Located on the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh 214km from Delhi is the holy city of Haridwar.
Haridwar or “the Gateway to the Gods” is listed among the seven holiest places according to Hindu mythology. Believed to be a place where the Hindu gods left their footprints, Haridwar’s geographical location also makes it a major thoroughfare to the three other important pilgrimages of Uttrakhand namely, Rishikesh, Badrinath, and Kedarnath.
One of the oldest and holiest pilgrim centers of India, also plays host to more than eight million devotees during the Kumbh melas or the Hindu show of faith by taking a dip in the Ganges which is believed to cleanse and purify their souls.
Haridwar is also known by the names of Mayapuri, Gangadwar, and Mokshadwar in the ancient scriptures and epics.
Haridwar is one of the first towns where Ganga emerges from the mountains to touch the planes. And that’s why the water is crystal clear and cool. Lush green forests and small ponds add to the scenic beauty of this holy land.
The Rajaji National Park is just 10 kilometers from Haridwar. It;s an ideal destination for wild life and adventure lovers. In the evening the ghats look breathtakingly beautiful as thousands of diyas (lamps) and marigold flowers float and illuminate the holy waters.
Constructed by the King Vikramaditya in memory of his brother Bhatrihari, this sacred ghat is ond of the venues of the Ganga aarti ceremony. The golden reflection of the floral diyas on the river Ganges during twilight can be one of the most enchanting sights of India.
Temples of Chandi Devi and Chandi Ghat
Set atop the Neel Parvat on the other bank of the river Ganges, Chandi Devi was constructed in AD 1929 by then Kashmir King Suchat Singh. Chandi Ghat, on the other hand, is located about 3km away. It is believed that the Adi Shankaracharya established the main statue in 8th century AD. The Chandi Devi Temple is now also accessible by a ropeway which starts near the Gauri Shankar Temple.
Tourists visiting the Bilwa Parvat may want to take a peek at the temple dedicated to the goddess Mansa Devi located on top of Bilwa Parvat. Tourists can also enjoy a very panoramic view of Haridwar, the Ganges, and the countryside from the temple.
Gurukul Kangadi University
Situated on the Haridwar-Jwalapur bypass road, the Gurukul Kangadi University is considered to be a center for traditional Indian studies. The University also houses the Ved Mandir which features many archaeological exhibits.
Other places around Haridwar that are well-worth a visit are the Bharat Mata Temple, Maya Devi temple, Bhimgoda, and Shanti Kunj.