Rishikesh is a small town in Uttarakhand’s Dehradun district, near Haridwar, located in the Himalayan foothills along the confluence of the Ganga and Chandrabhaga rivers. Rishikesh (also spelled as Hrishikesh) is well-known for its adventure activities, ancient temples, and popular cafes. Rishikesh is a pilgrimage town and one of the holiest places for Hindus, as well as the gateway to Garhwal Himalayas.
The Beatles ashram is now a popular tourist destination, attracting visitors from all over the world. The serene town has long been a spiritual center, but it’s also known for bungee jumping, whitewater rafting, mountain biking, and camping along the sacred Ganges. It also serves as a beginning point for a number of Himalayan hikes.
Rishikesh has long been recognized as a haven for saints(sadhus), with various ashrams cropping up to teach spirituality, meditation, yoga, and Ayurveda springing up. Alcohol and non-vegetarian food are strictly prohibited in this religious town. Rishikesh witness the most beautiful evening aarti on the Ganga’s banks. In the first week of March, the international yoga festival is held here, attracting yoga enthusiasts from all over the world.
The downtown area is called Rishikesh, and the favored Triveni ghat are the 2 main areas of Rishikesh. The other side of Rishikesh, 2 kilometers upstream from the popular Ram Jhula and Lakshman Jhula, is where most of the popular ashrams, cafes, accommodation, and tourists can be found. The cities of Haridwar and Rishikesh are the first in India to be designated as “twin national heritage cities.”
Best Time: September to June
“Yoga capital of the world.”
Places To Visit In Rishikesh
“Every path in life has a bridge, the journey is crossing it.”
The two villages, Tapovan in the Tehri Garhwal district and Jonk in the Pauri Garhwal district, across the Ganga is connected by the widely known Laxman Jhula in Rishikesh. The entire bridge is built of iron, is 450 feet long, and stands 70 feet over the river. Tourists flock to Laxman Jhula because it is said that this is where Lord Laxman, Lord Ram’s brother crossed the Ganga.
Timings: 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM
“नदी नहीं संसार है गंगा, देश का श्रृंगार है गंगा|”
Triveni Ghat is Rishikesh’s largest ghat, located on the banks of the holy river Ganges. Every evening, ‘Maha Aarti’ is performed at Triveni Ghat. Triveni ghat is referenced in the epics Mahabharat and Ramayana and is significant in Hindu mythology. The Triveni Ghat is also where Lord Krishna’s chattri was built. In fact, the ghat is thought to be the cremation site of the great Lord Krishna. Devotees bring milk offerings to the river and feed the fish in the ghat in addition to the holy dips.
The evening aarti, also known as the Maha Aarti, is held every day from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM. It is one of Rishikesh’s most popular and well-attended rituals. The Maha Aarti is celebrated by beating electrifying drums and rhythmic bells while chanting bhajans in praise of the Lord.
Timings: 5:00 AM – 9:00 PM
“The danger of adventure is worth a thousand days of ease and comfort.”
Rafting in Rishikesh, in particular, is without a doubt the best in India. The location has only the best to offer, from the gifted natural surroundings to the top professional assistance. In Rishikesh, there are certainly recognized operators who take adequate safety procedures as well as specialized camping and rafting packages. Rishikesh gets very crowded during the peak season, so keep that in mind when planning your trip.
Cost: depending upon the stretch, time, and difficulty level the cost ranges from Rs. 450 to Rs. 1800 per person.
Rishikesh rafting season: the greatest time to go rafting in Rishikesh is from mid-February to May. However, rafting is individually available all year except during the monsoon season, which begins in mid-June and lasts until September.
Some of the best rafting tour operators:
Ganga Valley Adventures
Near-Union Bank, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand
Red Chilli Adventure
Luxman Jhula Road, Tapovan, Rishikesh
NEELKANTH MAHADEV TEMPLE
“जिस समस्या का ना कोई उपाय उसका हल सिर्फ ॐ नमः शिवाय|”
The Neelkanth Mahadev Temple is a revered Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is about 7 kilometers from Swarg Ashram and is located in the Pauri Garhwal region. It is one of the most popular Shiva temples in the world, with devotees traveling from all over the world to visit.
Another way to get here is through Lakshman Jhula. You could also take a taxi there for a reasonable price. Pilgrims bring Ganga water to this temple.
“लीजिए नाम राम का और बढ़ाइए अपने कदम|”
Ram Jhula, a landmark built in 1986, is a suspension bridge that connects Shivananda Nagar and Swargashram across the sacred River Ganga. The 750- foot bridge is a beautiful technical feat that joins religious ashrams on both sides of the river and offers a breathtaking view of the mighty Ganges and the tranquil landscape of the Himalayan foothills.
TERA MANZIL TEMPLE
“तेरा मंजिल का है ये फासला तेरा मेरा, भगवान|”
Trimbakeshwar Temple is a thirteen-story temple in Rishikesh located on the banks of the Ganges, also known as the Tera Manzil Temple. The temple, which is located directly across from the Lakshman Jhula, houses several deities under one roof. The temple is well known for its remarkable architecture, but from the top of its 13th storey, it also offers panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.
Frequently Asked Question
Rishikesh is situated along the banks of the holy Ganga river, in the north Indian state of Uttarakhand.
Rishikesh is known as the yoga capital of the world, and earned more fame when the popular English band, Beatles visited it in the 1960s. Rishikesh is a very popular tourist destination amongst all age groups, owing to the tranquilizing environment along the ghats of Ganga, an array of temples which are architectural marvels, and a wide range of adventure activities like bungee jumping, river rafting etc.
Rishikesh is the nearest railway station that is situated at a distance of about 225 kms. From Kedarnath Temple. Taxi’s as well as buses are available from the railway station to reach Kedarnath Temple.
Rishikesh is a hotspot for adventure activities like cliff jumping, bungee jumping, trekking, hot air balloon, river rafting etc. Rishikesh is also known as the yoga capital of the world and there are many ashrams and temples to bask in the serenity and peace. Watching the Ganga aarti is another tranquil experience one should not miss.
BY AIR: Rishikesh is in close proximity to the newly built Jolly Grant Airport. This newly built airport handles flights only from Delhi. As the runaway is being extended, in near future it will also be connected to flights from other metros.
BY RAIL: It is best to take a train to Haridwar and then continue by buses or taxis. From Delhi, there are many trains that are connected with Haridwar namely the Jan Shatabdi, Shatabdi express, Mussoorie express etc.
BY ROAD: Rishikesh has a good network of buses that connect it with important places such as – Haridwar, Dehradun & New Delhi. Buses depart in the morning and late evening from Kashmiri Gate -ISBT as well as New Delhi. You can also choose a cab for a 7 hours drive to Rishikesh.
Image Source: Google