Sights to See
Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the temple contains the main idol is carved in Shalagram stone and represents Vishnu seated in meditation, flanked by NarNarayan. The present temple was built two centuries ago by the Garhwal Kings. During the period when the temple remains closed, the idols are taken to Pandukeshwar. The other important Badris are Bhavishye Badri, Yogadhyan Badri, Vrudh Badri and Adi Badri located near the main Badrinath Shrine which is known as ‘Panch Badri’.
Tapt Kund or Surya Kund
The famous hot springs are located just below the temple
A majestic peak of the Himalayas, towering to a height of 6,600 m. Other places of interest are the Mata Murti, Sesh Netra and Urvashi temples & Charanapaduka
Mana Village (4 km):
Considered as the last village on the Indo-Tibet border. Further 4 km from Mana village are the Vasundhara waterfalls, one of the biggest in India.
Satopanth Lake (18 km):
A natural lake situated amidst high mountains. On Route Rishikesh-Badrinath
At an altitude of 480 m, the mighty waters of the River Ganga here are ideal for white water rafting. Rock climbing can also be arranged. GMVN conducts river-rafting courses at Kaudiyala. Accom: Rest Tent Colony (GMVN) Kaudiyala, Dist Tehri, Tel 01378 262911.
Situated at the confluence of the rivers Alakananda and Bhagirathi, it is an important pilgrim centre with its Shiva and Ragunath temples. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Deoprayag, Tehri Dist., Tel: (01378) 266013
The old capital of Garhwal. Places of interest here are the Kamleshwar and Kalpaveshwar temples and the Shankar Math. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Srinagar, Dist. Pauri, Tel: 01346 252199, 257109
Situated at the confluence of the Alaknanda and Mandakini. The temples that dot this region are those of Rudranath and Chamunda Devi. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Rudraprayag, Dist. Pauri, Tel: 01364 233347.
A beautiful valley. Accom:Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Gauchar, Dist. Chamoli, Tel: 01363 240611.
The base for treks to Roopkund and Bedni Bugyal. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN) , Dist. Chamoli, Tel: 01363 244210.
Nandaprayag: An important pilgrim centre with a temple of Gopalji. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Nandprayag. Tel: 01372 261215
Known for its scenic beauty. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Chamoli Dist. Tel: 01372 266237.
It is believed that Adi Shankaracharya performed penance here. After enlightenment, he established a religious centre (Math) here, which he called ‘Jyotirmath’. Joshimath has temples dedicated to Goddess Durga and Ugra Narsimha, the lion incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Accom: (1) New Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Dist. Chamoli, Tel: 01389 222226 : (2) Old Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Joshimath, Dist. Chamoli, Tel: 01389 222118; (3) Badri-Kedar Temple Trust Dharamshala.(4) Birla Guest House. (5) Forest Rest House. (6) The Camp Chardham. www.theleisurehotels.com.
Govindghat is the starting point of the trek to the Valley of Flowers and Hemkund. Accommodation is available at the Gurudwara in Govindghat.
Famous for the temple of Yogdhyan Badri, one of the Panch Badris. The other four are Vishal Badri (Badrinath), Adi Badri (17 km from Karnaprayag), Bhavishya or future Badri and Vridha or old Badri (Joshimath). Pandukeshwar houses the idol of the Badrinath temple during the winter months.
(20 km from Govind Ghat by foot). This sacred Sikh shrine is situated on the shores of the Hemkund Lake (4,320 m). It marks the place where Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth and the last Guru unified with God after meditation.
Valley of Flowers:
(19 km trekking from Govind Ghat:): A beautiful scenic valley in the Himalayas, flowers blooms from July till end of August. (Trekking route: Govindghat-Pulna-Bhyunder-Ghangaria-Valley of Flowers-Hemkund).
Sites to See
Located at an altitude of 3,581 metres, one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, Kedarnath, is among the most revered pilgrim centres in the country. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple according to legend was first built and venerated by the Pandava brothers, to atone for their sins after the battle of Mahabharat.
To the south of the main temple stands the temple of Bhairav, the deity who guards Kedarnath in winter, when it is closed for worship.
Chorabari (Gandhi Sarovar):
Situated 1 km from Kedarnath, it is usually referred to as Gandhi Sarovar, because the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi were immersed in the lake.
Samadhi of Adi Shankaracharaya:
Behind the Kedarnath temple is the samadhi where Adi Shankaracharya, the saint and philosopher gave up his life.
This Lake with its crystal clear water is located at an altitude of 14,200 ft. The other Kedars are: Madmaheshwar, Tungnath, Rudranath and Kalpeshwar.
On Route Rishikesh-Kedarnath
(Route from Rishikesh to Rudraprayag same as in Rishikesh - Badrinath Route) Agastamuni:
Agastamuni is very scenic with its rich green forests.
Kund: From Kund one can visit Ukhimath (8 km), the winter seat of Lord Kedarnath and three of the Panch Kedars namely Tunganath, Rudranath and Kalpeshwar. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Ukhimath, Tel: 01364 264236.
An important pilgrim centre, with the Chandrasekhar and Ardhanarishwar temples. GMVN Accomodation Tel: 01364 267221, Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Guptkashi, Dist. Chamoli, Tel: 01364 26721. The Chardham Camp www.theleisurehotels.com.
Situated at the confluence of the Sone Ganga and Mandakini rivers. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Rampur (20 km before Soneprayag) 01364-262114
This is the last motor head and from here one has to trek 14 km to Kedarnath via Garurchatti and Rambara. Horses, dandies, ponies and coolies for luggage are available. Accom: Tourist Bungalow (GMVN), Tel: 01364 269202.
Gangotri in Uttarkashi District is situated at the confluence of the rivers, Kedar Ganga and Bhagirathi Ganga. According to legend, Gangotri is the place where Goddess Ganga descended on earth as a reward for King Bhagirath's severe penance. The source of the river is at Gaumukh, 18 km south east of Gangotri along the Gangotri glacier.
The 20 feet high temple is made of white granite. It was built in the early 18th century by a Gorkha commander and later renovated in the 20th century. Accom:Shikhar Nature Resort (5 km from Uttarkashi on the way to Gangotri. Resvn: Tel: 01377 222221.
A natural rock Shivling which, according to legend, is where Lord Shiva sat to receive the Ganga in his matted locks.
Chirbasa (9 km):
It is an excellent site for camping and the best viewpoint before Gaumukh. Accom: Dharamshalas and PWD Rest Sheds are available.
Bhojwasa (16 km):
Bhojbasa, 3 km from Gaumukh is situated at an altitude of 3,792 m. There are a few ashrams in Bhojbasa. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Bhojbasa, Dist. Uttarkashi.
Kedar Tal (18 km):
This enchanting lake is situated south of Gangotri at an altitude of 5065 m and it is a 18 km trek from Gangotri. Kedar Tal is also a base camp for treks.
Gaumukh (19 km):
At a height of 3892 m, Gaumukh is the source of the river Ganga. The trek from Gangotri to Gaumukh is gradual but beyond Gaumukh, one should venture only with proper gear and an experienced guide.
Nandavan/ Tapovan (25 km):
A difficult 6 km trek from Gaumukh along the glacier. Nandavan is the base camp for the Bhagirath peaks and offers a stunning view of the Shivling Peak, Tapovan is known for its exquisite meadows.
On Route Rishikesh-Gangotri
It commands a panoramic view of the Doon Valley and the river Ganga. Accommodation in the form of budget hotels available.
A picturesque place. The road bifurcates here for Mussoorie, New Tehri and Rishikesh. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Chamba, Dist. Tehri, Tel: 01376 255245.
New headquarters of the district of Tehri Garhwal, lying on the confluence of the Bhagirathi and Bhilangana rivers.
An important pilgrim centre often equated with Varanasi or Kashi. Uttarkashi is connected by bus services with all major centres in the region. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Uttarkashi, Tel: 01374 222222, 222271. Shikhar Nature Resort, Garam Pani, Gawana.
Noted for its thermal springs and a close up view of the Himalayas.
Starting point for various treks in the region. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Harsil, Dist. Uttarkashi. Tel: 013773 232210
At an elevation of 2650 m and famous for the temple of Bhairavnath. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Bhaironghati.
Yamunotri, the western most shrine in the Garhwal region, is situated at an altitude of 3,322 m. The shrine is reached by a trek of 14 km from Hanuman Chatti, the nearest roadhead. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna. The origin of the river Yamuna is at the Champasar Glacier, near Yamunotri.
Temple of Yamuna
The temple is a simple structure and the idol of Goddess Yamuna is in black marble. The temple was built between 1892 and 1893 and was destroyed twice due to earthquake after which it was re-built.
Divya Shila: A rock pillar, worshipped before entering the Yamunotri temple.
Surya-Kund: Near the temple of Goddess Yamuna there are number of hot springs. The most important of these is Surya Kund.
On route Rishikesh - Yamunotri
Route from Rishikesh to Chamba (same as in Rishikesh - Gangotri route) Dharasu:
The road bifurcates here for Gangotri and Yamunotri.
For the nature lovers, Barkot offers every charm in its forests, mountains and valleys. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Tel: 01375 224236.
A small village nestling in a forest on the banks of the Yamuna. Accom: Tourist Rest House (GMVN), Sayanchatti.
Set in very beautiful surroundings, at the confluence of the Hanuman Ganga and Yamuna rivers. The 14 km trek to Yamunotri starts from here. Accom: (GMVN) 01375 2233371.
This is the last halting place on the Yamunotri route. Accommodation is very limited at Yamunotri, hence pilgrims return to Jankichatti, which is just 7 km from Yamunotri. Jankichatti is also famous for thermal springs. Accom: Tourist Bungalow (GMVN).