Haridwar literally describes as “the abode of Lord Vishnu” where millions of people flock every year to experience the colourful and fascinating blend of Indian culture. It is considered as one of the seven major holiest places in India, which is located in the heart of Uttarakhand state. Its propitious location nearby the holy River Ganga increases its popularity and attracts innumerable devotees throughout the year to perform immersion of the ashes or to take a dip in holy water in order to wash away their sins. With the passage of time, the modern day Haridwar has become more than just a holy place as it become the major cultural, Yoga and spiritual centre. Here is the list of top 10 awesome places to must see when visiting Haridwar, The Gateway to the Gods.
Must See Places When Visited Haridwar
Har Ki Pauri
The most revered place and the major attraction of Haridwar, Har ki Pauri which means Lord’s Footsteps. It is holy ghat at the bank of River Ganga, built by King Vikramaditya in the memory of his brother Bharthari. The foot print of Lord Vishnu is the famous landmark of this place which is said to be at the precise location where River Ganga enters plains from the mountains. Another attraction of this place is the Aarti that is organised each morning and evening with great zeal. It is one of the events that one cannot afford to miss.
Chandi Devi Temple
Constructed by King Suchat Singh, the temple is dedicated to the goddess Chandi Devi, a form of Hindu deity Durga. It is located at the Neel Parvat where one can reach either by trekking 3kms from Chandighat or by taking the cable car. It is one of the most ancient temples in India that attracts thousands of pilgrims especially during the festival season of Navratra and the Kumbha Mela. It is also believed that amen statue of the temple is established by the great Hindu Philosopher and saint Adi Shankarcharaya in the 8th century.
Mansa Devi Temple
Located at the top of hillock named as Bilwa Parvat, the Mansa Devi Temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Mansa Devi who fulfills all wishes of devotees. The temple houses two idols of deity, one with three mouths and five arms, and the other one with eight arms. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations because of the cable cars that offer a picturesque view of the entire Haridwar city.
Vaishno Devi Temple
It is another attraction for the pilgrims visited the holy place. The Vaishno Devi Temple of Haridwar is a complete replica of the ancient and famous temple of same name which is located in Jammu and Kashmir. The complex of the temple and the path leading to the worship spot through caves and tunnel is an exact replica of the original temple.
Kankhal town is famous for the ancient temple of Daksha Mahadev. This temple is the tribute to legend related with King Daksha Prajapati, father of Dakshayani, Lord Shiva's first wife, who performed yagna and deliberately did not invite Lord Shiva. And when Dakshayani arrived uninvited then lord Shiva was further insulted which make her infuriated and she self-immolated herself in the yagna kund. After a while King Daksha was killed by the demon named as Virabhadra which is born of Shiva’s anger. However, later the king was brought to life again by Shiva giving him the goat’s head.
Sati kund, is the precious mythological heritage location in Kankhal that is worth a visit.
Shanti Kunj is a headquarters of the All India Gayatri Pariwar, the famous spiritual and social organizations. Situated at the bank of River Ganga, it is the spot of thousand tourists all around the world who are seeking the spiritual guidance. The ashram holds various sorts of spiritual training programs that make it popular among tourist, with spiritual blend of mind.
It is the famous shopping place in Haridwar where you can expect to find all the items required to perform Pooja (worship) in this religious town. Bara bazaar offers the variety of handicraft articles that one can take back home as souvenirs. Ayurvedic medicines, Rudraksha seeds, churan (digestive powder) and a variety of sweets are the popular buys in the market.
The Bhimgoda Kund/Tank is situated about 1 km from Har ki Pauri holds the historical importance. It is said, while going towards Himalaya, the Pandavas stoped by Haridwar to relax and the prince Bhima drew water from the rocks by thrusting his knee (Goda). This kund is another important attraction of the city which is visited by number of people through the year.
Patanjali Yog Peth
Patanjali Yog Peeth is the most popular and largest yoga institute of India which is run by the popular Yog Guru Baba Ramdev. The ashram is situation is Delhi-Haridwar Highway where number of people swarms every day for some or the other purpose.
Chilla Wildlife Sanctuary
Popularly named as the Rajaji Wildlife Sanctuary, is a home of many types of wildlife species like Elephants, Tigers, Bears and Small cats. It is situated at a distance of just 18kms from Haridwar which surely give exhilarating and unforgettable experience for both nature and wildlife lovers.
There are number of other temples and places to experience in the beautiful city of Haridwar. One can choose to come in this place at any time of the year to enjoy the pleasant stay.