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Written by Shalu Chandran,
in Spiritual Tourism
One of the greatest spiritual gatherings of people from all faiths and religions from across the world, the Kumbh Mela Allahabad returns to the Triveni Sangam from January to March 2019, after 6 years. The Sangam is the auspicious spot which marks the confluence of three rivers: the Ganga, the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati in Allahabad -now also known as Prayagraj now.
The spiritual event which welcomes over 150 million pilgrims is based on the astrological positions of the Sun, the Moon, and the Jupiter.
According to various Indian mythologies, it is believed that a sacred bath at the confluence of the rivers – Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati releases one from the sins of their birth and death cycle and brings them one step closer to Moksha. This gathering brings together the ascetics, saints, sadhus, aspirants-kalpavasis, pilgrims, and visitors. It is believed that the Kumbh Mela originates from back to when the Gods (Devtas) and Demons (Asura) resided on earth and were constantly at war, to get the Amrita or elixir of endless life. During a tug of war over the Amrita, four drops of holy nectar fell in four cities – Ujjain, Haridwar, Nasik, and Allahabad. Since then, the Kumbh returns to these four cities every three years by rotation.
The Maha Kumbh Mela is held at each of these four places every 12th year and at two places, Haridwar and Allahabad every 6th year. The rivers at these four places are the Ganges (Ganga) at Haridwar, the confluence (Sangam) of the Ganges and the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati at Allahabad, the Godavari at Nasik, and the Shipra at Ujjain.
The Kumbh Mela 2019 will return to Allahabad (Prayagraj) from January 14th to March 4th, 2019. The event will feature Snan and Shahi Snan dates. The Shahi Snan is also known as the Royal Bath and the Rajyogi Snan when saints of different Akharas (a kind of religious groups) will gather to take a holy bath in the Sangam. Only after the Akharas have finished their dip that common men are allowed to take their holy bath.
It is believed that a holy dip in the sacred Sangam washes off their sins, thus ending the cycle of rebirth. The event also gives people the opportunity to meet and interact with monks, saints and yogis from various sects across India.
The previous Kumbh Mela, which was held in 2013 in Allahabad, marked the second and the biggest Shahi Snan or royal bath with 13 akharas taking to the Sangam while over 30 million devotes and ascetics took a holy dip, on the occasion of Mauni Amavasya (2nd Shahi Snan).
14/15 January 2019 Makar Sankranti (1st Shahi Snan)
21 January 2019 Paush Purnima
31 January 2019 Paush Ekadashi
04 February 2019 Mauni Amavasya (Main Royal Bath / 2nd Shahi Snan)
10 February 2019 Basant Panchami (3rd Shahi Snan)
16 February 2019 Maghi Ekadashi
19 February 2019 Maghi Purnima
04 March 2019 Maha Shivratri
Allahabad is now known for its new name “Prayagraj”, is one of the oldest cities in India, heavily influenced by spiritualism and history. It is known in Hinduism as the site chosen by the creator of the universe, Lord Brahma, as the ‘king of all pilgrimage centers’. The city is at the confluence of the Ganga and Yamuna (two of India’s holiest rivers) and Saraswati River. The place where river Ganga and river Yamuna meet is called Sangam (union) and is the venue of many sacred fairs and rituals including the Kumbh Mela that attracts thousands of pilgrims throughout the year.
How to reach Allahabad/ Prayagraj:
Air: Allahabad Airport is located at Bamrauli, about 12 km away from the city center. Other airports closest to Allahabad are Varanasi, Lucknow, and Kanpur.
Rail: Allahabad has four major railway stations viz. Allahabad Junction, Prayag Station, City Station at Rambagh and Daraganj Station. The city of Allahabad is connected to several cities including Agra, Bareilly, Kolkata, Delhi, Aligarh, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Pune, Kanpur, Lucknow, Jaipur etc.
Road: There are buses, operated by Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC), that connects the city to all the major north Indian cities including Delhi, Lucknow, Varanasi, Meerut, Jhansi etc.
There are several tourist spots in and around the city. Some of the most prominent ones are:
At AyurUniverse, we want the world to experience this miraculous spiritual experience by offering an easy and reliable platform to book packages that promise to take visitors on a once-in-a-lifetime spiritual journey. We offer a choice of packages offered by the Government-approved hotel and tented vendors, all located in the vicinity of the festival.
Our all-inclusive packages offer airport pick-ups, accommodation, and meals. We will also have a local representation on the ground to ensure a safe and enriching experience for you.
Come and witness this amazing festival of faith!
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