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Excursions

Guptkashi (39 km):
Guptkashi has a great importance quite like of Kashi. The ancient Vishwanath temple, Ardhnareshwar temple and Manikarnik Kund, where the two streams of Ganga and Yamuna are believed to meet, are the main places of attraction in Guptkashi.

It is believed that after the battle of Mahabharata, the Pandavas wanted to meet Lord Shiva and seek his blessings. But Lord Shiva evaded from Guptkashi to Kedarnath as He did not want to meet the Pandavas, the reason being that although they had fought for the right cause, they were also responsible for destroying their own dynasty. Guptkashi is situated at an elevation of 1319 mts. The one Stupa is situated in Nala which is quite close to Ukhimath. Some local people call it the grave of Rana Nal. 3 km from Guptkashi, the remains of Ramgarh (in Ronitpur) still seem to echo the love between Lord Krishna's son Anniruddha and Vanasur's daughter Usha. Accommodation, Food, Market, Hospital, Telephone, and other facilities are available at Guptkashi.

Ukhimath (40 km)
The winter seat of Lord Kedarnath and three of the Panch Kedars namely Tunganath, Rudranath and Kalpeshwar.

Gaurikund (72 km) :

It's the trekking base to Kedarnath. The village has hot water springs and a temple dedicated to Goddess Gauri.

Kedarnath (86 km):
Amidst the dramatic mountain landscapes of the majestic Kedarnath range stands one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Kedar or Lord Shiva. Lying at an altitude of 3584 m on the head of river Mandakini, the shrine of Kedarnath is amongst the holiest pilgrimages for the Hindus. There are more than 200 shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva in the district itself, the most important one is Kedarnath.

According to legend, the Pandavas after having won over the Kauravas in the Kurukshetra war, felt guilty of having killed their own brothers and sought the blessings of Lord Shiva for redemption. He eluded them repeatedly and while fleeing took refuge at Kedarnath in the form of a bull. On being followed he dived into the ground, leaving his hump on the surface. The remaining portions of Lord Shiva appeared at four other places and are worshipped there as his manifestations. The arms appeared at Tungnath, the face at Rudranath, the belly at Madhmaheshwar and his locks (hair) with head at Kalpeshwar. Kedarnath and the four above mentioned shrines are treated as Panch Kedar.

An imposing sight, standing in the middle of a wide plateau surrounded by lofty snow covered peaks. The present temple, built in 8th century A.D. by Adi Shankaracharya, stands adjacent to the site of an earlier temple built by the Pandavas. The inner walls of the assembly hall are decorated with figures of various deities and scenes from mythology. Outside the temple door, a large statue of the Nandi Bull stands as guard. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the exquisitely architecture Kedarnath temple is considered to be more than 1000 years old. Built of extremely large, heavy and evenly cut gray slabs of stones, it evokes wonder as to how these heavy slabs had been handled in the earlier days. The temple has a "Garbha Griha" for worship and a Mandap, apt for assemblies of pilgrims and visitors. A conical rock formation inside the temple is worshipped as Lord Shiva in his Sadashiva form.


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