About Haridwar

The sacred Himalayan town of Haridwar represents a living lesson on Hinduism. Located at the foot of the Shivalik Hills, the town attracts hordes of tourists and devotees from all corners of the world. Haridwar also holds significance because it stands as the gateway to the chardham, which includes Yamunotri, Gangotri, Badrinathji and Kedarnathji. Haridwar finds its mention in the ancient Hindu epics and scriptures as 'Mayapuri', Mokshadwar' and 'Gangadwar'. Geographically, it is at Haridwar where the sacred Ganga enters the northern Indian plains.

During the Kumbh Mela (held at the interval of every 12 years), the population of the town swells up to millions. The next Kumbh Mela and the Ardh Kumbh Mela (held at every 6 years) are scheduled to be held in Haridwar in 2022. Today, Haridwar is seen as a mystic centre for the rejuvenation of the body, mind and soul.

Popular Place:-

Har Ki Pauri
Also known as Har ki Pairi, it is the centre of attraction in the pilgrimage town of Haridwar. Devotees gather here to take a holy dip in the Ganges and to offer prayers. The celebration Ganga Aarti is a sight to behold here for tourists. The aarti ceremony takes place here every evening at 7 pm. As the river Ganga is worshipped, hundreds of diyas are set afloat along the river. According to Hindu mythology, Har ki Pairi is the place where a drop of the nectar fell from the moiling oceans, when the world came into existence.

Chandi Devi
The temple stands in dedication to Goddess Chandi. One of the most ancient in the country, the temple can be reached either by a ropeway ride or by undertaking a steep climb, that takes up around 45 minutes. The rituals at the temple begin as early as 4 am in the morning. Visitors are required to strictly follow the dress code before entering the premises of the Chandi Devi temple.

Daksha Mahadev Temple
The temple is situated towards the south of the Kankhal town. Built by Queen Dhankaur in AD 1810, the Daksha Mahadev Temple is the site where Daksha performed a yagna (a Hindu ritual to invoke gods and seek their blessings). In the Hindu mythology, Daksha Prajapati is the father of Sati, the spouse of Lord Shiva. The temple is just a few minutes drive from the railway station.

Sapt Rishi
The ashram is both ancient and much popular. The words Sapt Rishi is a combination of sapt (seven) and rishi (sage). According to the Hindu traditions, it is the place where the sacred Ganga split herself in seven streams to prevent any disturbance to the seven sages (Kashyapa, Vashisht, Atri, Vishwamitra, Jamadagi, Bharadwaja and Gautam) who were deeply absorbed in meditation. A 5 km drive from Har ki Pauri takes you to the Sapt Rishi Ashram.

Maya Devi
Dedicated to goddess Maya Devi, the temple is a major attraction for all visitors to Haridwar. The temple is counted as one of the shaktipithas in India. According to the Hindu mythology, it is the place where the heart and navel of goddess Sati fell down, while Lord Shiva was carrying her burnt body. Numerous festivals are held at the Maya Devi temple in keeping with the customs and traditions.

Parad Shivling
The mythological site is located in the historical town of Kankhal, at 6 km from the town of Haridwar. The Parad Shivling remains enshrined inside the premises of the Harihar Ashram in Kankhal. Weighing 150 kg, the shivling is major pilgrimage site for Shaivites. Devotees worship the shivling to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva.

Pavan Dham
The beauty of Pawan Dham lies in the aesthetically adorned ornamental idols and the glass work designed on the temple walls, which makes it a famous tourist spot. Pawan Dham is distanced at 2 km from the main town of Haridwar and about 3 km from Har-ki-Pauri.

As the name implies, Pawan Dham is a holy place that should not be missed by all those aspiring to visit Haridwar. This temple is counted among the ancient temples of Haridwar. A glimpse of the rich Indian culture and heritage is very prominent in this temple and also hosts a sense of purity and satisfaction.

Bhimgoda Tank
The tank is held in high regard by the whole Hindu community. As per the Hindu mythology, the Bhimgoda Tank was created when Bhim, a legendary character of the Hindu epic Mahabharata, hit his knee against the ground while the Pandava brothers were heading towards the Himalayas. The tank occupies a position at a distance of 300 m from Har ki Pauri in Haridwar.

Moti Bazaar
One of the best and busiest shopping areas in Haridwar, Moti Bazaar is situated between the Har-ki-Pauri and the Upper Road. To make your trip to Haridwar worthwhile, make sure you visit Moti Bazaar and shop for religious items such as Rudraksha or sacred beads, Gangajal or water of the holy Ganges stored in a container, precious stones for prosperity, and vermillion to name a few.

Images of deities, food offerings, sacred threads, pickles, and ayurvedic medicines are among the other items that can be purchased. The numbers of tiny shops lined along the streets are best explored on foot.

Gau Ghat
One among the many sacred sights of Haridwar is Gau Ghat. Just like a dip in the holy Ganges, one can experience a feeling of wellness after taking a dip in this Gau Ghat. A dip in this holy river is known to pardon the sin of slaughtering cows.

The Gau Ghat is also known to offer solace to those who have lost their near and dear ones. Offering of rose petals and coconuts ensure peace to the souls of ancestors.

A fact not known to many is that the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi were immersed in this Ghat.

Vishnu Ghat
Vishnu Ghat, named after Lord Vishnu is believed to be the place where Lord Vishnu bathed. Bathing in this ghat, or taking a dip in the holy river, is known to wash away all your sins. A visit to the religious land of Haridwar without taking a dip in the holy river leaves a sense of loss. To get that feeling of contentment and achievement, make sure you splurge into the holy waters.

Kushavarta Ghat
Kushavarta Ghat, built by a Maratha queen Ahilya Bai Holkar, is a religious destination for those wishing to perform the “Shraddha" rites for the departed souls. The beliefs about Kushavarta Ghat are related to a great saint of the ancient period, Dattatreya. Dattatreya was known to have visited this ghat frequently and spent time meditating. History states that it is this ghat where Dattatreya offered his penance by standing on one foot for a thousand years.

Kushavarta Ghat is a usually a crowded place with pilgrims from all over the country coming down to perform religious rites in memory of the ancestors. It is situated about 0.5 km from Har-ki-Pauri.

Vaishno Devi temple
It is a known fact that Vaishno Devi temple is located in Jammu. Not many know that a replica of the Vaishno Devi temple is present in Haridwar. This temple was recently built and does not fall into the league of ancient temples. Vaishno Devi temple, like any other temples of Haridwar, is visited by large numbers of Devotees throughout the year.

Chilla Wildlife sanctuary
A treat for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers, Chilla Wildlife Sanctuary is located on the east bank of the Ganga River. Spread across an area of 249 sq km, the wildlife fauna includes elephants, tigers, bears and small cats. This area is mostly inhabited with elephants, apart from a variety of interesting birds.

The best time to visit this place is between November to June. Tours for visiting this wildlife sanctuary can be easily arranged. Those interested in a close encounter with the flora and fauna of nature must make it a point to visit the Chilla Wildlife sanctuary.

Similar to the temple in Jammu, the path leading to worship Goddess Vaishno Devi is full of tunnels and caves. It is believed that the Goddess blesses only those who truly intend to seek her blessings from the bottom of their hearts.

Mansa Devi
One of the most visited temples in Haridwar, Mansa Devi Mandir occupies a place on top of the Shivalik hills. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Mansa Devi, believed to fulfill the wishes of those who visit here. It is a tradition with the devotees to tie sacred threads around the tree that stands within the premises of the Mansa Devi temple. From the temple, one can have heart stirring views of the Haridwar town. Along with Chandi Devi temple and the Maya Devi temple, it completes the Siddhapeeth Triangle.

Gaurishankar Mahadev Temple
Gaurishankar Mahadev temple is another religious site in Haridwar. Located closest to the Chandi Devi temple, this temple is known to represent Lord Shiva. Any religious individual offering prayers with all his devotion gets his wishes fulfilled in this temple.

Gaurishankar Temple is a part of the various religious festivities held throughout the year. Offerings of flowers, coconuts and incense sticks to the deity promise a feeling of solace and satisfaction. The atmosphere in the temple is holy and relaxing. For a sense of well being and to ensure blessings from the Lord himself, it is advised to make a visit to this temple while visiting Haridwar.

Kamraj-ki-Kali Temple
Kali or the Goddess of Time and Change is usually depicted in her fierce form, but is worshipped by devotees all over. Identified as the slayer of demons and supreme mistress of the universe, Goddess Kali is worshipped by many to gain a feeling of liberation and sustenance. Goddess Kali is also the Mother of Destruction.

Kamraj-ki-Kali temple can be approached en route the Chandi Devi temple; the best way to commute is to walk your way to the temple. Located at a distance of about 7 km from the railway station, the Kamraj-ki-Kali temple stands on the Haridwar-Rishikesh highway.

Udan Khatola Ropeway
Udan Khatola, or ropeway, is a mode of transport to reach the hill top temples of Haridwar. Also known as the ropeway to Gods, this facility came into effect more than a decade back. You can reach the abode of God in approximately five minutes by Udan Khatola, as against the one hour steep climb/trek.

The Udan Khatola is operational in the area where Chandi Devi temple is located. As you rise in the air once atop the Udan Khatola, you can enjoy the marvelous view from greater heights. The Udan Khatola ride is for the strong hearted and not for those who fear heights.

Kanva Rishi Ashram
Located at a distance of about 42 km from Haridwar, the Kanva Rishi Ashram is built on the banks of river Malini. This ashram is enroute to Kotdwar and one has to travel through a path along the forest. This is an exciting experience for the adventurous souls!

Of the many ashrams in Haridwar, Kanva Rishi Ashram is a quick getaway from Haridwar, being on the outskirts. Needless to say, a visit to this ashram promises a feeling of peace and security. Away from the disturbing life of the city, the Kanva Rishi Ashram is a treat to nature lovers.

Shravannath Math Temple
Shravannath Math or temple is another pious place of significance worth seeing. Pilgrims from all over India make it a point to visit this sacred place of Haridwar throughout the year.

Devotees bathing on the ghat, taking a dip in the holy river, pilgrims and saints clad in saffron clothing are all a common sight to watch when in Haridwar. You will find lots of families offering prayers and performing rituals for their near and dear departed souls. Haridwar is a land of ancient temples, and any temple or shrine visited in Haridwar assures you a good experience and ever-lasting memories.

 

 

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