Location : In the north Indian State of Uttaranchal.
Tourist Attractions : Joshimath, Valley of Flowers, Govindghat, Lok-Pal Hemkund, Charan Paduka, Mana villages, Vyas Gufa, Shes Netra Tal, Ganesh Gufa and Bhimpul.
Best Hangouts : Valley of Flowers
Best Activity : Trekking
Nearby Tourist Destinations : Kedarnath, Gangotri, Yamunotri, Rishikesh, Haridwar, Hemkund Sahib, Pipalkoti (80 Kms.), Chamoli (10 Kms.), Srinagar (192 Kms.), Auli (57 Kms.)
When to Visit : September to May. The Badrinath temple opens every year in May and closes for winter in the third of November.
Badrinath in one of the four Dhams a devout Hindu has to visit in his lifetime to attain salvation. An abode of seers, saints and yogis from times immemorial, Badrinath is surrounded on either side by two mountain mountain ranges known as Nar and Naryanan, with the Neelkanth peak providing a breathtaking backdrop. The legends say, that Badrinath, was the home of Lord Vishnu in his incarnation as Narayan. It is known as Tapobhumi, a land for meditation and penance and bhubaikunth, the heaven on earth. Facing the Badrinath temple is a hot water spring known as Tapt Kund, known for its medicinal properties. Other springs here are the Narad Kund and Surya Kund. There is a separate tank for women.
Major Tourist Attractions
It is believed that Adi Guru Shankaracharya came all the way from Kerala in 8th century AD to perform penance here. After enlightment, he established a religious center (Math) here, which he called 'Jyotirmath'. The name Joshimath is a derived from that. Of religious interest are the temples of Nav Durga and Narsingh. Apart from the religious importance, this place is unequalled for its scenic beauty.
Valley of Flowers :
This is just amazing hangout for the flower and nature lovers. So named because of the abundance of flowers that bloom here. It is one of the most picturesque valleys in the world. Nearby flows the river Pushpawati while the massive Rataban peak forms a splendid backdrop. The appropriate time to visit it is July & August when the flowers bloom.
The confluence of alaknanda and Lakshman Ganga rivers. It has an imposing Gurudwara named after Guru Gobind Singh. Situated between Joshimath and Badrinath it is the starting point for the trek to this valley. From Gobindghat, it is 16 kms. away. Ponies can also be hired from Gobindghat.
Lok-Pal Hemkund :
This is where the Hemkund Sahib Gurdwara, at an altitude of 4320 m above sea-level, is located. The climb is steep and tiring. Hemkund Sahib is one of the most famous Gurdwaras and is held in great reverence by the Sikhs. Nearby is the Lok-Pal Hemkund Lake, with its crystal clear waters and four peaks surrounding it.
How To Get There
Air : The nearest airport is at Jelly Grant, 315 km away.
Rail : The nearest rail heads are at Rishikesh, 297 km away, and Kotdwara, 327 km away.
Road : There is bus service to Badrinath from Rishikesh, Haridwar, Dehra Dun, Kotdwara and other major towns.
Tourist Rest House, from UP Tourism Accommodation are available. There are also Private Hotels and Dharamshala and Temple Committee Guest House. Local eateries/dhabas which offer only vegetarian food. Non-vegetarian food and alcoholic drinks are prohibited. Facilities for lodging are available at Gobindghat and nearby Ghagria.