Sunday, August 28, 2011

Chandigarh Tourism : Introduction, Place to Visit, Rock Garden, Sukhna Lake, Capitol Complex, Leisure Valley, Dolls Museum, Chandi Mandir

Chandigarh is the best-planned city in India, with architecture which is world-renowned, and a quality of life, which is unparalleled. As the capital of the states of Punjab and Haryana, and the Union Territory of Chandigarh it is a prestigious city. The face of modern India, Chandigarh, is the manifestation of a dream that Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru envisaged and Le Corbusier executed.

Rock Garden is a unique attraction as Chandigarh, in its being a magnificent gallery of artistic works made out of industrial and urban wastes. The raw materials have been molded to form lively images of animals, human beings, trees, etc. Founded by Nek Chand, a government official, in 1957, the garden preserves a special collection of artistry found nowhere else in the world.

Sukhna Lake is a popular artificial lake in Chandigarh, made at the foothills of the Shivalik hills. It was created by Le Corbusier, in the year 1958. It is an ideal place for exercises like walking, jogging, strolling and even organizing picnics. The lake is rich in natural beauty and serves as the shelter for several migratory birds as well.

Capitol Complex is Le Corbsier’s most spectacular work in the Chandigarh city. He had conceived the master plan of Chandigarh as analogous to the parts of the human body, in which Capitol Complex was supposed to be the heart. It consists of three architectural Government buildings, High Court, Secretariat, and Legislative Assembly. In the middle stands The Open Hand, the official emblem of the city, signifying the city’s credo of “open to be given, open to receive”.

Le Corbusier planned lots of greenery in Chandigarh, by constructing a series of parks and gardens, collectively called the Leisure Valley. The valley consists of gardens extending from Sector 53 in the Southern edge to the Sector 1 in the North. Some of the gardens and parks are Rajendra Park, Bougainvillea Garden, Fitness Trails, Rose Garden, Children Traffic Park, Botanical Garden and Smriti Upavan & Topiary Park.

International Dolls Museum is situated in Bal Bhawan, in Sector 23 of Chandigarh. It contains more than 300 dolls from nearly every country in the world. It was inaugurated on 24th December, 1985. The museum was established by Chandigarh administration, in alliance with Rotary Club of Chandigarh, for the purpose of entertaining the children. It is a must-visit if you’re visiting the city with your kids.

Government Museum & Art Gallery is located in Sector 10 of Chandigarh and has a fine collection of stone sculptures belonging to the Gandhara School of Art. It also displays fossils and artifacts belonging to the prehistoric times and works of modern art and miniature paintings. This square building (165 feet by 165 feet) is a splendid display of architecture by none another than Le Corbusier himself.

Chandi Mandir is a temple located in the northern border of the city. Devoted to the Mother Goddess of power, Chandi, it is considered as one of the twelve Shakti Peethas for Hindus. The name Chandigarh is derived from this shrine only. There is an aura surrounded to this temple and if you are in search of divinity and tranquility, there is no better place for you than this temple. It is also one of the oldest temples of the area, claimed by many to date back to era of Mahabharata.

In addition to the various tourist spots, Chandigarh has lots to offer to the people seeking religious visits. Right from temples to the gurdwaras, the religious places in the city offer a wide variety. In fact, it has a plethora of worship places not only within, but also near its bounds. For instance, there is Chandi Mandir, after which Chandigarh has been named. Then, there is Nada Sahib Gurdwara, which witnesses a huge rush of devotees - Sikhs, Hindus, Jains, and so on, every Sunday.

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