You may have heard of Bareilly a number of times in Bollywood films. Why this city has been so popular with Hindi films of the’80s and ’90s, no one quite knows
Perhaps it is its rich historic past, or perhaps it is its typically North Indian lifestyle. Whatever the reason, Bareilly indeed offers much to the discerning travelers in terms of history, culture and spirituality.Bareilly goes by various names, including Ala Hazrat, Nath Nagari, and Sanjashya, each bearing a different religious context. The city is known for its agricultural produce of cotton, cereal and sugar, but more importantly for being a hub for furniture manufacturing.Bareilly has been governed by various rulers through the centuries, including the Rajputs, the Delhi Sultanate, the Mughals, and eventually, the British. Traces of each kingdom still live on in the winding lanes of this city in Uttar Pradesh.A city that embraces various religions and ways of life, celebrates its vibrant past, and welcomes visitors with warmth and hospitality, Bareilly truly does live up to its Bollywood name. If you’re the religious sort or are interested in Hindu mythology and enjoy visiting temples, then you’ll be mighty pleased in Bareilly. This North-Indian city has temples, mosques and churches at almost every corner. From the Alaknath Temple to the Trivani Nath Temple, most Hindu mandirs in Bareilly are dedicated to Lord Shiva. In fact, one of the other names of the city, Nath Nagari, is also derived from Shiva. Most of these popular temples are old and weathered, so the idols sitting in them and the carvings on the walls are also of interest to anyone with a passion for history.The mosques are equally vibrant and appealing. Jama Masjid Qila, Dargah Ala Hazrat and Bibi Ji Ki Masjid are just a few of the religious sites that you can add to your itinerary. One of the city’s other names, Ala Hazrat, comes from the famous Islamic mausoleum of the same name. The Ala Hazrat Dargah, in Bareilly, is known to be especially powerful, with devotees flocking to it in the thousands every year.For a quick history lesson on Bareilly and even India, for that matter, visit the newly-opened Panchala Museum at the university campus. Artifacts and artworks from various different eras in history are on display here—the most famous ones being the Ganesh torso, from the Gupta reign, and the statue of the three-headed Goddess dating to before the Mauryan period.Bareilly is also dotted with numerous markets, with many selling typical northern wares and locally produced furniture. If you can manage to carry it back, such cane furniture pieces would certainly be a trophy worth taking back home.Auto-rickshaws are fairly accessible in Bareilly, but commuters can also use cycle-rickshaws that are available for short distances. Buses also ply throughout the city but aren’t the most comfortable option. If you really crave comfort and privacy, simply hire a private taxi or car for a day-long sightseeing trip.Avoid venturing out alone after dark.Keep your valuables and expensive items safely locked away in your hotel, before heading out to explore the city
Bareilly is not well connected to other major cities of the country via regular flights. The nearest airport is in Pantnagar at a distance of 72kms.
Airports: Pantnagar Airport
You can easily get regular trains to Bareilly from other major cities of the country..