The first thing that comes into our mind, when we hear the word Punjab, is the image of a land full of life and activity. It is one of the smallest states of India, covering only about 1.6 per cent of the total geographical area of the country. Punjab is the state of greenery, which has agriculture as the main source of its economy. It is a highly fertile land, owing to the five main rivers flowing through it. The important rivers, which contribute to making Punjab an alluvial plain, are Beas, Chenab, Sutlej, Ravi, and Jhelum, along with their tributaries.
Punjab is surrounded by Pakistan on its west, Jammu and Kashmir on its north, Himachal Pradesh on its northeast, Haryana on its southeast and Rajasthan on its southwest. The state has a total area of 50,362 square kilometers. It is located between 29°30’N to 32°32’N latitude and 73°55’E to 76°50’E longitude. Each part of the state has so many stories to tell that any visitor to this land will find himself immersed into the essence of Punjab. This land of yellow fields, with Blue Mountains, provides a romantic and picturesque backdrop to the rest of the country. Punjab is widely known for its mouth-watering delicacies as well, which bear the signature of the land.
Punjab boasts of an integrated cultural history and historical embodiments. It exhibits a unique culture, which abounds in both traditional values and utilitarian aspects. Its culture is opulent and is apparent in its metalwork, embroidery, wall paintings, jewelry, mud wall paintings, architecture, folk songs and dances. The people of Punjab are highly religious and follow strictly all religious codes. This explains for the large number of gurdwaras in the state. Besides, Punjab is most visited by the tourists for the great Golden Temple, which is a spiritual as well as a tourist destination.
Fairs and festivals form a major part of the life of Punjabi people, who are always on the lookout for an occasion to celebrate. The major festivals of the state are Lohri, Baisakhi, Gurpurab, Teej and Holla Mohalla. The Punjabis celebrate these festivals with full gaiety and spirit. They also organize a number of fairs like Muktsar fair, Harballabh Sangeet Sammelan, and Basant Panchami, which add color to the land. Punjab boasts of many tourist detinations, of which Amritsar, Chandigarh, Patiala, Bathinda, and Gurdaspur are the major ones. These places abound in religious places, forts and palaces, gardens and parks, museums and so on.