10 Pilgrimage Tourism Destinations of India Worth Holidaying in at Least OnceJune 05, 2019 13:16
Scores of people every day come to India from all over the world seeking spiritual enlightenment. Before you get chaotic thinking what spiritual places to visit, we are here to get you out from that state by picking top 10 best pilgrimages to take in India.
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The Tirumala Venkateswara Temple near Tirupati is one of the holiest in India. The temple is dedicated to Lord Venkateswara who is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Millions of devotees visit the temple every year, especially during the annual nine-day Brahmotsavan festival in October.
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The holy town of Shirdi in Maharashtra is synonymous with Sai Baba - the saint who was revered by followers of all religions and who is said to have performed several miracles. Devotees throng his shrine year-round and the main festivals celebrated are Ramnavami, Guru Purnima and Vijayadashmi.
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The Ramanathaswamy temple in Rameswaram is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines of Lord Shiva and is also a part of the Char Dham circuit. Located on Pamban Island and connected to mainland India by a bridge, a trip to Rameswaram is a must-do whether you’re religious-minded or not. Mahashivratri and Navratri are especially popular festivals here.
Somnath and Dwarka
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The majestic seaside temples of Dwarka and Somnath are truly awe-inspiring. Dwarka is one of the four shrines comprising the Char Dham and home to the Jagat Mandir, also known as Dwarkadheesh Temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. The Somnath temple is one of the 12 holy Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva.
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One of the most important Indian pilgrimages is to the Vaishno Devi shrine, near Katra in Jammu. The temple is at a height of 5,300 feet and can be reached by an arduous climb. It’s dedicated to the goddess Shakti and is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas. Navratri is the biggest festival celebrated here.
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The sacred seaside town of Puri in Odisha is famous for its Jagannath Temple. Dedicated to Lord Jagannath, the temple’s Rath Yatra (or the chariot festival) sees devotees in large numbers from all over the world, celebrating the deities’ procession from the temple to the ocean waters.
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A shimmering golden façade reflected in the water, soothing intonations of the Granth Sahib is read out, the calming atmosphere - a trip to the Golden Temple (Harmandir Sahib) of Amritsar is a must-do. Do not miss out on the langar where thousands of pilgrims are fed daily. Guru Nanak Jayanti and Baisakhi are some of the festivals that are celebrated with great fervor here.
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Dargah Sharif, the Sufi shrine of the saint Moinuddin Chisti at Ajmer, is a favorite with Bollywood celebrities who make a beeline for it before every film release! Thousands of devotees come here to offer a chadar on fulfillment of their wishes. The annual Urs Festival commemorates the Sufi saint.
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Known as the birthplace of Lord Krishna, Mathura and nearby Vrindavan is home to hundreds of temples dedicated to the playful, dark-skinned god. Keshav Dev Temple and Banke Bihari Temple are amongst the important shrines here. Janmashtami and Holi are major festivals in Dwarka.
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The ancient city of Varanasi is considered most holy and there are several temples located on the banks of the Ganga river. The Kashi Vishwanath Temple and Sankat Mochan Temple are two of the most visited in the city. The annual Ganga Mahotsav celebrates the rich cultural heritage of India.
By Sowmya Sangam