The land that is made holy by the confluence of the Ganga, the Yamuna and the mystical Sarasvati rivers, and the Ambrosia from the heaven, Allahabad is one of the four destinations of the Kumbh Mela. This city in Uttar Pradesh, hosting the Kumbh Mela 2019, boasts of being a treasure chest for Hindu pilgrims as well as history enthusiasts who can take delight in exploring the ancient temples, monuments, and several tourist places.
Apart from Triveni Sangam which secures the first place as a must visit in the city, tourist attractions in Allahabad include temples like Hanuman Mandir and Mankameshwar; historical Ashoka Pillar and a number of Colonial period buildings like Swaraj Bhawan awaiting to be captured in the lens while on a Kumbha Mela tour.
Out of all the major festivities during Kumbh, “Peshwai” holds a significant place. Peshwai is the local dialect for the word “Praveshai” which denotes the grand procession carried out to mark the beginning of the Kumbh Mela by welcoming people from all around the world. In this procession, saints arrive in Kumbh along with their groups on elephants, horses and lavish carriages with bands. In addition, to welcome the procession of Akhadas and to further enhance its grandeur, large number of people provide their services as attendants and shower petals of flowers on the passing procession. The atmosphere during Peshwai is that of festivity and enthusiasm.
Special routes are demarcated for these processions that are led by saints from various Akharas.
The Government of Uttar Pradesh has mobilised the state cultural departments for exhibiting the rich and diverse cultural heritage that India possesses. The Kumbh Mela 2019 shall feature 5 cultural Pandals for displaying a series of cultural events ranging from musical performances to traditional and folk dances on a daily basis from January 2019 onwards. Ganga Pandal will be the mega structure among all pandals for hosting all the major events. Pravachan Pandal and 4 convention centres equipped with state-of-the-art facilities will be created to host various spiritual events.
The Government of Uttar Pradesh shall be revamping its existing tourist walks and introducing new routes for the tourists expected to visit Allahabad. To improve the quality of service delivery by the tour operators, the department of tourism shall be organising and imparting sensitisation and skill development workshops.
The details of the tourist walk routes can be found on the Allahabad Tourism website. The brief details of the routes are as under (Refer to Attachment)
The Sangam Walk
Waterways are of major importance and have been serving the human civilization since ancient times through rivers, lakes and oceans. Water tourism has always been an important part of overall tourism industry. For the holy event of Kumbh Mela, Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) is organizing a ferry services on the river Yamuna near Sangam Ghat. The route for this service will start from Sujawan Ghat to Rail Bridge (Naini Side) to Boat Club Ghat to Saraswati Ghat and ends at Kila Ghat. Multiple terminals will be constructed on this stretch of 20kms and boats and vessels will be provided by Mela Authority to create better pilgrim experience.
To enhance the experience of the large influx of Pilgrims, patrons, domestic and international tourists expected to visit the Kumbh Mela 2019, the Government of Uttar Pradesh is making provisions for a Laser Light and Sound Show that shall be operational from December 2018 onwards at the Allahabad Fort Wall.
The 2019 Kumbh Mela shall also witness over 25 temporary thematic gates which will mark the approach roads to the Mela Area and entrance to various sectors in the Mela Area. The Government of Uttar Pradesh has adopted an innovative solution to increase the aesthetic value of the Kumbh Mela by designing and producing over 25 temporary thematic gates that shall be strategically placed. Each gate will have its own identity, will be strongly rooted in the local context and deeply inspired by the culture, tradition and socio-religious factors. Vernacular construction methods shall be used and above all, practicality and reusability are being taken into consideration.