Gangotri - Char Dhams
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Gangotri - Char Dhams

June 30, 2009 | Post By: Vinay Dobhal | Editor: Neha Dhyani




Gangotri, The Eternal Gift Of Bhagirath's Penance - The shrine of Gangotri is situated amidst captivating surroundings, along the right bank of Bhagirathi is 100 km from Uttarkashi in Uttarkashi District. The ritual duties are supervised by the Semwal family of pujaris. The aarti ceremony at the Gangotri is especially impressive, as is the temple, a stately affair that sits on the banks of the rushing Ganga (Ganges River).

Gangotri is the source of the Ganga (Ganges) River and seat of the goddess Ganga. Gangotri can be reached in one day's travel from Rishikesh, Haridwar or Dehradun, or in two days from Yamunotri. Gangotri is also accessible directly by car and bus, meaning that it sees many more pilgrims. A small village of guesthouses and restaurants serves the pilgrim community. Adventurous pilgrims can make an overnight 17 kms. trek to Gaumukh, the actual current source of the Ganga.


Origin

The temple was constructed in the early 18th century by a Gorkha Commander Amar Singh Thapa. The existing temple is said to be the one reconstructed by the Jaipur dynasty.


What the history says

Acording to an old legend, King Bhagirathi did harsh worship to convince the gods to send the goddess Ganga from heaven to earth. Satisfied with Bhagirathi's prayer, Lord Shiva released the river Ganga. When river Ganga was coming to the earth in its full force, Lord Shiva caught her in his mighty locks of hair to save the Earth from destruction.


Best time to visit

The shrine of Gangotri opens every year on the auspicious day of Akshaya-Tritiya & closes on the day of Diwali. Every year hundred thousands of pilgrims visit the sacred shrine between May & October. The 20 feet structure temple's statue is taken to Mukhimath village, near Harsil for six months during the winter season.


How to reach ?

Jolly Grant Airport is the nearest Airport to Gangotri situated at a distance of 250kms. Jolly Grant Airport is well connected to Delhi with daily flights and Gangotri is well connected by motorable roads with Jolly Grant Airport. ypu can also hire chopper services to Gangotri from Dehradun.
The nearest railway station to Gangotri is Rishikesh 234kms before Gangotri on NH58 and is well connected by railway network with major destinations of India. Trains to Rishikesh are frequent. Taxis and buses are available from Rishikesh, Tehri Garhwal, Uttarkashi and many other destinations to Gangotri.
Gangotri is well connected by motorable roads with major destinations of Uttarakhand state. Situated at the end of NH108, buses to Rishikesh are available from ISBT Kashmiri Gate, Delhi. Buses and Taxis to Gangotri are easily available from major destinations of Uttarakhand state like Rishikesh, Dehradun, Tehri Garhwal, Uttarkashi.


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