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The Holy Site of Gangotri

by Madhav Srinivasan 5 year, 7 months ago

The River Ganga plays a very important role in Indian mythology, and based on its prominence and its distinction of being a silent witness to the country’s growth from early to modern civilizations; it’s a major part of the Hindu religion.

Gangotri is located at the base of the Garwhal Hills in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand, India and is the origin of the Ganges River. The river holds great religious significance in Hinduism and is one of four holy sites on the important pilgrimage circuit. As a result, it is a popular tourist spot that attracts thousands of visitors throughout the year, when the Gangotri Temple is opened. Do not miss a trip to Gangotri on your holidays in Uttaranchal.

What You Should See and Do

The Submerged Shivling

A very popular Shivling (a phallic symbol of Lord Shiva) is present here and this submerged rock has religious significance. The Shivling can be seen when the water level goes down in the month of January and is regarded as a sacred spot where the Goddess Ganga first touched ground.

This is the main attraction associated with Gangotri and all subsequent sites such as the shrine of the Goddess have been constructed up around this. Owing to the fact that this site is of religious importance, the area sees a large number of pilgrims and tourists over a short span of six months.

The Gangotri Temple

The temple is an 18th century structure made of white granite and was constructed by General Amar Singh. It is located on the left bank of the Ganges River and is situated close to the sacred stone. It is dedicated to the Goddess Ganga. A number of small shrines and temples have sprung up around the area and accommodation for visitors is offered in the form of some ashrams on the other bank of the river.

Dayara Bugyal

Literally translated, the name means ‘high altitude meadow in Dayaraand’ and this is one of the lesser known but highly appealing attractions of Gangotri. En route to the site is the popular Sheshnag Temple which is a must-see spot for pilgrims who take the time out to visit the meadow.

Excursion Options

Gangotri is one of the four holy spots associated with the Char Dham pilgrimage along with Yamunotri, Nandanvan Tapovan, Kedar Tal, and Gaumukhand. Pilgrims and tourists normally visit these locations and since they are difficult to access by road, rail or air, they make their trips in the form of excursions.

Gangotri is an ideal place for every tourist visiting India and this is a region where you’ll be exposed to the country’s cultural and religious heritage.

When and How to Visit Gangotri

The temple at Gangotri is open between the months of May and November and this is the peak period when major tourist activity is observed. Various packages from Delhi for Gangotri are available. 

Gangotri can be accessed through rail and flights up to Rishikesh and Jolly Grant Airport respectively after which your journey must be continued through road. The government of Uttarakhand provides bus and taxi services to tourists so that they can reach the holy site. These services are targeted towards making your trip easier, so that you can spend less time worrying about commute and more time taking in the beauty of the region. 

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