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Timings : Daytime

Time Required : 2-3 hrs

Entry Fee : No entry fee

Sivananda Ashram, Rishikesh Overview

Located in the holy city of Rishikesh, the Shivanand Ashram is a heaven on earth, guiding people toward spiritual peace and happiness. This serene abode of Saint Swami Shivanand is maintained and administered by an organization called the Divine life society. It is one of the favourite places for visitor out to spend some time meditating and living between nature and the divine authority. The place is an ideal religious yoga and meditation centre. Situated near the Ganges, the holy river of India and Ganga Vatika, the ashram is a beautiful and very calm place to be. The satsangs, feast and yoga sessions are well arranged, and the ashram is well maintained.

Sivananda Ashram now offers a course on yoga and meditation classes every day except Sunday. Apart from that, publication of books, pamphlets and magazines are also undertaken with an aim to rival the scientific aspects of yoga and Vedanta, universal religion, philosophy and ancient medicine, all over the world. Various cultural and spiritual conferences, discourses and training are also held periodically. This institution established by the revered saints is doing all it can to bring about quick moral and spiritual regeneration in the world.

River Ganges follows nearby the ashram, carrying with itself the message of seers and sages long gone, keeping the connection between past and the present intact. This relaxing environment around the premises, opposite the holy river and amidst the lush green of the valley, yoga lovers can indulge in their passion and further enhance their spiritual knowledge.

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History of Sivananda Ashram

Sivananda Ashram was founded by revered Saint Swami Sivananda in the year 1936. He was one of the first yogis of the last century to open his door to the western world and introduce a scientific aspect of Yoga. He had disciples and followers from all over the world, who themselves became a leader in the world of yoga and meditation. Some of his disciples are Swamis Vishnu Devananda, Chidananda, Sivananda Radha and Andre Van Lysbeth to name a few. Former president of India also mentioned the saint's impact in his autobiography, claiming that meeting Swami Shivanand was the defining moment in his life.

All those entering his Ashram were asked to first learn three principles of the Yamas (moral principles of the Yoga Sutras of Sage Patanjali) - non-violence, integrity and purity. According to the Swamii, these lead to mastery of the body, breath and mind to go beyond the mind to self-realization. He taught the practice of four major branches of yoga - Raja, Bhakta, Jnana and Karma. Hundreds of books on various aspects of Yoga, Hinduism, and Vedanta were written by Sivananda.

After the death of its founder, the ashram was handed over to Swami Chidananda who traveled the world to spread the teachings of Yoga and Vedanta. Under his efficient leadership, the ashram became a center of spiritual influence.

Yoga and Meditation Classes at Sivananda Ashram

To this day, the Sivananda Ashram is fulfilling all its objectives of spreading spiritual guidance under the leadership of Swami Yogaswarupananda. Daily classes are held (separately for men and women) by trained instructors to learn the benefits of yoga, exploring various essential elements of yoga postures accompanied by breath awareness, meditation, and relaxation. Two months courses on meditation and pranayama are available.

Accommodation at Sivananda Ashram

There are facilities for both AC and non- AC living accommodation available for all the guests. Apart from that if you want to spend your night among the beauties of the natural surroundings, you can also bring your own tent. Bedsheets, pillow and pillow covers are provided by the ashram.

Provisions for simple, healthy and vegetarian food is provided at a very reasonable rate at the ashram. You can also purchase fresh fruits, fruit juices and other snacks from the health hut located on the premises.

Facilities at Sivananda Ashram

Sivananda Ashram provides various facilities to all its guests and visitors for a comfortable stay. There is a boutique and a health hut from where you can purchase clothes, CDs, yoga mats, snacks and other items for daily use. Library facilities are also available for use during spare time. Internet and telephone services can be availed to keep in contact with your friends and family outside of the ashram. An independent laundry service and travel guide services are also available.

Rules & Regulations at Sivananda Ashram

1. Couples are not permitted to share twin rooms during the duration of Teachers' Training Courses and Advanced Teachers' Training Course. Two bed sheets, pillows and pillow cases and mosquito nets are provided at the ashram. 
2. During the stay, all the food and beverages are provided by the ashram for a minimal fee.
3. While in the ashram, non-vegetarian food, smoking and drinking are strictly prohibited.
4. Rooms and yoga classes can be booked upon arrival or in advance.
5. Everyday one hour is devoted to karma yoga or selfless service when the guests are asked to help out in the Ashram.
6. The teaching language is English.

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Best Time To Visit Sivananda Ashram

You can visit the Ashram all round the year. However, try to avoid during the winter months to escape the harsh cold.

Tips For Visiting Sivananda Ashram

1. Don't miss the Ganga Aarti performed at the Ashram's ghat, early morning and evening.
2. Reservations are required for availing yoga classes.
3. You can do Ganga puja at the ashram's ghat with the help of the swami.
4. Don't forget to bring comfortable clothes, sandals, toiletries, personal items, meditation shawl for cool evenings, yoga asana mats, towels, water bottle and a torch. Most of these items can also be purchased at the ashram's boutique.
5. Valid photo ID is required along with original passport or visa.
6. Facilities of boutique and post etc. are closed during classes, Satsang and after 7:30 PM.
7. The ashram is not responsible for the independent services of laundry and travel agency.

How To Reach Sivananda Ashram

Shivanand Ashram is located only 50 meters from the famous Ram Jhula. You can easily take an auto rickshaw or private taxi from the city centre.

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Q. Hi. I am a practitioner of sivananda system since more than 15 years. I wish & dreamed to visit India but I don't know where I have to start. Can somebody give some suggestions how I will start the tour. I am 63 Years old but still very active. Thank you for all the feedback in advance.

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