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Haridwar - The Gateway to Heaven
Haridwar is located in the north Indian state of Uttaranchal at a distance
of 214 km from Delhi. Hardwar or Haridwar, is one of the holiest places
for Hindus in India. It is a city of great religious significance and
large numbers of pilgrims come here everyday. It is the gateway to Sri
Kedarnath and Shri Badrinath the holy Shrines of Har and Hari. Many years
ago it was called Kapilsthan after the great sage Kapil, who lived and
meditated here, for a period. It also had the name of Mayapuri. Legend has
it that the Yakshas and the Devas had the seen Lord Vishnu
here. Every twelve years the Kumbh mela and after six years the Ardh Kumbh
mela are held when lacs of pilgrims from all over India through the
ghats of the Ganga. Hardwar is the home of ashrams and Dharamshalas,
which have been established by Sadhus (holy men) and religious
institutions. Here at Hardwar, the mighty Ganga hurries down from the
hills to the luxuriant ridges of the Himalayas. Each evening hundreds of
devotees attend the grand Arti performed at Har-ki-Pauri. This ghat
is named after the charan or footprints of Hari impressed on a stone set
into the upper wall of the Ghat. The Temples of the Ganga, Shankaracharya,
Navegraha and the Baraha Khamba are near Har-ki-Pauri. Other temples with
legendary importance, are Shrawan Nath, Maya Devi.
PLACES WORTH VISITING
BRAHM KUND- The name of the kund at Har ki Pairi is Brahma Kund.
This is the place where the celestial waters are said to flow and
religious minded Hindus gather from all parts of India and abroad to have
a dip in it, to free them from the bondage of the world.
SHARVAN NATH GHAT & GAUGHAT- Are situated to the south of
Har-ki-Pairi adjoining to each other.Triveni ghat is an interesting place
to be at dawn, when people make offerings of milk to the river and feed
the fish. After sunset, priests set floating lamps on the water during the
BHIM GODA TANK - At a distance of about 1 Km. from Har-ki-Pairi the
sacred tank is situated with the holy waters.
SAPTA SAROVER – 4 Km. towards the north from Har-ki-Pairi, the Holy
Ganga is bifurcated in 7 streams nearby the Ashrams is recently made and
dedicated to the 7 Rishis of Hindu mythology.
MANSA DEVI & CHANDI DEVI – The temple of Goddess Mansa Devi is
situated at the top of Bilwa Parwat about 3.5 Km from the city center.
Here one statue of the Goddess has three heads and five arms while the
other statue has eight arms. The temples are situated at the top of the
hills towering both sides of the city.
Temple of Chandi Devi is situated on a high hill on the opposite bank of
river Ganga about 5 Km from city. Ropeway is available for Mansa Devi and
Chandi Devi to take tourists to go to the top of the hills.
KANKHAL – 5 Km. From Har-ki-Pairi, the town of Kankhal is situated.
The place was once the capital of King Daksh the father of Parvati, who
burned her in the sacred fires of the yagya of King Daksh. This is very
old place. The temple of Daksheswar Mahadeva is the Place of
importance, along with Sati Ghat. The place has always been mentioned in
old histories and Purans. DAKSHESWARA MAHADEVA - The old temple
dedicated to lord Shiva is situated on the banks of the Ganges, where the
sacred waters of the river seem to touch the feet of the lord. Devotees
and pilgrims gather here in the month of Shrawan and on Shiva-Ratri
festivals, to sprinkle Gangajal on Shiva Linga enshrined in the temple.
The Kanva Rishi Ashram is situated around 42 km from Haridwar. The ashram
is on the banks of the Malini River along the forest road to Kotdwar.
The Chila Wildlife Sanctuary, part of the Rajaji National Park,
covers an area of around 240 sq. km. It has 23 species of mammals and 315
fauna species. Lucky tourists can catch glimpses of elephants, tigers,
leopards, jungle cats, Himalayan yellow throated martens, sambers, chitals,
barking dears, wild boars, langurs, ghurals, sloth bears, king cobras,
woodpeckers, etc. Fishing in the river there is allowed with permits only.
Rishikesh – is world famous for Yoga schools, Ashrams and is also
renowned for river rafting and adventure tourism. It is situated about 30
Km from Haridwar
BEST TIME TO VISIT
Haridwar is situated at a height of almost 300 meters above sea level and
the temperature usually hovers around 35-40°C during summers and can dip
to 6-10 °C in winters. The best season to visit Haridwar is between
October and March
Languages : Hindi, Garhwali and English
HOW TO REACH
BY RAIL - Haridwar is well connected by trains to almost all the
major cities in India. Several trains come to Haridwar every day. These
two are best trains between Haridwar and DelhiMorning Train :
Shatabdi Express - Daily departure New Delhi: 0710 A.M and
Arrival Haridwar 1120 A.M. Airconditioned & Tea/ Coffee & Breakfast on
Board included in the ticket.
Haridwar to Delhi Departure Haridwar 0610 PM Arrival New Delhi: 10:30
Jan Shatabdi Express: Everyday except Sundays
BY ROAD - The National Highway no.45 crosses the city, so it is
connected to other cities of the state as well as those in the other
BY AIR - The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant in Dehradun, but
connections are not good. It is preferable to use the roads or rail to
Delhi and then take flights to the destination of ones choice.
WHERE TO STAY- There are many places to stay in Haridwar. Most of
the hotels and resorts are in the middle range or budget categories. Many
of the ashrams and dharmshalas also provide simple and cheap
accommodation. The numerous resorts dotting the banks of the Ganges are
also good options.