Amritsar is a sacred site for the Sikh people and the Golden Temple or Harmandir Sahib is prime-most tourist attraction in the city. Amritsar pilgrimage tour primarily means a visit to the Golden Temple. The sacred tank of Harmandir Sahib is surrounded by quadrangular walls lined with marble-faced chapels. A white marble causeway leads from the west side of the tank to the Darbar Sahib (Golden Temple). There is an imposing arch, the Darshani Darwaja, flanked by gilded standard lamps at the place where the marble causeway begins. The Darbar Sahib is a square structure built upon a platform. The lower portion of the temple is of white marble. There are four door-ways on all the four sides to the temple, all plated with finely wrought silver. The domes and cupolas of the temple are plated with gold; hence the name. The fifth Guru, Arjun, completed the construction of the Golden Temple. The temple was constructed with four door-ways to symbolize the fact that the Sikh worship was open to all. The object of worship in the temple is a copy of the sacred book of the Sikhs the Adi Granth or Guru Granth Sahib. Here, before the book sit Sikh priests perpetually chanting hymns and passages from it. The Sikh pilgrims enter, pray and depart in unending streams and, in return for the offerings of money they make, get sweetmeats (Karhaprasad) and cups of sugar (Kujamisri) from the priests. The upper floor of the temple is a miniature Hall of Mirrors and is said to have been the place where the Gurus used to sit and meditate. The temple has a treasure-house, called Toshakhana, located in the upper chamber of the Darwaza; the way to it lies through massive silver doors and a stair-case.
In addition to the Harmandir Sahib, there are two important buildings near the Golden Temple - the Baba Atal Tower and the Akal Takht or the “Immortal Throne”. The former is a tower erected in memory of Baba Atal, the seven-year old son of Guru Har Govind, the sixth Guru. The boy was possessed of supernatural powers. The Akal Takht is situated opposite the Darshani Darwaza. It is the place where those newly converted to Sikhism go through a kind of initiation ceremony. The Granth Sahib in the Golden Temple is brought every night to this place for safe custody. Amritsar is also noted for certain other Gurudwaras (Sikh places of worship) which all have become historically famous, as the sites where bloody battles were fought between Sikh and Islamic armies.
Amritsar holiday packages not only include visit to holy shrines but also exploration of historical monuments and markets. The holiest among Sikh pilgrimages, Amritsar is not only famous for religious site of the Golden Temple but also possesses several beautiful and extensive gardens which add greatly to the pleasure and loveliness of the Sikh sacred city. The most delightful is the Ram Bagh. It was brought into existence by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. There was an old fort on the site; the Maharaja had the mud fortifications removed and had a beautiful garden laid out with swimming pools and a summer palace. Another is Guru-ka-Bagh about 80 acres in extent, containing many large fruit trees, and situated directly to the south of the Golden Temple.
The third important one is the Jallianwala Bagh. Ram Teerath, Durgiana Temple and Wagha Atari Border’ Beating Retreat Ceremony happen to be part of Amritsar tour itinerary. There is a great Sikh shrine at Taran Taran, 14 miles south of Amritsar. It was the residence of the fifth Guru Arjun and has gained much fame as many thousands of lepers are said to have been cured by bathing in its tank. Glorious history, colorful culture, religious practices, buzzing bazaar and traditional cuisines are prime attractions to see and explore while on Amritsar tour. Being seamlessly connected by air, road and train, Amritsar has emerged a throbbing tourist destination for cultural, heritage and religious tours.