Sheikh Chehli's Tomb
Welcome to Kurukshetra,
Kurukshetra is a district in the Indian state of Haryana. It is a holy place and is also known as Dharmakshetra ("Holy City"). According to the Puranas, Kurukshetra is named after King Kuru, the ancestor of Kauravas and Pandavas, as depicted in epic Mahabharata. The meaning of the word `Kurukshetra` is the land of the Kauravas.
Kurukshetra is a great pilgrimage for millions of Hindus from all over the country who visit the land of Kurukshetra, the venue of the Mahabharata war(Kurukshetra War) and the birth place of the Bhagvad Gita, for its holy places. Building on its,historical and cultural traditions, the Kurukshetra city has developed upto a modern city having Kurukshetra University,Regional Engineering College, Ayurvedic Medical College, Science Museum (Panorma) etc.
Pilgrimage tourism in Kurukshetra District comprises visits to several holy sites like temples, ponds and other religious sites. It is associated with the sermon of Lord Krishna to Arjuna and mankind in the form of the Bhagavad Gita. Tourism in Kurukshetra includes visits to its popular archeological sites. The major archaeological sites of Kurukshetra District include Raja Karana Ka Tila, Bhor Saidan, Asthipura, Bhagwanpura etc.
Aapga Teerth is 6 km away from Kurukshetra district; situated in Mirzapur Village. Aapga Teerth is situated near Aapga River. It is quite ancient and holy river in the district. The Aapga Teerth is situted in the palace of King Karna. A pond is inside this teerth(pilgrimage) which is constructed of Lakhori bricks. At each of the four corners of this pond; cenotaph is placed. The cenotaph has huge dome at the top and octagonal shape at base.
The village of Amin is located at a distance of about 8 kilometers from the historical city of Kurukshetra. There is a very old fort in the village of Amin. This fort is situated at a higher level than the rest of the village. People say that this fort belonged to Abhimanyu, the son of Arjun in the Mahabharat times. Folklore also says that the Pandavas arrayed their forces before the last battle in the war of Mahabharat at Amin.
Another interesting fact about the village is that there is a "tirth-sthal" (holy spot) called "Surya Kund", where Mother Aditi gave birth to the Sun God (Surya Dev). This spot is said to be empowered by the hard worship of 86000 "Rishi-Munis" and the villagers generally leave the "asthi (mortal remains after the pyre is burnt) kalash" after cremation in that sarovar (kund) even though other Hindus take them to the Ganges in Haridwar. A strong myth prevails that if any pregnant lady takes a bath in that holy kund, then the upcoming male child will have excellent qualities like bravery and power.
Aaditi Tirath and Abhimanu Tila in Amin are famous pilgrimage in the village.
This historical site lies to the west of Thanesar and marks the place where the bodies of the dead soldiers of the Mahabharata war were said to have been cremated. Cunningham excavated the mound which measures about 700 feet by 500 feet (213 metres by 152 metres) and found an extensive platform of unbaked bricks still 364 feet (111 metres) in length. Besides, remains of walls and fragments of terracotta sculptures have also been found.
A legendary temple that has close association with Pandavas, Bhadrakali temple at north Thaneswar holds much religious significance. Legend has it that the pandavas had performed austerities and rituals before their final battle against the Kauravas.
This shrine houses various incarnations of Goddess Kali and it is considered as one among the Sakthi Peeths where the lower limb of Goddess Sati fell. Sakthi Peeths are those holy places where all the wishes are believed to be fulfilled. The devotees offer terracotta horse as a mark of respect to the deity. The temple has got a awe inspiring look after its renovation with beautiful red stone. Huge crowd gather in the holy premises of the temple on the eve of Navarathri celebrations and also on every Saturdays.
Bhagwanpura is situated in the north-west of Ladwa on the right bank of the Sarasvati River. It is a prehistoric site which presents an overlap between the late Harappan and the Painted Grey Ware cultures which is of considerable significance, so far as the reconstruction of a continuous history of Haryana is concerned.
Continuity on the tradition supported by characteristic finds in pottery type, painted designs, art of terra-cotta figurines and burials provide evidence of the two cultures here. The three phases of the structural activity of the Painted Grey Ware people are represented successively by the round or semi-circular thatched huts followed by, mud-walled houses and then by houses built with baked bricks. Interesting oval-shaped structures meant for some religious functions have also bee discovered.
It is a small village in Kurukshetra District. At about 13 kms to the west of Thanesar towards Pehowa lies the Bhurirava Tank. Tradition associates the place with the war of Mahabharata. Bhuri was son of Somadatta, King of Vaishali. The village is named Bhor after him. This small village is situated on an ancient mound.
Bhurishrava Teerth is 15 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Bhor Sainda town. According to the great epic 'Mahabharata' this pilgrimage is concerned with the son of the King Somdatt name Bhurishrava. There are 3 temples Bhuteshwar Temple, Mata Rajrajeshwari Temple and Sankat Mauchan Hanuman Temple situated in this pilgrimage. The Bhuteshwar Temple is the oldest among these three whereas both Mata Rajrajeshwari Temple and Sankat Mauchan Hanuman Temple are morden temple.
Every year lakhs of people come to take a holy bath at Brahma Sarovar on the occasion of "Somavati Amavasya" (Sacred No-Moon Day that happens on a Monday). Brahma sarovar, as the name suggests, is associated with lord Brahma, the creator of the Universe. Since times immemorial, Kurukshetra has been the venue of the great purification ceremonies for moksha (salvation) for pilgrims from the four corners of the country. The Matsya purana and Padma Purana, ancient Hindu text tell us that if an individual takes a holy dip in the sacred tanks of Kurukshetra, on the occasion of a Solar Eclipse, he attains the merits of a thousand Ashwamedha Yajna.
It is believed that the Mughal Emperor akbar, accompanied by his court historian Abul Fazal, too visited Kurukshetra during the Solar Eclipse in 1567. Abul Fazal's Akbarnama refers to the Eclipse in Kurukshetra and the piligrims bathing in the Brahma Sarovar. The French traveller Francois Bernier of the Mughal Emperor Shajehan's era also mentions the sacred tanks of Kurukshetra.
The word Brahma means nucleus or gigantic. Brahma Sarovar happens to be the largest man made tank in India. On seeing this huge water body, Abul Fazal, the famous historian called a 'miniature ocean'.
The water tank is dedicated to Lord Shiva.Today Brahma Sarovar has been renovated. It is 1800 feet long and 1400 feet broad. Lord Brahma is said to have created the universe from this land. Just in the vicinity of this sacred place are the Birla Gita Mandir and Baba Nath's haveli. The sight of Kurukshetra is exquisite especially in winters when birds migrate from ever different landmasses to take a dip in the waters. This beautiful looks all the attractive during the 'Deep Daan' and Aarti during Gita Jayanti in the later November and early December.
Bramha Sthan Teerth is situated in Thana Town which covers 115 acre of land. Kurukshetra is the land of pilgrimage places. The pilgrimage places are situated almost in the all towns across the district. This teerth was described once in the epic Mahabharata. This is the pilgrimage of 'Lord Shiva'. This temple had been developed in Naagar form(type of construction) and situated on the height of 30 feet. The dome of the temple has many sculptures and carvings on it which comprises of Bamboo.
Apart from this there is pond where different type of bird can be seen. The natural beauty surrounding to this pond is really mesmerising.
The holy land of Kurukshetra has been a witness to moments events of historical , cultural and religious importance. During Budda's time, the king of Kurus was called Koravya, and his debates with the elder Rattahpala, also a scion of the noble family of Kurus, are emobodied I the Rattahapala Satta ( The Buddhist Taxt) . The famous Buddhist nuns Nanduttrara and Mittakali also belonged to this place.
According to Dipavamsa Buddha went to a town of the Kuru region and recerved alms on the bands of Anotatta lake, which he crossed. Udena's queen Magandiya belonged to the land of the Kurus, and Aggidatta, the prist of the Kosala king, lived on the boundary between the Kuru, Ariga and Magadha regions, and was honoured by the people of these kingdoms for forming his dutied honorably and efficiently.
The Chullavagga mentions Aggalpura ( Agroha) as a stronghold of Buddhism while the Miaya Pitaka recounts the visit of renowned physican Juvaka to the town of Rohtak . From the Somanassa Jataka it appears that at one time the Kuru kingdoms exteneded as far as Uttarapanchala, a town in the Kuruattha with Renu as its king.
Chhnip Gyanuns is the pilgrimage in the district. Here the Nabhi Kamal is a sacred tank. It is believed that the tank houses a sacred lotus which happens to play abode to Lord Bramha (one of the Trinity Gods). The Lord is believed to have manifested from the navel of the lotus.
Daulatpur is another important archaeological site, situated on Thanesar-Ladwa road near Pipli crossing, where excavations have revealed a relationship between the late phase of the Harappan and Painted Grey Ware cultures.
It is located 53 kms from Kurukshetra. The locals call this place 'Furl'. A dip in the water tank here is said to bring one wealth and prosperity. According to the mythology Lord Vishnu appeared here on request of Lord Brahma.
Gaalav Teerth is 38 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Guldehra Town. It is also known as Gaalib Teerth. This teerth is concerned of Maharshi Gaalav thats why the name Gaalav Teeth came in existance. This pilgrimage is comprises of one pond and two small temples.
The Gita Jayanti is a famous celebration of this place, during the ending of November and the start of December. Bhagwat Gita Recitals, Aartis and 'deep daan' are some of the aspects of celebration. The festival is a celebration of the movement when Lord Krishna was charioteer of Arjun and delivered him the Gita Updesh-which advocated path of selfless 'Karma', 'Gyana' and unwavering devotion to the Almighty.
Kurukshetra plays domain to many of the Sikh temples in the vicinity. The Gurudwara near Sannihit tank which is dedicated to Guru Hargobind Singh. The Rajghat Gurudwara is dedicated to Guru Gobind Singh's visit to Kurukshetra. It is the largest Sikh temple in the town and is located near the Kurukshetra tank. Gurudwara Sidhbati also is a famous place where Guru Nanak stayed when he visited Kurukshetra.
There is another Gurudwara dedicated to the eighth Sikh Guru Harikishan. The miraculous saint is believed to have made a deaf and mute boy well versed in chanting the Bhagwad Gita. A camp has also been set up near Sthaneshwar Teertha where a Gurudwara currently exists that is dedicated to the ninth guru Tegh Bahadur.
Near the fort complex, an impressive mound, popularly known as Harsha Ka Tila exists. Here recent excavations have brought to light many hidden layers of Indian history ranging from early historical times to late Mughals. Quite a few Jain and Brahmanical sculptures and architectural fragments have been found.
Jyotisar is a town on the Kurukshetra-Pehowa road, 5 km west of Thanesar in the Kurukshetra district of Haryana. 'Jyoti' means light and 'Sar' means the core meaning. Hence the name of place is a reference to the 'core meaning of light' or ultimately of God.
It is one of the most revered holy sites of the holy city of Kurukshetra. It is here under the holy banyan tree that Lord Krishna is believed to have delivered the eternal message of Bhagawad Gita to Arjuna before the commencement of the battle of Mahabharata. It is the birthplace of Bhagwat Gita. A beautiful marble chariot depicting Lord Krishna delivered the eternal message of Gita to Arjuna, canopied by a Banyan tree exists at the site.
Recently, a Sound and Light Show, on the theme of Bhagawad Gita has been mounted by ITDC and Haryana Tourism at Jyotisar. This show tries to capture the drama of Mahabharata with special emphasis on the teaching of Bhagawad Gita.
This town is named after the tenth son of Kardam Rishi, Kapil Muni. The 'Shankhya Shastra' was written by Kapil Muni. On the Karthika Purnima devotees gather near a sacred tank in kalayat.
Kamyak Teerth is 14 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Kamauda Town. Nearby this plgrimage Kamyak forest is situated. A pond is situated in this pilgrimage which is construsted by Lakhori bricks. In this pilgrimage separate temple of Shiva and Singhwahini Durga are situated. The Durga temple is situated on some height. The idol of Ganesha and Hanuman are also settled in this temple.
Karn Ka Tila is 5 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Mirzapur Village. This pilgrimage is concerned to Karn-the brave character in the great epic 'Mahabharata'.
Nature has always been worshiped in the Hindu mythology, from animals to birds all have their own sanctity in the religion so ancient. No wonder the land which is so highly revered amongst the Hindus has now been beautifully dotted by dexterously built and designed parks.
Purushottam Park, Harsh- Vardhan Park and Tapovan Park are some of the verdure attractions of the place, a refreshing evening or morning stroll can definitely rejuvenate your spirits.
Kurukshetra the holy pilgrimage covers an area of 48 kosas, in which 360 places of pilgrimage related to the Mahabharata can be seen. he festival in Kurushetra, Haryana coincides with the Gita Jayanti, signifying the birth of the Srimad Bhagavad Gita. Fairs are held during the solar and lunar eclipses at Kurukshetra. There are several shrines on the extensive plains of Kurukshetra, but the holiest place for meritorious bathing is a pool, near the town of Thaneshvar, filled from sacred river Saraswati.
Bathing here is considered particularly efficacious in purifying the soul. Another sacred tank in Kurukshetra is Sannihit Sarovar, which is believed to be the meeting point of seven sacred Saraswatis. The Hindus consider a dip in the pond during an eclipse auspicious. A large number of pilgrims visit these fairs. Amidst chanting of Vedic mantras, the pilgrims take a dip in the Sarovar when the eclipse starts. Many people come here for salvation on such occasions. Kurukshetra has been the germinating ground of the essence of Hinduism. It is one of the holy towns that have borne the imprint of Lord Krishna`s footsteps.
A world-class panorama depicting the Mahabharata war with scientific explanations justifying every episode in the war. There are also several scientific exhibits designed to kindle a curiosity for science.
The Kurukshetra War was a war between the Kauravas and Pandavas, which formed an essential component of the Hindu epic Mahabharata. The Kurukshetra War is believed to date variously from 6000 BCE to 500 BCE.
The Kurukshetra War lasted eighteen days. It was fought only during daylight hours; fighting ceased at sunset. The armies met on a vast field in Kurukshetra; each day the battle was characterised by numerous individual combats, as well as mass raids against entire enemy divisions. The victor or the vanquished on each day was determined not by any territories gained, but by the body count. This was a war to the death. The victor was the survivor.
Manipurak Teerth is 5 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Moortzapur Village. This pilgrimage is comprised of the temple of Gauri Shankar, Ganesh, Bala Sundari and Hanuman. The idol of Shiva, Parvati, Ganesh and Nandi are also settled in this teerth.
The Nabhi Kamal Teerth is situated near Thanesar on Thanesar-Bakhtala Road. This pilgrimage is the one of the oldest pilgrimage in the district. The Nabhi Kamal is a sacred tank. Kamal means Lotus and Nabhi mean Navel. It is believed that the tank houses a sacred lotus which happens to play abode to Lord Bramha (one of the Trinity Gods). The Lord is believed to have manifested from the navel of the lotus. Lord Brahma was born out of a Lotus that grew from the naval of Lord Vishnu. The temple here has the images of Lord Vishnu and Lord Brahma.
A temple lies at this place. It is believed that this is the place where Pitamaha Bhishma lay watching the famous battle of Mahabharata after Arjun, one of his grandsons, created a bed of arrows for him. The temple lies close to the water tank called the Banganga or the Bhishma Kund, named after the Pitamaha.
There is a legend attached to this water tank. It says that, when Bhishma lay on his bed of arrows created by Arjuna at his request, he felt thirsty and asked for water, At this, Arjuna immediately shot an arrow into the ground and let loose a stream of gushing water. This is how the Bhishma Kund tank came into existence.
Ojas Teerth is situated in the Shamshipur Town, Kurukshetra District. To have a bath in the Ojas Kund is considered quite auspicious.
27 km west of Thanesar lies Pehowa town. Cunningham dates the place back to 882 AD. The town derives its name from King Prithu. On the death of his father says a legend, the King sat on the bank of river Saraswati, offering water to all visitors. As a result, the place came to be known as Prithudaka or Prithu's pool.
The town which he afterwards built on the spot was called by the same name. With time, the town of Prithu came to be called Pehowa. Today, it is an ancient place of great sanctity, where prayer and `pind daan' for ancestors is believed to grant `moksha' or redemption from the cycle of birth and death.
Pehowa is famous for 'Prachi Teerth', 'Prithudak Teerth', 'Brahma Yoni Teerth' and 'Saraswati Tirath'. Pehowa is also famous for temples devoted to Shiva and his son Kartikkya. Unlike the other temples, the temple dedicated to Shiva, has no linga. Instead, it has a panch-mukhi (5 faced) idol of Lord Shiva which is said to be one of its kind.
It is a small mound located at around 5 kms to the west and south-west of Thanesar. The mound has yielded some objects of historic importance, these include relics of Harappan period, painted Grey Ware, a mould for printing of cloth, a double inkpot and a large step-well. It is about 500 square feet (46.5 square metres) at the top, 800 sq feet (74 square metres) at the base with a height of 30 feet to 40 feet (9 metres to 12 metres).
Shreds of Painted Grey Ware and some other objects such as flesh-rubber, a terracotta reel, a mould for printing cloth, human head, a double inkpot, a hollow terracotta rattle, an earthen pot having a line of trisula and wheel carved on it, one earthen pitcher ornamented round the shoulder and some pieces of glazed pottery of the Muslim period have been found here during excavations. There is also a large well of that period.
Rantuk Yaksh Teerth is 4 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Ratgal Village. It is situated on the bank of Saraswati River. Lord Shiva Temple is situated in the premises of this pilgrimage.
Sannihit Sarovar is believed to be the meeting point of seven sacred Saraswatis. The sarovar, according to popular belief, contains sacred water. Bathing in the waters of the tank on the day of Amavasya (night of complete darkness) or on the day of an eclipse bestows blessings equivalent to performing the ashvamedh yajna.
Bathing in this sarovar is believed to offer peace to wandering and unhappy souls. Prayers and pind daan, a memorial service for the dead, is performed here. Alongside the sarovar are small shrines dedicated to Lord Vishnu, Dhruv Narayan, Laxmi Narayan, Dhruv Bhagat, Sri Hanuman and Goddess Durga. The Sannihit Sarovar is believed to be the abode of Lord Vishnu.
Saptsaraswat Teerth is 14 km away from the Kurukshetra District; situated in Mangna Village. It is situated near the bank of River Saraswati. A Shiva Temple is situated in this pilgrimage. The idol of Shiva is established here which is constructed using 'Red Balua Stone'.
It is a beautiful monument of medieval times. It contains the mortal remains of the great Sufi saint Abudul-Karim popularly known as Sheikh Chehli, who was also the spiritual teacher of the scholar prince Dara Shikoh, son of the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan.
Built of buff sandstone, the tomb is crowned by a pear shaped dome of marble on a high circular drum. The cenotaph of the revered saint is in the centre of the chamber while the graves rests in the lower. Another tomb of sand stone with a dome of marble decorated with floral designs is situated on the western wall of the enclosure. It is said to be Sheikh Chehli's wife. The beautiful monument resembles the Taj Mahal and in view of its architectural and historical importance, has been declared as a 'protected monument' of national importance by the Archaeological Survey of India.
Shukra Teerth is situated in Satauda Village, Kurukshetra District. It was constructed using Lakhori Bricks. The temple in this pilgrimage is constructed in Mugal Form. The main idol in the temple is Lord Shiva but there are also some other idols like Ganesha, Shri Krishna etc are situated.
Som Teerth is situated in Gumthalagadu Village, Kurukshetra District. It was also constructed using Lakhori Bricks. Here the temple of Lord Shiva, Ganesha are situated.
Situated near Brahma Sarovar and set up by the Kurukshetra Development Board, it is one of the finest museums on the theme of Krishna. It has a collection of wide variety of beautiful sculptures, paintings and other artistic creations relating to the legend of Krishna.
The Sri Krishna Museum comprises of six galleries in which a variety of art objects such as wood carvings, metal castings, ivory carvings, miniature paintings, palm leaf etches, illustrated manuscripts, tableaux depicting facets of life and exploits of Sri Krishna have been displayed.Paintings of the Kangra and Madhubani styles, pattachitra-folk paintings of Orissa depicting scenes from Mahabharata have been prominently displayed.At the entrance of the Sri Krishna Museum , visitors are greeted by splendid sculpture of Ganesh in a dancing mudra (posture).
It has some historical artifacts and paintings depicting the Mahabharata war.
The ancient Sthaneshwar Mahadev Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva is situated in Thanesar, a holy town in the Kurukshetra district of Haryana. It was here that the Pandavas prayed to Lord Shiva and received his blessings for victory in the battle of Mahabharata. The ninth Guru, Shri Tegh Bahadur stayed at a spot near the Sthaneshwar Tirtha that is marked by a gurdwara just besides this temple.
Legend has it that the waters of the tank adjoining the temple are holy. A few drops of water cured the King Ban of leprosy. No pilgrimage of Kurukshetra is believed to be complete without a visit to this ancient, holy temple. The tank and temple lie a short distance from the Thanesar town, which gets its name from this temple. It is also believed that Lord Shiva was first worshipped here in the form of a lingam. The ancestor of the Mahabharata heroes, Kuru, performed penance on the banks of the Yamuna and Parshuram, the great warrior sage killed many Kshatriyas here.
The temple of Sthaneshwar is the abode of Lord Shiva and this town served as the capital of Emperor Harshavardhana. The temple with a dome-shaped roof follows a regional type of architecture. The facade of the roof is shaped like an 'amla' along with a tall pinnacle. The Lingam is ancient and still venerated by the local people.
- Towns in Kurukshetra : Kirmich, Narkatari, Dayalpur, Ladwa etc.
- Some Philgrimages : Shralvagpait Teerth, Arnai Tirath, Kullottaran Tirath in Kirmach, Shalihotar Tirath in Sarsa, Shiva Mandir, Birla Mandir, Panch Mukhi Hanuman Mandir etc.
- Chini and Pathar Masjid : Two oustanding monuments if you love the mughal architectural style.
- Ban Ganga, Saraswati Kund etc.