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Indian States

Uttar Pradesh

Uttar Pradesh - Uttar Pradesh has a very old and fascinating history. The recorded history of Uttar Pradesh dates back to the early Vedic period. From the third century BC, the region of Uttar Pradesh was a province of the large Mauryan dynasty. Chandragupta Maurya and the emperor Ashoka were two of the most famous Mauryan kings to have ruled the illustrious dynasty. Chandragupta embraced Jainism while Ashoka embraced and spread Buddhism. After the decline and downfall of the Moghuls, several kingdoms mushroomed in Uttar Pradesh. During the eighteenth century, different regions of Uttar Pradesh were under different rulers. The state of Oudh was ruled by the Nawabs who established the city of Lucknow; which went on to become a seat of Urdu literature and classical music and dance, whereas Afghans established their rule in Rohilkhand. In Bundelkhand, Marathas established their political hegemony. However, with the political ascent of the Britishers, the sovereignty of these states was compromised. Britishers went on to establish their paramount power in the region and consequently, across the country. The region was also a major centre in the Indian independence movement and was witness to a series of political turmoils of those years. Allahabad was home to prominent leaders in freedom struggle like Motilal Nehru and Jawaharlal Nehru, Purushottam Das Tandon and Madan Mohan Malaviya. Gobind Vallabh Pant was another important leader of Uttar Pradesh who played his role in the freedom struggle. He was sworn in as the first Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh and it was he who renamed the United Provinces (named by the Britishers in 1902) as Uttar Pradesh in 1950. In 2000, a new state of Uttaranchal, comprising the Garhwal and the Kumaon region, was carved out from Uttar Pradesh.

 

Main Cities / Towns

 

Lucknow, the capital city of Uttar Pradesh


Lucknow is the capital of Uttar Pradesh, a state in Northern India, which also happens to be the largest and the most populated state in the country. The city has been known as one of the major cultural centers of North India, for more than two centuries. Literature, music and dance have flourished here, under the patronage of the rulers of the region in the 18th and 19th centuries. Like all the major cities of that period, a lot of buildings have been built in Lucknow over the past three centuries, some of which still stand proudly as the tourist attractions in Lucknow. Tourism in Lucknow is a wonderful experience, the city being full of excellent buildings, gardens and vibrant bazaars. This city is undoubtedly one of the major contributors towards the growth of Uttar Pradesh tourism.

 

Tourist attraction in Lucknow

 

Bara Imambara – built by Asaf-ud-Daula in the year 1784, this magnificent structure is one of the major tourist attractions of Lucknow. It is said that the project was started in order to provide employment to thousands of hapless workers during a great famine. The Imambara is a Shiite religious building, and serves as the venue of religious gatherings during Muharram and other significant occasions of the Shia religion. The biggest attraction of this building complex is the Bhulbhulaiya, a maze with confusing passages. Tourists are deliberately left by the guides to find their way out of this maze. The place is said to have been used for the recreation of the royalty. A splendid mosque is located in the complex.

Chota Imambara – the smaller Imambara, as the name literally translates to, was built in 1837, and is said to be the brainchild of Mohammed Ali Shah. The complex contains many tombs, said to be those of Mohammad Ali Shah and his family members. The main building of this Imambara is topped by a golden dome, which when illuminated during festivities, offers a fantastic view. This complex is also known by the name of Husainabad Imambara.

The Residency – the Residency is a group of British buildings that used to serve as the headquarters of the British Resident in the state of Oudh, or Awadh as the region around Lucknow was known back in early 19th century. The complex was attacked by the mutineers during the 1857 revolt, and taken over by the Indian soldiers. The Residency is situated at the centre of the city, in the Hazratgunj area.

Rumi Darwaza – this beautiful structure is also said to be part of the famine relief plans for which the bara imambara was commissioned. Built in 1783, this gigantic gate soars top 60 feet, and is one of the famous landmarks of the city. The gateway is located to the Northwest of the Bara Imambara.

Sikandar Bagh – this garden was laid in 1800 by Nawab Saadat Ali Khan and was later used by the last Nawab of Oudh, Wajid Ali Shah. The name is derived from his favorite queen, Sikandara Mahal Begum. The garden, with a small pavilion in the middle, served as the venue for cultural events and dance performances. During the 1857 revolt, the mutineers took refuge here, and about 2000 of them were reportedly slaughtered by the British.

Some other tourist spots make up the overall tourism in Lucknow and should be visited as part of the Lucknow tours. The other places to visit in the city include Chattar manzil,Qaiser bagh palace, La Martiniere College, State Museum and Aurangzeb’s mosque.

ALLAHABAD

Allahabad a highly religious place for Hindus and Muslims was established by King Akbar by the name of Illahabas, meaning house of Allah. The British modified the name as per there convenience and started calling it Allahabad. Akbar realised the commercial importance of this place and built several Ghats on the river banks. Later the city developed as a major trade centre in Uttar Pradesh.

Allahabad was once called Oxford of east, due to the high standards of education in Allahabad University. Allahabad has produced many great scholars, poets, thinkers, statesman and leaders. It was a strategic location for the activities of Indian freedom struggle. Religiously highly sacred, Allahabad is host of the Maha Kumbh Mela on the Confluence site (Triveni Sangam). Many temples, churches and mosques are built across the city. Today Allahabad rests peacefully with a great past, calm present and a promising future.

Tourist attraction in Allahabad

Sangam - The sacred Sangam is the confluence of three of the holiest rivers in Hindu mythology - Ganga , Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati. It is believed that it is at the Sangam that a few drops of the nectar 'Amrit" spilled making its waters truly magical. It is around 7 Kms. from civil lines overlooked by the eastern ramparts of the Allahabad fort, wide flood plains and muddy banks protrude towards the sacred Sangam.

Allahabad Fort -  Allahabad Fort was built by emperor Akbar in 1583 AD. The fort stands on the banks of the river Yamuna near the confluence site. Its distance from Civil Lines is about 8 kms. In its prime, the fort was unrivalled for its design, construction and craftsmanship. At present the fort is used by the Army and only a limited area is open to visitors.

Anand Bhawan - Anand Bhawan is the ancestral home of the Nehrus. Here one is offered a glimpse of the lifestyle of the family that retained for a long time the status of the most important political dynasty in India. Anand Bhawan now houses one of the finest museums of India and a memorabilia of the Nehru-Gandhi family

Allahabad Museum - It is located near Chandra Shekhar Azad Park, the key attractions of the Allahabad Museum are the paintings of Nicholas Roerich, Rajasthani miniatures, terracotta figurines, coins and stone sculptures from the second century BC to modern times. The museum has eighteen galleries and is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily except Monday.

Khusro Bagh - It is one of the Mughal Gardens which was made by Jahangir in the memory of his beloved son Prince Khusro. The tomb of the prince was made in the centre of it. It is situated on G.T. Road near Allahabad Junction. Guava and mangoes of this garden are very famous.

Hanuman Temple - The Hanuman Temple is a unique temple in the vicinity of the Allahabad Fort. It is renowned for the supine image of the monkey-god Hanuman. This is the only temple to have Hanuman in a reclining posture. Though a very small temple, it is thronged by hundreds of devotees everyday.

Allahabad University -  It is situated near Anand Bhawan. Founded in 1887, it is one of the most famous Universities of India . It has a sprawling campus, graced by fine buildings in Victorian and Islamic architectural styles.

Jawahar Planetarium - It is situated beside Anand Bhawan. It Can be visited for a celestial trip of the scientific kind. It's worth every moment. Five shows are run from 11.00 AM, 12.00 Noon 2.00 PM, 3.00 PM & 4.00 PM . Closed on Mondays & Govt. holidays.

All Saints Cathedral - It is dedicated to the memory of people of all ages and places who have kept their faith in the Almighty. This magnificent cathedral designed by Sir William Emerson in 1870 and consecrated in 1887 is one of the finest cathedrals in Asia and is faced in white stone with red stone dressing. No one visiting the cathedral can fail to be impressed by the beauty of the marble altar with intricate inlay and mosaic work.

AGRA

 

Agra is the one of the prominent destinations of the World Tourism map with three heritage monuments-The Taj Mahal, Red Fort & Fatehpur Sikri. It is an ancient city located on the Yamuna River in India, within the state of Uttar Pradesh. It achieved prominence as the capital of the Mughal sovereigns from 1526 to 1658 and remains a major tourist destination, because of its many splendid Mughal-era buildings, most notably the Taj Mahal. Agra is famous for handicrafts products such as Inlay work on Marvel, Leather work, Footwear, Brasswear, Carpets, Jewelry, Zari and Embroidery work. It is also well known for Petha, Dalmoth and Gajak.

A pleasant town with a comparatively slow pace, Agra is known for its superb inlay work on marble and soapstone by craftsmen who are descendants of those who worked under the Mughals. The city is also famous for its carpets, gold thread embroidery and leather shoes.

On your Palace on Wheels tour with About Palace on Wheels, you will visit various tourist attractions in and around Agra. Some of them are mentioned below for your reference.


Tourist attraction in
Agra


Taj Mahal- The symbol of eternal love, the Taj Mahal was built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan in memory of his beloved queen Mumtaz Mahal, who died at a young age of 38 while giving birth to their 14th child. Situated on the bank of Yamuna River, the Taj Mahal represents a fine blend of Mughal, Persian, Central Asian, and Islamic architecture. The most impressive and remarkable features of the Taj Mahal are its four tall minarets (162.5 feet high) at four corners of the structure, the black and white chessboard marble floor and the majestic dome (213 feet high and 58 feet in diameter) in the middle. The Taj Mahal is one of the most visited and most photographed monuments in the world.

Agra Fort - The Mughal Emperor Akbar laid the foundation of the Agra Fort in 1565 AD. It took eight years to complete this massive fort at a cost of 3.5 million rupees at that time. After Akbar, Jehangir and Shah Jahan also added some new features to the fort. The fort is known for its magnificent architectural styles reflected in its various features. Some of the main attractions in the fort include the Diwan-e-Aam, the Diwan-e-Khas, the Moti Masjid (Pearl Mosque), the Nagina Masjid and the Palace of Mirrors.

Tomb of Itmad-Ud-Daulah - Built by Noor Jahan - the wife of the Mughal Emperor Jehangir -- in memory of his father, the white marble tomb represents a fine example of Indo-Persian architecture. Enjoying the privilege of being the first marble tomb of the Mughal period, the tomb of Itmad-ud-Daulah must be visited to see its beautiful inlay designs and carvings, which are considered even superior to the Taj Mahal. The tomb is popularly known as the 'Baby Taj'.

Jama Masjid or Jami Masjid - Built by Jahan Ara Begum -- the favorite daughter of Shah Jahan who was also imprisoned with him -- in 1648, the mosque has a unique shaped dome with no minarets.

Akbar's Mausoleum -  The mausoleum of Akbar is located at Sikandra at about 10 Km from Agra. Akbar himself designed and started its construction. The beautiful tomb enjoys a perfect blending of Hindu, Christian, Islamic, Buddhist and Jain motifs.

Fatehpur Sikri - Located at a distance of about 37 Km from Agra, the Red Sandstone town of Fatehpur Sikri was built by Akbar as his capital during 1571 and 1585. The city represents a fine blend of Indo- Mughal architecture. The main attractions at Fatehpur Sikri are the Buland Darwaza (54m high) - the largest gateway in the world and the tomb of famous Sufi saint Shaikh Salim Chisti.

 

AYODHYA

 

The main tourist attraction of Ayodhya was the Babri Masjid (Mosque), built by the Mughal king Babur. Unfortunately, the traveler can no longer see this monument as it was demolished in the riots that took place here in 1992. It is said that Ayodhya has 7000 temples, but there are some 100 temples of relative significance. Near the remains of the Babri Masjid, the traveler can see the Ram Janmabhumi (birthplace of Lord Ram) shrine. It is believed that Lord Ram spent much of his childhood here. Other places to visit in Ayodhya are Lakshman Ghat, Kala Ram temple and the Kanak Bhavan temple, which was built in the 19th century. There are several Jain shrines in Ayodhya. One kilometer east of the Ram Janmabhumi shrine is Hanumangadhi (Fortress of Hanuman, the revered monkey god and friend/devotee of Lord Ram). It is said that Lord Hanuman lived in a cave nearby to protect the Ram Janmabhumi.

 

Tourist attraction in Ayodhya


Ayodhya Lord Rama’s Janam Bhumi ( Birth Place)

Though a thinly-populated town now, Ayodhya ranked amongst the six most important Indian cities in the 6th century b.c. Sacred to the Hindus because it was Rama’s birthplace, it continues to hog the limelightfor the same reason. It caught global attention in 1992, when the Babri Masjid (it was, as claimed by some people, built on the same spot where Rama was born) was demolished. The demolition was followed by large-scale communal violence in most parts of the country. The place is now a high-security zone.

Amongst the places of interest in the town are some Hindu temples and bathing ghats (steps leading down to the river). Lakshman Ghat, and Swarga Dwara (Rama Ghat) are important ghats. Besides these, there are some kunds (wells) which serve as bathing spots

Ramjanambhumi - Ramjanambhumi is the place where Rama is believed to have been born. The Mughal Emperor Babur had built a mosque on this spot. The mosque was razed to ground in 1992.

Temples - Over 100 temples exist in Ayodhya of which Hanuman Gadhi is very famous. It is dedicated to Hanuman, the monkey-god. Treta Ka Mandir is another important temple where Rama is believed to have performed a yajna (sacrifice). Kshireswara Nath Temple is a very old temple and is supposed to have been built by Kaushalya, mother of Rama. She is said to have constructed this temple for her daughter-in-law, Sita (consort of Rama). Other temples you could visit include Kanak Bhavan and Kala Rama Temple which house idols of Rama and Sita.

Ghats - Ayodhya is situated on the banks of the Gogra (Ghaghara or Saryu) River. There are many holy ghats along its banks. Bathing in these ghats, it is believed, absolves people of their sins. Ram Ghat, which is also known as Swarga Dwara, is the most famous one amongst these. Lakshman Ghat is another important bathing ghat which is considered to be sacred, as Lakshman, Rama’s brother, is said to have bathed at this ghat.
 

Hanuman Garhi - Hanuman Garhi temple is easily approachable from the rest of Ayodhya as it is situated right in the center of the town. The temple is a must visit during your trip to Ayodhya. The temple is an important site both in terms of religion as well as architecture and is thus hot among the tourists visiting Ayodhya. Hanuman Garhi is a massive structure in the shape of a four-sided fort with circular bastions at each corner.

Jain Shrines - Ayodhya is not only the birthplace of Lord Rama but is also held on high esteem because of its association with Jainism as a religion. Several followers of the Jainism faith from all over India frequent Ayodhya every year. This is because of the fact that there are several Jain temples in Ayodhya. It is believed by the followers of Jainism that Ayodhya is the birthplace of as many as 5 of his Tirthankaras. These Jain temples mark the place where these Tirthankaras were born. It is said that Kesari Singh, the treasurer of Nawab of Faizabad, built 5 separate shrines to mark the birthplace of these Tirthankaras. The temples bear the date of Vikram samvat 1781.

Kanak Bhawan - Kanak Bhawan is another important temple in the city of Ayodhya. Situated near Hanuman Garhi, Kanak Bhawan is frequented by scores of tourists every year. The Temple is famous for the images of Sri Rama and Sita wearing gold crowns. Because of this very reason, it is also popularly referred to as Sone-ka-Ghar at times.

 

Nageshwarnath Temple - The temple of Nageshwarnath is said to have been established by Kush the son of Rama. Legend has it that Kush lost his armlet, while bathing in the Saryu, which was picked up by a Nag-Kanya, who fell in love with him. As she was a devotee of Shiva, Kush erected this temple for her. It is said that this has been the only temple to have survived till the time of Vikramaditya, the rest of city had fallen into ruins and was covered by dense forests. It was by means of this temple that Vikramaditya was able to locate Ayodhya and the sites of different shrines here. The festival of Shivratri is celebrated here with great pomp and splendor.


Other places of interest
Rishabhadeo Jain Temple, Brahma Kund, Amawan Temple, Tulsi Chaura, Laxman Quila, Angad Tila, Shri Rama Janaki Birla Temple, Tulsi Smarak Bhawan, Ram ki Paidi, Kaleramji ka Mandir, Datuvan Kund, Janki Mahal, Gurudwara Brahma Kund Ji, Ram Katha Museum, Valmiki Ramayan Bhawan, are among other places of interest in Ayodhya.

 

BAREILLY

The Bareilly city, located on the banks of the Ramganga River, is situated within the administrative district of Bareilly. The cosmopolitan township of Bareilly dates back to approximately 500 years ago and was known as Bans-Bareilly, known after the two sons of the ruler Bansal Dev and Baral Dev.Originally, Bareilly was famous for its artistic artwork with bamboo, and the exquisite folk art of embroidery known as Zari-Zardozi. Zari-Zardozi is a traditional type of artwork that utilizes various kinds of gold threading, beads, spangles, seed pearls, gota and wiring for decorating fine furnishings and garments.Bareilly is in close proximity for visiting Delhi and Lucknow hence short trips can be arranged. With seven different rivers flowing through the city, numerous water- related activities can be enjoyed such as swimming, rafting and boating. Bareilly is known for its prominent medical collages, especially the dental and an Ayurvedic college

Bareilly is the 4th city of Uttar Pradesh which has CNG fuel stations, after Lucknow, Kanpur and Agra. Bareilly is the 7th largest metropolitan city of Uttar Pradesh and 50th largest metropolitan city of India. This fast-growing city is also known as Bans-Bareilly, due to its big bamboo market. Bareilly is also known as the counter-magnet city because it is equidistant from New Delhi and Lucknow and has a lot of potential for setting up industries to attract people to settle. Historically it was the part of the ancient kingdom of Panchal. In the Medieval period it was under the Rohillas. The modern city's foundation was laid by Mukrand Rai in 1657.

Tourist attraction in Bareilly

Bareilly is an old city and has a lot of tourist places to explore and some of them we are mentioning here:

Parks - Akshar Vihar, Executive Park, Gandhi Udyan

Temples - Bareilly city is a spiritual city therefore lots of holy temples are here and some of them are Alakhnath Temple, Tibri Nath Temple, Marimanth Temple, Dhopeshwarnath Temple, Gulharhiya Gaurishankar Temple.

Majares - This city has a pride history of Muslim sages. Therefore some holy majares are here and these are Majare Aala Hazrat, Khanqahai Aaliya Niyazia, Bara Burji Masjid (Tehsil, Aanwala).

Church - The only church of the Bareilly city is Freewell Baptist Church.

Market - Bareilly is world wide famous for his Bamboo furniture work and Zari Zarkari work. You can get these items of bamboo in almost every corner of the Bazaar. Bareilly is also famous for its camphor industry (the city is largest producer and exporter of camphor in India). Surma is another product for which Bareilly is famous, so please don’t forget to buy such world famous products from the Bareilly Bazaar.

Rivers - The city is nurtured by the river

Ramganga that flows from the West to the South-East. This river provides water for irrigation in the crop fields as well. On a visit to Bareilly, one can enjoy a relaxing boat ride on the Ramganga. The other rivers are the Siddha, the Dojora, the Bahgul (west), the Sankha, the Deoranian and the Nakatia, and their tributaries, which mostly rise in the Tarai.

 

FAIZABAD

 

The city of Faizabad originally known as  Fyzabad, is situated in Eastern India, in Uttar Pradesh State, on the bank of River Saryu, about 130 k.m. east of  Lucknow. The city was founded  by Ali Vardi Khan, nawab of Bengal (1676-1756) in 1730. The foundation of Faizabad was laid by Saadat Khan, the second Nawab of Awadh. His successor Shuja-ud-daula made it the capital of Awadh. Faizabad  as a township, developed about   220 years ago.  Safdar Jang, the second nawab of Avadh (1739-54), made it as his military headquarters

Faizabad is a place of sugar refineries and mills for extracting oil from seeds. It is a market center for the produce of the surrounding area, including grain, oilseeds, cotton, and tobacco. A hydroelectric plant is located nearby. The ruins of the ancient town of Ajodhya, with the modern town standing nearby, are located across the river and form a part of Faizabad. Ayodhya, which is among the principal religious centers of India, is an important place of Hindu pilgrimage. Faizabad is a small developing city, here you can have fun of both the worlds of the town as well as the village if you go outside the city you will find lots of fields with plenty of crops.

 

Tourist attraction in Faizabad

Fort Calcutta - Fort Calcutta was constructed by Shuja-ud-daulah after he suffered defeat at the hands of the British, in the Battle of Buxer in 1764. The fort has massive clay ramparts. The Nawab lived here, and after his death on the 26th January, 1775, it continued to be the resident of his widow, Bahu Begum. After Shuja-ud-daulah, the fort declined in importance and Lucknow became the seat of power of the next Nawab, Asaf-ud-daulah.

Mausoleum of Bahu Begum - Built in 1816, the mausoleum of Bahu Begum is ‘the finest building of the kind in Oudh’. Built in white marble, it is 42m high.

Gulab Bari - The plan and chief features of this building are taken from Gulab Bari, another important monument at Faizabad. Bahu Begum, widow of Shuja-ud-daulah, fell prey to the conspiracy hatched by Asaf-ud-daulah in connivance with the British East India Company.
The role of Warren Hastings (1774-85), the first Governor General of Bengal, in the whole episode is not above reproach.
They tried to deprive the widow of the immense wealth which she had inherited from her husband.

Mausoleum of Shuja-ud-daulah or Gulab Bari - Situated 2.5km from the Mausoleum of Bahu Begum, the mausoleum of Shuja-ud-daulah was built in 1775. The ground floor contains three tombstones. The tomb in the centre is that of Shuja-ud-daulah, while to its left lies the tomb of his mother. The third one is that of his father. The complex also houses a mosque and an imambara (tomb of a Shiite Muslim holy man). The imambara lies to the south of the tombs.

Museum - There exists a fine museum in the Guptar Park, near the Guptar Ghat. Within the park lies a temple, located at the place from where Rama is believed to have disappeared.

There are some beautiful temples at the Guptar Ghat such as Chakra Harji Vishnu Temple and Gupta Harji and Raja Mandir. Imprints believed to be of Rama’s feet have been found in the Chakra Harji Vishnu Temple.

GORAKPUR


Gorakhpur, situated on the banks of rivers Rapti and Rohini was earlier known as Ramgram and used to be the capital of the Koliyas. Gorakhpur got its name from the famous saint Gorakhnath who lived and spread his message there. There is also evidence that Lord Buddha also visited Gorakhpur and then moved to Kushinagar, a nearby pilgrimage center of Buddhists.Gorakhpur has a place of prominence in the history of Indian independence because it was here that the 'ChauriChaura' incident took place when 19 British policemen were burnt inside the police station which prompted Gandhiji to give up the policy of non-cooperation.

 

The tourist attractions in Gorakhpur in the state of Uttar Pradesh have a medieval splendour. Gorakhpur is also popular as a stopover for Indian tourists going to Nepal because it shares a border with Nepal.

Tourist attractions in
Gorakhpur

 

Arogya Mandir - Gorakhpur Arogya Mandir was established in the year 1940 by Dr. Vithal Das Modi who took birth in Gorakhpur on 25th April 1912. Dr. Vithal Das Modi was a graduate from Benaras Hindu University and took active part in the fighting for India's freedom. He was a naturopath, litterateur and philanthropist. He was also known to be the teacher of special repute of 'Vipassana' meditation taught by Gautam the Buddha, until 23rd march, 2000 when he died. This vice-president of All-India Nature-Cure council penned several books on Nature-cure of which 'Rogon ki Saral Chikitsa' was widely recognized and has been published in 14 editions.

 

Gorakhnath Temple – This temple is situated around 4 kms from the city railway station on the Nepal road and is dedicated to the great yogi, Gorakhnath. It is one of the most prominent temples of the region. Every year during the month of January, “Makar Sankranti Mela” is held which attracts pilgrims and tourists from all parts of the country.

 

Vishnu Temple – This temple is dedicated to God Vishnu and has a large statue of Lord Vishnu made of black stone. Ram Lila is performed here during the Dusshera festival.

Arogya Mandir – This is a renowned centre for Naturopathy and patients come here for treatment of various ailments while staying close to nature.

 

Imambara –This was built by the great Sufi saint Roshan Ali Shah during the 18th Century. Every year during the Muslim month of Muharram “Tazia” processions are taken out from the Imambara.

 

Ramgarh Tal(Lake) –This is a huge natural lake near the city. There is an amusement park and a planetarium, apart from these number of other water sports activities are being developed to attract both the locals and the tourists.

 

Gita Press –This is situated in the Reti Chowk area of the city and it is centre of great cultural importance. All sorts of Hindu religious books and handloom textiles are sold here at subsidized rates.The surroundings of Gorakhpur are rich in cultural and historical sights. Some of the places which are worth visiting and are close to Gorakhpur are:

 

Lumbini –Lumbini is the birth place of Lord Buddha and it is situated in Nepal around 124 km from Gorakhpur. A temple dedicated to Lord Buddha’s mother Mahamaya and an Ashokan pillar with inscriptions in Prakit, can also be found here.

 

Kapilavastu –This place is around 95 kms from Gorakhpur and is believed to be the place where Lord Buddha spent 29 years of his early life. There is a big stupa from where precious relics of Lord Buddha have been discovered during excavations.

 

Pawa Nagar –Situated around 70 km from Gorakhpur, this is the place where Lord Mahavira, 24 Thirthankaras of Jains attained salvation or nirvana.

 

Maghar –Situated around 25 kms from Gorakhpur, this is the place where the great saint and social reformer of the medieval period Sant Kabir Das breathed his last. A temple and a mosque stand close by to the place where he was cremated as a symbol of communal harmony.

 

Chauri Chaura –Chauri chaura or Shaheed smarak is around 25 kms from Gorakhpur and is the place where in 1922, a mob of around 2000 people torched a police station killing 19 of them. This violent incident forced Gandhiji to suspend the Non Cooperation Movement which was started in 1920

 

Kushinagar –This is situated around 50 kms from Gorakhpur and is an important international tourist centre, closely associated with Lord Buddha, the founder of Buddhism. It is the place where Buddha breathed his last and achieved Mahaparinirvana(salvation) and was cremated here.

 

JAUNPUR

Jaunpur was of great importance during medieval times. It was founded in the 14th century by Feroz Shah Tuglaq to perpetuate the memory of his cousin Sultan Mohammad whose real name was Jauna. Later, around 1394 AD, it became the centre of the independent Sharquie kingdom of Jaunpur founded by Malik Sarvar. They were great patrons of art and architecture and constructed many fine tombs, mosques and madarsas. These have a distinctive style which bear influences of later Tughlaq architecture. Jaunpur was also an important centre of Islamic studies. While its architectural heritage speaks of its illustrious past, the city is known today for its Jasmine oil, tobacco leaves, raddish and imarti, a sweetmeat.PRIME ATTRACTIONS

Tourist attraction in Jaunpur

Atala Masjid - Built in 1408 in the reign of Ibrahim Sharquie, this mosque stands at the site of a Hindu temple, dedicated to Atala Devi. This mosque represents the earliest and finest example of Sharquie architecture. Its most distinguishing feature is the original treatment of the facade of its prayer-hall composed of three large ornamental archways, the central one of which soaring to 23 mts, is gigantic.

Jami Masjid - The most impressive and the largest of the mosques, Jami Masjid was built by Hussain Shah in 1458-78. The imposing structure, raised on a high plinth, encloses a courtyard. At the top of the interior of the prayer hall is a lofty dome.

Lal Darwaza Masjid - The construction of this mosque, around 1450, is attributed to Bibi Raji, the queen of Sultan Mahmud Shah.

Khalis Mukhlis Masjid - This was constructed by Malik Mukhlis and Khalis in 1417.

Shitla Choukiya Dham - This famous, ancient temple of Jaunpur is dedicated to Shitla Mata.

Yamdagni Ashram - A religious centre, this ashram is closely associated with the life of sage Parashuram. Other places of interest include Shahi Qil, Khwab-Gah, Dargah Chishti, Pan-e-Sharif, Jahangiri Masjid, Akbari Bridge and the tombs of the Sharquie Sultans.

Jaunpur fort -  The simple yet well maintained Jaunpur Fort overlooking river Gomati, was built by Feroz Shah in 1360. With an old pillar, a mosque and a hammam to be seen, Jaunpur Fort is worth visiting. There are good views from the fort's walls, especially towards Akbari Bridge, the best view being from the fort.

 

EXCURSIONS

Trilochan Mahadev Temple - An important temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, it is located 40 kms from Jaunpur.

KANPUR

Kanpur is one of the most populous cities in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. Kanpur is located on the banks of the Ganga and is an important industrial center. Kanpur is home to several educational institutions including CSJM University, one of the Indian Institutes of Technology, University Institute of Engineering and Technology, HBTI, and GSVM Medical College.

Kanpur is historically very important, as it was the capital of independence struggle of India. Many leaders, poets, thinkers and businessman of Kanpur have made it big globally. The city has a unique charm. For tourists, the city has to offer the historical ghats and temples of Bithoor, the freedom fighter's epicentre Phoolbagh, 6th century city in Jajmau, the zoological park and Nawabganj wildlife sanctuary.

Tourist attraction in Kanpur  

Shri Radhakrishna Temple - It is beautifully constructed, J.K. temple is a boon to the devotees. Built by J.K. Trust this architectural delight is a unique blend of ancient architecture with the modern. Among the five shrines that the temple has the central one is consecrated to Shri Radhakrishna and the other are adorned with idols of Shri Laxminarayan, Shri. Ardhanarishwar, Shri Narmadeshwar and Shri Hanuman.

The Kanpur Memorial Church - The Kanpur Memorial Church was built in 1875 in honor of the British who lost their lives in the war of 1857. The Church was designed by Walter Granville architect of the east Bengal Railway. The complete Church in Lombardic gothic style is handsomely executed in bright red brick with polychrome dressings. The interior contains monuments to the mutiny including several memorial tablets. In the separate enclosure to the east of the church is the Memorial Garden approached through two gateways. Here the handsome carved gothic screen designed by Henry Yule stands. Its centre is occupied by the beautiful carved figure of an angle by Baron Carlo Marochetti with crossed arms, holding palons and symbol of peace.

Jajmau - The mound of Jajmau on the eastern end of kanpur occupies a high place among ancient cities of the region. Excavations of the mound were undertaken during 1957-58 which unearthed antiquities ranging from 600 BC to 1600 AD.  Today, Jajmau houses the Siddhnath and Siddha Devi temples and the mausoleum of Makhdum Shah Ala-ul-Haq, the famous Sufi saint, built by Firoz Shah Tughlaq in 1358. A mosque built by Kulich Khan in 1679 also stands here.

Jain Glass Temple - It is situated in Maheshwari Mohal behind the Kamla Tower. It is a beautiful temple highly decorated with glass and enamel work.  

Allen Forest Zoo - The Kanpur Allen Forest Zoo was opened in 1971 and ranks among one of the best zoos in the country. It is an ideal place for outdoor life and picnics amongst picturesque surroundings.

Moti Jheel - Moti Jheel is drinking water reservoir of kanpur waterworks. It is situated in the benajhabar area of the city. The area around the jheel has recently been developed into a beautiful recreation grounds and children parks.

Phool Bagh - It is a beautiful park in the heart of the city on the Mall Road. In the centre of the park is a building known as Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi Memorial. After the first World War there was an Orthopedic Rehabilitation Hospital in this building.

 

Dwarka Dhish Temple - It is situated adjacent to Kamla Tower. This temple is dedicated to the worship of Lord Krishna.The jhoola dedicated during sravan is worth viewing in this temple

 

KAPILVASTU

 

Kapilvastu is a prime archeological site and that is why it is one of the most frequented tourist destinations in Nepal. Though very little remains of what was once a flourishing town, the place is a must visit. The place has the ruins of the palace where Lord Buddha spent his formative years. The archeological works that had been done in this area had to pass through various roadblocks including financial constraint. The archeologists had dug out as many as 14 different layers of human habitation in this area. The oldest among these dates back to 8th century before Christ. The place is a must for archeological and historical buffs,

 

Kapilvastu was the capital of the Shakya Household where Lord Buddha was born to king Shuddhodhana. He grew up amidst luxury and shunned away from miseries of life. But one day he broke out the luxurious entrapment of his father and set out for a journey. The place is important to visualize the pre meditation, princely days of the Lord who had contributed much to humanity by giving up his own luxury and princely status

There are many Stupas scattered around the place, built by Ashoka and the Gupta Kings. The symbols left behind by the Shakya dynasty is clearly visible here; moreover, there are relics of Lord Buddha himself.

 

Tourist attraction in Kapilvastu

 

Tilaurakot Fort -  Located approximately 25 kilometers east of Lumbini and about 4 kilometers north of Taulihawa, the modern district center of Kapilbastu District(approx. 30,000 inhabitants), are the archaeological remains of Tilaurakot. Thought to have been the citadel complex of the larger surrounding Kapilvastu Kingdom, founded by Lord Buddha's father Śuddhodana, the chief of the Shakya nation. Excavations have revealed a considerable walled fortress approximately 300 meters long and 200 meters wide and containing exposed foundations of several building complexes. Historically is is said that Prince Siddhartha grew up and spent his early life inside Tilaurakot to the age of 29, oblivious of worldly miseries outside.

 

Tilaurakot Museum - Some 150 meters before Tilaurakot's western gate (the modern main entrance) lies a small, neglected, but quaint museum housing jewelery and other ornaments, coins, painted grey ware and northern black polished ware pottery, and toys excavated from the site dating between the seventh century BC and fourth century AD.

Kapilvastu Kingdom Complex Gotihawa - lies 5-km southwest of Taulihawa town and is considered the natal town of Krakuchanda Buddha. The place has ruins of ancient habitation, stupas and monasteries. The place was visited by Ashoka as evidenced by a pillar with inscriptions. The pillar is broken with the upper part missing.

Araurakot - lies about 9-km northeast of Tilaurakot. P.C. Mukheiji (1899) identified it as the natal town of Kanakmuni Buddha. It is a rectangular fortified area that contains a moat with heaps of ancient ruins.

Kundan - is located 2-km southwest of Taulihawa on way to Gotihawa. It is a beautiful protected garden area with large structural ruins of monasteries and stupas and with a tank nearby. This is considered the historical sight where Lord Buddha, returning after many years preached, and where his father, Śuddhodana, was converted to Buddhism.

Niglihawa :- 7-km northwest of Tilaurakot, was another site visited by Ashoka and marked with a pillar. The pillar is broken into two pieces. The standing base pillar has Ashokan inscription in Brahmi script and the upper pillar has Devanagari inscription marking Ripu Mai's visit in 1312 AD. There are ruins of monasteries, stupas and habitation. It is identified as ancient town of Sobhawati, birthplace of Kanakmuni Buddha.

Sagarhawa - lies 3.5 kin. north of Tilaurakot and west of Banganga river. It is a rectangular depression. Excavations done in 1896 traced seventeen stupas and large monuments made from well-burnt bricks. Findings of casket and other rare antiquities indicate them to be votive stupas of the war dead. However, these stupas remain no more as they were excavated to their foundation without restoration.

Lumbini Garden - Located approximately 22 kilometers east from Taulihwa is the sacred birthplace of Lord Buddha. The garden stretches one kilometer east west and 4 kilometers north south and besides having abundant bird and even some wild life, has an amazing collection over 20 nation's monasteries.

 

KUSHINAGAR

 

Kushinagar is one of the most frequented Buddhist pilgrimage destinations in the Indian Sub-continent. The city has lots to offer when it comes to Stupas and Temples. Almost each and every corner of the city has some or other famous tourist attraction. While most of these sites are old, there is a sizable number modern architecture too.

 

Tourist attraction in Kushinagar

 

Ramabhar Stupa - Ramabhar Stupa can be counted as one of the most sacred shrine of Buddhism in the world. Situated just a kilometer off from the city center, Rambhar Stupa is a must visit for every tourist flocking India. Ramvara Stupa is said to mark the site where Lord Buddha was cremated and got Mahaparinirvana. Kushinagar is a place that has been frequented by Lord Buddha. There are sources, which confirm that Lord Buddha had many discourses at this place.

 

Nirvana Temple - Nirvana Temple is one of the most frequented amongst Buddhism shrines in the world. Nirvana Temple is a must visit destination during tour to India. The place evokes emotion for every Buddhist because it is the same temple near which, Buddha died. Nirvana Temple houses a statue of reclining Lord Buddha that is 6 meters long. It is believed that this statue represents the very last moments of Lord Buddha i.e. moments before he attained Mahaparinirvana.

Mathakaut Temple - Mathakaut Temple is one of the most famous and most visited shrines in Kushinagar. The Mathakaut shrine is situated at the distance of 300 meters from Maha-Parinirvana Stupa, another famous Buddhist shrine in Kushinagar. The place is famous for because this is the site from where a black stone image of the Buddha in the 'Bhumi Sparsha Mudra' was recovered during early excavations. 'Bhumi Sparsha Mudra' in Hindi means 'Kneel Down Posture'. It is widely perceived that the last sermon of Lord Buddha was given here.

 

Watt Thai Temple - Watt Thai Temple is one of the most beautiful and most visited temples in Kushinagar. Watt Thai Temple is only one of its kinds not only in Kushinagar but also in whole of Indian Sub-continent. The temple is centrally located in Kushinagar and that is why it can be seen from anywhere and everywhere in Kushinagar. The Temple has been laid out on a lush green lawn that is spread in several acres of land.

Japanese Temple - Japanese Temple is one of the most beautiful temples in Kushinagar. This is a must visit site during your tour to Kushinagar. A magnificent 'Ashta Dhatu' or 'Eight Metals' statue of Lord Buddha marks this temple. This statue has been brought from Japan in dismantled form and was later joined before it was established in this temple.

Chinese Temple - Chinese Temple is another fairly frequented tourist destination in Kushinagar. The temple is famous for its distinct architecture that puts it away from the numerous Buddhist Temples in Kushinagar. The architecture of this temple is predominantly 'Han Chinese' and has design elements that have been borrowed from various provinces of Mainland China.

 

MATHURA

 

Tshe land where Shri Krishna was born and spent his youth, has today little towns and hamlets that are still alive with the Krishna legend and still redolent with the music of his flute. Mathura, a little town on the River Yamuna was transformed into a place of faith after Lord Krishna was born here. Vrindavan, a village - once noted for its fragrant groves, is where he spent an eventful youth. There are numerous other little spots in the area that still reverberate with the enchantment of Shri Krishna.Tourist attraction of Mathura,


Tourist attraction in Mathura

Dwarkadhish Temple - This temple is one of the most splendid and the most remarkable temples of Mathura. It was built in the year 1814 and is located in the heart of the city. It is presently the most visited temple of Mathura and currently managed by the followers of the Vallabha sect. It lies on the eastern part of Mathura and is recognized for its architectural magnificence.

Government Museum - It is the repository of the finest collection of archaeological importance and is located at Dampier Park. You will find rare items belonging to the Gupta and Kushan period (400 B.C.-1200A.D) that are put on display. The other things you will come across are the collections of Mathura School of Sculptures. This museum is an ideal place for an insight into study of Indian Art and Iconography.

Krishna Janambhoomi - It is one of the most remarkable tourist attractions in Mathura and is highly venerated by the tourists. This place is said to be the birthplace of Lord Krishna. According to the people the present temple is built over spot of the prison where Lord Krishna was born.

Kusum Sarovar - The most striking among the Mathura tourist attractions actually is this 450 feet long tank that dates back to the time of Lord Krishna. It has a depth of 60 feet and has many flights of stairs from all the sides. It is a half an hour walk from another famous tank which is called Radha Kunj.

If your vacations coincide with the events and festivals that are celebrated here, then the charm of celebrating the vacations will simply accentuate. Some of the famous festivals celebrated with a lot of pomp here are Janmashtami and Braj Yatra.

Touristplacesinindia.com offers online information on the things to watch in Mathura and also offers useful inputs about Mathura.

VRINDAVAN

Vrindavan, just 15 km from Mathura, is another major place of pilgrimage in the state of Uttar Pradesh in the northern part of India. Vrindavan is known for its numerous Hindu temples - both ancient and modern. The name Vrindavan evokes the playfulness and lovable characteristics of Shri Krishna. This is the wood where he frolicked with the gopis and tenderly wooed Radha. This most revered destination of the Hindus is thronged by thousands of Tourists from all over the country.

Tourist attraction in Vrindavan

Madan Mohan Temple - The Madan Mohan Temple located near the Kali Ghat. This is the oldest existent temple in Vrindavan today. The temple is closely associated with the saint Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. The original image of Lord Madan Gopal was shifted from the shrine to Karauli in Rajasthan for safe keeping during Aurangzeb's rule. Today, a replica of the image is worshiped at the temple.

Banke-Bihari Temple - The Banke-Bihari Temple built in 1864 is the most popular shrine at Vrindavan. The image of Banke-Bihari was discovered in Nidhi Vana by Swami Haridas, the great Krishna devotee, belonging to the Nimbarka sampradaya. Radha Vallabh Temple - The famous Radha Vallabh Temple set up by the Radha - Vallabh sampradaya, has the crown of Radharani placed next to the Shri Krishna image in the sanctum. Jaipur Temple - The Jaipur Temple which was built by Sawai Madho Singh II, the Maharaja of Jaipur in 1917, is a richly embellished and opulent temple. The fine hand - carved sandstone is of unparalleled workmanship. The temple is dedicated to Shri Radha Madhava. Sri Radha Raman Mandir - Sri Radha Raman Mandir constructed at the request of Gopala Bhatta Goswami around 1542 is one most exquisitely crafted and revered temples of Vrindavan, especially by the Goswamis. It still houses the original saligram deity of Krishna, alongside Radharani.[1] Shahji Temple - The Shahji Temple, another popular temple at Vrindavan, was designed and built in 1876 .The deities (images) at the temple are popularly known as the Chhote Radha Raman. Noted for its magnificent architecture and beautiful marble sculpture, the temple has twelve spiral columns each 15 feet high. The `Basanti Kamra' - the darbar hall is famed for its Belgian glass chandeliers and fine paintings. Rangaji Temple - The Rangaji Temple, built in 1851 is dedicated to Lord Ranganatha or Rangaji depicted as Lord Vishnu in his sheshashayi pose, resting on the coils of the sacred Sesha Naga. The temple built in the Dravidian style has a tall gopuram (gateway) of six storeys and a gold - plated Dhwaja stambha, 50 feet highThe temple is also famous for its `Brahmotsdav' celebration in March-April, more popularly known as the `Rath ka Mela'. The ten day long celebrations are marked by the pulling of the rath (the chariot car) by the devotees from the temple to the adjoining gardens. Govind Deo (Govindaji) Temple - The Govind Deo (Govindaji) Temple was once a magnificent seven storeyed structure built in the form of a Greek cross. It is said that the Emperor Akbar donated some of the red sandstone that had been brought for the Red Fort at Agra, for the construction of this temple. Built at the astronomical cost of one crore rupees in 1590 by his general Raja Man Singh, the temple combines western, Hindu and Muslim architectural elements in its structure. It was destroyed by Mughal ruler Aurangzeb. Sri Krishna-Balrama Temple - The Sri Krishna-Balrama Temple built by the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) in a location known as 'Raman-Reti', is one of the most beautiful temples in Vrindavan today. The principal deities of this temple are Krishna & Balaram, with Radha-Shyamasundar and Gaura-Nitai alongside. Adjoining the temple is the samadhi of A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the founder of ISKCON, built in pure white marble. Radha Damodar Mandir - The Radha Damodar Mandir Located at Seva Kunj, the Mandir was established in 1542 by Srila Jiva Goswami. The deities Sri Sri Radha Damodar are here. The bhajan kutir of A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada is also situated at the Mandir. VARANASI Benaras is a Hindu holy city on the banks of the river Ganga (Ganges) in the modern north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. It is also known as Varanasi, Banaras, Benaras, Kashi, and Kasi. Varanasi has a unique culture, quite different from other places in the region. This culture has developed through thousands of years during which it has been one of the major cultural centres of northern India. The whole Varanasi culture revolves around the river Ganga, which is the heart and soul of the city. Varanasi has its own 'Gharanas' (style of music) in classical Indian music. Varanasi has produced some of the most well-known musicians, philosophers, poets, writers in Indian history. To name a few, Kabir, Munshi Premchand, Pandit Ravi Shankar, Ustad Bismillah Khan were/are from Varanasi. It even has its own dialect, which is quite different from other dialects of the region. It has been a seat of knowledge from about 700 BC onwards. Its universities attracted students from all over the then-known world. Major Tourist attraction in Varanasi Bharat Kala Bhavan  - Bharat Kala Bhavan, located inside the BHU campus, is an art and architecture museum and houses a vast collection of paintings, Hindu and Buddhist sculptures and other materials of archeological importance. The Bharat Kala Bhavan was established in the year 1920 A.D. In the main hall of the Bharat Kala Bhawan, there is a figure of a man standing on one leg and one hand on his hip and lifting a mass of stone above his head, with one hand. The figure is said to be of Lord Krishna, lifting Mount Govardhana. Many images in the Bharat Kala Bhavan confirm to the existence of Krishna cult in Kashi in 15th and 16th century.

Banaras Hindu University - The Banaras Hindu University or BHU is an internationally reputed University and is situated in Varanasi. The great nationalist leader, Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya, founded the Banaras Hindu University in the year 1916. Dr Annie Besant also played an important role in the formation of the BHU. The Banaras Hindu University played an important role in the Indian independence movement. Over a period of time, it has developed into one of the greatest centers of learning in India. The BHU has produced many great freedom fighters and Nation builders. It has immensely contributed to the progress of the nation through a large number of renowned scholars, artists and scientists.

New Vishwanath Temple (Golden Temple) - Varanasi is known for its temples and Ghats and the sacred dip in the holy river Ganges. Among the various temples, the new Vishwanath Temple is an important one and is situated within the walls of Banaras Hindu University. Apart from being called the Golden Temple, it is also known as the Birla Temple as the Indias well-known industrialist family, the Birlas, built it. This temple stands in dedication to Lord Shiva and is similar to the real Vishwanath temple. Being built in white marbles, the temple is wide open for people of different religions and castes and ones eyes truly get delighted by seeing the huge campus of the temple. Jantar Mantar  - Jantar Mantar is an observatory, built by Jai Singh, the Maharaja of Jaipur in the year 1737. Jai Singh was a great admirer of science and technology and he was particularly passionate about astronomy. Before the commencement of construction (of observatories) he sent scholars abroad to study the foreign observatories. The emissaries returned with many manuals on astronomy. The Jantar Mantar at Varanasi was built in line with Delhi , Mathura, Ujjain and Jaipur observatories.

Ramnagar Fort - The Ramnagar fort lies about 14 km. from Varanasi and is situated on the opposite bank of river Ganga. It is the ancestral home of the Maharaja of Banaras. Maharaja Balwant Singh built this fort-palace in the eighteenth century. The fort is built in red sandstone. The Ramnagar fort has a temple and a museum within the grounds and the temple is dedicated to Ved Vyasa, who wrote Mahabharata, the great Indian epic. Legends have it that Ved Vyasa stayed here for a brief period. Nandeshwar Kothi - Nandeshwari Kothi, designed by James Prinsep is a typical building of the early 19th century in Benaras.

Bharat Mata Temple - Among the various temples in Varanasi, Bharat Mata Temple is of a different kind. To the contrary of tourists belief, the temple is not in dedication to any particular God or Goddess. Instead it is mainly dedicated for the human expression of India famously known Bharat Mata in Hindi or Mother India. With no statues or image of Bharat Mata, it houses Indias relief map engraved out of marble and it was inaugurated by the father of Indian Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. The temple is constructed with 5 distinct pillars conversing one at the top and signifies wind, earth, water, fire and sky, the 5 basic elements. Durga Temple - One of the most important temples in Varanasi is the Durga Temple and is also referred as monkey temple as many monkeys are found in the premises. In dedication to Goddess Durga, it was built during the eighteenth century. It was Designed and built by a Bengali Maharani in Nagara Style, a style of temple architecture of North India. Also it is painted in red with ochre and owns a multi-tiered spire or the shikhara. Legends believed that the statue of Goddess Durga appeared on its own and not man-made. Goddess Durga is depicted as the avatar of shakti or the female power. Hanuman Ghat - Most of the spectacular ghats of Varanasi are crowded by the local pilgrims who execute their routine spiritual observances in the morning and also in the evening. One can never miss their vision from the Hanuman Ghat in Varanasi. It is highly believed by the people that during the 18th cent A.D, a Hanuman temple was established by the great saint Tulsidas and in ancient times this ghat was called as the Ramesvaram Ghat which was laid down by lord Ram himself and now the ghat lies with in the boundary of Juna Akhara. However, many ascetics and saints reside in the temples and the neighborhood being overshadowed by the residents of South India. Kashi Vishwanath Temple - Kashi Vishwanath Temple is similar to Varanasi and is considered the most famous and sacred pilgrimage. The history of this temple has had rise and fall and is also known Golden Temple rarely. This temple stands in dedication to Lord Shiva, the worlds destroyer and is the commanding deity of Varanasi. It is believed and said that the foremost Jyotirlinga got burst in this city and blazed up towards heaven. In order to settle down the war of mastery among Hindu Gods, Lord Shiva created this type of burst. The original lingam of Lord Shiva lies concealed in a Well of knowledge adjacent to the temple. Ramnagar Museum - The Ramnagar Fort situated 14 kms away from Varanasi has a museum and a temple within the premises and is considered the ancestral residence of the Banaras Maharajas. The museum displays a royal collection which comprises royal palkies, vintage Cars, inventory of swords, ivory work, antique clocks and old guns. Other artifacts displayed in the Ramnagar fort-palace museum are the array of howdahs that are gold plated, weapons, ornate palanquins, furniture, costumes, saddles of elephants carved out of silver etc. This museum houses few of the best and magnificent items which in one period belonged to the royal society and is a big treasure for the city. Tulsi Manas Temple - Tulsi Manas Temple owns a very historical and cultural importance not only in Varanasi but also in whole India. This is because the city is closely related to an event still ruling the Psychology of Indian people. Ramayana, a popular Hindu epic was compiled at this place and the man who composed it was Goswami Tulsi Das. He wrote the Hindi version called the Ram Charit Manas while in the earlier days only the Sanskrit version was available. Though the temple doesnt look attractive, its simplicity stands important with beautiful surroundings and its walls are sprinkled with Ram Charit Manas verses. SARNATH The city dwells from the time of Buddha reign and is a significant city of Buddhist pilgrimage. The ace city of Sarnath is a gem located 10 kms away from Varanasi. According to history book, Sarnath city originated or revived some 2500 years ago when Budhha came here to deliver his first sermon after attaining 'Niravana', enlightenment.

It was this place where Lord Buddha came across five discplines who later became a part of his later didactics. His disciplines who followed him were astound to see the visage which mesmerically convinced the people and to opt buddhism as their religion. It is now known as the Dharamachakra Pravartan. It then sey in motion of great Buddhist tradition of the Sangha which generalized the Buddhist teachings across the globe. Tourist attraction in Sarnath Dhemak Stupa - It is often refferd to as the ' Seat of Holy Buddha'. It is about 34 mtrs in height including the foundations. The Dhemak stupa can be measured upto 42 mtrs. This is the place where Buddhism was first voiced and thereby is an imporatant Buddhist tourist destination.

The Chaukhandi Stupa - This is one of its kind as it was originally a terraced temple created in Gupta period. Later on Govardhan, son of Raja Todarmal, altered its functionality.

Dharmarajika stupa - Constructed in 3 rd centuary BC is said to contain Buddha relics on green marble casket.The stupa was created by Emperor Ashoka. MORADABAD Moradabad is a city in Uttar Pradesh state of India. It was established in 1600 by Murad, the son of the Mughal Emperor Shahjahan; as a result the city came to known as Moradabad. It is situated at a distance of 167 km from the national capital, New Delhi, at the bank of River Ram Ganga (a tributary to the great Ganges). Moradabad is renowned for brass work and has carved a niche for itself in the handicraft industry throughout the world. The brassware is exported to countries like USA, Britain, Canada, Germany and to the Middle East and Asia. Therefore Moradabad is also called "Brass City" or Peetal Nagri..

The brassware industry in Moradabad bloomed in early 19th century and British took the art to foreign markets. Other immigrating artisans from Benaras, Lucknow, Agra and many other places formed the current cluster of brassware industry in Moradabad.

In 1980's various other metal wares like brass; iron, aluminum etc. were also introduced to the art industry of Moradabad. New technologies like Electroplating, lacquering, powder coating etc. also found its way to the industry. Tourist attraction in Moradabad The Prem Wonderland and Prem Water Kingdom, Moradabad is located near the Railway Crossing on Rampir Road. With exciting and fun rides, this is a great place to visit with family or friends. The water park is a delight offering terrific water slides and other rides, sure to brin out the child in you. So, while in Moradabad, do not miss enjoying this experience. Shirdi Sai - Baba’s name and deeds are respected & revered as a Fakir saint of the current era. Shirdi Sai Baba with his supernatural energies had enlightened the masses of these times. To combat the prevailing evils and dogmas emerged out of caste systems, & religious sects, Shirdi Sai Baba was the first to announce and prove the Oneness Of God with a universal salutation, ‘SABKA MAALIK EK’. Shirdi Sai Baba would equally acknowledge all religions, castes and creed. This is the reason why among all saints, Mahatmas, Fakirs, Priests and Gurus, Shirdi Sai Baba occupies a unique position. The temple is located at Shri Sai Karuna Dham, Deen Dayal Nagar, Phase II, Moradabad Moradabad - offers some of the best works of bronze and copper in the world and one visiting Moradabad should be on the lookout of these.

Peetal Mandi - In Moradabad, the prime market is called Peetal Mandi. This is a congested alley that has several small and big shops that sell copper and bronze. At the beginning, one can find small shops that sell decorative small items and miniatures.

However as one progresses inside there are huge showrooms that exhibit exclusive objects. The most favored copper items are the utensils. These are available in all sizes and shapes and are adorned with exquisite Naqqashi (design) work.

Other popular objects are the ‘Gulabpash’ or Rosewater Sprayer and ‘Itradan’ or Perfume Sprayer. These two items also have various sizes and shapes and are created from bronze. The ‘Aftab’ or Wine servers have attractive copper lining but are heavy.

MEERUT Meerut is a significant tourism destination in Uttar Pradesh. The city boasts of some very important historical as well as cultural heritage sites. These sites are dotted all over the town and therefore they can only be covered via private cabs.

Meerut is one of the most imperative towns in the Northern part of India. The town, located in Western Uttar Pradesh boasts a rich and long history behind it. The city was included in Hastinapur Empire of Kaurvas that ruled the Vedic India and was the protagonists of Hindu Epic of Mahabharata. The city again rose to eminence in medieval times when it defended itself vehemently but fruitlessly against Timor The Lame.

Tourist attraction in  Meerut Meerut is an important tourism destination in Uttar Pradesh. The city boasts of some very important historical as well as cultural heritage sites. These sites are scattered all over the town and therefore they can only be covered via private cabs. Following are some of the most important sites in Meerut.

Sardhana - Sardhana is situated 20 kilometers from the Meerut Town. The place Houses a famous Catholic Church built in the year 1822 by Begum Samru. Tradition has it that Sarkat, a Raja, founded the place and remained in the possession of his descendants till the advent of the Muslims. In 1778 Walter Reinhardt was assigned the Jagir of Sardhana but on his death in the same year the estate passed into the hands of his widow, Begum Samru. Begum Samru also Called Begum Sombre and had nicknames such as Zebunissa, Farzana and Joanna, started her career as a Nautch girl in 18th century India. Later on, she played a very crucial role in the politics and power struggle in 18th and 19th century India.

Hastinapur :- Hastinapur is the ancient capital of Kaurvas rulers of Hindu Epic Mahabharata. The place however is more famous for its Jain Temples these days. Acharya Kharatargatchh has described 4 stoops (pillars) at the time of his visit. The Shwetambar temple is renovated recently. The establishment of Digambara Temple followed it. Gurjar king Nain Singh renovated Digambara Jain Bada Mandir and Old Pandeshwer Temple. There is also Pandeshwer Temple. It is actually an old temple of Lord Shiva, situated in the ruins of old Hastinapur.

IIT Roorkee - The Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee (IIT Roorkee) is located just 70 Kilometers from Meerut. Instituted as Thomason college of Civil Engineering in year 1847 by British, it was re-christened as University of Roorkee in year 1949. It is acclaimed for its fine quality of academia and for producing brilliant engineers. IIT Roorkee is one of the premier institutes across the world and is a frontrunner in higher technological education and in basic and applied research. The institute celebrated its sesquicentennial anniversary in October 1996. On September 21, 2001, an ordinance issued by the Government of India declared it as the nation's seventh Indian Institute of Technology. The ordinance was converted into an act by the Parliament to make IIT Roorkee an "Institution of National Importance". Festivals of Lucknow

 

Lucknow Festival - Celebrated during the months of November - December, the Lucknow festival is a very important festival in this place. The unique and scintillating culture of Lucknow is portrayed in this festival. The Lucknow Festival is celebrated for a time period of ten days. In these ten days, Lucknow wears a grand and royal look and the whole city comes alive with joyous celebration. The Lucknow Festival is a platform to showcase the rich and unique culture, arts and crafts and the finer aspects of the lifestyle of Lucknow. Also, it is the best place to taste the lip-smacking cuisine that Lucknow is famous for.

Vrindavan Sharadotsav - The festival of Vrindavan Sharadotsav is celebrated every year in the month of October. Though it is not exactly celebrated in Lucknow, people over here also indulge in celebrating this festival that is dedicated to Lord Krishna of the Hindu mythology. This festival captures the magic spun by Lord Krishna in the form of a child and then as a young adult. The town of Vrindavan near Lucknow is decorated beautifully and the celebration is marked by much joy and fanfare.

Holi - Holi is one festival that is celebrated all over India with great enthusiasm and enjoyment. People in Lucknow indulge in elaborate celebrations. Children as well as adults go around throwing colored powder known as "Gulal" and drench all passer-bys with colored water. Lots of sweets and special dishes are made on this occasion and people indulge in all sorts of festivities.

Diwali - Diwali is an important festival in Lucknow and is celebrated by people all over Lucknow and India. Diwali is celebrated to mark the triumph of good over evil when lord Rama killed the demon king Ravana and returned back to his kingdom in Ayodhya. People lit small lamps outside their homes and welcomed the young prince with a brilliant display of fireworks. This tradition is carried on till date and Lucknow looks like a wonderland on the eve of Diwali when it is illuminated by thousands of little lamps.

Dusshera - Dusshera is an important festival of Lucknow and people celebrate it in the honor of Lord Rama who killed the demon king Ravana. On this day, huge effigies of Ravana and his two demon brothers are put up in various parts of the city and are set afire by people dressed up as Lord Rama. The battle scene is enacted first and the effigies are set afire when Ravana gets killed. It is a time to indulge in celebration and enjoyment.

 

 

Festivals of Agra

Agra district has many rural areas that are greatly influenced by the religious and sentimental attachment to the surrounding areas of Mathura and Vrindavan to Lord Krishna and Radha. Most of the fairs and festivals organized in the region are either temple festivals, religious festivals or cattle and village fairs based on Krishna's life such as Dauji ka mela, Kans lila, cattle fair Jat Devi, cattle fair Kund Mela, cattle fair Gwal Balba, Meta ki Puja Jat Devi, Holi Milap, Mata-ka-mela, Shitla Mela, Parikrama of Shivji, Kailash Mela, Janamashthmi, Dussehra, Kali-ka-mela, Ram lila, Urs Sufi Sahib and Bateshwar cattle fair. However, we have brought you the most famous of these fairs and festivals of the region.

Taj Mahotsav - Much famous and beloved cultural festival of Agra, Taj Mahotsav is organized annually for ten days during February. Shilpgram (the Crafts Village), the chosen venue for this fair is close to Taj. Here, one can find extensive display of arts, crafts and culture of India along with classical dance and song performances. 'Mushairas' and 'Ghazal' programmes by the well-known Indian artists. Children love to ride on camels and elephants in the vene while one can taste traditional Indian delicacies at the luring stalls here. The colorful celebrations welcome the Spring with a fiesta of Indian cuisine, dance and music, cultural displays and exhibition of arts and crafts.

 
Bateshwar Fair - Bateshwar is just 70 km from Agra and is names so after the presiding deity of the region, Bateshwar Mahadeo. It is an important spiritual and cultural centre boasting of 108 temples of the various gods and goddesses of Hindus. Bateshwar Fair is organized here annually during the months of October or November in the honor of Lord Shiva for a month. Thousands of devotees visit the venue to take holy dips in River Yamuna and participate in the Livestock and Cattle Fair, which is famous in the nearby areas.

Ram Barat - The special marriage procession of Sri Ram, held annually at Agra, is known as 'Rambarat' and precedes Dussehra. It is a part of 'Ramlila', the staging of life of Rama that ends with killing of Ravana, on the day of Dussehra. Its specialty lies in the beautiful 'jhankis' of the deities and the special set of the palace arranged at the chosen venue as 'Janakpuri', the palace of Raja Janak who was the father of Goddess Sita. A major fair is organized in the locality and thousands of people visit the venue to see the fair and attend the elaborate royal wedding of the divine deities. The procession starts from Lala Channomalji Ki Baradari for the Janakpuri venue and passes through different parts of the town. Special chariot covered with silver leaves is used as the mount of Ram while his brothers mount the elephants. The elaborate and heavy headgears look stunning. Teenaged boys play the female characters of the drama.

Kailash Fair - Held at Kailash temple in the honor of Lord Shiva, 12 km from Agra, Kailash fair is celebrated to commemorate the appearance of Lord Shiva in the form of a stone lingam here in the monsoon months of August and September. The major fair attracts devotees from all the nearby areas.  

Festivals of Allahabad

 

Maha Kumbh Mela - Legends have it, that the Gods fought a great battle with the demons over a pot full of amrit, which had emerged out of churning the ocean. In the ensuing tussle, four drops of this nectar fell on earth at four different places of Haridwar, Prayag (Allahabad), Ujjain and Nashik. Every 12 years when the planets are in similar alignment, the Maha Kumbh Mela takes place on the banks of the holy Sangam at Allahabad, where lakhs of pilgrims take bath on the banks of the holy Sangam. The main bathing days for the Kumbh Mela are known as 'Shahi Snans' or 'Royal Bathing Days', which are Makar Sankranti, Paush Purnima, Mauni Amavasya, Basant Panchmi, Maghi Poornima and Maha Shivratri.

Ardh Kumbh Mela - It is held every sixth year after the Maha Kumbh Mela that takes place every 12 years.

 

Magh Mela -  This is held annually, other than the years of Kumbh and Ardh Kumbh and is rightfully called the annual mini Kumbh Mela. The auspicious Magh Mela is so called as it falls in the Magh period (Jan-Feb). This annual religious event or the great bathing festival is a smaller version of the gigantic Kumbh Mela. Sangam, the confluence of the rivers Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati, hosts the annual Magh Mela, which turns into the Kumbh Mela every twelfth year. During the auspicious period when the Magh Mela is held, a temporary township comes up on the banks of the Ganga river to shelter millions of pilgrims. Devotees live in these temporary shelters for the whole duration of the mela leading a sacred life.

 

Festivals of Ayodhya

 

Rama Navami - Rama Navami is a Hindu holiday. It falls on the ninth day of the Hindu lunar year (or Chaitra Masa Suklapaksha Navami). and is a celebration of the birthday of the Hindu god Rama. People normally perform Kalyanotsavam (marriage celebration) for small murtis of Rama and Sita in their houses, and at the end of the day the deity is taken to a procession on the streets.

Ramnavami occurs in the month of March. Celebrations begin with a prayer to the Sun early in the morning. At midday, when Lord Rama is supposed to have been born, a special prayer is performed. In northern India especially, an event that draws popular participation is the Ramnavami procession. The main attraction in this procession is a gaily decorated chariot in which four persons are dressed up as Rama, his brother Laxman, his queen Sita and his disciple Hanuman.

People observe a waterless (nirjala) fast on this day. Arti at noon, the time of Lord Rama's birth, is performed in all Ram mandirs in India and abroad. The festival is celebrated with great eclat especially in four major pilgrim places, namely, in Nasik, Tirupati, Rameshwar and Ayodhya

 

Fair and Festivals of Kushinagar

Buddha Poornima is the most important festival celebrated in April/May. Thousands of people come to Kushinagar to celebrate the three most important stages of Buddha?s life?birth, enlightenment, and death.

Fairs & Festivals of Mathura

Holi - Holi is celebrated on the full moon day in the month of Phalguna (Feb-March). Holi in Braja is celebrated for several days, at different places around Braja, before the actual day of Holi. People throw colored powdered dye and colored water on each other. This is joyfully celebrated in Braja, especially at Varsana, Nandagram and Dauji. In Varsana the festival includes colorful processions with music, song, dance, and some boisterous scenes around the temples. If you go to these festivals you should expect to be totally covered in dye and never to be able to use the clothes that you are wearing again, at least until next year's festival. This is celebrated at the same time as Gaura Purnima.

Places Holi is celebrated

Varsana Groups of visitors go around in small and large groups here. In the afternoon gopas (men) from Nandagram come to Varsana and play Holi with the local gopis (women) of Varsana. The women hit the men hard with 2 m (7ft) long bamboo staffs. The men have shields which they protect themselves with. During this time local songs are sung. This festival is celebrated on the ninth day of the month of Phalguna (Feb-March).

Nandagram The day after the Holi festival at Varsana, Holi is celebrated in Nandagram. The gopas (men) from Varsana come to Nandagram to play Holi with the gopis (women) there. The flag of the Larily Lal Temple in Varsana is carried in an elaborate procession to Nandagram. At this time the residents of Nandagram attempt to capture the flag, but their attempts are foiled. After this, women play Holi with bamboo staffs. This festival is celebrated on the tenth day (dasami) of the month of Phalguna (Feb-March).

Phalen - On the full moon night in Feb/March a huge bon-fire is burned. One of the local priests walks through the fire unscathed. One story about Holi is that Prahlada Maharaja refused to worship his father and wanted to worship his father's enemy, Lord Vishnu instead. His father's sister Holika, who was immune to being burned, sat with the boy in a big fire. Prahlada's devotion was so great that Holika was burnt to death and Prahlada was unharmed. The Holi festival at Phalen re-enacts this event.

Dauji (Baldeo) - The festival here is a pretty wild event. Women pore buckets of colored water on the men. The men are also thrashed with whips made of cloth, which has been torn apart from men's clothing. The men can not touch the bodies of the women or unveil their faces. From the roof of the temple; basketfuls of colored powder are emptied on participants and onlookers, creating a thick haze of colors.

Festivals of Varanasi

Bharat Milap (Oct - Nov), at Nati Imli - Celebrating Lord Ram's return to Ayodhya after 14 years of exile and His reunion with His brother Bharat, the festival is held one day following Dussehra. Attended by the Kashi Naresh resplendent in regal finery, the festival attracts at least a million devotees.

Buddh Purnima: Sarnath (May)  - Celebrating the birth of Lord Buddha, this festival is celebrated with gaiety and rare abandon. A large fair is held at Sarnath and the relics of the Buddha are taken out for a public display on a procession, on this day.

The Unique Ramlila of Ramnager - This world renowned Ram Lila has been based on Goswami Tulsidas's 'Ramcharitmanas' and one can see a live demonstration of ancient rituals. A month long feast for the tourists. Ramlila is performed in the form of Ram Janmotsav, Dhanush Bhang, Surpnakha Nasika Chedan etc. at various places.

Dhrupad Mela March - A 5-day musical festival of Dhrupad is performed by renowned artistes at Tulsi Ghat. It is very popular among foreign tourists.

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