Thursday, 27 December 2012

Chardham Yatra | Yamunotri Temple | Gangotri Temple | Kedarnath Temple | Badrinath Temple

Chardham Yatra

Nestled among the serene heights of the great Himalayas are four pilgrim-destinations namely Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath, known collectively as Char Dham. These pilgrimage centres draw the maximum numbers of pilgrims each year, thus becoming the most important hubs of religious travel in whole of Northern India. Traditionally, the pilgimage is begins from West and ends in the East. Thus, the Char Dham Yatra commences from Yamunotri, then proceeding to Gangotri and finally to Kedarnath and Badrinath. In accordance with the Hindu conventions, thousands of devotees take up this pious pilgrimage in the hope to experience bliss and successfully purge their souls of all worldly demons.

Each of these four sites is devoted to a specific deity. Yamunotri is dedicated to the Goddess Yamuna who goes along the pilgrims to the high altitudes of the picturesque Rawai Valley. Yamunotri stands high up in the deep left on the western face of the Bunderpunch Peak. The most sacred area of Yamunotri is a dark rock from where the hot springs emerge, called the Divya Shila. Here at the origin of the Yamuna pilgrims offer their first prayer. It is believed that a bath in the waters of the Yamuna protects the devotee from untimely death that could hinder one’s chances of achieving eternal emancipation.

Gangotri is dedicated to the Goddess Ganga. The shrine overlooks the River Bhagirathi, another name of River Ganga - the name having been derived from the myth of the ancient King Bhagirath’s penance that succeeded in bringing her upon the earth from the heavens. It is said that King Bhagirath meditated here in Gangotri on a rock called Bhagirath Shila, near the temple
Kedarnath is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is also a part of the Panch Kedar. It is the northernmost Jyotirlinga and is close to the source of the holy River Mandakini. Adi Shankaracharya is said to have attained samadhi at very young age adjacent to the Kedarnath Temple.

Set against the awe-inspiring backdrop of the Neelkanth Peak between the Nar and Narayan mountains, Badrinath is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It is situated on the bank of the River Alaknanda at an altitude of 3133 meters. According to legend, Lord Vishnu meditated here while his consort Lakshmi took the form of a berry (badri) tree to offer him shade.

Before embarking on this journey, one has to be prepared to experience physical and mental hardships on the Himalayan roads. The Char Dham Yatra is one of the quite accessible yet most arduous journeys.  The Yatra route in the state is usually bustling with activity, especially during the summer. The scenic beauty of the mountains solemnly provides strength to the pilgrims, moving towards their destination.














May to June and September to October (Temples remain closed from November, i.e., after Diwali till the end of April due to inclement weather)

Languages spoken:

Gujarati, Hindi and English

STD Code:

Badrinath: 01381
Kedarnath: 01364
Gangotri: 01377
Yamunotri: 01375

How to reach Chardham

The nearest airport is Jolly Grant at Dehradun (315 km from Badrinath, 240 km from Kedarnath, 298 km from Gangotri and 177 km from Yamunotri) and is connected to Delhi. However, this sector is discontinued for time being. (Indian Airlines operates smaller aircrafts between Delhi and Dehradun). Delhi is the most convenient airport.

The nearest railhead is Rishikesh (297 km from Badrinath, 229 km from Kedarnath, 251 km from Gangotri and 223 km from Yamunotri), which is connected via Haridwar with major cities and towns in India.

Tourism Office:

The Manager, Tourist Rest House

GMVN, Badrinath,
Tel: 01381 222212;

The Manager, Tourist Rest House
GMVN, Kedarnath,
Tel: 01364 263228;

Asst. General Manager (Tourism)
Yatra Office, GMVN Ltd., Shail Vihar
Haridwar Bye Pass Road
Rishikesh 249201
Tel: 0135 2431793/ 2648/1783
Fax: 2430372
E-mail: &
Website: &

Uttaranchal Tourism
103 Indra Prakash Building
21 Barakhamba Road
New Delhi.
Tel: 011 23350481/23712246
Fax: 23320109.

India Tourism,
Government of India,
88 Janpath,
New Delhi
Tel: 011 23320005/23320008
Fax: 23320109


1 comment:

  1. I have been visiting various blogs for char dham yatra. I have found your blog to be quite useful. Keep updating your blog with valuable information... Regards