Chardham Yatra 2019

Uttarakhand is known as “Dev Bhoomi” because here are numerous pilgrimage sites and are worshipped by the devotees but the Four Pilgrimage sites Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath are most prominent which are known as “Char Dham” and visiting these places in a sequence is known as “Char Dham or Tirtha Yatra”.

These four pious sites are located in Indian Himalayas away from the pollution in soothing climate and invigorating greenery at different districts of Uttarakhand.

Beliefs

The Char Dham Yatra should be done in a sequence from west to east-

  1. Yamunotri
  2. Gangotri
  3. Kedarnath
  4. Badrinath

Char Dham holds a great position in Hindu Mythology and people believe that it is important to go for this yatra once in a lifetime to get salvation and overcome all the sins. It is great for the people who are in search of spirituality and tranquility.

History of the Char Dham’s

Each Pilgrimage site has its own mythological history which made these places great holy sites.

YAMUNOTRI  

  • Goddess Yamuna is daughter of Lord Surya and sister of Yam raj. A saint named “Asit Muni” lived here and took bath in Ganga and Yamuna. At the time of his old age he was unable to go to Gangotri then Ganga’s stream started to flow across Yamuna.
  • It is the source of River Yamuna and is second most holy river of India after Ganges inUttarkashi district. “Yamunotri” temple was built in 1839 by “Naresh Sudarshan Shah” the king of Tehri.
  • It is believed that bathing in the water here purifies the soul of a person and washes all the sins.
  • Hot water springs are present around the temple and Surya kundis most important among all, rice and potatoes are boiled in this hot water spring as Prasad.
Yamunotri Temple

GANGOTRI

  • During Ashwamedha Yagna King Sagar sent his 60,000 sons along with a horse and the horse got lost and the sons went in search of horse to saint Kapila’s ashram, he was in deep meditation. The saint in anger opened his eyes and turned all 60,000 sons into ashes. Then, Kapila advised Anshuman (grandson of king Sagar) to request Goddess Ganga to come on earth and cleanse all the ashes and provide salvation but he failed.
  • Bhagirath’s extreme meditation made goddess Ganga to come down to earth. Lord Shivatied Ganga then distributed the water into many streams to save earth from the powerful force.
  • The origin of River Ganga is Gomukh glacier in Uttarkashi district, this Dham is Goddess Ganga’s shrine and the temple was built by “Amar Singh Thapa” in 19th century.
Gangotri Temple

KEDARNATH

  • The Pandavas wanted Lord Shiva to forgive them for their sins which they committed at the battle ground of “Mahabharata” by killing their brothers “Kauravas” but Lord Shiva did not want to forgive them and transformed himself into a bull and was hiding in Garhwal region of Uttarakhand. The Pandavas found him and Lord Shiva dived into the ground.
  • The parts of Shiva differentiated at different places – Hump at Kedarnath, Navel at Madhya Maheshwar, Hair at Kalpeshwar, Face at Rudranath and Arms at Tunganath. All these five holy places are known as Panch Kedar.
  • The temple of Kedarnath was made by Pandavas and Saint Adi Shankaracharya made temple next to it in 8th century. It is built in a very remote area.
  • The structure is strongly built and it survived the floods in 2013.
Kedarnath Temple

BADRINATH

  • Lord Vishnu meditated here as an act of penance his wife Goddess Laxmi became a tree and protected him from the tough natural elements.
  • Badrinath was Shiva’s kingdom and Lord Vishnu tricked him and stayed here.
  • This holy site is also included both “Char Dham” Saint Adi Shankaracharya found statue or idol of Lord Vishnu in Alaknanda River and the saint kept it in a cave around Tapt Kund.
  • Garhwal King erected the temple and it has been reconstructed many times.
Badrinath Temple

Best Time to do Char Dham Yatra

  • The perfect time to go on this Yatra is from May to October.
  • The gates of these holy sites are closed during monsoon and winter season because the areas receive heavy snowfall in winters and is prone to landslides in monsoon. The routes get blocked and the idols are shifted to the pilgrim sites which are nearby.

Short Itinerary

Day 1Haridwar to Jan Ki Chatti (250 km) (9/10 hours)

Day 2Jan Ki Chatti to Yamunotri and back (5 km) (3/4 hours)

Day 3Jan Ki Chatti to Uttarkashi (130 km) (6/7 hours)

Day 4 - Uttarkashi to Gangotri and back (109 km) (5/6 hours)

Day 5 -Uttarkashi to Guptkashi (100 km) (4 hours)

Day 6 -Guptkashi to Gaurikund (22 km) and Kedarnath (09 km)

Day 7 -Rest day at Kedarnath

Day 8 -Kedarnath to Gaurikund (9 km) and Guptkashi (22 km)

Day 9Guptkashi to Rudraprayag via Pandukeshwar and Badrinath

Day 10 -Rudraprayag to Haridwar/Rishikesh (160 km) (7 hours)

Details Itinerary

Day 1 -Haridwar to Jan Ki Chatti (250 km) (9/10 hours)

Vehicle will be arranged for you at Haridwar and the drive is through Mussoorie, Barkot, Phool chatti and then you will reach Jan Ki Chatti. You can reach there in 9 to 10 hours. Rest for the night in a hotel.

Day 2 - Jan Ki Chatti to Yamunotri and back (5 km) (3/4 hours)

Have breakfast and leave for Yamunotri which is your first destination of Chare Dham Yatra, take bath in holy water to start your “Tirth Yatra” and then visit the temple. Head back to Jan Ki Chatti and reach your hotel to rest for the night.

Day 3 - Jan Ki Chatti to Uttarkashi (130 km) (6/7 hours)

Uttarkashi is 130 km away from Jan Ki Chatti, there are some beautiful attractions on the way like Parkateshwar caves. Reach Uttarkashi in the evening and visit Vishwanath temple, Aadi Shakti temple and Kandar Devta temple. Spend some time here in peace and divine atmosphere and then spend your night in a hotel.

Day 4 - Uttarkashi to Gangotri and back (109 km) (5/6 hours)

Leave for Gangotri early in the morning, it is nestled at the base of Bhagirathi massif, there are many hot water springs around this place and the devotees take bath in it and people believe that the pure water of Ganges washes all the sins. After spending some time here leave for Uttarkashi, you can reach there in the evening and spend your night in a hotel.

Day 5 - Uttarkashi to Guptkashi (100 km) (4 hours)

Guptkashi is a mini town from where Chaukhamba Peaks can be clearly seen. Have breakfast and leave for Guptkashi, leave early so that you can visit Ganga Aarti and all the rituals performed there. Take a dip in the purest water of River Ganga. Sit there for some time and feel the tranquillity and spirituality. At night accommodate in a hotel.

Day 6 - Guptkashi to Gaurikund (22 km) and Kedarnath (09 km)

Drive from Guptkashi to Gaurikund by taxi distance is 22 km, it is a hot water spring and then leave for Kedarnath. Kedarnath is at a height of (3548 m), you have reached your third destination of the tour Lord Shiva’s abode. The place has beautiful aura which gives inner peace. Rest for today at the vicinity of temple.

Day 7 - Rest day at Kedarnath

Explore this naturally beautiful place which offers amazing views, the environment is soothing and it will make you want to stay here for some more time. Spend time at the vicinity and today explore all the surroundings. Go to the hotel and stay for the night there.

Day 8 - Kedarnath to Gaurikund (9 km) and Guptkashi (22 km)

Leave from Kedarnath and visit Gaurikund it is 9 km away and on same day drive to Guptkashi.

Day 9 - Guptkashi to Rudraprayag via Pandukeshwar and Badrinath

Leave from Guptkashi tom Pandukeshwar and have a bath in Kund and then visit the abode of Lord Vishnu “Badrinath”. You can see other spots like Vyas Gufa, Maana, Maatamoorti, Charanpaduka, Bheem kund and Saraswati River’s Mukh. Then leave for Rudrprayag and stay in a hotel.

Day 10 -Rudraprayag to Haridwar/Rishikesh (160 km) (7 hours)

Leave early from Rudraprayag to Hardiwar and you can reach there in 7 hours.

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