Haridwar, literally translated means Gateway to God, is a holy city in the Haridwar district of Uttar Pradesh. It is also regarded as one amongst the seven holiest cities by Hindus.
Haridwar is a place rich in culture and civilization which blend smoothly into each other giving this city a typical, rustic charm that is irrestible for many. It is amongst the first places where the river Ganga touches the plains after flowing down the mountains. Haridwar is also the entry point to the four main centers in Uttar Pradesh namely Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri.
Haridwar is a town steeped in rich history and traces its root back to the vedic ages. According to popular Hindu mythology, the city of Haridwar was created when a drop of nectar spilled over from the kundalini which was being carried by the celestial bird Garuda after the mythical Samudra Manthan.
Haridwar is home to numerous temples presided over by different deities. Another attraction that Haridwar offers is the Ganga Snan, a dip in the holy waters of river Ganga which, according to Hindu belief, washes away all sins and allows the chance to start life afresh, devoid of any sins and ill deeds.
Hari – ki – Pauri: This is a ghat constructed on the banks of the Ganga by king Vikramaditya to commemorate his brother Brithari’s penance to invoke divine blessings. The most sacred and pious amongst all ghat that comprise Hari ki Pauri is Brahmakund. The evening aarti, an enchanting and spiritually rewarding experience, is offered to Goddess Ganga where, after the aarti, diyas are set afloat in the river. The sight of these diyas bobbing up and down in the water is a mesmerizing experience and is bound to leave you spellbound.
Chandi Devi Temple: Constructed in 1929 by Suchat Singh, the king of Kashmir, this temple is dedicated to Goddess Chandi.
Mansa Devi Temple: Situated atop the Bilwa Parvat and offering a panoramic view of the city below, Mansa Devi temple is the place to go if you need your desires (mansa) to be fulfilled. The cable car ride to reach this temple is very popular amongst tourists and pilgrims alike.
Neel Dhara Pakshi Vihar: A bird watcher’s delight, the Neel Dhara bird sanctuary is situated approximately 3.5 km from the city.
Sati Kund: Another place of historical and cultural importance. This is the place where, if legend is to be believed, Sati immolated herself.
How to Reach
Like the other dhams in Uttarkhand, Jolly Grant airport in Dehradun is your best bet to reach Haridwar. The city is well connected with other cities by road and easily accessible. You could also board a train at Delhi and alight at Haridwar station.
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