Spiritual destinations to visit in India, perhaps there is no place in the whole world more identifiable with spirituality than India. His glorious and ancient spiritual culture has attracted pilgrims, seekers and philosophers from all over the world for thousands of years, and continues to do so. But what really makes this spiritual destiny different from any other is that no matter what main religion of the world you adhere to, there is a spiritual experience that awaits you.
So go find yours.
The coastal city of Puri in Orissa is one of the most popular pilgrimage destinations in India and is best known for the Puri Jagannath Temple, an important place of worship for both Hindus and Buddhists . Puri, located on the pristine south coast of Orissa along the Bay of Bengal, hosts annually the famous Rath Yatra (pulling carts) festival, during which three massive cars are dragged through the city of Puri.
Interestingly, it was this historical spectacle that gave rise to the English word “Juggernaut”! While the festival, which takes place in June, is a different matter from any other, Puri is also a paradise for pilgrims throughout the year and one of the most important spiritual destinations in India.
Kumbh Mela is at the pinnacle of all spiritual experiences in India and takes place on a rotating basis in four major sites of pilgrims in India: Haridwar, Prayag (Allahabad), Nashik -Trimbak and Ujjain. While you would have to wait until January 2019 to be able to visit the next Kumbh Mela (Ardh Kumbha in Prayag), this show is worth waiting for! Travel to Nashik via luxury train and book online Deccan Odyssey train.
Visited by philosophers, devotees, saints and commoners across the country, Mela is an indigenous experience par excellence and also one of the greatest human feats. To put things in perspective, the Kumbh Mela in Allahabad (Prayag) 2013 still holds the record for the largest human gathering in the world, with the visit of 30 million pilgrims in a single day!
The great living temples
Dating back centuries, and in some cases, even millennia, the ancient living temples of Tamil Nadu are a testament to the continuing legacy of the state’s spiritual quest. Among others, the Brihadeeswarar Temple in Thanjavur, the Meenakshi Temple in Madurai and the Srirangam Temple in Trichy stand out. Each year, thousands of devotees and seekers visit these temples to witness and participate in a spiritual experience that has been virtually unchanged for more than a thousand years!
Varanasi is one of the few places in the world where a whole city is considered spiritual! Often called “City of the Gods”, the legend says that the city was founded by Lord Shiva himself and that a single visit to the Ganges River in Kasi is all that is needed to cleanse the sins. Plan your trip to Varanasi and experience the luxury trains of India which makes your trip more memorable.
Today, this extensive and densely populated religious and spiritual center is home to the largest number of saints and sannyasis in India and is visited every year by a large number of international and local devotees. The city is home to the Kasi Viswanath temple, one of the most popular places of pilgrimage in Hinduism.