This is a wonderful opportunity to discover India’s spiritual richness and breathtaking beauty.
On this wonder-filled 17-day pilgrimage and yatra, we visit 4 of India’s main pilgrimage temples in the Himalayas (char dham yatra), stay at Chinmaya Mission’s ashram in Uttarkashi, visit some other wonderful sites and wander the Himalayas with Swamini Amritananda. There will be teachings and meditation interspersed throughout the journey and some of the most stunning scenery that you will ever come across.
Commencing from Delhi on 29th September 2018.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 – 29th September : Delhi

Arrive in Delhi any time day. We have a group meeting in the early evening, before proceeding to Chinmaya Ashram to receive a blessing for the tour.

Day 2 – 30th September : Delhi – Rishikesh

After breakfast we have a short flight to Rishikesh, where we have a guided walk along the Ganges followed by a wonderful Ganga aarti ceremony at sunset.

Day 3 – 1st October : Rishikesh – Barkot

Today after breakfast, we drive to Barkot. This is an ideal destination to stay for visitors to Yamunotri, It is situated 45 Kms before Yamunotri temple, where paranomic views of the Bandarpunch Peaks can be seen.

Day 4 – 2nd October : Barkot – Yamunotri – Barkot

This morning we drive to Janki Chatti to start our 6klm trek to Yamunotri. You have an option to either walk, hire a Pony or by Doli. After bathing in Surya Kund (hot spring) visit Yamunotri temple for Darshan and Puja of “Yamunaji” at Divya Shila, before returning to our accommodation.

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Yamunotri is the source of the Yamuna River and the seat of the Goddess Yamuna, regarded as a daughter of the Sun God, Surya Dev. The Temple is situated in an exhilarating location in the foothills of Garhwal mountain ranges and is 3290 metres above sea level. It proffers picturesque surroundings with beautiful flora, lush meadows and gushing streams. The walking trail is magnificent, with awesome views of craggy peaks and thick forest.

Day 5 & 6 – 3rd & 4th October : Barkot – Gangotri

After breakfast, we proceed to Gangotri, enjoying the very pictures- que Harsil valley, Bhagirathi River and magnificent Himalayan views as we drive along.
At Gangotri we have Puja and Darshan of Goddess Gangotri. This Temple is one of the holiest places in India. Near the source of the Ganges, the shrine is dedicated to the origin of Hinduism’s most sacred river.

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Along the right bank of Bhagirathi stands the sanctum of Gangotri devoted to the Goddess.

We also visit an elderly swami and some yogis, meditate on the banks of the river in the early morning and undertake a gentle trek on the path towards Gaumukh and Tapovan.

Day 7 – 5th October : Gangotri – Uttarkashi

After breakfast and a river puja, enjoy some free time in this very picturesque mountain abode. After lunch, we drive to the sacred town of Uttarkashi. Here we stay at Chinmaya Mission ashram.

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Day 8 and 9 – 6th and 7th October : Uttarkashi

While staying at this peaceful ashram overlooking the Bhagirathi River,
We will visit the town including Anandamayi ashram and Kashi Vishwanath Temple as well as enjoying ashram activities. You can also take a dip in the holy river if you are game!

Day 10 – 8th October : Uttarkashi – Guptkashi

After breakfast, enjoy the scenic drive to Guptkashi.

Day 11 – 9th October : Guptkashi

Today we are transferred by helicopter to and from Kedarnath Temple for Puja and Darshan of Lord Shiva.

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Tucked at the base of 6970m peaks, 22km from the nearest road, Kedarnath is in the most dramatic location of any of the char dham temples. The 1000-year old Kedarnath Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It has a carved exterior and is located in a courtyard protected by Nandi (Shiva’s bull). This place has great significance in the legendary Mahabharata epic where the Pandavas were said to have pleased Lord Shiva by doing penance and building the temple. Inside the main sanctum is one of the 12 naturally formed ‘Jyotirlingas’ of India. The temple has carved shapes of the Pandavas and Lord Shiva.

Day 12 – 10th October : Guptkashi – Badrinath

Today after breakfast, we drive to Badrinath where we stay for 2 nights. The scenery in these mountains is totally stunning, making our travel very rewarding. In the early evening, witness the aarti ceremony at the temple.

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Badrinath temple – It is said that Badrinath and the surrounding areas abound in spiritual treasures. And sacred legends. Badrinath is sacred to Lord Vishnu, particularly in His dual form of Nara-Narayan.
The vividly painted temple was founded by Adi Guru Shri Shankaracharya in the 8th century and is considered as one of the holiest Hindu temples and is also one of the 108 Divya Desams, sacred holy places for Vaishnavites.

Day 13 – 11th October : Badrinath

After bathing in the Tapt-kund (hot sulfur spring), we visit & have Darshan at Badrivishal. Brahama-kamal is significant for Pinddan Shraddh of ancestors (Pitrus). There are other interesting places like Mana Village, Vyas Gufa, Maatamoorti, Bhimkund and the “Mukh” of the Saraswati River all within three klms of Badrinath. We visit these in the late afternoon.

Bhimpul Bridge, according to myth, was built by Bhima during the period of the Mahabharata.

5000-year-old Vyas & Ganesh-Gufa are situated in Mana, alongside numerous different caverns. It is accepted that in this cavern Vyasa directed his acclaimed epic of Mahabharata to Ganesh.

Day 14 – 12th October: Badrinath – Joshimath

This morning, we enjoy breathtaking views as we drive to Joshimath.
Joshimath is perched at an elevation of 2000m above sea level and is surrounded by snowcapped Himalayan Ranges. It is a revered site for Hindus and is home to numerous temples. Joshimath is one of the four maths founded by Adi Guru Sri Shankaracharya during the 8th century. This math is devoted to the sacred Hindu text called the Atharva Veda. On arrival, we visit some wonderful nearby places.

Day 15 – 13th October : Joshimath – Rishikesh

After breakfast, we return to Rishikesh. This is a stunning scenic drive with a stop on the way to visit Devprayag, where 2 rivers meet to form the Ganges.

Day 16 – 14th October : Rishikesh

After a visit to the Shivananda Ashram, the rest of the day is free to enjoy this lovely town. Attend a sunset aarti in the late afternoon.

Day 17 – 15th October : Rishikesh – Chandigarh

Today is the completion of our wonderful journey. After a brief flight back to Delhi, you can depart for home or continue on to Chinmaya Mission’s ashram at Sidhabari for a few days. Other options include a guided tour of Delhi, a day trip to the Taj Mahal (arranged by request) or extra days in Rishikesh.

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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The yatra includes all accommodation, all road transport, 2 domestic flights, helicopter ride, tours and entrance fees as mentioned, local guides, many meals (approx. 2 per day) and Chinmaya Mission donations.

Swamini Amritanandaji is based at Chinmaya Mission, Nelson, New Zealand.
Price $3790 per person twin share. Single supplement $950
For more information or booking, email – mela@touchofspirittours.com.au