects, coins, and ornaments.
When hunger pangs strike after a day out in Kurukshetra, enjoy a great meal at the numerous restaurants around the city.
Some of the most popular restaurants in Kurukshetra are Saffron, Krishna Café, Golden Saras, Mirchi Restaurant, Burger Point, Golden Sweets, The Harsh Family Dhaba, Mr. Chicken, Yuvraj’s Citadel, Veggie Green, and Mezbaan Restaurant.
Between October to March is the best time to visit Kurukshetra. The summers and monsoons are humid and unbearable in the city. The winter months are ideal for a comfortable stay and sightseeing around the mythical city of Kurukshetra.
By Air: The nearest airports to Kurukshetra are the Chandigarh and Ludhiana airports
By Train: Kurukshetra is well-connected by train to major cities of the country via the Kurukshetra Junction (KKDE)
By Road: Kurukshetra is well-connected by bus to major cities in the country
Please go back to portrait mode for the best experience