Rishikesh is popularly known as "Dev Bhoomi" - meaning - the abode of Gods. It acquired this nickname due the abundance of Ashrams and temples scattered around the city. Rishikesh is also believed that meditation at this place leads to attainment of salvation. Its scenic beauty is another important factor that lures thousands of nature loving tourists. Surrounded by Shivalik range of the Himalayas, and the serene, mystical river Ganges flowing through its length it provides a splendid panoramic memoir for the visitors. Yet another factor that has helped Rishikesh shoot up into glory is the presence of quite a few Yoga and Ayurveda institutions and teachers. Rishikesh is named as the world capital of yoga.
Evening aarti of Goddess Ganga is performed at Triveni Ghat. Triveni is a bathing Ghat where people wash their sins by taking a dip in the holy water of sacred Ganga River. It is believed that the three streams of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati are flowing together underground at this point. Pinda Shradha is also performed at Triveni Ghat.
The Bharat Mandir is the oldest temple of Rishikesh, situated near the Jhanda Chowk. Rishi Rabhya did his penance at this holy spot and the place is devoted to Lord Vishnu. A spectacular sacred Shree Yanthra is placed at the inner canopy of the temple. Bharat Mandir celebrates colourful spring festival called 'Basant Panchami'.
Thousands of devotees visit Neelkanth Mahadev every month throughout the year. It is situated on the summit of the mountain across the sacred Ganga River. According to mythology this is the place where Lord Shiva drank the venom produced during 'Sagar Manthan' which turned his throat blue and was thus the place was named as Neelkanth. Neelkanth and Mahadev are names of Lord Shiva.
Lakshman Jhula is on of the main attraction of Rishikesh. It is 450 ft long hanging bridge on the river Ganga which was built in 1939. According to myths and legends Laksman, brother of Lord Rama crossed Ganga River on a jute rope from this point. The 13 storied temple is located near Lakshman Jhula where the idols of several Gods and Goddesses are kept. The bridge gives a magnificent view of the Ganges, greeting you with the cool breeze from the river.
Ram Jhoola connects Swargashram with Shivananda Ashram. Several ashrams are located near Ram Jhoola. Ram Jhoola is bigger than Laxman Jhula and even more picturesque.
Rishikund literally suggests the sage's pond. It is believed that the waters of the Yamuna drenched this pond on the request of Kubz saint. Shani mandir is also situated at Rishikund.
Geeta Bhawan is one of the oldest temple complexes situated by the side of Laxman Jhula on the banks of sacred Ganges in Rishikesh. Gita Bhavan is dedicated as a Museum for puranic and mythological awareness for the common public. Building consists of a very large complex comprising discourse halls and over 1000 rooms available free of charge for the stay of devotees. For the convenience of the devotees, simple vegetarian food, kitchen and grocery items and Indian sweets are available at very moderate price.
Activities in Rishikesh
White Water Rafting: Rishikesh is very popular for its rafting on the River Ganga (Ganges). Season: September-November and March-April-May are ideal for rafting. Camping, Rappelling, Rock climbing, Cliff Jumping, Kayaking, Trekking Bungee Jumping: You can try bungee jump at Jumpin Heights in Rishikesh. It is located 15km ahead of Rishikesh on Rishikesh-Neelkanth road. It is a unique experience in India, a jump from 83 mtrs just above a natural river and have the time of your life.
Distances from Major Cities
- Haridwar (24kms.)
- Delhi (227kms.)
- Dehradun (43kms.)
- Mussoorie (78kms.)
- Kedarnath (227kms.)
- Yamunotri (234kms.)
- Gangotri (248kms.)
- Nainital (260kms.)
- Shimla (262kms.)
- Govindghat (275kms.)
- Badrinath (300kms.)
- Agra (398kms.)