Pilgrimages

BADRINATH - UTTAR PRADESH

BadrinathBadrinath, located on the right bank of river Alaknanda, is a shrine, that evokes the most intense religious feelings. An abode of seers, saints and yogis from time immemorial, Badrinath is one of the four Dhams, a devout Hindu has to visit in his lifetime to attain salvation.One of Hinduism's holiest sites, it was founded by Sri Shankaracharya, in the ninth century. The temple, also known as Badri Narayan, is dedicated to Vishnu, who is said to have done penance in the mythical Brindavan, that once covered the mountains of Uttarakhand.

Known as 'Tapobhumi', a land of meditation and penance, and 'Bhubaikunth', heaven on earth, it is surrounded on either side, by two mountain ranges known as Nar and Narayan, with the Neelkanth peak, providing a spectacular backdrop. Facing the Badrinath temple, is a hot water spring, known as 'Tapt Kund'. Other famous springs, here, are the Narad Kund and the Surya Kund.Badrinath is presided over by a Namboothiri Brahman from Kerala, the Rawal, who also acts as as the head priest for Kedarnath.

Around Badrinath

Joshimath: The religious centre, established by Adi Shankaracharya, which he called Jyotirmath, later came to be known as Joshimath. The other sites of interest are the temples of Nav Durga and Narsingh. Apart from its obvious religious importance, this place is unparalleled for its scenic beauty.

Valley of Flowers:
One of the most idyllic valleys in the world, was discoverd by Frank S. Smythe, in 1931. The valley is profuse with a plethora of vibrant flowers, hence the name. Nearby, flows the river Pushpavati, while the massive Rataban peak forms a splendid backdrop.

Gobindghat: Situated between Joshimath and Badrinath, Gobindghat is the starting point for the trek to the valley.

Lok-Pal Hemkund: One of the most famous Gurudwaras in India, Hemkund Sahib is located here, at an altitude of 4320 metres above sea level. Nearby, is the Lok-Pal Hemkund lake, with its crystal clear waters, and four peaks surrounding it.


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