Best Places in Rishikesh– Rishikesh is a holy town in northern India with so numerous Ashrams and it is widely famous for practicing Yoga overlooking the mighty Ganga. Rishikesh is now a world famous as a Yoga Capital of the world. Read out my blog post on the best places to visit in Rishikesh.
WHY GO RISHIKESH?
Unlike other cities in India, Rishikesh is something extraordinary and undoubtedly a beautiful place on Earth. In this hectic lives where people have forgotten to breathe and lost a sense of inner calm, you need to practice Yoga and buying a ticket to Rishikesh is a solution as the place is known as Yoga Capital of the World for reasons. Not only Yoga while the adventure is out there as Rishikesh offers a whole range of water sports and activities for the travellers of any age.
RISHIKESH POPULAR TOURIST PLACES
Life in Rishikesh revolves around the fast-flowing water of Ganges, full of Yoga and meditation centers, and a host of water sports and activities around the city take full advantage of it. Here are the most popular tourist places in Rishikesh. Suggested to check out my comprehensive guide written on Rishikesh tourism. I am sure, you will love it.
ONLY BEST RISHIKESH STAYS
Finding the best stays in Rishikesh at the best price & comfortable stays is what you should look for. If you are looking for backpacking premium hostel in Rishikesh, I would recommend checking out these great hostels and book your stay.
Looking for the best resorts in Rishikesh? check out my exclusive article on choosing your best resorts in Rishikesh and then decide on selecting one for you.
#1 LAKSHMAN JHULA, RAM JHULA – THE SWINGING BRIDGES
Get into the swing of things on these suspension bridges across the river Ganges which are located 2.5km to each other. Both the bridges are the glory of Rishikesh and one of the main tourist attractions in the town. Tourists witness the most scenic views from the bridges as these are made over the Ganges surrounded by mountains and temples. Ram Jhula was built later than the Lakshman Jhula but quite similar in design and extremely captivating.
#2 PARMARTH NIKETAN – DEDICATED TO WELFARE OF ALL
Located in Swargashram in Rishikesh, Parmarth Niketan is an abode ornamented with beautiful gardens and provides a facility of over 1000 rooms equipped with the modern amenities. The daily activities here include Yoga sessions, meditation classes, morning prayers, and evening Satsang, lecture programs. The ashram is home to a divine tree Kalpavriksha and a 14ft statue of Lord Shiva meditating on the Ganges.
Food for the hungry, medicine for the sick, education for the illiterate, housing for the homeless and hope for the downtrodden — Parmarth aims to serve the needy in whatever capacity possible.
If you would like to make a reservation to stay at the ashram, please click here –
#3 SHIVPURI – LET’S BE ADVENTURERS
The town of Shivpuri is situated 18km from the city center and boasts a lot of ashrams and temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is the spot where almost all the rafting and camping activities start. The most common rafting routes start from Shivpuri which cover exciting rapids to experience, stunning locations to put up your tents and scenic views surrounded by the mountains which capture the complete attention of travellers.
Book your rafting plus camping in advance, and you will be picked up at their booking office and carry you to the starting point in Shivpuri on their vehicle. Safety is a cheap and effective insurance policy, so you ensure the excellent safety standards and availability of well-trained guides on the adventure you book.
Life is an adventure. It ain’t a package tour. It’s true but not always.
#4. BEATLES ASHRAM IN RISHIKESH – AN EXPERIENCE
Located in the foothills of the Himalayas and close enough to reach by walking from Parmarth Niketan, Beatles Ashram, locally known as Chaurasi Kutia became famous after Beatles (the most influential English rock band formed in 1960) visited this International Academy of Meditation in 1967. They came here to know about Maharishi Mahesh Yogi who was a spiritual Guru and the founder of the Ashram and known for developing Transcendental Meditation technique, a form of silent mantra meditation.
The graffiti, the entire hermitage, its ruins, Ved Bhawan also known as Beatles Cathedral and the dome-shaped architecture are all fantastic and amazingly memorable if you’re a fan of Beatles.
The ashram opens from 10 AM to 5 PM and the tickets to the park cost Rs.100 per head for Indians and Rs.600 for foreigners.
#5 TRIVENI GHAT – BEST TO ENJOY EVENING IN RISHIKESH
Situated at the bans of Ganges, Triveni Ghat is an excellent place to take ritual baths and experience the most beautiful Ganga Aarti which is why the spot always remains overcrowded. At a distance of around 12km from Lakshman Jhula, the Ghat has the confluence of three rivers; the Ganges, Yamuna and Saraswati River as it has the power to purify the soul.
It is believed that Lord Krishna visited this Ghat when got hurt by an arrow of a hunter named Jara. Come and see this religious place to get your inner peace.
The Gita Mandir and Lakshminarayan Temple are the main attractions in the surrounding of Triveni Ghat. There is a market at which people gather to buy precious stones, jewelry, clothes, Hindu Puja items, ornaments and miscellaneous.
#6 TRAYAMBAKESHWAR – FOR PRICELESS BLESSINGS
One of the sacred temples in Rishikesh, this place of worship is mainly dedicated to Lord Shiva as the name ‘Trayambakeshwar’ means ‘the House of the three-eyed.’ It also enshrines idol of various Hindu deities in its thirteen storeys which attracts the pilgrims visiting the town. Founded by Adi Guru Shankaracharya in the 12th century and situated near the Lakshman Jhula, this ancient temple is the most photographed destination in Rishikesh.
The temple opens at 6 in the morning till 12 noon and reopens at 2 PM till 7 in the evening so plan your visit accordingly. If you are heading to Rishikesh during the festival of Maha Shivratri, you must add Trayambakeshwar Temple in the travel itinerary you designed.
#7 VASHISHTHA CAVE – SOMETHING ANCIENT AND SACRED
According to Hindu mythology, Vashishtha is believed to have lived, meditated on the banks of River Ganga, and the holy abode is known as Vashishtha Cave (Gufa). The Guru of Lord Rama, Vashishtha is the oldest, most revered and one of the Saptarishis (seven great Rishis) of India.
The cave is located around 19km from Rishikesh and 6km from Shivpuri on the Rishikesh Badrinath Highway near Swami Purushottamanda Ashram which is properly managed by Swami Purushottamanda Trust. It houses the Shiva Temple and least known place but popular among travellers who come for meditation in Rishikesh. The premises has another cave named Arundhati Cave as Vashishtha was married to Arundhati, and therefore he was called Arundhati Nath.
It opens from 9 AM to 12 PM and 3 PM to 6 PM and can be visited throughout the year.
#8 SIVANANDA ASHRAM – THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY
In 1936, Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj established the Sivananda Ashram to work for the spiritual uplift of mankind and to bring peace and bliss to every home. Located at a distance of 2.5km from Lakshman Jhula, the Ashram’s Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy offers a wide range of programs include two-month Yoga course thrice a year (March to April, May to June, September to October) which aims to provide training to enable in the endeavour to blossom into integrated personalities.
This remarkable achievement of creating the Divine Life Society has built up a splendid mansion of purity and integrity which make it a delightful destination among travellers.
TIPS FOR TRAVELLING TO RISHIKESH
Here are some points to keep in mind while travelling to Rishikesh –
- Carry woolen clothes, blanket or sleeping bag, gloves, and socks/shoes to keep yourself warm at nights as the temperature gets dropped with the dusk.
- Bargain like a pro when exploring Rishikesh because there is no harm to learn to haggle while travelling. Meet the Real Sadhus of Rishikesh but do not indulge yourself with their activities.
- Do carry your identity cards such as Passport, Aadhar Card or any valid identity proof to make your trip a hassle-free.
- Keep a first-aid kit with some common medicines and essentials while travelling Rishikesh as the town is located in the Himalayan foothills so you might face difficulty in finding a doctor there.
- The most convenient way to travel Rishikesh is to hire a two-wheeler and explore all the places you have chosen to visit in the town or nearby.
- Get an idea about the camp location before hitting the road if you are going to book camping plus rafting online.
- Do not keep any bottle of booze with you as it has been prohibited as this may make you poorer by some bucks.
- Reduce plastic waste while travelling by bringing a reusable water bottle, Tupperware and you can say no to polythene bags to contribute to creating a Plastic-Free Future.
- Keep cash instead of debit or credit cards as there are ATMs but not in sufficient numbers you may face difficulties if they go cashless.
- Do not be excessively confident while involving in any adventure activity in Rishikesh and always follow your instructor.
FEELING HUNGRY IN RISHIKESH?
Started in 1958, Chotiwala Restaurant is the most popular eatery in Rishikesh which offers a variety of delicacies with a warm welcome. Heading to a riverside restaurant near Lakshman Jhula – Little Buddha Cafe would be the most delightful addition to your trip.
The Ganga Beach Restaurant provides a beautiful ambience with tasty food options and also, Ramana’s Organic Cafe offers a healthy organic meal, and a menu includes vegan-friendly cuisines, Lacto, International, Ovo, Organic, Western, Salad bar. Many good options are there in Rishikesh such as Honey Hut, Tulsi Restaurant, Oasis Restaurant and Freedom Cafe to satiate your food cravings.
Eat well. Travel often.
MOST POPULAR TRIPS NEAR RISHIKESH TO GIFT YOURSELF
Distance from Rishikesh: 20km
Best Time to Travel: March to April, October to November
Haridwar is one of the popular Hindi pilgrimage sites in India, known as the Gateway to God which is located on the banks of River Ganges. Haridwar and Rishikesh are called Twin National Heritage Cities in India attracting a lot of tourists from all around the world who visit both the places in one go due to distance and popularity.
Easily accessible from Rishikesh, Haridwar is a land of salvation which boasts a gamut of Hindu temples and Yoga centers. Har Ki Pauri is the most revered place in Haridwar where people take holy baths, and witness Evening Aarti starts at 6’o clock around.
Distance from Rishikesh: 50km
Best Time to Travel: March to June
Dehradun is the capital of Uttarakhand and nestled between the Himalayan foothills, which offers magnificent scenery. The city is not only known for its natural resources, but it has some spectacular tourist places such as Sahastradhara, Tiger Falls, Robber’s Cave, Mindrolling Monastery, Tapkeshwar Temple, Tapovan, Forest Research Institute, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Lachhiwala, Malsi Deer Park, and Paltan Bazaar.
Jolly Grant Airport, located in Dehradun is the main airport of Uttarakhand, so this makes it quite feasible for the tourists to reach and explore nearby places.
District: Tehri Garhwal
Distance from Rishikesh: 70km
Best Time to Travel: April to October
Dhanaulti is a hill station that takes 2.5 hours from Rishikesh to replenish your spirit.
I included Dhanaulti in the list intentionally, and I tell you why. A small, quiet and captivating town is perfect for doing nothing without guilty because sometimes you need more space to breathe rather than more things to do.
It offers a glorious panoramic view of the Himalayas and house of oak trees which makes you happy if things are not perfect now. The weather is pleasant, and the place is less crowded and devoid of luxury hotels and modern restaurants. The popular tourist attractions are Surkanda Devi Temple, Eco Park, and Apple Orchid Resort.
District: Pauri Garhwal
Distance from Rishikesh: 101km
Best Time to Travel: March to June
The most unusual and quiet hill station in Uttarakhand, Lansdowne is a blend of peace and tranquillity. The Army Cantonment Board regulates the town and its development.
Business Standard Motoring magazine – “Lansdowne is one of the quietest hill stations in India, quiet and so well hidden that you only realize you’re there when you turn past the gates of the elegant Gadhwal Rifles Cantonment.”
HolidayIQ.com says, “You won’t find much of popular tourism here, and it is as if the town intends to preserve its local charm and sanctity.”
State: Himachal Pradesh
Distance from Rishikesh: 275km
Best Time to Travel: March to June, October to December
The Queen of Hills – Shimla is a popular holiday-retreat built over several hills and tops the list of honeymoon destinations in India. The town offers a variety of attractions and entertainment opportunities for every kind of tourists. Heavy snowfall in December and January, a multitude of activities and green meadows entice the tourists to spend your days and create amazing Shimla memories.
The top tourist places to visit in Shimla are Shimla Ridge, Annandale, Jakhu Hill, Mall Road, Christ Church, Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Summer Hill, Shimla State Museum and Kufri.
Distance from Rishikesh: 80km
Best Time to Travel: April to October
A fascinating hill station which offers a magical view of Himalayan snow ranges, Mussoorie has a list of delightful tourist places like Kempty Falls, Lal Tibba, Happy Valley, Bhatta Falls, Camel’s Back Road, Gun Hill, Christ Church, Mussoorie Lake, Sir George Everest’s House, Lake Mist and Jwalaji Temple.
A visit to Cambridge Book Store may excite you meeting Ruskin Bond, a well known Indian author who comes here regularly. FastTrack Gaming Cafe is an entrainment spot installed with the latest gaming consoles for kids in Mall Road.
Distance from Rishikesh: 251km
Best Time to Travel: April to June
A famous, charming and lake district of India, Nainital is surrounded by mountains on all sides. Nakki Lake is a major tourist attraction and the most beautiful you cannot imagine from a distance. Tourists decide to go boating on Nakki Lake, explore the beauty of the city from Tiffin Top, buy souvenirs at Mall and Barra Bazaar and trek to the highest peak in the region Naina Peak because as a hill station Nainital has everything you could ask for.
The mountains of Nainital are calling, and you must go.
JIM CORBETT NATIONAL PARK
Distance from Rishikesh: 130km
Best Time to Travel: November to June
The magical landscape of Corbett, famous for its tiger richness is one of the oldest and prestigious national park divided into five different zones for wildlife safari which offers the way to discover the wilderness. Bijrani and Dhikala Zone are the best two zones in the park to visit for tiger sightseeing. Situated around 300km from Delhi, Ramnagar town is a connecting point to the park which is 15km far from Ramnagar Railway Station and well-connected to all major cities.
The safari prices start from Rs.4500 per Jeep for Indians and Rs.7500 for foreigners. In case, you opt for Canter Safari, Rs.1500 per person for Indians and Rs.3000 per person for foreigners.
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