Rishikesh 24 Kms. from Haridwar. Located in the laps of
lower Himalayas, and is surrounded by scenic beauty of the
hills on three sides with Holy Ganga
flowing through it. The
whole place is considered to be sacred as it is believed
that meditation at this place leads to attainment of
salvation. There are many temples-some ancient, some new
along the river Ganges. Rishikesh is important not only as
pilgrimage centre closely associated with the Ramayana, but
also as home for many important centres of Hindu religious
thought and spirituality, and as a very great Yoga Centre.
There are a great many ashrams and Yoga institutes here.
Rishikesh is also the gateway and the start-off point for
journeys to important religious places like Badrinath,
Kedarnath, Gangotri, and Yamunotri.
Rishikesh is also acquiring greater significance as a centre
for white water rafting, other revering sports, a base for
treks and hikes in the beautiful Garhwal Himalayas.
Rishikesh is an ideal destination not only for pilgrims but
also for those who want to delve deeper into meditation,
Yoga and other aspects of Hinduism. For the adventurous,
Rishikesh is the place for starting their trekking
expeditions and excursions towards the Himalayan peaks. The
International Yoga week, which attracts participation from
all across the world, is held here every year from 2nd to
7th Feb on the bank of Ganga river.
Lakshman Jhula, the famous hanging bridge across Ganga, is
about 3 km from the main township of
Rishikesh. It is 450
feet long and is situated at a height of 70 feet from the
river. As per mythological tales, once Lakshman, the younger
brother of Lord Rama, crossed river Ganga at the same site
where the bridge now stands. At that time, there was only a
suspension bridge, made of jute. After this incident, the
bridge came to be known as ‘Lakshman Jhula’. With time, the
jute bridge eroded and a new iron bridge was built along the
same path in 1939.
Lakshman Jhula is actually an adjoining bridge across the
Ganga, along the old route to the holy shrines of Badrinath
The jhula has now become one of the most
visited tourist spot of Rishikesh, not simply because of its
ancient origin and religious sanctity, but also because of
the grand temples and wonderful local market have come to be
developed around it. A thirteen storey temple, called Terah
Manzil, near the Lakshman Jhula is very popular amongst
visitors. The top floor of this temple gives a wonderful
view of the surroundings.
Ram Jhula is
situated 3Km north of Rishikesh. It’s a very popular place
amongst people coming for religious purposes
because it has
very known Ashrams. Most known is Geeta Bhawan and Swarg
Ashram and these temples are very important in Hindu society
and you will see much more commotion here then in Laxman
jhula. You can contact the ashrams for accommodation but if
you like nature the Laxman jhula area is a better choice.
Everybody coming to the area of Rishikesh should go and see
the evening prayer at Geeta Bhawan's ghat (Bank of the
river). It’s a special experience to see how Hindus worship
the river Ganga. The evening prayer will take about 30
minutes and you can take your camera along with you. The
famous restaurant Chotiwala is also in Ram hula, there
actually two of them and it very unclear which is the real
one. It is 50 years old now and is very famous for its
delicious servings, you will love the taste of food their.
Bharat temple is situated in the heart of the township of
Rishikesh. It is approximately half kilometer away from the
Triveni Ghat, the famous river bank in the town. Said to be
the oldest temple in Rishikesh, it is also regarded as one
of the most ancient shrines in India. According to
historical evidences, Adiguru Shankracharya, the great
theologian, laid the foundation stone of Bharat temple. The
temple has been
named after Lord Ram’s second brother
‘Bharat’; however the presiding deity of this temple is Lord
Vishnu, ‘the Preserver’.
The statue of God Narayan (Vishnu), enshrined in Bharat
temple, is of black stone, carved out from a single piece of
Saligram. The image has a noticeably Himalayan appearance.
Though the temple’s main deity is Lord Vishnu, it holds a
number of other illustrations as well, generally related to
Lord Shiva, the Destroyer. The idol of Lord Rishikesh
Bharatji is also installed in this temple. The idol was
obscured in the Maya Kund of the temple, in order to save it
from the attack of the Buddha people.
Every year, on the day of Basant Panchami, the idol of Lord
Rishikesh is taken out, in a holy procession, for a dip in
the sacred water of river Ganga. Followers from far off
places come to Rishikesh for participating in this
procession. The holy records of Bharat temple can be found
in the ancient records of Kedarkhand, a religious text of
Hindus. It is said that the temple that stands now is
actually a renovated image of the original temple, which was
destroyed by Tamur, a bandit. Bharat temple is the perfect
destination for tourists who have a love for ancient
religious monuments and a desire to explore historical
Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh is located right on the banks of
the holy river Ganga. It is the perfect place to imbibe the
goodness of Yoga in the peaceful environment of the ancient
Indian retreat, 'ashrama'.
The Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh is the place which hosts the
internationally acclaimed annual International Yoga
Festival. Many dignitaries from all around the place come
here to gain valuable information about the science of Yoga.
Many ayurveda tours are conducted by the different
organizers which visit the Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh.
Swarg Ashram is a small township located 5 km upstream from
Rishikesh, on the left bank of the Ganges, opposite to Shri
Shivananda Ashram. It can be reached by two ways - either by
crossing river Ganges by boat or by walking through the
Ram/Shivanand Jhula built across the river. The ashram was
built in the memory of Swami Vishudhanand, the saint better
known as Kali Kamli Wala (the saint with a black blanket)
amongst the localities. There are lots of ashrams, temples
and caves, inhabited by saints, inside the Swarg Ashram.
Swarg Ashram also encompasses several cafes, stores,
shopping complexes, libraries, parks, meditation centers,
Ayurvedic dispensaries, restaurants and hotels. The area
lies amidst forest hills, with beautiful orchards and an
atmosphere that is free from the pollutions of a motorized
city. The area consists of a dozens of large ashrams,
generally two or three-storey buildings, with hundreds of
rooms that serve as residential quarters for priests,
pilgrims, students and tourists looking for an economical
Inside the ashram premises, there are several temples and
numerous shrines, each of them depicting a number of Hindu
deities. Every temple is headed by a priest who takes care
of the shrine as well as the residing crew. Several
religious ceremonies, like chanting, processions as well as
birth and death ceremonies, regularly take place inside the
Swarg Ashram. All these residential cells, temples, cafés
and other complexes that form a part of the Swarg Ashram are
maintained by a trust called ‘Kali Kamliwala Kshetra’.
Kali Kamliwala Kshetra trust has been organized by the
followers of Swami Vishudhanand. It is a mammoth
organization in the name of Swami Vishudhanand, embracing
several activities. Swarg Ashram is very popular amongst
foreign tourists as well, mainly because of the ethnic touch
that it provides them. They basically visit this place for
‘Yoga tours’ and ‘a study of Ayurvedic medicines’. It is an
ideal destination for all those people who love to have a
word with nature and are spiritually inclined.
Triveni Ghat is the most popular place in Rishikesh where
many people take a holy dip to wash away all their sins.
What makes it more popular is the fact that it is believed
to be at the confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati.
Hundreds of people attend the Ganga Aarti every evening at
Triveni Ghat has a significant place in Hindu Mythology and
Puranas. This ghat was mentioned many places in Purana and
great epics Ramayana and Mahabharata. It is believed that
Lord Krishna paid a visit to this holy spot after he was hit
by an arrow shot by Jara, a hunter. This is a highly revered
place in Samantha.