Uttar Pradesh is not only the most populated but is also the fourth largest state of the country. This northern state got its current name in 1950 after India won independence. Its rich culture, vibrant atmosphere, different heritage sites and religious places of worship make it an important and famous tourist destination.
Gorakhpur is a city in the north eastern side of the state, alongside the River Rapti. This is the home of the Saint Gorakhshanath, a renowned religious leader, which gave the city its name. It is a famous tourist destination for family holidays. The best places to visit in and around are mentioned below.
1. Gorakhnath Temple
The Nath Sampraday’s most revered shrine, this temple is dedicated to the Saint Gorakhnath. He preached humanity and yoga all over the nation. He was an important figurine during medieval times for his acts of austerities. The city gets its name from this math. Gorakhnath Temple itself was constructed back in the 12th century. The temple houses the saint’s shrine, his footsteps and his seat, where he used to practice Yog. During the festival of Makar Sankranti, food is donated to all devotees. Currently, the chief priest here is Yogi Adityanath, who has devoted his life to follow on the footsteps of Baba Gorakhnath. There is also an artificial pond inside the premises of the temple.
2. Archeological Museum
Established in 1957, this Archeological museum portrays the history, rules, culture, traditions and archeological findings of past and present Gorakhpur. It is the most famous local tourist destination and is crowded at all times. It is under the care taking of the Deen Dayal Upadhyay University of Gorakhpur’s Department of Indian History, Archeology and Culture. It lies within is premises itself. The artifacts preserved inside include ancient coins, sculptures, paintings, stone tools, age old jewellery and even stamps. It is accessible on all days except when the university remains closed.
3. Gita Press
Gita Press currently holds the position of being the world’s premier press of publishing Hindu religious scriptures and books. It was started in the year 1923 by Jaya Dayal Goyandka and Ghanshyam Das Jalan. Their main motto was to promote Hinduism, ‘Sanatan Dharma’, as they call it. It is belied to be the right or perfect way to lead life. They publish the Holy Gita and its interpretations, the holy epics Ramayana and Mahabharata, Purana, Upanishad and even works of different saints and gurus. All this literature is translated to other regional languages and sold to. Kalyank and Kalyana Kalpataru are two monthly magazines being published since the start. Currently, around 350 workers are employed there.
4. Railway Museum
This unique Railway museum and the attached amusement park are recent additions to the tourism attractions of Gorakhpur. It was opened in the year 2007 for the public to visit. The most prized possession of this museum is the steam engine of Lord Lawrence. It was built in London in the year 1874 and imported to India by a ship. There is also a photo gallery, uniforms, old clocks and even other engines. A toy train is also there for the amusement of children. The entire museum tour will take about 2 hours to finish.
5. Nehru Park
Nehru Park is situated in the Laldiggi locality of Gorakhpur, right next to Gita Press. Fountains and twinkling multi colored lights give Nehru Park a very distinguished and poised look. Its serene surroundings and lush greenery will give you exactly what you are looking for at the end of a day, a little rest and some quiet. September 16th 2005 saw a memorial built here dedicated to the life and memory of freedom fighter Ram Prasad Bismil. This revolutionary was at the forefront of the Manipuri and Kakori conspiracies and throughout the struggles against British tyranny. The park has huge lawns, picnic spots and attractions for children too.
Gorakhpur is the best place to visit when one wants to seek a restful holiday and yet see some of India’s best wonders. This delightful city will charm you with its historical relation and cultural importance.