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Rishikesh is known as the World Yoga and Meditation centre. Located in the Dehradun District of Indian state Uttarakhand. Located in the foothills of Himalaya is the gateway of Himalaya and Chardham.
The literal meaning of Rishikesh or Hrishikesh is Hrishik means Senses and ish means master or Lord. Hence the word means Lord of Senses or Lord Vishnu. The place gets its name after Lord Vishnu who appeared to ‘Raibhya Rishi’,as a result of his tapasya (austerities), as Lord Hrishikesh. Rishikesh is the land of Sadhus (Sage), Ashram, Vedanta and the best place for Yoga and Meditation. Located on River Ganges. Shivananda Nagar the home of Sivananda Ashram and the Divine Life Society founded by Swami Sivananda, north of Rishikesh; the temple section of Lakshman Jhula, a little further north; and the assorted Ashrams around Swarg Ashram on the east bank. The Ganga Aarti performed at dusk at the Triveni Ghat is popular with visitors. Neelakanta Maha Deva Temple (or, ‘Neelkanth Mahadev Temple’), situated 28 km from Rishikesh, amidst forest is also a popular local pilgrimage, along with ‘Vasishtha Guha’, (Cave of sage Vasishtha), 21 km up from the town by the Ganges.
It is believed that meditation in Rishikesh brings one closer to attainment of moksha, as does a dip in the holy river that flows through it. Rishikesh is world famous for Rafting and Adventure. Rafting season starts from the month of March and ends in September.
Rishikesh is also home to the 120-year old Kailas Ashram Brahmavidyapeetham, an institution dedicated to preserve and promote the traditional Vedantic Studies. Prominent personalities such as Swami Vivekananda, Swami Rama Tirtha and Swami Shivananda have studied in this institution.
In February 1968, The Beatles visited the now-closed Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram in Rishikesh. John Lennon recorded a song titled, ‘The Happy Rishikesh Song’. The Beatles composed nearly 48 songs during their time at the Maharishi’s ashram,many of which appear on the White Album. Several other artists, including Mike Love and Donovan, visited the site to contemplate and meditate. Former royal palace of the Maharaja of Tehri Garhwal at nearby Narendra Nagar, now houses the Ananda–In the Himalayas destination spa and yoga retreat, estb. 2000.
Rishikesh is also popular for adventure activities like White Water River Rafting, Bungee Jumping the first of its kind in India. It is also a center for hiking and backpacking.
How to reach:
By Air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grand Airport Dehradun which is 29 kms away from Rishikesh. The nearest International Airport is Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhli which is 240 kms away.
By Rail: Rishikesh railway station is linked to all cities in India. There are regular train facilities from Rishikesh to cities like Jammu (Hemkunt Exp), Delhi (Del-Rishikesh Pass), Haridwar (Rishikesh Haridwar Pass) and may other cities located close by. The main station near tp Rishikesh is HAridwar which lies at a distance of 26 kms.
By Road: The city is well linked with almost all the major town like Dehradun, New Delhi, Jammu, Agra, Moradabad. The city is also the gateway of Chardham.
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