Have you ever wondered about how heaven looks like? I bet you will feel that in Rishikesh with the presence of an iconic river, Ganga. Also, the Garwhal Himalayas make this place more fabulous. Rishikesh is one of the most famous tourist spots in India. It attracts numerous Hindu pilgrims and also foreigners.
It is also known as the yoga capital of the world and offers a variety of ashrams and locations to perform yoga. There is a lot more about this cleanest city Rishikesh that makes this place more special.
Best time to visit Rishikesh: September to March
How to reach Rishikesh?
Delhi: 240 km by road. One can opt for buses and taxis easily, will take around 6 hours.
Haridwar: 23 km by road. One can opt for buses and taxis easily, which will take around 40 mins.
Dehradun: From Airport, it takes around 35 mins (21 km). From the main city, it takes around 80 mins (46kms).
Check out some of the most amazing places to visit in Rishikesh!
1. Stunning Laxman Jhula and Ram Jhula
The long swinging suspending bridge over the river Ganges connects the town of Rishikesh from two sides. They are 450 feet long and around 70m from the river. They lie 4km from the Rishikesh Railway station. The Lakshman Jhula has significant history from the Hindu Mythology “Ramayan”. It is the place where crossed the Ganga river on Jute rope. It has no entry fees and opens all time. Recently, it is painted in Indian Flag tricolor. You find many things nearby Lakshman Jhula like Shopping hubs, Teesri Manzil Temple, and Cafes.
2. Exciting Adventure Sports
There are a total of 4 start points for this rafting covering different distances. Brahampuri to Ram Jhula (Shortest – 8 Kms), Shivpuri to Rishikesh (The most popular one – 16 Kms), from Marine Drive to Rishikesh (26 Kms), from Kaudiyala to Rishikesh (Longest Day Trip of Rafting – 35 Kms). The best season to visit the white river rafting is from November to March. This is because the water during this time resembles a crystal white color.
All the safety precautions are taken by the guide, they even have a combined bag where we had put wallets, watches, and specs, so no worries. Large waves of water ran in the middle which is called rapids and they all have very funny names for it. It was getting truly electrifying and the cold water splashes on you through the rapids. In the middle of the journey, the guide also allows you to jump in the water and relax in it for some time. Also, you can get the chance to do cliff jumping if you want and relish the tea and Maggi at one stop point.
You can taste the thrill for sure and challenge your inner self. The best place to do this is at Jumping Heights Centre. The entry fee is Rs.100 plus extra charges on the sport you opt for. Also, it is open every day from 9.30 am to 4 pm. There are some more exciting things like Giant Swing, Flying Fox with Bungee Jumping. But it is advisable to avoid by the people who have serious health conditions.
Camping and much more!
When it comes to camping, trekking, kayaking, zip-lining, hiking, and rappelling, Shivpuri and Kaudiyala are the best places to go. Shivpuri lies 19kms from Rishikesh and offers camping by the riverside and also overnight camping with friends. Kaudiyala is a paradise of flora and fauna, 36kms from Rishikesh. Also, it has dense forest areas around and it perfect for water sports too. You can lit the bonfire at night and have a good time.
3. Blissful Temples and Aartis
Triveni Ghats’s evening Maha Aarti is one of the most marvelous things to see. It occurs from 5.30 pm to 6.30 PM in winter and 6.30 pm to 7.30 pm in summers. It is believed that people wash away their sins by taking a dip in river Ganga. This place attracts a lot of pilgrims all around the world. The aura which gets created during this aarti is just speechless. With Aartis, you can hear the chanting of bhajans, the sound of bells, and loud drums.
Geeta Temple and Lakshmi Narayana Temple are situated around the Triveni Ghat. Other than these two temples, Neelkanth Mahadeva Temple is the most sacred Shiva Temple to visit. It also has a freshwater spring. Kunjapuri Temple lies at the height of 1700m and one has to trek to reach the temple top. It is around 30mins drive from Rishikesh and you will get awe-struck by watching the sunrise over here. Teesri Manzil Temple is one of the famous temples in Rishikesh which is dedicated to many deities and has exclusive architecture. Other temples where you can visit are like Bhootnath Temple, Raghunath Temple, and Bharat Temple.
4. Serene Ashrams
Beatles Ashram is the most famous Ashrams in Rishikesh. In 1968, the Beatles visited this place to practice meditation with the help of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. This tranquil place made them productive as a result they made over 30 songs for their album. You can practice meditation here and enjoy the peacefulness. Swarg Ashram is one of the oldest Ashrams in India. Other than that, it is open all day long and no entry fees. You can perform Yoga inside it and sitting on the side of the private river banks too. Parmarth Niketan is the largest ashram in Rishikesh having the capacity to accommodate 1000 pilgrims. Reiki, Meditation, Yoga, and Aryuvedic treatments are the major things that you can do here.
“Munn ki reti” which means sand of sages is also a popular tourist spot. It is a peaceful location to perform yoga surrounded by beautiful ashrams. Other ashrams like Andhra Ashram, Swami Dayanand Ashram, and Sadhaka Grama Ashram are also popular among foreign tourists.
5. Majestic Waterfalls and National Parks
Neer Garh Waterfall is indeed a picturesque location. So, one can trek to the top of it to experience the beauty of this place. Garud Chatti waterfall is best to visit in monsoons. Patna Waterfall has limestone cave over its stone and you can also prefer trekking here.
Rajaji National Park lies 16 km from Rishikesh and nestles in the Shivalik range besides the Himalayan foothills. The entry fee is Rs.150 for Indians and Rs. 600 for foreigners for 3 hours. It has over 23 mammal species and 300 bird species. Thereby, wildlife enthusiasts will enjoy this place. It also has provisions for Jeep Safari and cottage stay.
Rishikesh is full of delightful places to visit. Above all, you can travel around this place easily in your car or by auto. When it comes to food, you must visit Little Buddha Café. It is near Lakshman Jhula and offers a variety of cuisines. It gives the eye-pleasing view of Lakshman Jhula. Moreover, you can see decorated walls the colorful paintings as you pass its street. If you want to stay at a free shelter, Geeta Bhavan is the best option for that. One must visit Rishikesh at least once in their lifetime. Be it for youth or elderly one, it is the place that will truly mesmerize you to the core!