Location: Gangotri Dham is situated in the Uttarkashi district of the northern Indian state of Uttarakhand.
Source of River Ganges: It is considered one of the Char Dham pilgrimage sites and is the origin of the sacred River Ganges, known as the Bhagirathi River at this point.
Altitude: Nestled in the Himalayas at an elevation of about 3,100 meters (10,200 feet), Gangotri is surrounded by snow-capped peaks and pristine natural beauty.
Gangotri Temple: The main attraction is the Gangotri Temple, dedicated to Goddess Ganga. It was built in the 18th century by Amar Singh Thapa, a Gorkha Commander.
Opening and Closing Dates: The temple is open to pilgrims from May to October, and during the winter months, it remains closed due to heavy snowfall.
Timings: 4 am - 9 pm
Entry Fee: No entry fee
Time Required: 1-3 hours
Religious Significance: Gangotri holds immense religious significance for Hindus, and it is believed that bathing in the holy waters of the Ganges here cleanses one of sins.
Submerged Shivling: Near the temple, there is a submerged natural Shivling, which is visible during the winter when the water level recedes.
Trekking Opportunities: The region offers trekking opportunities, with trails leading to places like Gaumukh, the actual source of the Ganges, and Tapovan, a high-altitude meadow.
Surrounding Scenery: Visitors are treated to breathtaking views of snow-clad peaks, dense forests, and the majestic Gangotri glacier in the surrounding area.
Accessibility: Gangotri can be reached by road from Rishikesh, and the journey takes you through picturesque landscapes, making the pilgrimage a memorable experience.
Gangotri Dham, nestled in the breathtaking Garhwal Himalayas of Uttarakhand, India, is a revered pilgrimage site for Hindus and a place of immense religious and natural significance. Its history dates back centuries, with mention of Gangotri found in ancient scriptures and texts like the Puranas. According to Hindu mythology, this is the spot where the mighty Ganges River descended from the heavens, brought to Earth by the penance of King Bhagirath. The temple of Gangotri, dedicated to Goddess Ganga, stands at the heart of this sacred site and is a prime example of Himalayan architecture. Visitors are not only drawn to the spiritual aura but also the scenic beauty of the region, featuring snow-capped peaks, lush green valleys, and the thundering Bhagirathi River.
The best time to visit Gangotri is during the summer months of May to June and then again from September to October. The weather is mild and conducive for travel during these periods, while the winter months are harsh and often see heavy snowfall. The route to Gangotri Dham takes you through picturesque landscapes, with a journey that typically begins from Rishikesh and passes through Uttarkashi. The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, while the nearest railway station is Rishikesh. From there, a road trip through the mountains offers breathtaking views and a chance to immerse yourself in the spiritual and natural wonders of Gangotri Dham.
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