This Sunday(yesterday) I visited Akshardham temple in Delhi and believe me now I regret not visiting it earlier..it was a great experience that I can never ever draw a comparison with anything in the world..
Let me tell you my experience....We (me along with my family) visited there @ around 3:40PM, parked the car and then got onto our feet. There is a list of soooooo many things that you can't carry inside that I think they would have saved money in listing the things allowed inside :).
Anyways, as always due to heavy security check at the Gate and the day being sunday, there was a long queue(separate queue for women and men). I reached inside, after waiting almost half an hour in the queue. I saw the first view of the temple from inside it just looked marvelous, such a great work of art and Indianism.
I went inside speechless to see more...I was then standing @ 10 doors entrance, symbolizing doors to all of the 10 directions. Then I saw various dwars and passed through them to see the main Temple view...god why did they take my camera...i felt if I had camera I would have definitely become a professional photographer taking sooo many stunningly beautiful captures.
I purchased tickets for hall of values show, the Movie show, the boat ride and the musical fountain from the counter...then entered the 1st stage of all i.e. Sahajanand Darshan (no point in telling, after standing in a queue), but it was worth waiting...it consisted of audio and robotic motion filled various stages and excerpts from life of Swaminarayan , I found it very interesting.
Then though the 2nd stage was Nilkanth yatra(i.e. the movie show), we entered the Sanskruti Vihar for the boat ride...the halls tag line was "10,000 years of old India’s glorious heritage in 10 minutes"....again in a queue...we started the journey of 10,000 years in the boat....there were the all the ancient accomplishments, establishment and also great people statues to teach us the great past of INDIAN history. There were examples from history like great institutions like Nalanda, great leader minds like Ramanujacharya (teacher for Vedanata).
Then we waited for the musical fountain as there is a particular time for it to be played. The musical fountain was another show of wonderful human imagination...the integration of music, water flow and the the lighting was out of world...unimaginable, inexpressible are the words for it.
We headed for some snacks after the show...then we entered the movie hall Nilkanth Yatra, it is a fact that what I was looking at is 85' x 65' ft gigantic screen....An epic period film featuring an exciting and inspiring pilgrimage of Neelkanth Varni, a child-yogi, of 18th century India, was being played. It helped me understand all the aspects of the story told in 1st stage
After the movie we went to see the main Temple from inside. It's huge and has beautiful marble handwork allover its walls. It has a tall statue of Swaminarayan in the middle of the temple and has all the god, goddess pairs circling it from within the temple. we read sooo many good sayings by Swaminarayan.
Frankly it left me wanting more and a feel of visiting such a peaceful and wonderful place once again...I hope to visit there again sometime...