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Badrinath, Uttarakhand Travel Guide

Badrinath is considered to be one among the four ‘must visit’ pilgrim sites of the Hindus. It is a part of Chamoli district in the Uttarakhand State. It is located at an altitude of 11, 204 feet in the Garhwal hills. River Alakananda flows here. You can reach Badrinath via Dehradun, via Rishikesh, Haridwar or via Delhi. From Delhi there are frequent buses to Badrinath. Dehradun is the nearest place having air service. Dehradun is located 317kms away from Badrinath. Nowadays vehicles are allowed till the temple site. But, the road is very narrow. So, it is better to take an ‘all terrain vehicle’. Usually pilgrims start their trip to Badrinath from the Joshimath point. About Badrinath Badrinath is visited by Lakhs of pilgrims every year. It is the center for Shiva cult as well as for the Vaishnava cult. Adi Shankara has established one of the centers for Advaita philosophy here. For Vaishnavas the temple of Nara Narayana (Badari Narayan) is of much importance. Badrinath is mentioned in the ancient texts of India. It is one of the important holy places of India. Devotees visit the Badarinarayan temple which is the main attraction of this place. According to a legend Adi Shankara (propagated the Advaitha philosophy) seemed to have found lord Badari Narayan in the form of a Saligram (oval shaped unique stone that is revered by the Hindus for Puja) in the Alakananda river and then installed that in a cave besides Tapth Kund (hot water spring). Later, it was brought to the present temple by the rulers of Garhwal. Badrinath has witnessed earthquake, and avalanche many times. Therefore the temple has been reconstructed several times by the kings of Garhwal. Badarinath is the place, as it is said, where Lord Vishnu in the form of twins (Nara and Narayana) is doing penance for the welfare of people. The place is often referred to the story of Mahabharata as well. BadariNarayan temple and Adi Shankara Math (it is in Jyotirmath) are the two important places to visit there in Badrinath. Other than that you can see a waterfall nearby, which is jus 8kms from Badrinath. It is called the Vasudhara waterfall. Vehicles do not go till the falls site. Near Mana village one will have to leave their vehicles and walk up to the falls. That could be a nice trek for you. There is a hot water spring near Badrinath. Do not expect lavishing hotels here, however, one would certainly get fair enough accommodation facility.

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