Prayagraj General Information
|Location||Located in the south-western part of Eastern U.P. on the confluence of River Ganges, Yamuna & Saraswati (Triveni) in Allahabad district, U.P., India|
|Distances||Lucknow about 204 km, Vindhyachal- 93 km, Sarnath- 135 km,Varanasi- 125 km, Ayodhya- 167 km, Chitrakut- 128 km, Chunar- 125 km, Delhi- 643 km, Lumbini (Nepal)- 406 km, Kanpur- 193 km, Gorakhpur- 277 km|
|Ideal time to visit||Oct.-March|
|Languages Spoken||Hindi & English|
|Temperature||Summers- 26°C-41°C, Winters- 9°C-29°C|
|Attractions||Religious, Historical & Archaeological|
|Local Transport||Taxi/Auto rickshaw/cycle rickshaw|
|Must Visit||Sangam, Anand & Swaraj Bhawan & All Saints Cathedral|
|Fairs & Festivals||Magh Mela (Jan.-Feb.), Ardh Kumbh (every sixth year), Kumbh Mela (every 12th year), Dusheshra (Sep.-Oct.), Water Sports festival (Feb.)|
|How to reach||Allahabad is well connected to all the major cities of India by all modes of transport, however flights are only on specific days.|
Allahabad, one of the largest cities of Eastern U.P., is situated on the confluence of River Ganges,Yamuna and the invisible Saraswati (Triveni). It has been one of the most sacred places of Hindus since ancient times and was known as Prayag in earlier times. The place finds a mention in ancient scriptures such as Vedas, the great epics-Ramayana, Mahabharata & Puranas. Because of its religious sanctity the place has been considered as one of the holiest, from the times immemorial. Mythologically, the place is believed to have its association with Lord Brahma, who chose this site for Prakrishta Yagya and also called it Thirth Raj (King of all pilgrim centers). It is one of the four chosen sites of the famous Kumbh-Mela.
The present name of the city was possibly coined in Akbar’s time, around 1583 as Illahabas, which later came to be known as Allahabad. The word Illahabas itself means a place of God. (Ilah in Arabic means- God).
The place is considered as one of the most sacred soul cleansing bathing destinations in Hindu religion. Mythology has it that few drops of nector (Amrit) fell at Sangam which made the water of this place truly pure & laced with divinity. Important bathing fairs are segregated into three categories- Annual (Magh Mela), six yearly (Ardh Kumbh) & 12 yearly (Maha Kumbh). Apart from these occasions, snan (bathing) on certain auspicious occasions go on throughout the year.
The holy city of Allahabad, along with its suburbs Jhunsi and Arail, is lined with many temples, maths and ashrams such as Bharat Sewa Ashram, Nimbark Ashram, Roop Gauria Math, etc., which draw much large visitors during the various fairs of Allahabad.
In medieval times, especially during the time of Akbar, the city was given much strategic importance. Allahabad fort on the confluence of River Ganges & Yamuna confirms it. Another important monument of this period is Khusro Bagh.
With the arrival of British, Allahabad functioned as the capital of the state and underwent significant changes. New Institutions, buildings, parks, churches with distinct colonial architectural stamp, were added to the landscape of the city like Muir Hall, Alfred Park, Minto Park, High Court, All Saints Cathedral etc.
The place has also been associated with the freedom struggle of India and was a hub of congress activities to a much larger period. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister was born here, His father Pandit Motilal Nehru along with Jawaharlal Nehru converted the Anand & Swaraj Bhawan into one of the major centres of India’s freedom struggle. Both these buildings, dedicated to nation by Nehru family, are among the most important attractions of the city. Allahabad, also played an important role in development & propagation of Hindi language, Indian music & other performing Arts. Many Institutions located in Allahabad are actively involved in this.
Many ghats with boating and bathing facilities are constructed specially along the left bank of the River Yamuna, viz., Saraswati ghat, Nehru ghat, Balua ghat, Gau ghat etc.