Gorakhpur TourismThe medieval splendour of Gorakhpur has made this city one of the most visited tourist destinations in Uttar Pradesh. With a tale behind every monument that dots this city’s landscapes, Gorakhpur’s rich culture and timeless traditions have drawn countless tourists from within India as well as worldwide. Tourism in Gorakhpur is focused on the various monuments devoted to different religions. Bringing various beliefs together, people of all walks of life will find something of interest in this city. An ideal spot for those who would also love to do a bit of shopping or relax in natural surroundings, Gorakhpur never ceases to amaze people of all ages who would like to get a break from the routine of daily life.
Major Tourist Attractions Of Gorakhpur
Standing proud on 52 acres of land in the heart of Gorakhpur, the Gorakhnath Temple is by itself the identity of this city. Located at a distance of 4 kilometres from the City Railway Station, this temple stands as a monument to Mahayogi Guru Gorakhnath. Dating back to the 12th century, this architectural marvel is said to be the built at the exact spot where Guru Gorakhnath did the Tapasya in Treta Yug. The Gorakhnath Temple is more than just a religious monument – it is a magnificent example of Indian sculpture in its entirety. Tuesdays and Saturdays are days when this temple sees the most number of devotees. Commencing on the 14th of January each year is the Makar Sankranti Mela or Khichari Mela, which is the temple’s main festival and lasts for an entire month.
With its origins dating back to the 12th century, the famous Vishnu Temple boasts of a massive statue of Lord Vishnu, made of “Pal Kalin Kalin Kasauti” or Black Stone. Apart from the magnificence of the temple itself, the greatest tourist attraction is the Ramleela that is organized at this place on the eve of the Dussehera festival. The very embodiment of traditionalism, this grand procession is one of the major tourist attractions where people from all over the world visit to immerse themselves in its grandeur.
Geeta Vatika is located right in the heart of Gorakhpur, at a mere distance of 3 kilometres from the City Railway Station. The grand temple of Lord Radha-Krishna is one of the biggest attractions and tourists and devotees throng to visit throughout the year. Prayers are offered throughout the day here, ceaselessly, for the goddess Radha, who was the love of Lord Krishna.
With its establishment dating back to the year 1940, the Arogya Mandir is located at a distance of 4 kilometres from the City Railway Station. Established by Sri Bitthal Das Modi, it was not until the year 1961 that all work on this building was completed. The Arogya Mandir is set amidst lush greenery, which is certainly apt considering that naturopathy is its main focus. Every year, thousands of visitors throng this place for treatment as well as just a visit and the Arogya Mandir is said to be India’s largest Naturopathy centre.
Gita Press in Gorakhpur
Gita Press was established with the primary objective of propagating the principles of Hinduism’s Sanatana Dharma. It was established as a unit of Gobind Bhawan Karyalaya and publishes the Ramayana, Gita, Puranas, Upanishads and discourses and principles of Saints, apart from other books and magazines that are in line with its advocated principles. The English Kalyana-Kalpataru and the Hindi Kalyan are two magazines produced by the Gita Press on a monthly basis. The house magazine is Yug Kalyan and contains information about the newest releases as well as various essays. Located on Reti Chowk around 4 kilometres from the City Railway Station, this press is a major tourist attraction. It has the Gita’s 18 parts inscribed on its marble walls and also has other tapestry and paintings that re-enact the lives of the Lords Krishna and Rama. A number of books, textiles and products of Hinduism can be purchased here at subsidized rates.
The abode of Imam, also known as Imambara, is one of Gorakhpur’s most famed landmarks. Its existence goes back to the year 1774 when it was built by Saint Syed Roshan Ali Shah. In 1796, other edifices were added to the Imambara, including a proper enclosure. Today, the Imambara is one of Gorakhpur’s most famous tourist locations and attracts thousands of visitors each year, as its dhuni or smoke fire burns ceaselessly.
Located near Gorakhpur, the Ramgarh Taal lake covers a massive area of 723 hectares with its embankment stretching through 18 kilometers of area. At its southern bank is the Tara Mandal which is a huge tourist attraction. It is also a source of livelihood to the people of many villages who rely on fishing from this lake to survive.
Veer Bahadur Singh Planetarium
Located at Tara Mandal, the Veer Bahadur Singh Planetarium is a state of the art structure based on digital technology, that has become the destination of many students and astronomers alike. On December 21, 2009, the planetarium was re-opened to the public and to tourists.
Probably one of the lushest forests in India, the Kushmi forest is home to a wide range of flora and fauna. Precious Sal and Sequoia trees stand majestic in this forest that is easily accessible from Gorakhpur’s railway junction. This forest is also home to temples and shrines nestled in serene spots that inspire true reverence.
Suraj Kund is a tribute to the Sun and is one of a few rare Sun temples in the world. Located at the North Western part of Gorakhpur, Suraj Kund spreads over 10 acres of land. Said to be a resting place of Lord Ram, this temple was built around 125 years ago by Baba Muneshwar Das and is dedicated to the worship of Lord Laxmi Narayan and Lord Ram.
Neer Nikunj Water Park Gorakhpur
Quite a newer addition to Gorakhpur’s attractions is the Neer Nikunj Water Park. It is an amusement park with water sports and cover rides for all age groups. There are a number of attractions such as a merry-go-round, paint ball, bowling alley, go carting, toy train, shooting ranges and bull rides. Well-stocked food courts provide one with samples of the city’s best cuisine while taking a break from daily life. For those who would like to get more out of this place, there is also a lawn and a banquet hall for functions or corporate meetings.
Vinod Van Zoo is located in the Kushmi forest and is one of Uttar Pradesh’s largest zoos. Its wide variety of flora and fauna add to its attractions and many animals find a peaceful home here. A huge bird species also live here in its massive aviary.
The history of India Railways is showcased in the Rail Museum located at Gorakhpur. For the amusement of children toy train ride that has become one of its spotlights. Since Gorakhpur is the North Eastern Railway headquarters, it is certainly ideal that this museum has found its place here. The Rail Museum was set up in 2007 and is home to Lord Lawrence’s steam engine of 1874. This museum attracts numerous visitors each year and has an excellent food plaza for those who would like to stop off and revel in the richness of this segment of Indian history.
Lord Buddha Sangrahalay in Gorakhpur
Thousands of visitors, especially from predominantly Buddhist countries throng to Lord Buddha Sangrahalay each year. This Buddhist museum houses numerous artefacts and relics associated with Lord Buddha. While the museum was set up in 1987, it was brought into being only in 1997. It preserves cultural property related to Buddhism and has around 2023 unique objects that perfectly highlight the history of the land.
Established in 1980, the Bakhira Bird Sanctuary is the largest sanctuary in eastern Uttar Pradesh. It is located over an area of 29 square kilometres and houses a wide variety of bird species. Sant Kabir Nagar wetland plain in which this sanctuary is located also provides the surrounding villages with all that is needed for their livelihood, including an agricultural base and fishing.
Best Time to Visit Gorakhpur
The best time to visit Gorakhpur would be between the months of December and February when the weather is pleasant. Summers are hot and dry while winters are not too cold at temperatures of around 28 degrees Celsius. Winters are considered to be the best time of year to visit Gorakhpur.
Transport in Gorakhpur
There is a wide range of transportation for those who visit Gorakhpur. City buses ply throughout the city. Apart from this, there are also autorickshaws, taxi services and cycle rickshaws that one can hire at nominal charges. One could also take a walk through the city to visit the various sights and sounds along the way.
Gorakhpur has a number of tourist spots at a reasonable distance where one can relax and unwind for a day. Some of these are Ayodhya, Faizabad, Jaunpur, Varanasi, Chandauli, Pratapgarh, Raebareli, Barabanki and Mirzapur. All of these places lie within 250 kilometers away from Gorakhpur and are ideal for a day’s visit.