Dedicated to Lord Shiva, who is known as Neelkanth, literally meaning the blue-throated one, the temple is a much-visited spot in Rishikesh. It stands at a height of 926 m on top of a hill across the Ganges and boasts a beautiful architecture.

According to Hindu mythology, the place where the Neelkanth Mahadev Temple currently stands is the sacred location where Lord Shiva consumed the poison that originated from the sea, when gods and demons churned the ocean in order to obtain nectar. This poison that emanated during the samudramanthan (churning of the ocean) turned his throat blue. From then on, Lord Shiva began to be worshipped as Neelkanth.

The entrance door of the temple has the event of samudramanthan, between the gods and the demons, sculpted on it, while the walls depict the whole story. Devotees come here to worship a shivling that lies in the inner complex, and to bathe in the waters of a natural spring, situated within the premises. The temple is a three-hour walk along a forest path from Swarg Ashram.

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