Haridwar is a holy city located in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. The city is situated on the banks of the river Ganges and is considered to be one of the seven holiest places in Hinduism. The name "Haridwar" is derived from two Sanskrit words - "Hari" meaning "Lord Vishnu" and "dwar" meaning "gateway". Therefore, Haridwar is also known as the "Gateway to Lord Vishnu". The city is famous for its religious significance and attracts thousands of pilgrims every year. Apart from its religious importance, Haridwar is also known for its scenic beauty and is surrounded by hills and forests. It serves as a base for exploring the nearby destinations such as Rishikesh, Dehradun, Mussoorie, and the Jim Corbett National Park.
Tourism in Haridwar:
Haridwar is a popular destination for both domestic and international tourists. One of the seven holiest places in Hinduism, it is known for its numerous temples, ghats, and ashrams. The city's main attraction is the Har Ki Pauri ghat, where visitors can take a dip in the holy Ganges River and witness the evening Ganga Aarti ceremony. Other popular sites include the Mansa Devi and Chandi Devi temples, the Maya Devi Temple, and the Daksha Mahadev Temple. Visitors can also explore the ashrams that line the river, including the Parmarth Niketan and the Sivananda Ashram. With its rich cultural and religious heritage, Haridwar is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Indian spirituality and culture.
History of Haridwar:
Haridwar, located in the state of Uttarakhand in India, has a rich historical significance. The city is known for its spiritual and religious significance, and it is one of the seven holiest places for Hindus. Haridwar has been mentioned in various ancient Hindu texts like the Vedas and the Puranas. According to legend, it is believed that Lord Vishnu, along with other gods, visited the earth in Haridwar during the Vedic period. The city has also been mentioned in the Mahabharata and is believed to be the place where the Pandavas left their mortal bodies to reach heaven. The city has been a center of learning and spirituality for centuries and has attracted sages, saints, and pilgrims from all over the world.
When to Visit Haridwar:
Haridwar is a year-round destination, but the best time to visit is from February to March and August to October when the weather is pleasant and there are many festivals to enjoy. The months of February and March witness the celebration of Kumbh Mela, while the months of August to October host the popular festival of Dussehra and Diwali. The monsoon season from July to September brings heavy rainfall and is not recommended for travel due to flooding and landslides. The winter months from November to January are also a good time to visit as the weather is cool and there are many cultural events to attend.
Top Places to Visit in Haridwar:
Haridwar, located in the state of Uttarakhand, is a popular tourist destination and attracts a large number of visitors every year. The city is known for its religious and cultural significance and has numerous temples, ashrams, and ghats. One of the most important places to visit in Haridwar is Har Ki Pauri, which is the most famous ghat and is believed to be the spot where Lord Vishnu left his footprint. It is also a popular spot for the Ganga Aarti, which is a daily ritual performed in the evening to worship the holy river Ganges. Another important temple in Haridwar is the Chandi Devi Temple, which is located on top of a hill and is dedicated to Goddess Chandi. The temple can be reached by trekking or by taking a cable car. Mansa Devi Temple is another popular temple, which is situated on top of a hill and can be reached by a cable car ride.
Another popular tourist attraction in Haridwar is the Shantikunj Ashram, which was established by Pandit Shriram Sharma Acharya. It is known for its spiritual teachings and is a great place to meditate and rejuvenate the mind, body, and soul. Apart from these, one can also visit the Bhimgoda Kund, which is a holy pond believed to be the spot where the Pandavas took a bath during their exile. The Rajaji National Park, which is located on the outskirts of the city, is also a great place to visit for wildlife enthusiasts.
Offbeat Places Near Haridwar:
Haridwar is located in the foothills of the Shivalik range and is surrounded by several offbeat destinations that are worth exploring. One such place is Rajaji National Park, located just 18 km from Haridwar. The park is spread over an area of 820 sq km and is home to a variety of flora and fauna. Visitors can go on a jeep safari or an elephant safari to explore the park. Another offbeat destination near Haridwar is the Neer Garh Waterfall, located around 25 km from the city. The waterfall is situated at an altitude of 6000 feet and is surrounded by lush green forests. Visitors can trek to the waterfall and enjoy the picturesque views along the way.
Another interesting offbeat place near Haridwar is the ancient town of Rishikesh. Located just 20 km from Haridwar, Rishikesh is known as the "Yoga Capital of the World." The town is situated on the banks of the river Ganges and is surrounded by beautiful mountains. Visitors can explore the town's many ashrams and take part in yoga and meditation classes. Rishikesh is also famous for its adventure activities such as white water rafting, bungee jumping, and camping. The town's vibrant culture and spiritual atmosphere make it a must-visit destination near Haridwar.
Outdoor Adventure Activities in Haridwar:
Haridwar is not only famous for its religious significance, but also offers a number of outdoor adventure activities. One of the most popular activities is white water rafting in the Ganges river. The river has different grades of rapids which make it suitable for both beginners and experienced rafters. Trekking is also a popular activity in Haridwar as it is surrounded by the Shivalik Hills. Visitors can take guided treks to popular spots such as Chandi Devi Temple and Mansa Devi Temple. Camping is another popular activity in Haridwar, and there are several campsites located near the river that offer various outdoor activities such as bonfire, bird watching and star gazing.
Another outdoor adventure activity that visitors can enjoy in Haridwar is bungee jumping. The jump is from a height of 83 meters and offers an adrenaline-pumping experience. There are also options for flying fox and giant swing, which are equally thrilling. For those who prefer a more leisurely activity, there are several nature walks and cycling trails that visitors can take to explore the city and its surroundings. The Rajaji National Park is also located near Haridwar and offers an opportunity for visitors to experience wildlife and nature up close.
Cheap Homestays in Haridwar:
Haridwar offers a range of accommodation options for budget travellers, including cheap homestays. These homestays provide comfortable and affordable stay options with basic amenities. They are a great way to experience the local culture and lifestyle while staying in Haridwar. Some popular cheap homestays in Haridwar are Bharat Sadan, Krishna Dham, and Om Homestay. If you need more cheap homestays in Haridwar then do comprehensive search on ClearHolidays website. They offer clean and spacious rooms, home-cooked food, and warm hospitality. The hosts are usually locals who can guide visitors on places to visit and things to do in and around Haridwar.
Tour Packages for Haridwar:
There are several tour packages available for Haridwar, catering to different types of travellers and interests. Some packages focus on religious and spiritual tourism and include visits to the various temples and ghats of Haridwar, while others offer adventure activities such as trekking, camping, and river rafting. There are also packages that combine the best of both worlds, allowing visitors to experience the holy city's spiritual and natural beauty.
Most tour packages for Haridwar include accommodation, transportation, and meals, as well as the services of a tour guide. Prices may vary depending on the duration of the tour, the activities included, and the level of comfort and luxury desired. ClearHolidays has wide range of tour packages for Haridwar and see which one best suits your budget & preferences.
In conclusion, Haridwar is a must-visit destination for those looking to experience the rich culture and spirituality of India. With its plethora of temples and ghats, Haridwar is an ideal place to witness the age-old traditions and rituals of Hinduism. The city's natural beauty, with the Ganges flowing through its heart and the lush surrounding forests, only adds to its charm. Whether you want to take a dip in the holy waters of the Ganges, explore the temples and ashrams, or simply soak in the atmosphere of this vibrant city, Haridwar has something for everyone. With its accessibility and range of accommodation options, Haridwar is also a great starting point for exploring the wider region of Uttarakhand.
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