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Tourist Attractions in Rishikesh
While on their holy Chardham pilgrimage, devotees deem it highly significant to take a holy dip at the Triveni Ghat at observe pooja. Worshippers of Lord Vishnu make a visit to the Bharat Temple, dedicated to the very Hindu god. The 'aarto' ceremony (performed in the evening) also holds a lot of importance for the people of the Hindu religion. The Himalayan town of Rishikesh remains steeped in mythology. There are hordes of temples and ashrams in the pilgrimage town. A visit to Rishikesh gives travelers the opportunity to witness a host of Hindu rituals, to practice yoga and meditation at the world renowned ashrams and see a number of tourist attractions, both picturesque and religious. Some wonderful excursion tours also await travelers coming to Rishikesh.
Location - 24 Kms from Haridwar (Uttarakhand)
Near by Attractions - Haridwar, Dehradun, Mussoorie
Best Season - Throughout the Year
Being the river rafting capital of India, Rishikesh is visited by adventurers from the world over. The Ganges at Rishikesh offers 13 excellent rapids, both for beginners as well as adrenaline junkies. The white water rapids of River Ganga have been categorized into different grades ranging from I to VI. Travellers can enjoy river rafting in Rishikesh even with their family and friends. There are expert guides and instructors to take care of adventure lovers during the Ganges river rafting session.
The site holds an important place in the Hindu mythology. According to mythology, Lakshman Jhula is the place where Lord Rama crossed River Ganga. The suspended bridge, therefore, stands in dedication to the very event. The suspended bridge also affords bird's eye view of the surroundings. Lakshman Jhula was constructed in 1929.
Ashrams in Rishikesh
Not only temples, but the pilgrimage town of Rishikesh also offers to visit a number of world renowned ashrams. These ashrams are a great place for travelers to practice yoga and meditation. The holy town of Rishikesh has been referred in ancient Hindu scriptures. It is believed that practicing meditation in Rishikesh leads one to salvation. Major ashrams in Rishikesh include Sivanand Ashram, Yoga Niketan, Vedanta Ashram, Vithal Ashram, Omkaranand Ashram, Vanprastha Ashram, Ved Niketan Dayanad and Vanmali Gita Yogashram among others.
Founded by Adiguru Shankaracharya, the 12th century temple occupies a position right in the centre of Rishikesh town. The temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The idol of Lord Vishnu at the temple has been chiseled out of a single saligram. Many ancient relics including statues, pots and coins have been discovered in a recent excavation at the site.
The ghat marks the point where the three sacred Rivers Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati coalesce. It is a ritual to take a holy dip at the ghat before proceeding to visit the temples in the town. The evening pooja ceremony or 'Ganga Aarti' is a major attraction for travelers here. During the pooja, hordes of oil lamps are set afloat along the river amidst sounds of temple bells and chants.
Most of the major ashrams in Rishikesh are located around Ram Jhula. The suspended bridge has been built in dedication to Lord Rama. Besides visiting many ashrams at Ram Jhula, visitors can also attend the 'Ganga Aart' at Geeta Bhawan ghat. The ritual lasts for around 30 minutes. Also remember to relish some deliciously cooked dishes at the 50-year-old Chotiwala Restaurant.