Sangam literally means confluence. The place has been named so because it is situated on the confluence of Ganges, Yamuna and a mythical river named Saraswati. The actual confluence is located around 7 Kilometers from the Civil Lines. The place is considered to be one of the most sacred in Hindu religion and is the site for Ardh-Kumbh and Kumbh Mela that takes every 6 and 12 years respectively. At the point at which the Ganges meets Yamuna, pandas (priests) perch on small platforms to perform puja and assist the devout in their ritual ablutions in the shallow waters. Boats are available for visitors to take a ride in the river.
During the month of Magh (mid-January to mid-February) pilgrims come to bathe at this holy confluence for the festival known as the Magh Mela. Astrologers calculate the holiest time to enter the water and draw a ‘Holy Dip Schedule’ that is updated annually. The most propitious time of all comes every 12 years when the massive Kumbh Mela takes place. The Mela holds a record in the Guinness Book as the largest human gathering on the earth. This was created in the year 1988 when 15 Million people gathered to take a dip in a single day.