Place to see in Rishikesh
There are a number of ashrams in and around Rishikesh. Some are very well known and is regarded as tourist spots. There are some which are still been regarded as proper ashrams where rishis (saints) stay.
- Lakshman Jhula
Lakshman Jhula is a hanging bridge on the river Ganges that flows here. According to legends, Lakshman the brother of Lord Ram crossed this river with the help of a hanging bridge made of jute. The present suspended bridge was built in the year AD 1939. The place of the present bridge is supposedly on the same spot where the original jute suspended bridge used to be.
- Gita Bhavan
Situated by the side of the Lakshman Jhula, this is the Gita Bhavan. The Gita Bhavan is a beautifully constructed building housing some attractive statues of characters Hindu mythology.
- Triveni Ghat
Around 1½ km from the Rishikesh is a bathing spot known as Triveni. It is believed that three mountain streams flow together on this spot making the ghat (bank) more sacred. Pilgrims from various places come here to take a dip in the holy water, which is supposed to wash off all their sins.
- Neelkanth Mahadev
It is a place of interest especially for the religious minded tourists. It is said to be the place where Lord Shiva drank the venom that had come out during the cosmic churning of the ocean by the gods and demons. The spot is at a distance of 12 km from the centre of Rishikesh town and is surrounded by lush, sylvan forests.
Rishikesh is full of innumerable small and big temples. A walk along the road towards the Muni-ki-Reti takes one to a place along the Chandrabhaga River that has a cluster of temples. The famous Char Dham pilgrimage starts from this place. The Rishikund tank and Raghunath temple near the tank are two other temple that deserve a visit. The tank is supposed to have been used by Lord Ram for bathing while he was in exile. There is also the Bharat temple, named after one of the brothers of Lord Ram. Situated in the heart of the town, this temple is surrounded by massive walls and is very old.
Chilla, situated just 16 km away from the main Rishikesh town, is famous for the Rajaji National Park. The park (820 sq km) has wildlife in abundance and is especially known for its wild elephants. The Sariska sanctuary is 37 km from Rishikesh. It was established in AD 1955 and is located in the valley of the Aravalli range.
- Narendra Nagar
Just 15 kilometres on the Rishikesh-Chamba road is the historical town of Narendra Nagar. This is a town of archaeological importance, built by the King of Tehri, Narendra Singh. The royal palace here is worth seeing as is the magnificent statue of Lord Shiva's attendant, the Nandi bull that stands here.
Kunjapuri is a wonderful picturesque place ideal for a one day visit. The view of the snow-capped mountains and the mighty Himalayas along the valley below is marvellous. The small white Shakti temple of Kunjapuri is 10 km higher at the sharp point of an almost perfectly conical hill with breathtaking views of the Himalayas to the north. This place is accessible by bus and taxis from Rishikesh.
- Events and Festivals
Besides celebrating all the general Hindu festivals, there is a special festival celebrated in this area. The International Yoga Week usually celebrated from February 2-7 every year. This festival is the ideal place and time to learn some real yoga postures to keep oneself fit and fine.
- By Air - The closest airport is the Jolly Grant in
- By Rail - Though Rishikesh is connected by rail, the
connection is only to Haidwar (24 km from Rishikesh). However
Haridwar is well connected by rail to all major cities like Delhi,
Mumbai and Calcutta.
- By Road - Haridwar is the closest bus connection to cities and towns in north India like Kullu, Manali, Shimla and Dehradun. From Haridwar you can take a train or another bus ro Rishikesh.