Surrounded by a sal forest and on the banks of river Yamuna, the historic town of Paonta Sahib (398 m) was founded by the tenth Sikh guru, Guru Gobind Singh. When only 16 years old, the Guru left Anandpur Sahib and on the invitation of Raja Maidini Prakash of Sirmour, lived at this beautiful spot for over four years. The historic gurudwara commemorates his stay and interestingly the waters of the Yamuna fall silent below this - which happened at the Guru`s behest. The word `Paonta` means `Space for a foot hold`.
The Gurudwara has linkages to the tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh and the Sikh leader Banda Bahadur. Its original name was Paontika. "Paon" in Hindi means feet and "tika" in Hindi means became stable. It is believed that Guru Gobind Singh's horse stopped at this place on its own and he decided to stay here. He wrote many Sikh religious books here and then went to Anandpur Sahib to establish the Khalsa Panth. One of the noticeable thing is the Durga temple where the Guru used to pray. The Gurudwara also houses a museum which contains a lot of antiques and weapons used by Guru Gobind Singh during his stay.
Gurudwara Paonta Sahib
This site was Guru Gobind Singh's home for over four years and it was here that he| wrote the 'Dasam Granth'. Within its precincts are the Sri Talab Asthan where he disbursed salaries and the Sri Dastar Asthan where he judged the turban-tying competitions. At the Kavi Darbar Asthan, poetic symposia were held. There is also a memorial to Kalpi Rishi and a museum that displays pens of the Guru and weapons of the time.
Other Attractions Around Paonta Sahib
Balasundari Temple, Trilokpur
Legend has it that the Devi's 'pindi' appeared in the bag of salt brought by a local trader. The temple built by Raja Deep Parkash of Sirmour in 1573. Close by is a recently built Shiva temple.
Shiva Temple, Paltia
Surrounded by fields and sal trees, the linga in this temple is supposed to be steadily increasing in size.
Shrine of Baba Garib Nath
Located in a sal forest and with an excellent view of the area, the shrine is revered by childless women
Simbalwara Wildlife Sanctuary
12 km off the main Paonta Sahib - Nahan road, this is known for a variety of bird life.
Here are the remains of the old capital of the princely state of Sirmour. The town is said to have been destroyed by flood in the 11th century, when it was cursed by a dancing girl.
This ancient shrine is immediately below the gurudwara and is dedicated to the goddess Yamuna
Fossil Park, Saketi
This was the site of the largest fossil find in the Siwalik hills. The park has a museum and life-size models of the animals that once roamed these tracts.
Gurudwara Bhangani Sahib
This commemorates Guru Gobind Singh's first battle when he defeated Raja Fateh Shah and his allies.
Gurudwara Tirgarh Sahib
This is built on the hillock from where Guru Gobind Singh shot arrows at the enemy.
Gurudwara Shergarh Sahib
At this spot Guru Gobind Singh beheaded a dangerous man-eating tiger with a single swipe of his sword
Katasan Devi Temple
Also known as Uttam Wala Bara Ban, this is on the Paonta Sahib - Nahan road. The shrine is revered by local people. At this spot, the forces of Sirmour defeated the marauding armies of Ghulam Qadir Khan Rohiolla.
Built in a hollow near the village of Puruwalla, this temple is closely allied with the legend of Sirmour's erstwhile ruling house.
Built in a series of interlocking circles, this charming town was founded by Raja Karan Prakash of Sirmour in 1621. It has numerous pleasing walks, several temples, a gurudwara and interesting architecture - including many old palaces.
Within Paonta Sahib and also known as the 'Mandir Shri Dei Ji Sahiba', this is located near the Yamuna bridge. With exquisite marble work, this was built in 1889 in memory of Raja Pratap Chand of Kangra by his wife who originally belonged to Sirmour. The Kirpal Dass Gurudwara is just past the temple
Location and Transport
It is on the banks of the river Yamuna, the river being the boundary between the states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. It is situated near the towns of Nahan in Himachal Pradesh, Yamunanagar in Haryana and Dehradun in Uttaranchal. It is on the western extreme of the Doon valley a distance of about 55 k.m from Dehradun.
Paonta Sahib is on national highway 72 connecting Chandigarh and Dehradun.To Nahan 45 km., Shimla to Paonta Sahib 258 km., Chandigarh to Paonta Sahib 132 km. Nearest railway station is Yamunanagar 56 km away and nearest airport is Jubbarhatti 145 km.There are frequent bus services from nearby towns. Rickshaws are common for travelling short distances, especially by school-going children, housewives and the elderly. Auto rickshaws are limited, and most often ply to and from on main roads.
By Air :
The nearest airports are at Chandigarh and Dehradun.
By Road :
The closest railheads are at Ambala and Dehradun.
By Rail :
Paonta Sahib is connected by road. From Renukaji it is 81 km via Nahan and 60 km via Rajban. From Dehradun, it is 44 km. Taxis/buses are available for Paonta Sahib at all places.
Paonta Sahib has a sub-tropical continental monsoon climate characterized by a seasonal rhythm, hot summers, slightly cold winters, unreliable rainfall and great variation in temperature (0 °C to 40 °C). In winters, frost sometimes occurs during December and January. It also receives occasional winter rains from the western disturbance.
Summer: Temperature in summers may rise high to maximum of 40°C. Temperature generally remains 35° C to 40° C.
Autumn : In Autumn, temperature may go to high to maximum 36° C. Temperature usually remains between 16° to 27° in autumn. Lowest temperature may go to 13° C.
Winter : Winters are quite cool. However, it may sometimes gets chilly. Average temperature in winters (November to February) remains at (max) 7° C to 15 ° C and (min) 0° C to 5° C.
Spring : Climate remains quite pleasant in spring season. Temperature remains (max) 16° C to 25° C and (min) 9° C to 18° C.