Rishikesh - The world capital of Yoga
Rishikesh - The world capital of Yoga
 
Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Rishikesh also spelled Hrishikesh, Rushikesh or Hrushikesh, is a city and a municipal board in Dehradun district in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. It is surrounded by two other districts namely Tehri Garhwal and Pauri Garhwal. It is located in the foothills of the Himalaya in northern India and attracts thousands of pilgrims and tourists each year, from within India, as well as from other countries. Rishikesh is a vegetarian city by law, as well as an alcohol-free city. Rishikesh has also banned use of plastics bags by shopkeepers and vendors.

It is also known as the gateway to the Himalayas and is located around 25 kilometres north of another holy city, Haridwar. Rishikesh is also a Yoga and spiritual destination with an international feel.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Etymology

In Sanskrit Rishikesh is a name of Vishnu that means 'Lord of The Senses'. The place gets its name after Lord Vishnu who appeared to 'Raibhya Rishi', as a result of his tapasya (austerities), as Lord Hrishikesh. In Skanda Purana, this area is known as 'Kubjamrak' as Lord Vishnu appeared, under a mango tree. The name Rishikesh is loosely applied to an association of five distinct sections encompassing not only the town but also hamlets and settlements on both sides of the river Ganges. These include Rishikesh itself, the commercial and communication hub; the sprawling suburb Muni-ki-Reti or the "sands of the sages"; Shivananda Nagar the home of Sivananda Ashram and the Divine Life Society founded by Swami Sivananda, north of Rishikesh; the temple section of Lakshman Jhula, a little further north; and the assorted Ashrams around Swarg Ashram on the east bank. One can reach the famous Neelakanta Maha Deva Temple from here. The Ganga Arati performed at dusk at the Triveni Ghat is popular with visitors. 'Neelkanth Mahadev Temple', situated 12 km from Rishikesh, amidst forest is also a popular local pilgrimage, along with 'Vasishtha Guha', (Cave of sage Vasishtha), 21 km up from the town by the Ganges.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide History of Rishikesh

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 demon king of Lanka; and Lakshmana, his younger brother, crossed the river Ganges, at a point, where the present 'Lakshman Jhula' bridge stands today, using a jute rope bridge. The 'Kedar Khand' 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, and after it was washed away in the 1924 floods, it was replaced by a stronger present bridge.

 
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The sacred river Ganges flows through Rishikesh. It is here that the river leaves the Shivalik mountains in the Himalayas and flows out into the plains of northern India. Several temples, ancient as well as new, can be found along the banks of the Ganges in Rishikesh.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Yoga Center - Rishikesh

Rishikesh, sometimes nicknamed "the world capital of Yoga", has numerous yoga centres that also attract tourists. It is believed that meditation in Rishikesh brings one closer to attainment of moksha, as does a dip in the holy river that flows through it. Rishikesh is world famous for Rafting and Adventure. Rafting season starts from the month of March and ends in July.

Rishikesh is also home to the 120-year old Kailas Ashram Brahmavidyapeetham, an institution dedicated to preserve and promote the traditional Vedantic Studies. Prominent personalities such as Swami Vivekananda, Swami Rama Tirtha and Swami Shivananda have studied in this institution.

 
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In February 1968, The Beatles visited the now-closed Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's ashram in Rishikesh. John Lennon recorded a song titled, 'The Happy Rishikesh Song'. The Beatles composed nearly 48 songs during their time at the Maharishi's ashram, many of which appear on the White Album. Several other artists visited the site to contemplate and meditate.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Geography of Rishikesh

It is situated at an altitude of 356 m above sea level. The geographical location of Rishikesh is 30.7 North Latitude and 78.42 East Longitude. It has an average elevation of 372 metres (1,745 feet). The Tehri dam is just 80 km uphill on the way to Gangotri. Rishikesh is the starting point for traveling to the sites that form the Char Dham pilgrimage — Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, and Yamunotri.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Adventure Sports in Rishikesh

Rishikesh is becoming a popular spot for white water rafting enthusiasts, both from India and abroad, as it offers medium to rough rapids in the course of river Ganges, with rapids rated class 3 and class 4. It is also a center for hiking and backpacking.

 
River Rafting in Rishikesh
 

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Best time to Visit Rishikesh :-

Rishikesh is a picturesque destination affording enchanting views throughout the year.
The right time to visit would be February, March, August-October. In July there is a festival called Savan where thousands of people flock to Rishikesh. Major roads are blocked and hotels are crowded. It is better to avoid travelling to Rishikesh during that time.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel Guide Places to see in Rishikesh :- Visiting Places in Rishikesh - Sight Seeing Places - Rishikesh Attractions

Triveni Ghat. This is a bathing ghat. Daily in the morning and evening there are thousands who take bath here and enjoy the Maha Aarti being performed. It very soothing to sit on the banks of the river and enjoy the cool breeze from the river.

Bharat Mandir

Lakshman Jhula Is an iron suspension bridge situated in Rishikesh in Indian state of Uttarakhand . It is made over river Ganges to cross the river and is a landmark of Rishikesh. It is said that Lakshman crossed Ganges on jute ropes between the place where this bridge is built. Lakshman Jhula was built in 1939. There are spectacular views from the bridge.

Gita Bhavan. Place of Guru Shri Ram Sukh Daasji, (the great thinker of his time) Popular among the Hindu Brahmin Community. Twice a year people gather at this ashram to read the Ramayana together.

Swarg Ashram, Shri 108 Baba Sali Kamli Wale Swami Atam Prakash Ji. Swargashram ( Heavenly Adobe) as the name connotes is a beautiful place situated in picturesque surroundings at the foot of Himalayas on the left bank of the Ganges between Rishikesh and Laxmanjhula. It is the spiritual “ground zero” of Rishikesh, filled with a concentration of ashrams and temples. The areas is known for its healthy and satwik living environment. It is this spot where from ages of yore the famous Yogis and Rishis have been doing the Tapasya. Numerous mention of this spot occurs in the holy scripture Puranas.

Parmarth Niketan. One of the few Ashrams left in India where Kids get the Vedas Education. Must Visit in Evening for the Pooja/Aarti. 5PM in Winter and 6PM in summer.

Neelkanth Mahadev Mela

Trayambakeshwar Temple, Lakshman Jhula. is 13 stories high, with different deities throughout.

 
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Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideThings To Do in Rishikesh :-

Take a holy dip in the Ganges, with reputed healing powers.

Check into an Ashram to study yoga, meditation and Hindu philosophy.

Watch a beautiful evening Ganga Arti at Parmarth Niketan.

White Water Rafting Rishikesh is very popular for its rafting on the River Ganga (Ganges). Season: September-November and March-April-May are ideal for rafting. The rafting will go on for several kilometres, and the path is interspersed with rapids, ranging from Level 1 to Level 5, in order of difficulty. At the end of the trip, you have the option of jumping some 20 feet from a ledge into the water. There are several local travel agencies, offering these rafting trips. The package usually includes an overnight camp on the banks of the river, with a brilliant and dangerous trek among the hills in the morning. If one has time, courses in rafting are also offered.

Camping is a recreational activity that does not have any age limit. Any individual who likes to explore new places and enjoy the beauty and serenity of nature can embark on a camping voyage. Camping in Rishikesh on the Ganga beach offer an environment to wake up with the birds cher chew and can swim in the fresh water of the river Ganges. Camping in Rishikesh is a very popular activity.

Rappelling Climbing down with a rope is called rappelling. The group is taken to a spot where there is a cliff drop, experts with proper equipment who setup the gear first and then, one by one, everyone comes down. It's all about trusting your gear and following the instructions and then it's a lot of fun.

Rock climbing This is something everyone is familiar with, this is also included in some of the camps but not everyone can do it as it requires a lot of strength and skill. The group is taken to a cliff side and with proper safety gear everyone is given a chance to climb the cliff side.

Cliff Jumping You are supposed to jump into freezing water from a cliff! Yes, it sounds crazy but this is one thing which everyone can brag about back home, of course you are wearing a life jacket and a helmet but still to jump from so high into the Ganga which is murky and the bottom can't be seen, it's not like jumping into a swimming pool where one can see the bottom the water is static.

Kayaking is the use of a kayak for moving across water. Kayaking is differentiated from canoeing by the fact that a kayak has a closed cockpit and a canoe has an open cockpit. They also use a two bladed paddle. Another major difference is in the way the paddler sits in the boat. Kayakers sit in a seat on the bottom of the boat with their legs extended out in front of them. Canoeists will either sit on an elevated bench seat or kneel directly on the bottom of the boat. Whitewater kayaking is the sport of paddling a kayak on a moving body of water, typically a whitewater river. Whitewater kayaking can range from simple, carefree gently moving water, to demanding, dangerous whitewater.

Trekking There are a lot of soft treks in this region, this is an optional thing as some people love to walk in nature and do a bit of bird watching and some prefer to be at the camp and relax and they are already tired with the activities they have done.

Bungee Jump, (15km ahead of Rishikesh on Rishikesh-Neelkanth road), You can try bungee jump at Jumpin Heights. It is a unique experience in India, a jump from 83 mtrs just above a natural river.

Mukeshji's Jungle Vibes, Shisham Jhari,Rishikesh (Near Dayanand Ashram), Have a once in a life time experience of making the Australian Didgeridoos, African Djmbes and other musical instruments in the guidance of iconic Mukeshji while he enthralls you with his hilarious stories and takes you along with him in his Himalayan Journeys. A person visiting here finds himself/herself in a selected crowd of music aficionados and extreme adventures from around the world.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideClimate - Weather of Rishikesh :-

Rishikesh - has a pleasant climate for many months of the year. As its location is in the hilly terrains, the climate never becomes extreme type. Thus Rishikesh is one such tourist spot that can be visited any time of the year.

The weather of Rishikesh can be studied with a glimpse towards its climatic conditions. The maximum temperature recorded so far is 27.7 degree Celsius and the minimum temperature of Rishikesh is 14.6 degree Celsius. In the months of summer the temperature in Rishikesh varies from 35 degrees to 45 degrees Celsius. The temperature ranges from 10 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius in the months of winter. The weather of Rishikesh often becomes unpredictable. There are frequent precipitation that takes place. The annual mean rainfall in Rishikesh is about 2136.7 mm.

 
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The holy city of Rishikesh lies at the bank of river Ganga. The region is surrounded by the Himalayas and falls under the climatic conditions of the western part of the Himalayas. The day remains pleasant and sunny with comparatively cold evenings. The winters are very cold and the summer season is mild and moderate followed by a good rainfall in monsoon.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideSummer Season in Rishikesh :- During the months from March to June. The maximum temperature that you can expect during the summer is around Summer 20 °C to 35 °C.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideMonsoon Season in Rishikesh :- Monsoon season is from July to September and during this time most activities are suspended due to the heavy blast of rains. Rainfall is highest in the month of August. During the month of October and November the conditions are pleasant and temperate.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideWinter Season in Rishikesh :- Winter season can be cold in the town and the temperatures can be expected to around 8°C. The barometer rises up to a maximum of 20°C during the winter months. Wollen clothing is essential during this period.

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideHow to Reach Rishikesh :-

By Car

Delhi airport to Rishikesh by car is a good option for a hassle free traveling specially for foreign tourists who are traveling to India for the first time. It's a 6 to 7 hours journey. Prices vary from US$ 85 for an air conditioned compact car to US$ 125 for an air conditioned SUV (but rates are much higher if one avails these services from prepaid taxi booths located at the airport).

 
Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideRoute Map to Rishikesh
A Route Map to Rishikesh
 

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideNearest Airport

By plane Rishikesh is in close proximity of Dehradun's Jolly Grant Airport (about 15 km) - a small, quiet and recently renovated airport handling just two flights from Delhi. The runway is being extended and will possibly then handle flights from other metros as of now there are flights only from Delhi (The capital of India)

Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideBy Train - Rishikesh railway station

By train A quiet branch line connects Rishikesh to Haridwar, but there are only about three slow trains daily. It's best to take the train to Haridwar and continue by bus (45 min), by taxi (30 mins or by shared auto-rickshaw (40 min). Travelling by train comes recommended because they often run empty and the fares are low & run right-time especially in peak seasons or "Melas" (Fares) when bus routes are diverted in Haridwar & share rickshaws try to make a killing. You can take "Vikrams" towards Lakshman Jhula from Rishikesh station.

You will have to cross Ram Jhula to reach Swarg Ashram(On the other side of river Ganges). From Delhi there are many trains to Haridwar, some of the best are :-

Shatabadi Express, Jan Shatabdi, AC Special Express, Mussoorie Express. to buy a ticket.

Trains from Rishikesh

Rishikesh - Delhi      07:00
Rishikesh - Haridwar 08:10
Rishikesh - Bandikui 14:10
Rishikesh - Haridwar 14:20
Rishikesh - Haridwar 18:35

By Bus

From Delhi the city is about 230 km away and is well connected with buses. A bus journey may take about 5-7 hours - depending on the traffic.

 
Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideGoogle Map of Rishikesh
A Route Map to Rishikesh
 

 
Rishikesh | Rishikesh Tourism | Rishikesh Travel GuideGoogle Map of Rishikesh A Route Map to Rishikesh
 

Nainital Tourism provides Pickup & Drop facility from Delhi - Kathgodam to Rishikesh or anywhere in Uttarakhand.
 
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