Gurudwara Baoli Sahib – Goindwal
Goindwal is situated at a distance of 30 km south-east of Amritsar city. Here, are two historic Gurdwaras, associated with the third Guru Sri Amar Das. He provided a place of pilgrimage, alternative to Hardwar and Benaras, where God alone was to be worshipped. He planned to construct a ‘Baoli’-a well with descending steps, in Goindwal. He purchased some land and laid the foundation of the ‘Baoli’ with due religious ceremonies. His devoted Sikhs joined in the work on self-help basis and many willingly came forward to provide food for the volunteers engaged in the digging operation. The Baoli had eighty-four steps. The Guru decreed that whoever should attentively repeat Japji on every step, should escape from the travail of wandering through eighty four lakhs births and rebirths.
Thus the Baoli at Goindwal Sahib, became an object of pilgrimage to Hindus as well as Sikhs. This Gurudwara is considered the first great Sikh center of pilgrimage. The entrance to the Baoli has been artistically decorated. There is a row of frescoes, depicting scenes from Sikh history. A dip in the Baoli is considered most holy. Adjoining the Baoli, a magnificent Gurudwara has been built. Besides, there is ‘Langar’ the famous community kitchen of Guru Amar Das, where each visitor is offered food free of cost. It has been recorded by a Sikh historian that Emperor Akbar also took meal in the Langar, before meeting the Guru.