Gangotri

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Ideal duration: 1-2 days

Best Time: Apr-Jun, Sep-Nov Read More

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"Source of holy River Ganga"

Gangotri Tourism

Gangotri Dham is the origin of the holy River Ganga, located in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. It is one of the most revered pilgrimages in India, part of the famous Chhota Char Dham yatra (including Yamunotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath).

Gangotri is the easiest to reach (by direct bus or taxi) out of the char dhams. It is located 300 km from Rishikesh and 100 from Uttarkashi. The main attraction of Gangotri is the Gangotri Temple, dedicated to Ma Ganga. The temple remains open for 6 months each year, from May to November. On Akshya Tritiya, the idol of Ma Ganga is shifted to the Gangotri Temple from Mukhbas (Mukhimath). On Bhai Dooj, the idol is returned to Mukhimath for the next 6 months. The temple remains open from 4 AM -9 PM. Aarti Timing is 6 AM and 7:45 PM.

The original source of River Ganga is at Gaumukh, located 19 km away. It is accessible through trekking from Gangotri. River Ganga is known as Bhagirathi as it originates from Gaumukh. It acquires the name Ganga from Devprayag, where it meets Alaknanda River. 

Gangotri is visited by millions of devotees each year due to its religious significance. It is believed to be the place where Goddess Ganga descended on earth after Lord Shiva released her from the locks of his hair.

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Must Know Before You Visit Gangotri

  • Route from Uttarkashi: Uttarkashi - Harsil - Gangotri
  • Route from Yamunotri: Jankichatti - Barkhot - Bhramkal - Dharasu - Dunda - Uttarkashi - Gangori - Maneri - Bhatwarhi - Gangnani - Harsil - Dharali - Gangotri
  • Route from Rishikesh: Rishikesh - Narendra Nagar - Chamba - New Tihari - Dharasu Bend - Uttarkashi - Harsil - Gangotri
  • Uttarkashi is the nearest major point near Gangotri. Many pilgrims stay at Uttarkashi and visit Gangotri for a day
  • Accommodation is available in Gangotri at various guest houses, lodges and dharamshalas. Prices for these vary according to seasons
  • Food: Some small eateries and restaurants are located in the main market 1km before Gangotri Temple.
  • Non-vegetarian food and alcohol is prohibited in Gangotri
  • INR 50 is charged by Nagar Panchayat a few km before entering into Gangotri as parking charge for the vehicle

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The Legend of Gangotri

The ancient and fascinating legend of Gangotri is that, for many-a-century, King Bhagirath undertook a series of severe self-mortifying rituals as a way to show outward repentance of the sins carried out by his predecessors. He performed a very harsh penance, in order to bring nirvana to his ancestors who were said to have been burned to ashes due to a sage’s curse.

The Daughter of Heaven, River Ganga, who only flowed in the heavens before this, then decided to descend into the Earth, after Bhagirath’s prolonged meditation. However, it was said that once the Ganga starts flowing, no one on the face of the Earth could stop the Goddess’s mighty tides and flow which had the power to sweep the entire planet away. It was then that Lord Shiva, on the day of Gangavataran or Ganga Dussehra, decided to rise and channelise the waters with his valour and took the Ganga in the locks of his hair and released one of the strands of his hair in Gangotri. Ganga then flowed down, in the form of 12 streams of water from here - which were later called its tributaries. Hence, Gangotri is that place where the Holy River Ganga, touched Earth for the first time and has been worshipped for thousands of years, ever after.

Gangotri Photos

Gangotri, Uttarakhand
Gangotri Temple
Vishwanath Temple
Kedar Tal

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FAQs on Gangotri

What is famous about Gangotri?

Famous for its alluring beauty and sanctity, Gangotri is located on the banks of river Bhagirathi. Excellent view of the snow clad Himalayas.

What is not so good about Gangotri?

The region is prone to heavy snowfall during the winters, often disrupting the communication and transport facilities. Non-vegetarian food and alcohol are strictly unavailable.

Who should visit Gangotri?

Gangotri is a great destination for people who want to enjoy a divine, as well as an adventurous experience. Ideal for the braveheart pilgrims.

What is the best time to visit Gangotri?

Gangotri tends to remain cold for the most part of the year; however, the ideal time to visit this place is between April to June and from September to October. Summers in Gangotri is quite pleasant and a perfect season to pay homage at the holy shrine. Monsoons are characterised by heavy rainfall, and it is difficult to travel there during that time. Winters are frigid and not the best time to visit the place.

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What is the local food in Gangotri?

Gangotri does not have an elaborate menu but does house a number of local eating joints, stalls and restaurants as well as ashrams that serve typical Indian platters. One also finds a handful of places serving Chinese here. Since the region has immense religious and spiritual significance for Hindus, non-vegetarian food is not available and alcohol, prohibited.
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What is the best way to reach Gangotri?

Reaching Gangotri is not a problem, rail head as it is well connected by air, road and railway networks.The Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun makes for the nearest airport, while Rishikesh railway station is the railhead at a distance of 250 km from Gangotri. Cars and tourist buses are another viable options to undertake the journey by road.
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What are the things to do in Gangotri?

The top things to do in Gangotri are Ganges Glacier, Gangotri Temple, Kedar Tal, Harsil, Dodi Tal, Auden's Col. You can see all the places to visit in Gangotri here

What are the places near Gangotri?

The top places near to Gangotri are Valley of flowers which is 70 km from Gangotri, Nelong valley which is located 15 km from Gangotri, Auli which is located 79 km from Gangotri, Kedarnath which is located 31 km from Gangotri, Rishikesh which is located 119 km from Gangotri

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Popular Questions And Answers on Gangotri

Q. How easy or difficult is the Gangotri Trek? How many days are enough for the trek?

Kumar Kislay

3 years ago
There are actually a lot of trips you can undertake from Gangotri. Such as to tapovan, Shivling, nandavan. Gomukh, Rudragaira and Kedar Tal. Each of these will take you 10-15 days.

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