Untold Explorations - DAY1 - Amritsar Continued

Hello everyone,

This post is part of a travelogue series that I have been writing on my recent Trip with Untold Tales(Facebook link)
Read the previous posts


So as per itinerary we had Golden Temple and Wagah/Attari Border retreat ceremony to be covered, but Amritsar has a lot more to offer.

Going through the streets of Amritsar, I said to Sunny who was accompanying me "It's beautiful, one must spend more than a day to thoroughly admire and enjoy this place."

But then I think like that about every place I visit, I like to leave with a few memories about the roads I went strolling without any purpose..
Back then I promised myself to come back here and spend more time exploring the place.
Seems silly when I say this but....
If you give enough time,  the place starts speaking to you and you can have some delightful conversations!

We did roam through the Amritsar Mall Road and visited Jallianwala Baug but still there was lot more...
And also as this was the first day of our trip we were unsure on how to plan our free time well.

Did you know?!
"Ambarsariya" the famous Punjabi word means "Resident of Amritsar". As the informal local name for Amritsar is Ambarsar, therefore Ambarsariya!

So to begin with on the way from hotel to Golden temple was Amritsar Mall road and the Heritage street.

Now Wikipedia said, Amritsar is famous for wooden chessboard  manufacturing industry, so this I was very excited about and wanted to get one for myself!
Turns out that Amritsar Mall road didn't have shops selling Wooden Chess boards, I found a few places in map which said they had something to do with chess manufacturing and went searching for them.
I didn't find the first two places listed on maps but while on the way I enjoyed the journey as the streets had some magnificent art outlining them displaying the culture and heritage of the city.

Heritage street is a perfect example of how a city can be urbanised while keeping it's heritage intact.
Below are few snaps from my walk around heritage street.

Maharaja Ranjit Singh statue, Heritage street
Statues depicting Punjab's Bhangra Dance.

My companion during this travel Sunny had heard from a lady in train travelling with us about another temple "Durgiana" it's said that holy water from many pilgrimage places have been brought here. He was eager to visit this temple.
We visited the temple, it had a golden dome and was surrounded by a lake like Golden temple. Magnificent Silver door welcomed us.

A poster depicting all the places the sacred water is brought from

Durgiana Temple

Later when I read about this temple I came to know that this temple was there since 1921 and recently being renovated.
There were more temples in same premises, Bada Hanuman mandir and 600 year old Shitla Devi mandir, we have all heard of the story from Ramayan where Lav-Khush tied Hanuman to a tree during Ashvamedha Yagna. The banyan tree is said to still be here. Unfortunately I didn't know of all this when I visited so I didn't look for it.

6rs Soft Drink shop
We found a place right behind the temple where a shop sells 200 ml soft drinks at 6 rs only. Even though I am not a big fan of soft drinks, I did enjoy a 6rs Limca!

A short video from our Cycle Rickshaw journey through the streets.


Next we went to Jallianwala Baug.

"Smriti"
There was this marble memorial named Smriti, which is in shape of a flame and was a tribute to martyrs of Jallianwala massacare.
 A sad but very important incident from our country's freedom struggle, Jallianwala Baug massacare. We have all read about it in our history class and always imagined with the help of full pictures in our history books.  Since I had booked the trip, I was eager to give a more clear picture to my childhood imagination of this historical place.

Wall said to Have the Bullet marks for the massacare


I was disappointed.
Maybe the place was under renovation, but as a exhibit or a memory of our history it had only one Wall. A wall hich had bullet holes marked, now those holes were in no way peculiar .... Maybe I am being too skeptical, but it looked too artificial and too less!

Also I didn't get to see the well! The dreadful well into which many men and women and children had jumped to escape the gunshots.

Other than this, there was a another memorial inside the Baug which was just a selfie spot for everyone and a small hall which had a souvenir shop and some artifacts, newspaper cuttings, etc.
The place seemed more like a picnic spot and It would have been really good if there was a guided tour or maybe once a day a theatrical presentation on what went down over there during our freedom struggle.

So that was about my exploration of Amritsar! And I better wrap up this long long post here.... Next I will write about Dalhousie, which was our next stop(place where I feel sick) in UnTold Exploration trip.

Hope you liked this post, do comment and share your feedback.

Regards,
Anirudh Shetty

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