Badrinath Temple – One of the Holiest Dham in India

Badrinath Temple

Badrinath Temple

Holy Badrinath Temple, one of the Char (four) Dham (pilgrimage centre) in India, is the temple of Lord Vishnu in Uttarakhand. Nestled in the lap of Himalayan mountain ranges, this colourful temple stands with the river Alakananda flowing on its front and the magnificent peak Neelkantha, also known as ‘Garhwal Queen’ on its back.  Just imagine, there you are, at one of the most popular pilgrimage sites in India, the Badrinath Temple!

Badrinath Valley

Badrinath Valley

A small valley town, Badrinath, is located between two Himalayan mountain ranges, Nar and Narayan. The river Alakananda flows right through middle of the town. Badrinath is one of the holiest places in India, one of the Char Dham, the other being Puri, Dwarka and Rameshwaram.

It was already late in the afternoon and was drizzling when we reached Badrinath town. We were there in late August and by that time of the season, number of pilgrims were less in Badrinath. So getting accommodation was not difficult at all for us.  There are many hotels and ashrams in Badrinath which offer decent accommodation but no deluxe kind of thing. In this pilgrimage destination, one gets only vegetarian foods.

Badrinath Temple on the right bank of river Alakananda

Badrinath Temple on the right bank of river Alakananda

After the lunch, we went to the temple. Situated on the right bank of river Alakananda, the colourful temple of Badrinath was visible from far. We reached the temple and saw pilgrims were entering the temple after taking a holy dip in the ‘Tapt Kund’ which locates next to the temple. A Tapt Kund is a natural hot water pool fed by sulphur spring. The bathing area of the kund has arrangements separate for men and women.

Tapt Kund next to the Temple

Tapt Kund next to the Temple

Mens' bathing area in Tapt Kund

Mens’ bathing area in Tapt Kund

We saw no crowd at the entrance gate of the temple. The main entrance gate, called “Singha-Dwar”, is colourful and an imposing one. It is a tall temple with round dome adorning a glided roof. Happy seeing fewer crowds in the temple, we entered through the colourful “Singha-Dwar”.

Singha-Dwar, the entrance gate of Badrinath Temple

Singha-Dwar, the entrance gate of Badrinath Temple

In the sanctum sanctorum, we saw the image of Lord Badrinarayan made of black stone. Then we saw the devotees singing prayers in the Sabha  Mandap (assembly place for devotees). Photography is strictly prohibited inside the temple but it did not come to my notice and I had already clicked a picture of Sabha Mandap by the time all the devotees started shouting.

Devotees singing prayer at Shabha Mandap

Devotees singing prayer at Shabha Mandap

Lord Vishnu as Badrinarayan or Badrivishal, resides on the banks of Alakananda river on the Garhwal hill where every year more than ten lakhs pilgrims visit this holy shrine. Though this holy shrine is located in Northern India, the head priest is traditionally a Nambudari Brhmin from Kerala.

The daily rituals at the temple starts at early morning, around 4 – 4.30 am with abhishek puja and closes at around 8.30-9 pm with shayan aarti. The temple remains close for visitors’ Darshan between 12pm to 3 pm. Due to the extreme weather conditions in the region; Badrinath Temple remains open only for six months from end of April to the beginning of November.

Besides Badrinath temple, there are many attractions in and around Badrinath Valley. You can go for a short trek to Charan Paduka which is believed to be the foot prints of Lord Vishnu that lies on the way to the towering Neelkantha peak behind the temple. Mana, the last Indian village on this region before the Chinese border is only at a distance of three kilometers from Badrinath. From Mana, one can take a short trek to the spectacular Vasudhara falls which locates 5 kms from Mana.

How to Get There

The road to Badrinath starts from Rishikesh, the nearest Railway head which locates at a distance of 297 Kms. The distance remains almost the same if you select Dehradun to be your choice of Railway station or nearest airport which is 314 km away from Badrinath.

Badrinath Temple - Night View

Badrinath Temple – Night View

Even if you are not a religious person but a nature lover, Badrinath valley is the place which you should visit once. So get ready and gear up for your next journey into the Himalayas, to the holiest shrine of India, Badrinath. The imposing Garhwal queen Neelkantha peak, Mana Village, river Sarswati, Vasudhara falls, Badrinath temple and the valley will certainly occupy your memory for long.

11 Comments

  • V RAMACHA DRAN says:

    I had visited Sri Bhadri twenty years before. So much buildings were not there. Even Restaurants were a few.The Golden look of Neelkant Parvath was very beautiful. It was God’s blessing I could visit Sri Bhadri.

  • Arun Singh says:

    ????? ??,

    ?? ??? ???? ????? ??????? ?? ?????? ?? ??? ??, ???? ?? ?????????? ?? ???? ??? ????? ?? ?????? ?? ??, ???? ????? ?? ????? ??? ??-?? ?????? ????? ?? ???

    ?? ??????? ????? ?? ????? ??? ????? ???? ?? ??? ????????

    ??????
    ????

  • Archana Ravichander says:

    Crisp and informative..
    Salutations to the almighty and thanks to you for touring us in the holy kshetra of Badrinath.

    Best.

  • urbi banerjee says:

    the post is very beautiful. hi sir,, I’m also a Bengali.. I also like to travel specially in Himalaya region. its great to visit “badri bisal” for at least one time in life. thank you for the beautiful and informative post. I am hoping for more posts…..

  • SANTANU says:

    Dear Anupam,
    Dil nehi bhara dada. You wrote it in a hurry, as it seems. Because most of your previous posts gave us a detail story of your journey, the atmosphere, the surroundings, the people everything. Yeh dil maange more. I am commenting so much because I am your admirer. And only 8 photos. Otherwise, it is crisp. Thank you for this log.
    Regards
    Santanu

  • Nandan Jha says:

    And let me put my request behind Santanu Da as well. It finished too soon.

    But as of your any post, the pictures are simply amazing. And yes, all of us can see that they are stopping you from shooting, inside the temple. Though I do not understand on why they do this.

    Never been there, may be someday.

  • Pooja Kataria says:

    Dear Anupam, what a splendid but short post! Though I should not be complaining since I am yet to write my first post here. :p Have been a reader of your posts for almost two years now. And, as always they are well put and decorated with nice photographs.

    Cheers!

  • Ramta Jogi says:

    Signature photographs Anupam.!!
    I think you didn’t explore Vashudhara Fall & Bhimshila in Vicinity of Mana, else there would have a lot of splendid pics in this box .

  • Uday Baxi says:

    Dear Anupam

    Good to see that you had gone to Badrinath. Good pictures as usual.

    Regards

  • Dear friends, I am sorry for my delayed response. Dear Nandan, please fix the technical fault so that I receive all comments in my email. I will be then prompt in my response. Thank you everyone for your encouraging comments. Well, next time I will keep it little long :-) @ Ramta Jogi, I did visit Vasudhara falls and Bheemshila but not included about them in this post. Thank you all once again!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.