Ayodhya- the holy city of Lord Ram
When we speak about our great Hindu Mythology then Uttar Pradesh in North India has a special importance. Both for Ramayana and Mahabharata has evolved from the same state. Ayodhya is the birthplace of Ram and Hastinapur is the place from where Mahabharata still have its existence in Uttar Pradesh. And being an Indian everyone has a curiosity about the place. Today we are going to explore Ayodhya which inculcates the complete set of Ramayana.
Ayodhya being considered as one of seven important pilgrimage sites or Saptapuri has great importance. Later during Mughal rule, Ayodhya was also named as Awadh and during the rule of Babar, a mosque was erected in the place of the Temple which was considered as the birthplace of Lord Rama. Later this mosque was demolished and currently, there is a small temple. Ram Janmbhoomi has always been a highly debatable question. And this debate has always made this place scary for common people to visit due to often disputes that keep on going. Though the place is few kilometers away from Lucknow, and one of sacred pilgrim places still there are few visitors every year. Whatever it is Ayodhya has always been a historical place and Indian have lot see and know about the place. So today I will be sharing with you few places which make Ayodhya unique and a true destination point.
Do you know?
Ayodhya was previously known as Saketa or Saket. Saketa is a Sanskrit word which means Heaven. This place was considered to a place where God used to reside.
Places to visit in Ayodhya
Let’s check what the “must see” places in Ayodhya are:
Ram Janmabhoomi Temple
The place of Ram Janam Bhoomi has always been a debatable one. As per Hindu mythology, Ramayana-Ram’s birthplace is considered as the Sarayu river banks. But the Hindu section demands the land of Ayodhya where Babri Masjid used to be during the 16th century as the exact birthplace of Lord Rama. History says during Mughal rule under the instruction of Babar the temple was demolished and was a mosque was erected which later during the 20th century the mosque was broken down and a temple was erected. And as per the excavation report by Archaeological survey of India, there was a temple beneath the mosque. After the riot, the temple is now under construction. The place is under the high security of commandos. There you have to go through tough security check. You will find a lot of monkeys jumping here and there. The passage of entrance is narrow. You will find the idol of Ram Lalla inside. Initially, the temple was temporarily on Swiss tent but now the construction work is on.
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Hanuman Garhi Temple
Hanuman Garhi Temple has also reference in Ramayana. The story says, when Lord Rama decided to leave the world and get immersed into Sarayu River, he asked Hanuman to take care of Ayodhya. Hunuman promised to do that, Hanuman chooses a place for himself on hills from where he can look throughout Ayodhya. People believe the temple is in the same place where Hanuman chose to sit. The temple is on the hilltop and you need to climb 76 steps to reach over there. The temple doors are colorful and majestic. There is a 6-inch tall deity of Hanuman and the hilltop view is amazing. You can have a panoramic view of Ayodhya.
Do you know?
Ayodhya was the capital of Kosala during the Vedic period, which is currently known as Uttar Pradesh. In Ayodhya, there is a place named Ajanavana, which is a forest and a deer park where Gautam Buddha Stayed and preached.
Kanak Bhawan is one of the most beautiful temples in Ayodhya. The place is also known as Sone-ka-ghar. The colorful arches, the carved walls and windows and the huge marble courtyard are just enchanting. The story goes in this way- Lord Ram’s stem mother Kaikayee gifted this palace to Sita during their marriage. Though this temple has been renovated at various Yugas (Ages), the details are provided below in the image as the reference. Inside the Bhawan, you will find wonderful deities of Lord Rama and Sita.
** Reference for renovation of Kanak Bhawan
Nageshwarnath Temple is said to be the only temple which had survived till the time of Vikramaditya. This temple also has a story behind it. It is said that that Kush son f Lord Rama has established this temple. It is said Kush had lost his armlet in river Saryu while bathing which was picked up by Nag- Kanya who fell in love with him. Kush erected this temple in her honor.
Vijay Raghav Mandir
Vijay Raghav Mandir is another beautiful temple in Ayodhya, where still now the temple has no electricity. The temple follows traditional ways of cooking and uses water from well. They even don’t use utensils, they use utensils made up of leaves. Balaram Acharya Maharaj has established this temple.
Do you know?
What are the Sapta puris-
Sapta Puris means 7 Sacred Cities of India which are Ayodhya, Haridwar, Mathura, Kashi, Ujjain, Dwarka and Kanchipuram
Ghats of Ayodhya
Saryu River has been very famous. There are mentions of this river at various chapters of Ramayana. Saryu River originated from Lake Mansarovar from the Himalayas and got merged with Ganga after Ayodhya. Gupta Ghat is a serene ghat with a yellow temple at its one side. The mythological story says, Lord Ram took Jal Samadhi in this Ghat. Laman Ghat is another Ghat which is believed to be the place where Laxman took Jal Samadhi.
What is the best time to visit Ayodhya?
The main festivals that are celebrated in Ayodhya are Ram Navmi, Ram Leela, Dusshera, Hanuman Jayanti, and Diwali. So the best time to visit Ayodhya is during the months of March, April, October, and November.
Which foods to taste while you are visiting Ayodhya?
The place is considered as holy for Indian, so the most food you will get here is vegetarian dishes. You can find Swastik Bhojan at small restaurants and eateries outside temple. The Amrittis are quite tasty over here. Do not forget to taste Kachories, Samosa, and Papri Chaat. If possible go to some local restaurant to taste Baati Chokha Nimona, Daal Bhari Puri, Long Latta, and Tehri.
Do not forget to carry your identity card while you travel to Ayodhya. Do not panic if commandos or Army people ask any questions, which are their routine work, so be polite to them.