PILGRIMAGE OF UTTAR PRADESH
Kedarnath shrine is one among the twelve jyotirlings of Lord
Shiva. Kedar is another name of lord Shiva. Kedarnath is situated
as an altitude of 3,581 mt, and 14 km. trek from gaurikund.
It is believed to have been made by the 5 Pandav brothers
(Mahabharat) after they won the war. It is set amidst the
stunning mountainscape of the Garhwal Himalayas at the head
of the Mandakini River. There are more than 200 shrines dedicated
to Lord Shiva in Chamoli district itself, the most important
one is Kedarnath. The lingam at Kedarnath is pyramidal, unlike
its usual form. A status of Nandi the celestial bull stands
at the entrance of the temple and exquisitely carved images
adorn the interiors of the temple. During the winters, the
shrine is submerged in snow and hence is closed. The ideal
time to visit is between May to October.
This is a Vishnu temple situated at a height of 3000 meters
in the Himalayas. It is famous for it's statue of Lord Vishnu
with many priceless gems and a large diamond over his third
eye. The Bhrama Kapala located at a distance of 200 ft. from
the main shrine to the north on the banks of the river Alaknanda
is the site for performance of remembrance rites for the ancestors
pitras (souls of the dead) by offering prasad (rice food)
of Lord Badri Narayan. Main Festivals are Mata Murti ka Mela
(Sept.), Krishna Janmashtami; (Jul/Aug), Badri-Kedar Utsav.
Other Places to see there are Tapt Kund, Sheshnetra, Neelkanth,
Charanpaduka, Brahma Kapal and many more. Road : Well connected
to Rishikesh, Haridwar, Dehradun, Kotdwar and other hill stations
of Gaharwal and Kumaon. Railhead : Rishikesh (300 kms.), Kotdwar
Rishikesh is one of the popular pilgrimage place of Hindus,
which is famous as TAPO BHUMI, the place for meditation of
the gods. Rishikesh is 24 km from Haridwar. This is the place
where River Ganga starts his journey through plains after
leaving the mountains. Another reason of the popularity of
this place is that there are lots of Ashrams, Yoga centers
and meditation centers and the ideal locations. The two famous
bridges Laxman Jhula and Ram Jhula connect Rishikesh’s two
sides. Other places to see in Rishikesh are Neelkanth Mahadev
Mandir, Bharat Temple etc.
Varanasi is the holiest places of Hindus. One of the oldest
living cities of the world formerly known as Banaras or Kashi.
Varanasi gets its name from the two tributaries of the Ganga
- Varuna and Assi - between which it is situated. It attracts
the tourist because of its 2000 year old history, civilization,
music and craft of silk weaving etc. It is said that Lord
Shiva has founded this city.
The main temple of Varanasi is Golden
Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva and Vishwanath.
Mogul Emperor Aurangzeb distorted the original temple and
in that place he built a Mosque. Then in 1776, Ahilya Bai
built the present temple. Another is Durga temple,
which was built in 17 century by a Bengali Maharani. This
temple is also known as Monkey temple. Mahatma Gandhi
opened a temple known as Bharat Mata Temple. The most
popular places are the Ghats of Varanasi, which
line the west bank of river Ganga. There are around 100 Ghats
in Varanasi. Ghats like Dasaswamedh Ghat, Manikarnika ghat
, Asi ghat, Dasaswamedh, Barna Sangam, Panchganga, Manikarnika,
Mansarovar ghat, PanchGanga Ghat, Kedar ghat are the most
popular Ghats of Varanasi. It is said that life is incomplete
without %%% the Kashi.