A Complete Guide to Visit Allahabad Ardh Kumbh Mela
Kumbh Mela is the oldest fair in the history of mankind which is still celebrated with great fervor in the modern world. If you want to witness the glory of Kumbh Mela, the upcoming Ardh Kumbh Mela 2019 a chance for you to be a part of this cultural feast which is going to be held in Allahabad near the banks of Triveni Sangam.
The world famous Kumbh Mela is seen as an important event for a wide variety of travelers from across the globe as it gives them a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the depth of Indian culture. The fair is also a great occasion for pious Hindus and saints to participate in the rituals and other ceremonies conducted during the fair. The word Kumbh Mela means fair of earthen pots.
According to Indian mythology, some drops of nectar which Lord Vishnu was carrying in an earthen pot to keep it away from the reach of Asuras, fell in the river and rendered it pure as the nectar could make a person immortal. Since, the fair sees millions of visitors, you must make proper arrangements in advance to avoid any delays or obstructions while on your way to the fair site. Here is a complete guide to equip yourself with all the information you need for a trouble free journey in Allahabad Kumbh Mela 2019.
Important Bathing Dates
Being the most important ritual of Kumbh Mela, the holy bath on auspicious days is considered highly sacred as it washes a person clean of the sins committed by him or his ancestors. A large number of saints and pilgrims gather at around 3 a.m. at the banks of the holy river to take the holy dip in groups. The Ardh Kumbh Mela 2019 starts on the day after full moon as it is said to have a positive effect on the quality of air and water. This time Kumbh Mela starts on Makar Sakranti which falls on 15th January.
According to astrologers, this day is considered as the holiest day to take the holy dip. Other important Kumbh Mela 2019 holy bathing dates during this two months long fair are Paush Poornima (21st January) , Mauni Amavasya (4th February) , Basant Panchami (10th February) , Maghi Poornima (19th February) and Maha Shivratri (4th March). Planning your tour around these auspicious days would enable you to free yourself from the cycle of rebirth and suffering by taking the holy bath.
How to Reach Allahabad
Allahabad is well connected to all major cities of India including Delhi by air, rail and road. But to avoid the last minute rush we advise you to book your transport in advance so you do not miss out on any important ritual which is very much likely keeping in view the large inflow of tourists at this time. The best way to reach Allahabad is by taking a direct flight to Allahabad airport. You will need to hire a cab to take you to your hotel or guest house. Since the vehicles are banned during the bathing dates, you have to reach the destination at least a day before the auspicious dates. So, make all your taxi bookings in advance to counter delays.
Accommodation and Meals
Next consideration which should be on your list is Kumbh Mela accommodation. Allahabad has an infinite number of hotels and guest houses equipped with world-class facilities. You can book these hotels if you want to experience other aspects of the city during your Kumbh Mela tour. But if you want to ensure that you reach the bathing site in time you can opt for an overnight stay at the luxury tents near the fairgrounds.
These tents are equipped with toilets and other amenities to meet the needs of all kinds of tourists. For the safety of the tourists, many police stations and hospitals have been built near the tents. You will be served hygienic vegetarian Indian and Continental cuisine during your stay in the Luxury tents. However, if you wish to try the menu at the communal meals served to saints and pilgrims, you can do so by sitting on mats with other people on the fair site. Alcohol is banned at the fair to maintain the sanctity of the holy festival.
Clothes to Wear
The weather in Allahabad stays pleasant and cool in the months of January and February. There may be clouds and fog with some rain. It would be wise to carry warm clothing and an umbrella to save you from any unexpected change in weather especially when you visit the fair. Women should wear proper clothing to maintain the dignity of the holy place. You need to be very particular about what you should wear during the holy bath. It is advised to wear a full length outfit when you take the dip as swimsuits are not allowed here.
Photography Do's and Don'ts
During Kumbh Mela, the whole city wears a garb of purity and holiness. You will see many different types of Sadhus wearing saffron robes which would be enough to tempt you to take a picture of them. But before you click any pictures, you have to know about the photography rules before going on India Kumbh Mela tour so you do not end up hurting the religious sentiments of the people there. Photography at the bathing site is strictly banned. If you want to capture the essence of the fair, you can click pictures of Sadhus roaming around during the fair. It would be better if you take permission before taking any snapshots of the holy men. This will also allow you to interact with them which in turn will help you know more about the significance of the fair as told by these Sadhus.
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People who want to book their tents in Kumbh Mela,