One of the char dhams, the Kedarnath Temple welcomes lakhs of devotees every year. The pilgrims undertake an arduous but devotional journey to reach this 3,584-m high shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is one of the 12 jyotirlingas (devotional shrines of Lord Shiva) in the country, and is thus considered specially holy. The sanctum sanctorum houses a conical rock formation that is worshipped as Lord Shiva’s Sadashiva (ever auspicious) form. This 1,000-year-old temple is made out of giant stone slabs arranged over a rectangular platform. There are inscriptions in Pali language on the steps leading to the sanctum sanctorum. The inner walls have sculptures of various gods and scenes from Hindu mythology. It is said that the temple was built in the 8th century by sage Adi Shankaracharya and has undergone several renovations over the years. Every year in November, the idol of Lord Shiva is shifted from the Kedarnath Temple to Ukhimath since the entire temple gets covered in snow during winters. In May, the idol is reinstated in Kedarnath.


There is an interesting legend behind this religious place. It is said that Lord Shiva turned himself into a bull to evade the Pandavas when they were looking for him to seek atonement for their sins after fighting the epic Mahabharata battle. When the Pandavas spotted Lord Shiva, he hid inside the ground, leaving only the hump visible on the surface of the earth.

Other Attractions In Kedarnath