MakeMyTrip India offers convenient and economical tour packages to Allahabad. We arrange cheap flights, comfortable hotels and exclusive tours in Allahabad to guarantee you a memorable holiday/vacation. Online Flights Hotels Booking in Allahabad


  
 

Allahabad - The Destination

  
Travel to Allahabad

Allahabad, the sacred city of Hinduism was formerly called Prayag in memory of a sacrifice done by Lord Brahma. It is best known as host to the mind-boggling number of Kumbh pilgrims who visit this endearing city every 12 years. According to Hindu mythology for the Prakrishta Yagna Lord Brahma chose a piece of land on the earth on the confluence of the three rivers - the Ganga, the Yamuna, and the mythical Sarswati. The land being surrounded by these 3 rivers would serve as the prime and central altar and came to be known as Prayag, today  known  as  Allahabad. The  most  sacred  spot  in  Allahabad  is

Triveni Sangam, the confluence of three of the holiest rivers where devout Hindus from all over India come to the sacred pilgrimage point to offer prayers and take a dip in the holy waters. It is believed that a holy dip taken at the Sangam washes away all sins.

Allahabad is among the largest cities in Uttar Pradesh. Emperor Akbar founded this city in 1575 and called it by the name of `Illahabas’, which has now become modern Allahabad. The monarch realized its strategic importance as a waterway landmark in North India and also built a magnificent fort on the banks of the holy Sangam.

Over the centuries that followed, Allahabad remained on the forefront of national importance - more so, during the days of the Indian independence struggle. The vibrant history of Allahabad with its religious, cultural and historical ethos also gave rise to several renowned scholars, poets, writers, thinkers, statesmen and leaders.

Two million pilgrims meet here for the Mahakumbh Mela - the world’s largest religious event and by far the most magnificent. A makeshift township springs up, with sadhus, bards, magicians, pilgrims, snake charmers, astrologers… all jostling for space on the sandy banks. There are processions of naked ascetics with knotted dreadlocks and ash-smeared bodies, flourishing tridents and spears. Hordes of devotees surge into the river for a holy-dip. To bathe at the Kumbh means assurance of salvation. The evening hour is magical. Thousands of glowing diyas (earthen oil-lamps) are floated upon the water in offering to the river goddess. The air is filled with the chanting of prayers and the sound of temple bells. It is hard not be affected by the religious greatness of the moment.

At times, the Mahakumbh seems to distort the distinction between pilgrimage and tourism. It features plush Maharaja tents equipped with cell-phones, laptops and hot water. Ayurvedic massages, turmeric baths, sitar and conch-blowing lessons will be thrown in for good measure! One can hope to bump into Indophile celebrities too.

The story of the Kumbh is interesting. It is said that the gods and the demons joined hands to churn the ocean to procure amrit, the nectar of immortality. When the ocean yielded its treasure, Vishnu the Preserver, first served the gods, and then, instead of giving the demons their share, made off with the kumbh (pitcher). His duty as Preserver of the Universe, got the better of his sense of fair play, for surely it would have been unwise to make the demons indestructible! In the chase that followed, four drops of the elixir spilt on earth - at Allahabad, Haridwar, Nasik and Ujjain. The festival moves every 3 years, returning to Allahabad, the holiest of the sites, for the Mahakumbh (Great Kumbh) every 12 years.
Allahabad Facts at a Glance

State : Uttar Pradesh
Area : 63.07 sq km
Temperature : 26.6 C – 41.1 C (Summer)
9.1 C – 29 C (Winter)
Altitude : 98 mts
Language : Hindi, Urdu, English
Best Season : October – April


History of Allahabad


Built on a very ancient site, Allahabad was known as Prayag in Aryan times. Legends have it that Lord Brahma, the creator of the Universe, performed a sacrifice here. The Chinese pilgrim Hiuen Tsang described visiting the city in 634 AD, and it acquired its present name in 1584, under the rule of Emperor Akbar.

Emperor Akbar founded this city in 1575 and called it by name of Illahabas, which today stands as modern Allahabad. The monarch realized its strategic importance as a waterway landmark in North India and built a magnificent fort on the banks of the holy Sangam also well known as the Triveni Sangam. Later Allahabad was conquered by the Marathas, sacked by the Pathans and finally ceded to the British in 1801 by the Nawab of Avadh.

It was in Allahabad that the East India Company officially handed over the control of India to the British government in 1858, following the Mutiny. It houses some beautiful remnants of their colonial architecture. Over the centuries that followed, Allahabad remained on the forefront of national importance - more so, during the days of the India’s struggle for independence. The history of Allahabad with its religious, cultural and historical ethos also gave rise to several renowned scholars, poets, writers, thinkers, statesmen and leaders.

In the early 20th century, Allahabad University was the foremost center of learning in the country. Today, it is an important city where history, culture and religion create a confluence, much like the sacred rivers that caress this God-graced land. The city was also a centre of the Indian National Congress and at the conference here in 1920, Mahatma Gandhi proposed his programme of nonviolent resistance to achieve independance.
                                  Travel Guide to Allahabad

[ close this window ] close

[ close this window ] close