Our day started off rather early. I woke up, quite excited about visiting the largest temple in Delhi, The Akshardham Temple.
We called our friends and discussed when and where we had to meet. I was so excited that we left without even having any breakfast and asked them to meet at a common point from where we would go together.
The temple is situated on the outskirts of Delhi and took us more than an hour and a half via metro. Luckily, the temple was not that far from the metro station.
When we finally arrived, we found out that we can’t take any electronic gadget or anything other than money inside. The reason, why we don’t have any pictures of the temple.
As we joined the long queue to enter, we had to go through a strict checking which was quite unusual, but it all made sense when we entered the temple later and realised the number of people going to worship and appreciate the beauty of the place.
Nevertheless, our journey started off witnessing the amazing marble structure and the main Temple (Mandir) where the statues of the Indian gods stood. We decided to enter it later as it was really crowded and we moved forward just to come across a huge statue of the primary deity of the temple ‘Swaminarayana’ Neelkanth in between an artificial pond surrounded by fountains. At this place every evening an amazing water and light show takes place. Sadly we were not able to see it, because we didn’t have time.
The temple is so huge and divided into so many parts, that we’re given a pamphlet so as not to get confused or lost. Important things were mentioned in it, like the map, the timings of certain shows about the deities, canteens and many other crucial things.
Well, the guys made sure that I will still have doubts about the history behind the temple and the purpose of some of the Gods. According to them Neelkanth was a God who had a pot with a magical thing inside and whenever he pours his magic on things they were becoming gold. That is how he was helping the poor ones and were getting rid of the bad and evil…. Sounds legit, right? Well, none of this is true.
After roaming around the beautiful temple randomly, witnessing the amazing sculptures and carving all over walls and walking paths of the temple, we proceeded for the Exhibitions that consist of history and story about the deities (where I got to know that Neelkanth was not the golden God). Right after the exhibition we continued to see Abhishek Mandap where the customs for the deity take place. All this was so beautifully crafted that your eyes just get stuck the moment you see it.
After that we went to the main Temple that we skipped initially. As soon as I entered, beautiful and big idols of Indian Gods stood in front of me. The astonishing architecture is something I can’t describe but to recommend, you experience it yourself.
Akshardham Temple is surely a modern beauty!
It was a regret not being allowed to click pictures of the startling temple.
We left the temple with smiles on our faces, and decided to visit the famous Karol Bagh Market. As soon as we reached there, I realised why it is so famous, looked like all of Delhi came there for shopping. As none of us had to shop, we went on to try mainstream Indian Street Food like Gol Gappe, Chilla, Kulfi etc. Not really sure if I liked it (the Gol Gappe-s).
Wandering around the huge market, we got really exhausted and everyone decided to go home. As soon as we got home Rishabh’s friends – Tanishq and Devyani – came over and we decided to go clubbing later that night.
We finally got to dance at a good place with great music, all thanks to Tabula Beach Cafe. Even though we were tired, we still danced our hearts out.
After we left the club we payed a visit to Gurudwara Bangla Sahib on our way home. One of the most peaceful and refreshing places I’ve ever been to.
On our way to the temple really weird things happened. Firstly we had a “routine” check from police officers. Honestly, by my standards, that was a really intense and detailed check – except for the regular things like documents and mandatory requirements only the guys had to go through a touchy check for drugs, alcohol and other hidden belongings.
Devz and I were not searched because there was no woman officer who could do it. This is one of the things I find weirdly good but also in India.
After parking our car in the underground parking of the temple, Rishabh locked the keys in it! The next 20 minutes we spent struggling to open it and get them. Luckily, the windows were slightly open and Tanishq found a long metal stick with which he was able to twist the lock and after a really intense fight to finally unlock the car.
After a long tiring day we got back home, all worn out and really hungry but we still didn’t sleep. We took warming and refreshing showers and went on to watch “Friends” while having “Maggi” noodles and ice-cream, for we had to leave for Agra in a few hours.
Struggle. Understanding. Faith. Love.