Wagah Border is a tourist destination in a very different sense of it. One look at the wall dividing the two countries and you'd find nothing particular about it. But come evening and a spectacular procession begins, which creates an aura along with its deep historical background.
At a distance of 28 km from Amritsar, the Wagah Border is situated on the Grand Trunk dividing the Wagah village into two parts, western region now belonging to Pakistan and eastern one under India. This border has also seen the bloodshed and millions of people getting homeless during the infamous partition of India into two different countries, Pakistan and India soon after the independence won in 1947.
Today, the border marks a daily procession carried out to withdraw the hoisted flag at sunset by the Indian Border Security Force soldiers and Sutlej Rangers soldiers from Pakistan. The soldiers march up to the wall from both sides and the entire procession is a passionate, enthusiastic affair that lasts around 45 minutes. The procession ends with both sides retreating back with the flag and a loud trumpet announcement.
The seats are arranged as close as mere 100 metres away from the entire scene. You can hear patriotic songs and a celebratory vibe just before the ceremony is about to start. If you want to indulge, you can also march along side the soldiers' march holding a flag in your hands. At all times, it is always a good idea to get seated a little before (Procession starts at 4:15) so to get better view and avoid last minute rush that is typical here.
Best time to visit
The weather here is usually in extreme, meaning too hot or too cold during summers and weathers respectively.
Hence, the best time period to visit Amritsar is during October-November and February-March.
Due to security reasons, the mobile network is jammed at the border.
You are not allowed to carry any kind of bags and plastic covers.
As a protective measure, be aware of the pick-pocketers which are easy to find because of the crowd.
Best things to shop
Wagah Border is not a typical tourist destination with markets and stalls. However, you can always buy CDs/DVDs of the entire procession available at the stalls nearby as a memento.
Best accommodation places/nearest city
Welcome Heritage Ranjit's Svaasa
Hotel City Heart
How to reach
Amritsar is a well-connected city with airport (Rajasansi Airport), railway network and roads to rest of the country. However, due to extreme weather situation during winters in Northern India, there are often delays in flight. Hence, it is always a good idea to pick railways over flight if travelling from a shorter distance.