Rishikesh Tourism – A Blend of Spirituality and Excitement

by On Jan 28, 2014

With a name that refers to a form of Lord Vishnu in Sanskrit, Rishikesh means “lord of the senses”. Lying in the foothills of Himalaya in Uttarakhand, a state in Northern India, Rishikesh is the ultimate gateway to explore the beauty of the upper Garhwal region. It is the starting point of the sacred ‘Char Dham Yatra’. But it doesn’t mean that Rishikesh tourism is only about spirituality. There is an adventurous and mediating side too that equally fascinates travelers visiting this land of Gods and Goddesses.

 

Often dubbed “Place of Sagas”, Rishikesh is situated at the union of Ganga and Chandrabhaga rivers, 24 km upstream from Haridwar, another sacred spiritual destination of North India. Encircled by scenic hills from three sides and River Ganga touching its feet, the place is also a heaven for adventure seekers. The place serves as the base for trekking expeditions of Himalaya and upper Garhwal regions. Bringing you close to nature’s bounty, a tour to Rishikesh lets you discover many faces of its prized possessions.

Attractions in Rishikesh

laxman-jhula
Dotted with several beautiful and interesting sightseeing points, Rishikesh is no short of attractions. Being a spiritual destination, there are various temples in and around Rishikesh that not only act as salvation bases but also rejuvenate your tired body and mind with their peaceful ambience. Some of the most notable temples in Rishikesh are Bharat Mandir, Geeta Bhawan and Trayambakeshwar Temple. But there is much more to see in Rishikesh other than shrines. Triveni Ghat, the most sacred bathing spot in Rishikesh, is a must-visit attraction for every traveler visiting the place. Enjoying the ‘Maha Ganga Aarti’ while sitting on the Ghat is an experience to cherish forever.

 

Among the major attractions in Rishikesh, Laxman and Ram Jhulas are the two most noteworthy ones. These suspended bridges provide easy access over River Ganga and have fascinating myths attached with them. Along with these famous landmarks, there are many other attractions that travelers will love to see. Major among them are Rishi Kund, Parmarth Niketan, Swarga Ashram and Neelkanth Mahadev Temple.

Adventure Activities in Rishikesh

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People may assume that Rishikesh is only meant for spiritual visits, however, it is not just a religious destination dotted with temples and full of sages. The gushing sound of River Ganga and the hilly and rocky terrains add the thrill factor that transforms this spiritual land into a hub of adventure. Nestled at an elevation of 356 meters above sea level, Rishikesh is a wonderland for those who want to experience the feel of icy cold water running down their veins. From river rafting, rappelling and cliff jumping to bungee jumping, rock climbing and beach camping, Rishikesh is not short of exciting and fun-frolic holidays.

 

Among all the adventure activities in Rishikesh, river rafting is the most popular. The splashing icy water of Ganga and the submerged rocks that come as hurdles or rapids make river rafting in Rishikesh an experience to treasure forever. Beach camping is another great activity that most of the travelers love to enjoy here. The soft touch of the ripples of the Ganges under the feet and the bright canopy of stars over your head take you to a different world.

Yoga Centers in Rishikesh

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Adding a feather to the cap of Rishikesh tourism, yoga centers in Rishikesh are making their mark on the global front. There are several yoga institutes and ashrams that teach this ancient art of rejuvenation in the lap of nature. A holy dip in Ganga and meditating yoga will bring peace to your inner soul and nothing is better than Rishikesh in providing that serene and spiritual environment for yoga.

 

Parmath Niketan, Sivananda Ashram, Sadhna Mandir, Omkarananda Ganga Sadan, Yoga Niketan, Swami Dayananda Ashram, Anand Prakash Ashram and Osho Ganga Dham Ashram are some of the prominent places in Rishikesh to experience this ancient rejuvenating art.

Restaurants in Rishikesh

chotiwala-rastaurant-rishikesh
Like any other popular Indian destination, Rishikesh too has a plethora of dining establishments, small and big, that serve a wide range of delicacies. Being a holy place, non-vegetarian food and liquor is completely banned here. So, if you are a die-hard non-vegetarian than it’s time to adjust your taste buds for a vegetarian flavor. Though there are restaurants located all over the town, it always is a great delight to enjoy dining treats at some known outlet. Try these well-known restaurants in Rishikesh to relish some mouthwatering vegetarian treats:

Chotiwala: A famous eating outlet located close to Ram Jhula, Chotiwala Restaurant serves lip-smacking South and North Indian food.

Little Italy: It is a multi-cuisine restaurant located near Ram Jhula and is a favourite among backpackers.

Madras Café: Located close to Ram Jhula bus stand, Madras Café is not only one of the oldest restaurants in Rishikesh, but among the most popular serving south Indian food.

 

Some other restaurants that you can try out are Lucky Restaurant, German Bakery, Buddha Café, Elachi Restaurant and Oasis Restaurant.

Excursions from Rishikesh

haridwar
If you want to give that extra dose of oomph to your Rishikesh tour then excursions are the best options. Rishikesh is known as a perfect gateway for travelling to several places of the upper Garhwal region. Whether you are looking for a scenic hill station or want to satisfy your desires of a wild expedition, there are many places located nearby that act as great excursions from Rishikesh.  Some of the most popular ones are Mussoorie, Rajaji National Park, Chilla Sanctuary, Neelkanth Mahadev Temple, Kunjapuri Devi Temple, Shivpuri, Chamba, Haridwar, Dhanaulti, Gangotri and Badrinath.

 


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