The American Kishori India trip commenced on the 26th of June when they headed to their first destination: London.
Three days were spent in London where they enjoyed touring the city, spending time at the Neasden mandir, and taking part in a grand Rath Yatra.
Then they left for their first stop in India: Delhi. While in Delhi, the kishoris had the opportunity to see the new mandir as well as the Akshardham site. They visited all the historical as well as contemporary sights including the Gandhi Ashram, the Lotus Temple, ISKCON Temple, and the India Gate. Next, they spent two days in Chhapaiya and Ayodhya, where Lord Swaminarayan was born and raised. They were treated to the exact spot where He was born and the Confectioner's Shop where He ate all the sweets. They also visited Haridwar and Rushikesh, which are important places of pilgrimage to all Hindus. They participated in Ganga Aarti and had the opportunity to cross the Ram and Laxman Jhula. After Delhi, the Kishoris went to Amdavad where they had the opportunity to spend a few days with Param Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj and also visit Amli Vali Pod. The kishoris got to learn a little about Amdavad mandir and its history from the aunties. From there they went to Akshardham - Gandhinagar, where they got to see all of the amazing exhibitions and heard prasangs about how the lives of people changed upon visiting Akshardham. Next stop - Mahesana, where they were able to go to a water park. Over the next few days the kishoris visited Rajkot, Junagadh (where they attempted to climb Girnar), Bhadra (the birthplace of Mul Akshar Murti Gunatitanand Swami), Gondal, Loj, Mongrol, Gadhada, Sarangpur, Mahelav and Bochason. At every mandir they learned a bit about its history and got a chance to see the magnificent carvings.
The highlight of the tour was a five day shibir that was held in the presence of H.D.H Pramukh Swami Maharaj. The Shibir was held in Anand in IRMA, a facility that was provided by Dr. Kurien. Also present were Sadguru Santos: Pujya Mahant Swami, Pujya Tyagvallabh Swami, and Pujya Viveksagar Swami. All had the privilege of doing darshan of Bapa during puja, all three meals and two times for sessions. The shibir was a divine experience that will never be forgotten by anyone who attended it. Immediately after the shibir, the kishoris spent six days with their relatives. Afterwards the kishoris went to Atladra, and Chansad (the birthplace of Pramukh Swami Maharaj) where they visited His old house and mandir that he often visited as a child. Next they visited Bharuch (where everyone performed abishek on the murti of Neelkanth Varni), Surat, Sankri, Navsari and Tithal.
The final three days of the trip were spent in Mumbai, where they were able to visit Yogi Hall in Dadar and tour the whole city. This trip was an amazing experience - a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity which will not be forgotten by anyone and will be cherished for years to come.