City of Bliss, less than 85km north of Chandigarh and a detour of ~35km on way to Amritsar, Anandpur Sahib is a small town but one of the most sacred for Sikhs as it is closely linked with Sikh history and Gurus. One needs to go here for two things – pay your respects at the gurdwara and visit the newly built Virasat e Khalsa – Heritage of Sikhs Museum. It is a museum on Sikh history, built to celebrate 500 years of Sikhism / Sikh History. The history has been told in pictorial form with audio guide providing the background and connecting dots of the artwork.
Even if Sikh history is not of interest to you, you need to go to see the pictorial form of storytelling which if not unparalleled is definitely unexpected. After the visit, one may be left wishing if there was more to see. Hope the government adds more to the expansive campus, making it a good half day visit. Budget two / two and half hours for worshiping at the Gurudwara and seeing the Virasat e Khalsa.
If in Punjab in March, make Anandpur Sahib a must visit. Be on lookout for dates of Holla Mohalla. Dates fluctuate but are always in March. It is a three day festival where traditional Sikh martial art is at display through mock fights and you can see the warriors in their traditional dresses. Like in another fete anywhere, expect traditional food, market stalls of clothes and traditional items, souvenirs, and since you are in India – crowd and crowd, and more crowds, and much more. Tentative dates till 2020 are as follows:
|2016||March 24th – 26th|
|2017||March 13th – 15th|
|2018||March 2nd – 4th|
|2019||March 21st – 23rd|
|2020||March 10th – 12th|