The Golden Temple, Amritsar
The most sacred of Sikh shrines, the Golden Temple, is a major pilgrimage destination for devotees from around the world, as well as, an ever increasing popular tourist attraction. Construction of the Amrit Sarovar (pool of nectar) was initiated by Guru Amar Das, the third Guru, in 1570 and was completed by Guru Ram Das, the fourth Guru. His successor, Guru Arjan Dev began work on the building after inviting Mian Mir, the Sufi saint, to lay its foundation stone in 1588. Completed three years later, the Harimandar Sahib, or Darbar Sahib, as it is also known, required substantial restoration following its sacking by the 18th century Afghan invader .
Wagah Border, Amritsar
The border with Pakistan lies roughly 30kms from Amritsar at Attari on the Grand Trunk Road to Lahore and is one of the main access points overland to the neighbouring nation. A flag-lowering ceremony is held here daily at sunset by both sides. And along with the interactive patriotic fiesta that precedes it, the ceremony is a huge attraction for visitors. Another attraction in close proximity is the complex housing the samadh of Sham Singh Attari. A celebrated General of the Sikh Empire, he fought valiantly and is known for his last stand at the Battle of Sabraon. The grounds include samadhs of his family members, a museum dedicated to the General and his descendants, and a water tank. A similar albeit larger tank can be seen a short distance away at Pul Kanjri. It makes for a good picnic spot a stone’s throw from the fenced border.
Clock Tower, Ludhiana
The Clock Tower, popularly reckoned as Ghanta Ghar, is the icon of Ludhiana metropolitan. Inaugurated on October 19, 1906 by Sir Charles Montgomery; the then Lt- Governor of Punjab and Deewan Tek Chand; the then Deputy Commissioner – Ludhiana, the Victoria Memorial Clock Tower has today become the prime landmark and the representative emblem of the city. This clock tower had been erected marking the occasion of the silver jubilee of Queen Victoria’s reign. Victoria Memorial Clock Tower had be renamed as ‘Bhagwan Mahavir Clock Tower’ by Giani Zail Singh; the then chief minister of the state, giving in to the insistence of the Jain community of Ludhiana. However, all these names are now forgotten and the clock tower is only known by the name Ghanta Ghar. Located near the railway station in Chaura Bazar, the clock tower comprises the center of the city. The original clock installed by British had to be wound manually.
Lala Hans Raj Jain got this monument constructed in the year 1911. Glass is used for building the interior walls and ceilings. Hence, it is called sheesh mahal meaning a palace of glass. King George V’s coronation ceremony is depicted through the paintings on the first floor. The statues of many gods and goddesses are found on the ground floor.