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Badrinath - Holy temple of Badrinath

DISTANCE - 518 KM From Delhi, 343 KM From Dehradun, 155 KM From Rudraprayag


By Air : The nearest airport is that of Jolly Grant, which is about 317 km from Badrinath. Helicopters and small private airlines are allowed to land there.

By Rail : The nearest railheads are Rishikesh (297 km) and Kotdwar (327 km). Badrinath is well connected to all the major tourist spots nearby, namely, Rishikesh, Haridwar, Kotdwar, Dehradun, and other hill retreats of the Garhwal and Kumaon region.

By Road :

  • Route 1 : Delhi - Rishikesh : 243 , Rishikesh-Badrinath :297 km by road.
  • Route 2 : Delhi - Kotdwara: 300 km, Kotdwara-Badrinath-327 km by road.


Badrinath is the most important of four destinations in India’s Chardham Pilgrimage. Badrinath is one of the most sacred towns for Hindus. It is one of the most famous Hindu pilgrimage centers. It is a very popular retreat with the towering Neelkanth Peak in the background. For ancient times, this holy town has been a sacred ground of many saints and sages who came here looking for Moksha (salvation).

The holy town of Badrinath has a lot to offer in terms of tourism especially for pilgrims. The Badrinath Temple and the Badrikasharam are major centres of attraction in Badrinath. Tapt Kund (Hot water pool), Surya Kund, etc are also attractions of the town. This city also attracts nature lovers as well as pilgrims. The surrounding of the town is scenic and provides great treat for visitors’ eyes.


Badrinath Temple : The Badrinath temple is the pride of this temple town. Located at a breathtaking altitude of 11,268 ft on the banks of the Alaknanda, the temple is ensconced between the snowcapped Nar and Narayan peaks of the Himalayas. Heaven is surely within reach here! Badrinath derives its name from the wild berries of Badri which grow profusely in this region. Adi Shankarcharya (509-477 BC) is believed to have built the temple and installed the idol of Lord Vishnu here in the 8th century. Contiguous to the temple and scattered around the region are several thermal springs — Tapta Kund, Narad Kund and Surya Kund, associated with remedial and religious significance. Badrinath is considered the holiest of the four important shrines (Char Dham) in Garhwal.

Tapt Kund : Tapt kund is a natural hot water pool fed by a sulphur spring which is said to be the abode of Agni, the god of fire. It is customary to bathe before entering Sri Badrinath temple. This water has a temperature of 130 degrees C. To the left of this pool is the Surya Kund fed by a branch of the same thermal spring. These waters are said to be very nourishing to the body. The Alakananda flows swiftly just below these kunds and the boiling water falls into the icy waters of the river giving rise to clouds of steam.

Panch Dharas : The Panch Dharas (five streams) which are famous in Badrinath are Prahlad, Kurma, Bhrigu, Urvashi & Indira dhara. The most striking of these is the Indira dhara, about 1.5 km north of the town Badaripuri. Bhrigudhara flows past a number of caves. The one on the right of river Rishi Ganga, originally from the Neelkanth range is Urvashi dhara. Kurma dhara water is extremely cold whereas Prahlad dhara has lukewarm water, which glides majestically down the rocks of Narain Parvat.

Panch Shilas : Around the Tapt Kund there are five blocks of mythological importance called Narad, Narsimh, Barah, Garur & Markandeya Shilas (stone).Standing between Tapt and Narad Kund is conical formed Narad Shila. It is said that the sage Narad meditated on this rock for several years. Standing in the waters of Alaknanda just below the Narad Shila is a huge stone looking like a lion with its gaping jaws and hooked claws. It is said that Bhagwan Narsimh after killing the demon King Hiranyakashyapa remained in the shape of a block of stone forever.Near the Narad Kund the Barah Shila has the shape of boar. Barah is believed to be an incarnation of Lord Vishnu.

Narad Kund : A recess in the river, near Tapt Kund, forming a pool from where the Badrinath idol was recovered. It is sheltered by a projecting rock which breaks the force of the river and allows people to bathe in it. Adi Shankaracharya knew this by his great powers and retrieved the idol from this pool. He is the one who has laid down the rules by which the Lord is to be worshipped. He decreed that the Rawal or chief priest of the temple should come from the state of Kerala, far down south. He also decreed that the chief priest of the temple of Rameswaram in the south, should be from the state of Garhwal. Thus he ensured that there was a good interchange between the north and south of this holy land. This tradition is followed to this day and the Rawal of Badrinath is always a Namboodiri Brahmin from Kerala, the land of Adi Shankara’s birth.

Brahma Kapal : To the north of Sri Badrinath temple is the spot known as Brahma Kapal where Lord Brahma is said to reside. Ceremonies for departed souls are performed here.In a quest to ensure a heavenly abode for the dead ancestors, the shradh ceremony (propitiating rites) or the offering of pind is an important part of Hindu rituals. After offering pind here, it is believed, the spirits of the dead are permanently enshrined in Heaven and no more pinds are to be offered elsewhere. The Brahma Kapal, on the bank of the Alaknanda is a flat platform a few yards north of the temple. Legend has it that when Shiva chopped off the fifth head of Brahma, it got stuck to his trident. Lastly with the blessing of Lord Vishnu at Badarivan, the head of Brahma fell down from the trident at this place & hence the name Brahma-Kapal (head).

Sheshnetra : 1.5 km away is a boulder having an impression of the legendary snake, better known as the Sheshnag’s eye (Shesh meaning Sheshnag and Netra meaning eye).

Charanpaduka : 3 km away is a beautiful meadow carpeted with wild flowers in the summer. Here is a boulder bearing the footprints of Lord Vishnu. It is said that when Lord Vishnu descended from Vaikunth (the heavenly abode of Lord Vishnu) he stepped on this boulder. The area is a steep climb from the town and is full of caves & boulders.

Neelkanth : A pyramidal shaped snowy peak (6,597 mt) towering above Badrinath, presents a dramatic sight. It is popularly known as the ‘Garhwal Queen’.

Mata Murti Temple : Mata Murti Temple is located on the right bank of Alaknanda and is dedicated to the mother of Sri Badrinathji. There is also the Vyas Gufa (Vyas Cave), a rock cave of saint Ved Vyas.

Mana : Mana is 4km northwest of Badrinath near the Tibet border. This is where Vyasadeva’s cave is located. He is said to have divided the Vedas into four parts and wrote many Puranas here. The front of the cave is painted white, and there is a deity of Vyasadeva in the cave.


The best time to visit Badrinath is between May-June and September-November. Due to heavy rainfall in the area, visitors may face difficulty reaching the temple during monsoon season (late June to Aug). The temple usually remains open from first week of May to 2nd week of November.


Summer : Cool during the day and cold at night. (March to June) are very pleasant with moderate climate, with average around 18°C. Summers is ideal for all sightseeing and pilgrimage.

Winter : Snow-bound. Touching sub-zero. (November to February) are chilly days with average minimum touching near 5°C. Minimum can touch sub zero levels and snow falling seen very often during winters. These months are perfect for travelers liking chilly climates.

Monsoons (July to October) are accompanied with scanty rains and also temperature drops down to 15°C.


The Badri-Kedar festival, held at the sacred shrines of Badrinath and Kedarnath in the month of June is an attempt to bring together some of the finest artists of the country who perform in the praise of the Almighty.

On the day of Mata Murti Ka Mela in the month of September, the mother of Shri Badrinathji is worshipped, and a large fair held at the Badrinath Temple. According to Hindu mythology, when the Ganga River descended on earth, she diversified into twelve channels. The place where the River flowed became the abode of Lord Vishnu, the holy land of Badrinath.


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