Prayag ,modern day Allahabad, has been renowned as the greatest pilgrimage since the Vedas era. Prayag is where Lord Rama, Sita and Lakshmana spent some time before proceeding to the nearby Chitrakoot during their exile of fourteen years. It is one among the important places visited by Lord Rama during his exile and one of the major places connected to Ramayana. The confluence of the three holiest rivers in India - the Ganga, the Yamuna and the Saraswati makes Prayag one of the major religious destinations in India.
New Yamuna bridge in Allahabad
The holy Prayag!
Prayag is a city in Uttar Pradesh better known today as Allahabad. It is a city steeped in mythology , history, religion and culture. The Mahabharat, Agnipuran, Padam Puran and Surya Puran also mention Prayag as the holiest of all pilgrimages. Lord Brahma, one of the three Gods of Hindu trinity is believed to have performed 'yajna' to purify the atmosphere when he created the universe. Hence the name Prayag,"the place of purification". It is said one who dies at the Sangam is freed from the cycle of re-birth and attains salvation and thus become one of the major religious destinations in India.
Sangam during the Kumbh Mela
The point of confluence of the three holy rivers , Triveni Sangam , is a very sacred place for Hindu religion. Prayag is known as the king of pilgrimages, because of being situated at the confluence of three holy rivers. A bath here is said to flush away all of one's sins and free one from the cycle of rebirth. It is the site for historic Kumbh Mela which is held every 12 years .The deep, calm and greenish Yamuna, the shallow, forceful and clear Ganga are visibly different as they merge. The Saraswati remains hidden, but the faithful believe that she makes her presence felt underwater.
Allahabad is one of the four sites of historic Kumbh Mela which is held every 12 years. It is the largest religious gathering on the planet. According to medieval Hindu mythology, Lord Vishnu dropped drops of Amrita (the drink of immortality) at four places, while transporting it in a Kumbha (pot). These four places are identified as the present-day sites of the Kumbh Mela.
A place of numerous pilgrimages!
Prayag has got six ghats- Holy bathing spots. Numerous holy spots and temples are spread across Prayag. "Dhirrttya Kuliya" and "Madhu kuliya" are situated to west of Sangam, ahead of them is "Niranjan Tirtha" and in west of it is "Adutiya Tirtha". "Shrir Mochan" and "Parsu Ram Tirtha" are beneath the fort. At some distance ahead is "Kapil Tirtha" which was established by Lord Kapila. Here is the temple of "Indeshwar Shiva" and near to it is "Tarkeshwar Kund" and "Tarkeshwar Shiva".
Dasashwamedh Ghat, Lakshmi Tirtha, Mahadevi Tirtha, Urvashi Tirtha, Urvashi Kund, Som Tirtha are some other holy spots in Prayag. Prayag is also famous for it's 12 Madho temples.
The Puranas mention the existence of three and a half crores of pilgrimage sites in Prayag. It incorporates one crore each in the heaven, earth and the Patal lok, and fifty lakhs in the atmosphere. In the land of pilgrimages, India, Prayag is at the zenith. This is one among the places visited by Lord Rama and is a must visit for any pious devotee.
How to reach : Allahabad is well connected by rail, road and air. The best recommended way is to fly into Varanasi or Lucknow and drive from there.