Rishikesh is a city, municipal corporation and a tehsil in Dehradun district of the Indian state, Uttarakhand. Located in the foothills of the Himalayas in northern India.
It is known as the ‘Gateway to the Garhwal Himalayas and ‘Yoga Capital of the World‘.
It is approximately 25 km (16 mi) north of the city Haridwar and 43 km (27 mi) southeast of the state capital Dehradun. It is known as the pilgrimage town and regarded as one of the holiest places to Hindus. Hindu sages and saints have visited Rishikesh since ancient times to meditate in search of higher knowledge.
In September 2015, the Union tourism minister Mahesh Sharma announced that Rishikesh and Haridwar will be the first in India to be given the title of “twin national heritage cities”. Due to the religious significance of the place, non-vegetarian food and alcohol are strictly prohibited in Rishikesh. The city hosts the annual International Yoga Festival.
Rishikesh has been a part of the legendary ‘Kedarkhand’ (the present day Garhwal). Legends state that Lord Rama did penance here for killing Ravana, the asura king of Lanka; and Lakshmana, his younger brother, crossed the river Ganges, at a point, where the present ‘Lakshman Jhula’ (लक्ष्मण झूला) bridge stands today, using a jute rope bridge. The ‘Kedarkhand’ of Skanda Purana, also mentions the existence of Indrakund at this very point. The jute-rope bridge was replaced by iron-rope suspension bridge in 1889. After it was washed away in the 1924 floods, it was replaced by the present stronger bridge. Another similar suspension bridge Ram Jhula was built in 1986 at nearby Sivananda Nagar.
The sacred river Ganges flows through Rishikesh. Here the river leaves the Shivalik Hills in the Himalayas and flows into the plains of northern India. Several temples, ancient and new, are along the banks of the Ganges in Rishikesh. Shatrughna Mandir, Bharat Mandir, Lakshman Mandir are the ancient temples established by Adi Shankaracharya. Shatrughna Temple is near Ram Jhula and Lakshman Mandir is near Lakshman Jhula.
Best Places & Things to do in Rishikesh
- Triveni Ghat
- Lakshman Jhula
- The Beatles Ashram
- Ram Jhula
- River Rafting
- Kunjapuri Devi Temple
- Triveni Ghat
- Vashishta Gufa
- Neer Garh Waterfall
- Sivananda Ashram
- Neelkanth Mahadev
- Parmath Niketan Temple
- Jumpin Heights
- Rafting Camp
- LAKSHMAN JHULA:- Is an iron suspension bridge across the river Ganga, located 5Km from the to Rishikesh in Uttrakhand. The bridge connects the two villages, Tapovan in Tehri Garhwal district to Jonk in Pauri Garhwal district crossing the river from West to East. It is said that Lakshman crosses the Ganges on jute ropes between the place where this bridge is built. It was completed in 1929.
- JUMPIN HEIGHTS:- It is associated with the sports Bunjee jumping in Rishikesh. It is an activity that involves jumping from a tall structure while connected to a large elastic cord. The tall structure is usually a fixed object such as building, bridge or crane, but it is also possible to jump from a movable object, such as a hot air balloon or helicopter that has the ability to hover above the ground.
- NEELKANTH MAHADEV TEMPLE:- |Is a Hindu temple dedicated to Neelkanth, an aspect of Shiva, the temple is situated at a height of 1330 meters and is located about 32Km from Rishikesh. It is surrounded by dense forest and is adjacent to the mountain ranges of Nar-Narayan. The people use to come from far places to pour milk and water on Shivling in Mahashivratri.
- RAM JHULA:- Is an iron suspension bridge across the Gange, located 3Km from Rishikesh. The bridge connects the Shivananda Nagar area of Muni Ki Reti in Tehri Garhwal district to swargashram in Pauri Garhwal. It is also connecting the bridge between Shivananda Ashram located in Muni Ki Reti to Gita Bhawan, Parmarth Niketan and other temples located in Swargashram.
- TRIVENI GHAT:- Is a sacred ghat in Rishikesh famous for Ganga aarti, Triveni word comes from joint of two words, TRI (three) and VENI (confluence) meaning confluence of three. It is one of the biggest and must visit ghat of Rishikesh from its auspicious and spiritual aroma. One can participate at Ganga aarti by contacting Ganga Sewa Samiti by paying the nominal fee. Ganga Sewa Samiti uses this money for management of Triveni Ghat such as cleanliness, facilities, festivals e.t.c.
- GEETA BHAVAN: –Is dedicated as a museum for puranic and mythological awareness of the common public. The Geeta Bhawan enclose many painting and statues of characters from Hindu mythology. The statues and sculptures are very attractive and give detailed information on the Hindu gods and goddesses and the Hindu culture in the ancient period.
- BYASI:- Is a small village in Uttrakhand located at about 30Km from Rishikesh, byasi is known for adventures water sports of river rafting and camping Byasi is surrounded by dense Sal forest, Adventure fanatics from Delhi, Gurugram, Haryana, Punjab, UP and other parts of the country much like to visit Byasi for exciting and daring river rafting. Best season to enjoy rafting camping at Byasi are February to June and September to November.
- KAUDIYALA:- Is a small village located 40Kms from Rishikesh on Badrinath road. Kaudiyala is famous for white river rafting and a beautiful camping site. highly adventure expedition lovers from far away place visit Kaudiyala to enjoy the thrill of most challenging zones of rafting which stretches between Kaudiyala to Shivpuri.
- MUNI KI RETI:- Literally meaning ‘Sand of the Sages’ is traditionally considered the gateway for the Char Dham pilgrimage- Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamnotri. It is also known as the place where king Bharata of Ramayana did penance.
- TERA MANZIL TTEMPLE: Is a thirteen storey structure in Rishikesh, is also known as the Kailash niketan temple or Trayambakeshwar temple. The main deity here is Lord Shive. The significance of the temple is that it is enshrined with sculptures of all hindu gods and goddesses. The temple also has many deities and chambers that houses religious and vedic texts. The popularity of the temple is due to its number of storey’s. on reaching the top floor, you can enjoy the beauty of the surrounding area and the sunset view is the awesome one.
- SHIVPURI CAMP :- Meaning the house of Lord Shiva is the place for all those who are on the lookout for peace and rejuvenation. It is at a distance of just 19Km from Rishikesh. During your stay in Shivpuri, you will have the opportunity of learning the techniques of yoga and meditation. Spend the day enjoying river rafting along the ganga and indulging in other adventure activities, in the evening sit around a campfire and get to listen loads of intresting legends and stories from travel guides.