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Kedarnath - abode of the gods OR Spirituality and Unbridled Beauty

DISTANCE - 223 KM From Rishikesh, 70 KM From Deoprayag, 35KM From Shrinagar, 34 KM From Rudraprayag

By Air : Jolly grant (Dehradun)-239 km away from Kedarnath of which 225 km is by road and rest 14 km is on foot.

By Rail : Railhead at Rishikesh, 221 km away of which 207 km is by road and the rest 14 km is on foot. Railhead at Kotdwara, 250 km away, of which 236 km is by road and rest 14 km is on foot.

By Road : Kedarnath is approachable on footfrom Gaurikund, which is connected by road with Rishikesh, Kotdwara, Dehradun, Haridwar and other important hill stations of Garhwal and Kumaon Hills.
Kedarnath city of temple is a Hindu holy town located in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. It is a nagar panchayat in Rudraprayag district. Kedarnath is located in the Himalayas, about 3584m above sea level near the origin of river Mandakini, and is flanked by breathtaking snow-capped peaks. Kedarnath hosts one of the holiest Hindu temples and is a popular destination for Hindu pilgrims from all over the world.

Kedarnath is accessible only after a steep 14 km trek through a paved path (horses or palanquins are available for rent) from Gaurikund, which is connected by road from Rishikesh, Haridwar, Dehradun and other important hill stations of the Garhwal and Kumaon regions in Uttarakhand. The temple is open only during the months of April/May (on Akshaya Trithiya) to October/November (closes on Diwali - festival of light), due to heavy snowfall and extreme cold weather during winter.

Kedar is another name of Lord Shiva, and the name for the stone rounded by year’s long travel in Ganga (Ganges River). In all there are over 200 shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva in the Chamoli district itself, the most important surely being Kedarnath. Kedarnath is also one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva.
The Temple : The present temple of Kedarnath was built by Adi Guru Shankaracharya in 8th century adjacent to the site where Pandavas had built a temple. It is a mighty structure standing in the middle of a plateau with snow covered peaks on the periphery. The temple is believed to be more then 1000 years old. The architecture of the temple is exquisite, the walls are embellished with scenes from mythological stories and images of deities.

In the sanctorum of the temple is the conical lingam that is mainly considered Shiva in his Sadashiva form. The temple also has a 'Garbha Griha' for assemblies and a 'Mandap' for gatherings. Large slabs of grey stones form the temple, it is a matter of surprise that such a structure was built so many years ago without any technology.

Shankaracharya Samadhi : Behind the Kedarnath Temple lies the final resting place or Samadhi of Guru Shankaracharya. According to Hindu Mythology, it is believed that at an early age of 32 years after establishing the char dhams in India, he went for his Samadhi.

Chorabari (Gandhi Sarover) : According to Hindu Legends, Gandhi Sarovar is a small lake from where Yudhishthir, you take enjoy camping at himalaya hills the eldest of the Pandavas is believed to have moved to heaven. The floating ice on the sparkling waters is an amazing sight that attracts tourists from all over the country and abroad.

Vasuki Tal : This is a beautiful lake six kilometres from Kedarnath. Set in a picturesque setting, the clear waters of the lake are surrounded by lofty hills from all sides.

Gaurikund : The trekking to Kedarnath begins from Gaurikund, 14 kilometres from here. There is a temple dedicated to Gauri, wife of lord Shiva here. Also in the vicinity are thermal springs believed to be infused with medicinal properties. It is believed that Gauri had meditated at this place.

Soneprayag : This is the meeting place of two important Himalayan rivers, river Son Ganga and river Mandakini. The place is twenty kilometres from Kedarnath.

Triyuginarayan : Twenty five kilometres from Kedarnath is this revered place which was witness to Lord Shiva tying knot with Goddess Parvati. The eternal Flame which burns here even today is said to have been the witness to their marriage.

Deoria Tal : Sari Village on the Chopta-Ukhimath road is the last bus terminus from where a 2 km trek leads to Deoria lake. Situated at an altitude of 2348 meters, this beautiful lake gives the spectacular reflection of the snow capped mountains in the lake water. If you are a nature lover then this is the right choice.

The ideal time or peak season to go for a KEDARNATH Yatra is from May to October, except monsoons., which is prone to heavy snowfall. As a result, all the passage leading to the shrines are blocked. Moreover, during the monsoon season, there is undue threat of having landslides, which can further disrupt the journey. For safety reasons, the gates of the temples are also closed for this period of time and the idols are shifted to nearby pilgrim points.

In summers : Cool during day and cold at night.
In winters : Very cold, about to touching sub zero

Kedarnath Darshan and Pooja Timings : As per the tradition decided by Lord Brahma the temple would be open for six months i.e from hindu calender month Vaishaka to Karthik for darshan to common people. For the remaining six months i.e from Margashsish to Chaitra the temple would be closed for darshan for common people as it is Devas turn for Lord’s darshan. In general the closing month is November and reopening month is April

Badri Kedar Festival : Held in the month of June, nothing could be a perfect manifestation of Hindu religion and culture. The Badri Kedar festival is held in the sacred shrines of Badrinath and Kedarnath in the month of June. The festivities go on for a stretch of eight days. The festival makes an attempt to bring under one platform, the greatest artists of the country.
This holy town witnesses lot of fairs and festivals throughout the year. Being an important Hindu religious site, it joins in the celebration of almost all the major festivals. Some of the major festivals celebrated in Kedarnath are Makar Sankranti, Basant Panchmi, Shivaratri, Holi, Deepawali etc. Badri Kedar festival held in the month of June is a popular local festival. This festival is celebrated for eight days and many artists from all over the country take part in it.

Some of the popular fairs are Mata Murti ka Mela, Nagnath, Sardotsava, Krishan Mela, Ansi Mela, etc. Mata Murti Ka Mela is every held in the month of September. It is a big fair which is organized in the honour of the mother of lord Badrinath.


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