Ayodhya

Ayodhya 

Ayodhya is located on the right bank of the river Sarayu, 6 km from Faizabad. Also known as Saket ,it is an ancient city of India, birthplace of the Lord Vishnu Hindu avatar Rama, and setting of the epic Ramayana. It is situated adjacent to Faizabad city at south end in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. Ayodhya used to be the capital of the ancient Kosala Kingdom, and has an average elevation of 93 meters (305 feet).

Ayodhya is a city of worship. Several religions have prospered simultaneously as well as at different periods of time, and elements of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Islam can be found in the city. This town is closely associated with Rama, Seventh incarnation of Vishnu. According to the Ramayana, the city is 9,000 years old, and was founded by Manu, the first man in the Vedas, and law-giver of the Hindus. Other sources hold that it was founded by its namesake, King Ayudh. For centuries, it was the capital for the Surya dynasty, of which Lord Rama was the most celebrated king. At the time it was known as Kaushaldesa.

Ayodhya is one of the most ancient Hindu cities. In the Ramayana, it is described covering an area of 250 km2 (97 sq mi), and was capital of the Hindu kingdom KaushalValmiki began writing the Ramayana in Ayodhya. Its opening chapters recount the magnificence of the city, the glories of its monarch and the virtues, wealth and loyalty of its people. Kamban orTulsidas retold a common version of the Ramayana called the Ramacharitamanasa in which he also praised the city. Several Tamil Alvars mention the city. It is the birthplace of Jadabharata, the first Chakravartin, Bahubali, Brahmi, Sundari, Padaliptasurisvarji, Harishchandra and Achalbharata.

Places to visit

Hanuman Garhi, a massive four-sided fort with circular bastions at each corner and a temple of Hanuman inside, is the most popular shrine in Ayodhya. Situated in the center of town, it is approachable by a flight of 76 steps. Its legend is that Hanuman lived here in a cave and guarded theJanambhoomi, or Ramkot. The main temple contains the statue of Maa Anjani with Bal Hanuman seated on her lap. The faithful believe wishes are granted with a visit to the shrine. Kanak Bhawan is a temple gifted to Sita by her mother with her marriage to Rama, and only contains statues of Sita with her husband.


Hanuman Garhi

Ramkot is the main place of worship in Ayodhya, and the site of the ancient citadel of its namesake, standing on elevated ground in the western city. Although visited by pilgrims throughout the year, it attracts devotees from all over the world on `Ram Navami’, the day of the birth of Rama. Ram Navami is celebrated with great pomp in the Hindu month of Chaitra, which falls between March and April. Swarg Dwar is believed to be the site of cremation of Rama. Mani Parbat and Sugriv Parbat are ancient earth mounds, the first identified by a stupa built by the emperor Ashoka, and the second is an ancient monastery. Treta ke Thaku is a temple standing at the site of the Ashvamedha Yajnya of Rama. Three centuries prior, the Raja of Kulu built a new temple here, which was improved by Ahilyabai Holkar of Indore in 1784, the same time the adjacent Ghats were built. The initial idols in black sandstone were recovered from Sarayu and placed in the new temple, which was known as Kaleram-ka-Mandir. Chhoti Devkali Mandir is the temple of goddess Ishani, or Durga, Kuldevi of Sita.




The Holy City of Ayodhya




Kanak Bhavan




The Saryu River