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Amritsar (Punjabi: ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤਸਰ Hindi: अमृतसर) is a city in the state of Punjab, India. It is the holiest city in the Sikh religion. Amritsar is one of the largest cities in the Indian state of Punjab and is the spiritual and cultural centre of the Sikh religion. Sikhs are rightfully very proud of the city and their very beautiful and unique Gurdwara (place of worship), the Golden Temple. Amritsar is today a major pilgrimage centre for Sikhs and a tourism centre for anyone.


Golden Temple, Amritsar

The name Amritsar name derives from the pool around the Golden Temple (aka Harmandir Sahib) and means "holy pool of nectar" (Amrit elixir; Sar, short for sarovar which means "lake").

No visit to Amritsar is complete without a visit of the Golden Temple, including a community meal, a bath in the pool, potentially a night in the temple and if you are keen a volunteering session in the community kitchen, as well as the participation in the Flag lowering ceremony at the Wagah (Attari) border.


Amritsar is known mainly for its Golden Temple which was initiated by Guru Ram Das, the fourth Sikh Guru and the founder of the city, and completed in 1601 by his successor Guru Arjan Dev Ji.

The Jallianwala Bagh massacre or Amritsar massacre occurred in 1919. The area where this occurred was a large, open square but walled in on all sides. British troops opened fire on a crowd of demonstrators, and a large number were killed — the British said 370 dead and 1,200 wounded but Indian sources say the total was well over 1,000 dead. Some of the victims were, in fact, demonstrating, protesting against the arrest of two political activists, while others were gathered to celebrate the traditional festival of Baisakhi. Not all died directly due to British fire; many were trampled in the stampede to escape and others died diving down a well to avoid the bullets. Today the well is a rather grisly tourist attraction and bullet holes are still visible on walls around the area.

The massacre news spread quickly all over the country caused widespread outrage and additional demonstrations as it stunned the entire sub-continent. Eventually, the public lost faith in the British colonial government and subsequently, this massacre initiated the "Non-cooperation movement" led by the father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi. It is considered a significant phase of the Indian independence movement from British rule.

Sikh pilgrim at the Golden Temple

It also had a tremendous effect in the UK, with many of the more liberal British appalled by it while others thought it necessary. A commission investigated and concluded that "General Dyer thought he had crushed the rebellion and Sir Michael O'Dwyer was of the same view, ... (but) there was no rebellion which required to be crushed." Dyer was in command on the spot and O'Dwyer the provincial governor.

During the partition of the Indian Subcontinent in 1947, the Punjab region was divided between India and Pakistan near Amritsar. Pakistan wanted to annex Amritsar due to its close proximity with Lahore and 50% Muslim population; however, the city remained inside Indian territory. Similarly, India wanted to annex Lahore. Both of the cities experienced some of the worst communal riots during the partition. Mass evacuations were made both in Amritsar and in Lahore. Hence, the demographics of both the cities were changed following the partition, significantly altering the culture and affecting the political, economic and social environment of the cities.

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In June 1984, an Indian military operation ordered by then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi, was launched in the city to remove a few hundred Sikh militants who had taken control of the Golden Temple compound. After a few hundred people were killed during the 5-day siege, thousands of civilians were killed throughout the country in the aftermath.

Get in[edit]

The best time to visit Amritsar is during winter, October–March.

By plane[edit]

Most flights are to Delhi (1 hr away) but there are an increasing number of international connections:

  • Air India flies from/to Birmingham
  • Qatar Airways now flies from/to Doha
  • FlyScoot flies from/to Singapore with possible budget connections all around Southeast Asia and beyond
  • Air-India Express, SpiceJet and IndiGo fly from/to Dubai and Sharjah with cheap connections into Europe from there
  • There are also a surprising number of flights to Central Asia (Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan).

Getting there and away:

  • By bus – The cheapest way to and from the airport is by local bus. Take the bus to Ajnala (stand 19 in the city bus stand) and tell the conductor that you go to the airport. The bus costs ₹15 (December 2018). The bus will drop you in the main road, about 1 km away from the airport. You could walk this in about 15 minutes or take a rickshaw or auto from there. The way back should be the same, just walk to the main road and hail down any bus going into the city.
  • By free shuttle – The Golden Temple is running a free shuttle bus generally twice a day. It is leaving from the airport around 09:00 and 15:00 (as of F July 2023), generally shortly after a couple of flights arrived. So check ahead for the flights—he might go a little earlier or a little later. From the roundabout northeast of the Golden Temple in the center, the roundabout where also rickshaws go to the border, the bus should leave towards the airport about 1 hr before these times, but best to inquire with the Golden Temple staff beforehand.
  • By rickshaw – If you just head to the highway, or even just outside of the airport, there should be rickshaws waiting for potential customers—say ₹100-200. On the way back they will go as far as they are allowed. If you don't have much large luggage, that can also be a convenient option.
  • By taxi – Taxi drivers wait outside the arrivals gate for visitors. For a trip into town, even the prepaid taxi can be bargained down with the drivers to ₹300 from initially ridiculous prices of ₹550 a person (as of March 2014; became ₹850 as of May 2023) before you pay, but there is a significant dearth of official taxis or even auto-rickshaws, so prepare for a hard time. Uber and OLA are available. Both Uber and OLA charges around ₹550 (May 2023) with OLA slapping an additional ₹100 charge for parking which is not apparent while booking. This charge is applied both during airport pickup and drop off.

By train[edit]

  • 2 Amritsar Junction Railway Station (IR station code : ASR) (North of the Golden Temple Complex). An important railway station that is well connected to major cities in India through daily trains. Trains can be booked, at the train station.
  • 3 Train Booking Office, Golden Temple Unit, Baba Attal Road (In the Golden Temple Complex, next to the tourist dorm). The most convenient place to book a ticket. Book your return train ticket as soon as you arrive in Amritsar, or before if you know the exact date, as trains are often heavily booked.

Here are some useful trains to get to Amritsar:

Train Number Train Name You may board at You may alight at
12013 Shatabdi Express New Delhi, Ludhiana, Jalandha Amritsar (449 km)
12029 Shatabdi Express New Delhi, Ludhiana, Jalandha Amritsar
12497 Shan-e-Punjab Express New Delhi Amritsar (448 km in 7 hr 40 min)
12903 Golden Temple Mail Mumbai Central, Kota, Nizamuddin (Delhi) Amritsar (1891 km in 32 hr 15 min)
12925 Paschim Express Bandra Terminus (Mumbai), Vadodara, New Delhi Amritsar (32 hours)
12317 Akal Takht Express Howrah (Kolkata), Varanasi, Patna Amritsar
13005 Howrah-Amritsar Mail Howrah (Kolkata), Varanasi, Lucknow, Patna Amritsar
12053 Jan Shatabdi Express Haridwar, Saharanpur Junction, Ambala Cantonment Junction, Ludhiana Amritsar (407 km, 7½ hours)
18102 Muri Express Jammu, Pathankot Junction Amritsar

Also see Rail travel in India

By bus[edit]

  • 4 Amritsar Bus Terminal (ISBT Amritsar), Mehar Pura (East one km from Train Station. Electric rickshaw to the Golden Temple area are ₹10-20, or just walk.). The city is well-connected by bus to most major cities and the northern areas within a days drive. Pathankot (2½ hr, 100 km), Jalandahar (80 km), Kapurthala, royal city,(65 km) and there are daily direct buses to New Delhi (around 480 km), Jammu (north 220 km via Pathankot), Katra (north 280 km), Chandigarh (230 km), Dharamsala (northeast 200 km, once daily, ~6 hr), etc. You can find Volvo buses from Chandigarh, Delhi and Katra to Amritsar.

At the bus terminal you can also catch a bus to the Wagah border for ₹50.

By car[edit]

Long-distance taxis are available from most places. It takes around 6–7 hours from New Delhi via NH-1.

From Pakistan[edit]

If coming from Wagah at the Pakistani border, take a rickshaw (₹20, 3 km) to the Attari station, where you can catch a local bus to Amritsar (₹40, 25 km).

Nowadays, the bus from Amritsar is actually calling at the border. However, this might only be in the afternoon when a lot a people head to the border for the parade.

Taxis and rickshaws also use this route and charge ₹200-500 for the entire journey.

Get around[edit]

By bus[edit]

A public bus system has been introduced.

By auto-rickshaw[edit]

  • An auto-rickshaw from the train station to the temple should cost around ₹20, while a cycle-rickshaw will cost about ₹30.
  • Electric rickshaw between the Golden Temple area and the bus stand are ₹10.

By car[edit]

If you have your own car to get around Amritsar then simply confirm the directions with a local guide. In case you don't have your own car then there are several travel agencies that can offer you the car of your choice.

Renting a car is less time-consuming and affordable. Experienced car drivers know all the shortcuts within the city and will take you to the best hotel or restaurant. Never pay the entire fare to the car agent in advance and don't leave expensive luggage in your car whenever you are visiting a site.


Jallianwala Bagh, with bullet holes visible on the walls
  • 1 Jallianwala Bagh (A 5-min walk east from the Golden Temple). Daily 6AM-6PM (summer), 7AM-5PM (winter). The site of the 1919 Amritsar massacre, turned into a park memorial. On April 13 of that year, British Indian Army soldiers opened fire on an unarmed gathering of men, women and children. The firing lasted about 10 minutes and 1650 rounds were fired, killing 1579 people. A memorial was built on the site and inaugurated by the then-President of India, Rajendra Prasad, on 13 April 1961. The bullet holes can be seen on the walls and adjoining buildings. The well into which many people jumped and drowned attempting to save themselves from the hail of bullets is also a protected monument inside the park. The area near the entrance is only for pedestrians with shops and restaurants. Free. Jallianwala Bagh (Q10904104) on Wikidata Jallianwala Bagh on Wikipedia
  • 2 Gobindgarh Fort (Gobindgarh Fort, Bhangian Da Quila), Old Cantt Rd, Vijay Chowk, (½ km south of the railway station), +91 183 521 7666, . Daily 10AM–10PM. A large 1760 fort that is being turned into a tourist spot with several museums and performances. The fort was built of bricks and lime by Gujjar Singh Bhangi and armed with 25 cannons. In the 19th century it was conquered and enhanced by Maharaja Ranjit Singh, then captured by the British and also used by the Indian army. After restoration it was opened in 2017 to the wide public in a form of something between a museum and amusement park. Among the attractions there is a central stage with live performances; several rooms showing Punjabi clothing, coins and warfare; multimedia shows such as Sher-e-Punjab, a camel ride and a few restaurants and shops. ₹100-800. Gobindgarh Fort (Q19891598) on Wikidata Gobindgarh Fort on Wikipedia
  • 3 Ram Bagh (Company Bagh) (Near Lawrence Road). Tu-Su 10AM-5PM. This is a beautiful garden. A tribute to Guru Ram Das, the founder of the city. Famed as the summer palace of the Maharaja Ranjit Singh (Ranjit Singh Panorama?), it has now been converted into a museum which exhibits weapons from Mughal times to portraits of ruling houses of Punjab and the replica of "Kohinoor" diamond. ₹10. Ram Bagh (Q109649317) on Wikidata Ram Bagh, Amritsar on Wikipedia
    • 4 Maharaja Ranjith Singh Museum, Maharaja Ranjit Singh Bagh (Ram Bagh), Lawrence road (east of Punjab Lawn Tennis Association (PLTA) Tennis Court).
    • 5 Statue of Netaji. Subhas Chandra Bose (Netaji) was an important leader in the Indian struggle for independence. He led the Indian National Army and formed the Provisional Government of Azad Hind in exile.
    • 6 Summer Palace of Maharaja Ranjit Singh', Maharaja Ranjit Singh Nagar, Hasanpura Chowk (Ram Bagh park.). The palace houses a museum, exhibiting oil paintings, miniatures, coins and weapons from the Sikh period. In this park is the Maharaja Ranjit Singh Panorama, so ask, if you are at the right museum. Summer Palace of Maharaja Ranjit Singh (Q26898105) on Wikidata Ram Bagh Palace on Wikipedia
    • Historical Banyan Tree (Shaheedi Bohr), At the northern boundary of Ram Bagh.
  • 7 Baba Atal Rai Tower, Bazar Chure Wala, Papraha Wala Bazar, Katra Ahluwalia (Near the south entrance to the Golden Temple). Daily 7–10AM, 3–6PM. This is a great viewpoint over the city and the nearby Golden Temple. It is standing in another Gurdwara, namely the one of Baba Atal Rai Sahib Ji. Try the cimmunity kitchen of this Gurdwara if you are keen. Free. Gurdwara Baba Atal (Q924374) on Wikidata Gurdwara Baba Atal on Wikipedia
  • 8 Tarn Taran Sahib (Tarn Taran Gurudwara) (22 km southeast of the city, 600 m west of the train station). Mughal architectural style. There is a big holy tank and believed that the water of its has magical healing power. Amavas, or no moon day, is the most popular Feast, also Diwali, Baishakhi and the various Guru Parabs festivals held here.
  • 9 Gandhi Gate, Hall Road, Katra Ahluwalia (east 500 m from R.S.).
  • 10 Maharaja Ranjit Singh's Statue (Statue of Maharaja Jassa Singh Ramgarhia).
  • 11 Sarovar Ramsar Sahib (Gurudwara Bibeksar Sahib), Moni Chowk, Katra Ahluwalia (south one km from centre, next to Gurudwara Shahidan). Gurudwara and pool.
  • 12 Statue of General Sham Singh Attariwala and India Gate.

Religious sites[edit]

  • 13 Mata Temple (Mata Lal Devi Mandir), Rani Ka Bagh area (800 m northwest of the railway station). Highly recommended! This is a cave labyrinth Hindu temple devoted to the female saint Lal Devi. Traditionally, women wishing to become pregnant come here to pray. The roundabout path to the main temple passes through low tunnels, caves full of ankle-deep water, inclined walkways, and mirrored hallways that make the experience seem more like a fun house than a place of worship. The colours, wide variety of deities and elaborate mirrored image make this a psychedelically unique temple. This is called Sheesh Mahal, and some people also seem to call it "Lal Dev." Mata Lal Devi Mandir (Q91200105) on Wikidata
  • 14 Durgiana Temple (Lakshmi Narayan Temple), Basant Avenue, Gole Bagh (Near the Lohgarh Gate). The temple is enshrined with Goddess Durga. Daily rituals devoted to Durga Ma is performed in here. A dome and a tank are the prime possession of Durgiana Temple. Apart from Durga Devi, Durgiana Temple is also famous for Lord Krishna and Lord Vishnu. Believers whom devotees of these Goddess Lakshmi and Narayan also visit the shrine to gather the blessings. Durgiana Temple (Q5316436) on Wikidata Durgiana Temple on Wikipedia
  • 15 Gurdwara Toot Sahib, Sultanvind Area, Jaspal Nagar (3 blocks south from Sultanwind Rd.), +91 70095 44833. Gurdwara Shib of Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji. Toot Sahib (Q7824234) on Wikidata Toot Sahib on Wikipedia
  • 16 Gurudwara Pipli Sahib, Guru Arjun Dev Nagar quarter, Merchant Rd. (west one km of R.S.).
  • 17 Gurudwara Baba Budha Sahib (Gurudwara Sahib - Gobind Nagar), one block north from Sultanwind Rd. (southeast ~2 km of Golden temple).
  • Jama Masjid Khairuddin. It was built in 1976 by freedom fighter Mohammed Khairuddin. This is a mosque where Tootie-e-Hind, Shah Attaullah Bukhari protested against the British Rule.

Golden Temple[edit]

The Golden Temple at night
Pilgrims bathing in the Amrit Sarovar
Darbar Sahib, Golden Temple Complex

18 Golden Temple Complex (Gurudwara Harmandir Sahib), Golden Temple Road, Atta Mandi (Right in the centre, 1 km south of Railway Station). The complex is open 24/7, and is worth visiting twice: once during the day, once at night, when it's beautifully lit up. It is especially a delight at sunset when after a rainy day the sun shines through the clouds and swathes the place into a golden glow.. This is the main attraction in the city, and the most important religious place to the Sikhs. It's a stunning complex, and always full of thousands of pilgrims from all over India, excited to be at a place that they usually only see on television. The excitement to be here is infectious, and many people will be more than happy to tell you all about their religion and customs, and show you around the temple. As you arrive near the complex, you will more likely than not be accosted by hawkers trying to sell you bandannas to cover your head, but there's also a big barrel of free ones to choose from at the every entrance. Head covering and removal of shoes is mandatory for everyone—free cloakrooms are available at all entrances.
Besides walking around and enjoying the sight, have a meal and a chai at the free community kitchen southeast of the pool. It is also highly recommended to stay one or two nights in the temple itself—if you do not wanna sleep next to the pool, there are is a tourist dorm with AC in the Sarai Shri Guru Ramdass Ji building. Also, if you are keen, volunteers for the kitchen are always welcome and it is a fun experience between the many other locals rolling some bread, collecting dishes, or washing up.
Free (donations for free meals and accommodation are welcome). Harmandir Sahib (Q180422) on Wikidata Golden Temple on Wikipedia

  • 19 Akal Takht (The Timeless) (opposite the Harmandir Sahib, and the marbled Darshni Deorhi). This is where the highest council of Sikhs sits and deliberates. At night, the Guru Granth Sahib is taken to the Akal Takht. Akal Takht (Q118893) on Wikidata Akal Takht on Wikipedia
  • 20 Amrit Sarovar. The giant pool of water that surrounds and reflects the Golden Temple. Sections (marked off by ropes) are set aside for (male) pilgrims wishing to bathe.
  • 21 Central Sikh Museum (2nd floor, entrance on the right side of the main entrance when looking from the pool). Devoted to large gallery of paintings, mostly showing the gruesome ways countless Sikhs have been martyred, and various items from the gurus. Free. Central Sikh Museum (Q59601028) on Wikidata
  • 22 Ghanta Ghar. This is the main entrance, sporting a distinctly Victorian clock-tower. Wash your feet in the water at the entrance in order to keep the temple clean.
  • 23 Harmandir Sahib (Sri Darbar Sahib). This is the Golden Temple itself, floating above the Amrit Sarovar, housing the sacred Adi Granth scripture which is recited out loud during the day. This is the most crowded point, accessible by a bridge from the edge of the pool, and entry here is regulated by traditionally dressed Sikh guards. It's a 2-storey structure where Sikh saints are seated on each floor.
  • 24 Kaulsar Sarovar (Kaulsar Sacred Pools) (SW part of the Complex). This is one of five sarovars in the city. This sarovar is in honor of Mata Kaulan, a Muslim woman, who was taken into care by the sixth Sikh Guru, Guru Hargobind on instructions of Mian Mir, a close friend of the Sikh Gurus and a pious and wise Muslim pir. All Sikhs are encouraged in their lives to do volunteer services at any gurdwara or in the greater society, and everyone you see working here is fulfilling that duty. It's likely possible that you can join in if you feel so inclined: you could enquire by asking the people outside peeling vegetables, or those washing dishes.
  • 25 Gurdwara Mata Kaulan Sahib Ji (on the north shore of Kaulsar Sarovar).
  • 26 Manji Sahib Hall (East of Kaulsar Pool, Opposite Sri Guru Ram Das Langar Hall).
  • 27 Langar Ghar (Community kitchen) (SE of Amrit Sarovar). Free communal kitchen, where people of any colour, caste, creed or religion, can eat food (langar) sitting together. Also enjoy a free chai at the bottom level. In case you are keen for a picture of the Golden Temple from above (especially during sunset), follow the left staircase up further onto the roof and roam around a little. Also, people won't mind if you walk around in the place where the prepare the bread or wash the dishes.
  • 28 Sarai Shri Guru Ramdass Ji (Shri Guru Ram Das Sarai) (S of Amrit Sarovar). Built in 1931. Lodging place for pilgrims in 228 rooms, including 1 dorm with AC and fans for foreigners.
  • 29 Guru Arjun Dev Niwas (east of Sarai Shri Guru Ramdass Ji). Another lodging place for pilgrims.
  • 30 Sri Guru Nanak Dev Niwas (West of Guru Arjun Dev Niwas). This building houses sectarian offices of the different departments of SGPC and provide lodging facilities for pilgrims. Twenty rooms for pilgrims.
  • 31 Guru Hargobind Niwas and Sri Guru Ramdas Library (west of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Niwas). Rooms for pilgrims.
  • 32 Gurudwara Santokh Sar, Golden Temple Out Rd (near Subhash Park).

Further afield[edit]

Wagah Border, Checkpoint of India-Pakistan
  • 33 Bathinda Fort and Qila Mubaraq (Hindi: ਬਠਿੰਡਾ), Near Fort street, Old City quarter, Bathinda (500 m east of Bathinda Junction Railway Station, about 180 km south of Amritsar). The Qila is one of the oldest and highest small brick monument. It also contains two gurudwaras as the tenth Sikh guru Gobind Singh visited the place. The fort was built in 1930. It was as the official residence of armed forces of Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala State. It has been converted into a four-star hotel. Other sights in/around the town: Rose Garden on four hectares (close to Thermal Plant), Zoological garden (10 km away), Chetak Park with a lake, Mazaar of Peer Haji Rattan a worship place including a mosque and a Sikh gurudwara.- Further afield: Lakhi Jungle (15 km away toward Muktsar). A forest having old Gurudwara enjoyed the touches of Shri Guru Nanak Dev.
  • 34 Faridkot Fort (Quilla Mubarrak, Punjabi: ਫ਼ਰੀਦਕੋਟ), Sarafa Bazar Rd, Ajit Nagar (Thirty km away from Ferozepur). The fort is closed under renovation. Faridkot Fort more than 700 years old. The main attraction of Faridkot Fort lies in its extraordinary interiors. Among other prime captivating features, Faridkot Fort boasts of its Sheesh Mahals which are embellished with incredibly beautifully mirror works and wall paintings. Also, there can see motifs on the interior ceilings and walls of Faridkot Fort which show the rich Rajasthani traditions of craftsmanship. More sights in/around the town: Raj Mahal the Royal Palace of Maharaja Bikrama Singh on Area 61,000 m² - Darbar Ganj bungalow with a garden place, now been converted into Circuit House. Fairy Cottage (seven km on Chahal Road). This beautiful cottage is constructed by Maharaja Brijinder Singh in 1910–11. Check Tower (at the entrance of the Fairy cottage), Shaheed Bhagat Singh Park (in the city centre) in a beautiful scenery of the sunset in the evening. To do: Sheikh Farid Agman Purab festival (15-23 Sept); Bhatinda Virasat Mela and Heritage Festivals
  • 35 Gurudwara Goindwal & Baoli Sahib (Samadhi of Guru Angad Dev Ji), Goindwal Sahib (about 45 km southeast from Amritsar). Located on western shore of Beas River, Northeast 30 km. It was the first centre of Sikhism, holds immense significance in reference to the Sikh pilgrimage sites. A popular pilgrimage destination for both Sikhs and Hindus. The entrance of place is well decorated with murals describing significant scenes of the Sikh history. The massive langar of the community kitchen provides food to a large number of visitors every day. Guru Amar Das Ji (the third Guru) established this place. There is a Baoli (well) with 84 steps leading down to it. The devout believe that by reciting Japji Sahib, the divine Word revealed to Guru Nanak Dev at each step after taking a bath in the Baoli.
  • 36 Harike Bird Sanctuary (Hari-ke-Pattan), Harike village (South 54 km). Daily 9AM-5PM. The second largest bird sanctuary in India. Also a National Wetland & Wildlife Sanctuary. Hari-ke-Pattan is one of India's leading in-land sweet water fish market and home of varied wild life.
  • 37 Mandir Mata Salani Ji, Khiranwali (SE 60 km away from Amritsar, north half km from Kapurthala - Khanpur Rd).
  • 38 Pul Kanjari village (W 35 km away from Amritsar, north 6 km from Wagah Border). Maharaja Ranjit Singh had been staying here in a Baradari as and when he passed by with his troops. It has been declared as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO. It is said that once when a young dancer was going to Maharaja's Baradari for a dance performance, her shoe slipped into the water channel. A bridge (pul) was especially constructed to take her shoe out and hence this place got its name. Here is also a temple, a mosque and a Gurudwara. Popular shopping place for locals.
  • 39 Ram Tirth (Ram Tirath Temple), Chogawan Road , Kaler (West 11 km outside the city. Half km north of the main road). 5AM-9PM?. Consecrated by the appearance of Devi Sita, Ram Tirth was the birth place of the sons of King Rama. Making a special place in the holy scripts of ancient religions, the place was once the ashrama of saint Balmiki. The saint is believed to have scripted many of his sacred manuscripts at this place. A hut of Rishi Balmiki is still found at Ram Tirth where he once lived. After giving birth to Luv and Kush, Devi Sita used to stay at this place for a considerable period of time. The evidence of her stay still exists in the form a well which, it is believed, was dug by Hanuman. Devotees of King Rama and Devi Sita flock to this place every year to offer their prayers to the respected deities. As the locational position of the Ram Tirth is facilitated by easy accessibility, hence, the visitors conveniently reach this place of worship without any extra hassles.


  • Amritsar Heritage Walk. Despite visiting Amritsar and Golden temple several times, visitors find Heritage Walk experience extremely enjoyable and informative.
  • Old City Shopping. As you move through narrow path of old city and some other heritage buildings, you can see stalls selling everything from jootis to roasted sweet potatoes.
  • 1 Flag lowering ceremony Attari–Wagah border ceremony on Wikipedia – The ceremony at the Wagah (Attari) border involving a lot of nationalistic cheering, Monty-Pythonesque silly walks by soldiers, the lowering of the flags of both the countries (India and Pakistan), and the closing of international gates


  • The Golden Temple has a massive library where tourists/visitors can get books on Sikhism for free or at very little cost.
  • Almost every Sikh at the temple will be willing to talk to you about the temple and their religion and culture. Go there with an open mind and you'll leave with a smiling heart.


Sikh khandas displayed prominently on an exaggerated turban
  • 1 Mall of Amritsar, Main GT Road, MBM Farms, Sultan Wind Sub Urban (Next to Hyatt Hotel), +91 183 5031500, +91 183 5031599, +91 183 5093600, fax: +91 183 5031515. Shops of leading national, international and regional brands, five-screen cinema, hypermarket and one of Asia’s largest food courts. Services: customer relation desks, wheelchairs, children's play area, ambulance and first aid, Hi-tech security with CCTV, Gift wrapping at Hypercity hypermarket (Upper basement), Lost and found announcement services

There are bustling bazaars with a huge variety from embroidered phulkari dupattas to famous papad wariyan. The markets offer a wide range of products like carpets, bangles, shawls and woolen textiles and Punjabi juttis (traditional footwear).

  • Sikh symbols and religious paraphernalia like khandas, Karas (Sikh religious bangle), swords, daggers etc. from the shops close to the Golden Temple.
  • CDs of temple recordings, chants, and Punjabi music in the shops along the front of the temple.
  • Punjabi Juttis (shoes) from the tiny shops near the Hall Bazaar flyover.
  • Warian (spicy pulses ground with spices) from Hall Bazaar
  • Phulkaari is a form of embroidery from the state of Punjab in India and certain parts of Pakistan which literally means “flower making”. Brightly coloured shawls to sarees to head scarves to salwar-kameez of Phulkaari can be found in Hall Bazar and Kapra market. Hand-embroidered ones would be more expensive and are still very much in demand for festivals and other joyous occasions. Bargain your heart out, especially in Kapra market as it’s a whole-sale market for clothes.
  • Clock tower (since 1930) (Balmukand Kailash nath), new misri bazar, near golden temple (2-3 mins walk from golden temple), +91 9988367620.


Amritsar is famous for Amritsari Kulcha, a flatbread cooked in tandoor which is usually eaten with pindi chhole (chickpeas) for breakfast.

  • 1 Golden Temple Community Kitchen. 24/7. A dining hall (langar) serving free basic meals to all. Plates and spoons are handed out near the entrance, then follow the crowds inside and take the next vacant spot in one of the rows on the floor. Servers come by with large buckets of dal, chapatis and rice. Make sure to finish everything on your plate (wasting food isn't an option here) then take it outside to volunteers at the washing area. It's inside the complex which means no shoes and cover your head. At the ground floor of the building, they are serving chai. At the exit, there is a donation box for the free meals. Free, or donation.
Amritsar, Shopping street
  • The Brothers or Bharavan the Dhaba (near the Golden Temple). Serves traditional food or Chinese, continental at affordable prices. However, the food and service drops during peak times like weekends.
  • Bubby Dhaba, opposite Golden Temple (Just opposite the main entrance of Golden Temple). serves authentic Punjabi food at a very reasonable cost. Just metres from the main entrance of the Holy Golden Temple
  • 2 Charming Chicken, Opp. Nari Niketan, Majitha Road (From bus stand direct auto service available), +91 9814096207. 5-11PM. Established in 1958. Very popular family restaurant, particularly for butter chicken with naan. No alcohol is permitted. .
  • Country Inn & Suites, around the corner of Bhandari Bridge serves up great Indian, Italian, Continental and Chinese food.
  • Kesar da Dhaba (Located near the Golden Temple). It offers good Punjabi food made in pure ghee. Daal Makhni is worth trying. Don't forget to try a glass of Lassi after a heavy meal.
  • Moolchand Fish Shop, Off of GT Road near Tourist Guesthouse. (Find the Christchurch Cathedral (large red-and-green church, pretty conspicuous!) and keep walking, away from GT road. In about 2 minutes, you'll see a little shop selling fish.). Open 08.00-23.00. This tiny place is the definition of hole-in-the wall. If it looks like it has been there for 50 years, it's because it has! They'll weigh out your fish based on how much you want to pay, fry it, put some delicious spices on it, and serve it with spicy green chutney and raw onions. A little hard to find, but worth it. About ₹50 for a good-sized piece of fish, ₹70 for a serving of chicken.
  • My Kind of Place. Offers fast food such as pizza, burgers, and chips. It offers Chinese & Continental food also.
  • Neelam's (A few doors down from New Punjabi Rasoi). Offers pizza and other basics. Meals from ₹30.
  • New Punjabi Rasoi (Around the corner from the temple). It's one of the most popular restaurants in town and serves up great Indian food including tasty masala dosas. Meals ₹40–60.

There are very few decent non-veg restaurants and cafes near the temple complex.


Lassi is a popular and traditional yogurt-based drink which originates in the Punjab region. It is made by blending yogurt with water and Indian spices. Traditional lassi (also known as salted lassi, or, simply lassi) is a savoury drink sometimes flavoured with ground roasted cumin while sweet lassi, on the other hand, is blended with sugar or fruits instead of spices.

Bars & Lounge[edit]

  • Bar One, Comfort Inn GSK Hotel Amritsar, 110, Albert Road.
  • Empire Lounge, Welcom heritage Ranjits Svaasa, 47a, Mall Road Area.
  • Glassy Junction at Surya Residency, Dist. Shopping Complex Ranjit Avenue.
  • Nimos Restaurant and Bar, Green Avenue, Amritsar.



Global Institutes' Main Building
Khalsa College, Amritsar (1892)
  • 1 Golden Temple Dorm (In Guru Ram Das Ji Niwas, behind the temple). Offers free accommodation to pilgrims and tourists in very basic dorms or 3-bed rooms with AC and ventilation. It includes a shower, but toilets are outside with the other pilgrims. Maximum stay is 2-5 days, depending on utilization. You should remain quiet and respectful of the surroundings, keeping in mind that this is a holy place of pilgrimage more than a tourist attraction. Alcohol and smoking are strictly forbidden, not only within the temple complex but anywhere within sight of the temple complex. If you can handle that, then this is arguably the best place to stay—watching people go about their routine, talking to the pilgrims, and absorbing the gorgeous atmosphere. Put your donations in the donation box near the entrance to Ram Das Ji Niwas. Free, but donation expected (₹75-150 per night).
  • 2 Tourist Guesthouse, 1355 GT Road (Near Bhandari Bridge, One km east of Amritsar Junction Station), +91 183 255 3830, +91 93 56003219 (Mobile). A very nice place with a decent restaurant and friendly owners. About 25 minutes walking distance to the Golden Temple. ₹250–400.
  • Hotel Astoria, Queens Road (North of the Railway Station), +91 183 2401222. Rooms : 28. Room ₹500–1,500.
  • 3 Hotel Golden Heritage, Bazar Sarai Guru Ram Dass (Near to Jallianwala Bagh), +91 183 5070628. Check-in: noon, check-out: noon. Rooms : 35 Room ₹900–1,600.
  • 4 Hotel Sita Niwas, 61, Sita Niwas Road (near the eastern corner of the golden temple. The Hotel Sita Newas next door offering rooms from ₹1000, so ask where the other one is if the price seems high.), +91 183 2543092, +91 183 5064841, +91 98154-83755 (Mobile), . Check-in: noon, check-out: midday. Good and relatively cheap (₹80) food in their restaurant. Doubles Standard / Semi-Deluxe / Deluxe Room ₹600/₹700/₹900 With Breakfast: ₹1,000. - Triple Bed Semi-Deluxe / Deluxe / Deluxe Air-con Room ₹800/₹900/₹1,000. With Breakfast: ₹1,200 (2014).


Amritsar, Transporting
Amritsar, Roadside market
Statue of general Sham Singh Attariwala
Guru Nanak Dev University, Library building


Festival in Amritsar

Stay safe[edit]

  • The sectarian strife of the 1980s is just a bad memory and Amritsar is a safe and welcoming city, if a little polluted.
  • Don't leave cash or any valuables in the hotel room. Cross check all hotel, restaurant and lounges bills for errors.
  • Never pay anyone for anything upfront, including taxi drivers.
  • Do not exchange money in the black market. Ask for a receipt when exchanging money at any authorised currency exchange centre.


  • You should remain aware and respectful of the Sikh religion anywhere near the Golden Temple complex.
  • Inside the complex both men and women are required to cover their heads (scarves are widely available throughout the town for ₹10, or a box of them are free to use at the entrances to the temple).
  • Every visitor is required to remove shoes and socks and wash his/her feet before entering the temple. You can store your shoes at the subterranean building to the left of the entrance.
  • Smoking and alcohol are forbidden within the complex and anywhere within sight of the temple. Lighting up a cigarette on the busy street out front will definitely attract negative attention, as will spitting near the temple.
  • Photography is allowed on the outside ring of the holy lake, but not inside the temple.


Post Office[edit]

  • 4 Amritsar G.P.O., Albert Rd and Court Rd corner (Northeast from Railway Station), +91 183-2400785. General Post Office. - Pincode: 143001


There are quite a few good internet surfing facilities in Amritsar. Reliance WebWorld and Sify Internet kiosks are located at strategic locations.

  • Cyber Pub, Opposite District Courts on Airport Road. Scanner and printer available.
  • Cyber Swing, (above New Punjabi Rasoi restaurant), has several machines and a decent connection. ₹40/hour.

Go next[edit]

  • Dharamsala – A hill station in Himachal Pradesh, famed for its large Tibetan community centred on the activities of the Dalai Lama.
  • Jammu – The winter capital of Jammu and Kashmir
  • Lahore – Armed with a visa, take the plunge into this bustling gateway city, one of the cultural hubs of Pakistan.

This city travel guide to Amritsar is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.