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''Have unfulfilled wishes? You can offer your prayers here. Check out the dos and the don'ts.''

Location : About 450 kms from Delhi

Why go the distance : Dewa, a small town in Barabanki district which is about 34 kms from Lucknow, is popularly known as Dewa Sharif because of the shrine of Syed Haji Waris Ali Shah (Dewa Sharif). Once inside the arched Mughal stylised gates, the shrine is breathtaking and sufi music will be in the air. It is an epitome of love for humanity and is believed to fulfill sincere wishes.
Haji Waris’s shrine is extremely beautiful but the pathway can be a let-down. Shrine is about 300 meters away from the parking area and so one will have to cover the distance walking. Also be weary of shopkeepers who are looking to swindle visitors for cash. The stuff they sell is heavily overpriced.
Also, do not leave without grabbing a bite of the sweet Mughlai paratha with halva made of dates. All along the 300 metres stretch to Dewa Sharif you will find unique cuisines that are difficult to be found elsewhere.

How to reach : One can take a train to Lucknow or catch a flight. However, to travel from Lucknow to Dewa, Barabanki highway is suggested. To avoid the daily migration traffic between Lucknow and other towns avoid travelling between 7.30 am to 11 am in the morning and 5.30 pm to 7.30 pm in the evening. The road is clean and hurdle free with trees enveloping the road and is a pleasant ride even in the summers (highway, not Lucknow city). It is a straight road with no turns except for one fork in the road which will come after 28 or 29 kilometres which has a sign board for Dewa. So don't get lost.

When to go : In the month of October Dewa Mela is held and is quite popular in Barabanki. So, if you like multitudes of people then October would be a nice time to visit. And if you are looking for peace and love any time during the year though the winter months would be a better choice.

Lodging : It is not a place where you would get good hotels but there are lodges and small hotels available. But if it was me I would visit in the morning spend the day and come back by evening and find a hotel in Lucknow to stay.

Source / Review By : Stephan Bayley


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