Out of the Tourist Track: London Taj Mahal

Hindu Temple London

If you’ve already managed to see all the major sights in London, but you’re still eager to explore the best of it, why not to try something extraordinary?

One of my favourite places of interests is an Hindu temple – Mandir, standing right in the heart of Neasden, North West London. Is a real castle, carved from stones and marble by the hands of thousands of volunteers.

Get out at Neasden station, and follow the signs. In about 15 minutes walking time, you will cross the green yard, and suddenly a gorgeous view will open before your eyes.

It is impossible to look at this glorious construction without holding your breath. It looks like a castle from a children’s fairy tale. Stand still for a moment and take some pictures, because you will not be allowed to do it inside.

Mandir London

Mandir London

Hindu Temple in Neasden

Mandir London

Mandir London

Before entering the gates, you will have to give your bag to the security. Don’t worry. All the valuable things, like phones and wallets could be carried in hands. These are just security measures.

Similarly to any Hindu temple, you will be required to take off your shoes, and leave it in a special boxes near the entrance. Don’t be afraid to catch a cold. During cold seasons the floor is heated, so your feet will stay warm. Women, wearing short and medium skirts will be asked to put on a sarong – a long piece of dark fabric around your waste. So, if you want to look glamorous, better to put on the trousers.

The temple looks even more spectacular from the inside. A massive part of the front hall is made from skilfully carved wood. Take your chance to go to the souvenir shop and buy some incense sticks and candles. They are qualitative and quite cheap.

Unfortunately, despite the huge size of the building, only one hall is open to the public. There people come to pray and get acquainted with the culture. It is especially impressive during the national holidays. At these times it is generously decorated with flowers and colourful sweets. The columns from marble depict various gods and goddesses from Hindu culture. And the ceiling filled with lotus flowers and dancing figures is a real work of art.

Once you are happy with what you saw, don’t head straight home. Just near the temple there is a fantastic restaurant with authentic cuisine, and a big Indian supermarket with typical goods. I really recommend the sweets that are sold near the restaurant. It will satisfy the taste of every gourmand. However, it would probably not suit you  if you are on diet, or have nut allergy.

I have been in these temple more than enough to appreciate its beauty. But, every time I return there with enthusiasm, and gladly show it to my friends, who are staring at all its glory with their eyes wide open. I hope, you will be one of them. (;

More information about Mandir at http://www.mandir.org/

A link to wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BAPS_Shri_Swaminarayan_Mandir_London

Have a wonderful  time!


Text and images Copyright © 2012 Unordinary Customer. All rights reserved.

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2 Responses to “Out of the Tourist Track: London Taj Mahal”
  1. aww yeah.. the place is great!

  2. What’s Taking place i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I’ve found It positively useful
    and it has helped me out loads. I hope to contribute & assist different customers like its helped
    me. Good job.

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