Uttarakhand Devbhoomi is undoubtedly one of the most sacred places for a deep spiritual enlightenment. The sacred Panch Badri Yatra on the hills amidst the deep Himalayan beauty allows you to have one of the most deeply devotional time. The exhilarating surroundings and the lush greenery takes you on the journey of a lifetime to the remarkable, scenic and extremely highly revered places of Vishnu worship. These temples form one of the most spiritually awakening pilgrimages in the entire Indian subcontinent and is undertaken by Vaishnavites and devout Hindus at least once in a lifetime.
If you are someone with a spiritual bent of mind or are looking to spend your holidays on the hills steeped in spiritualism then here is everything you will need to know about the Panch Badri Yatra.
Panch Badri Temples:
Originally the number of these badri temples were 7 however only 5 of them are significant. Here are the 5 temples that make up for the entire panch badri yatra:
Badri Vishal or Badrinath
This has to be one of the most sacred Divya Desams in all over the world. perched within the holy pilgrimage district of Chamoli and lined by the holy river of Alaknanda from one end Badrinath temple’s presiding deity is worshipped in the form of Lord Badri. This colourful and serene temple is easily reachable and forms not only an important part of the Chota Char Dham Yatra of Uttarakhand but also the all India Char Dham Yatra which pans across all India and takes you through temples of Rameshwaram, Jagannath temple and Dwarkadheesh temple. Badrinath has earned its place for being a legendary and an iconic symbol of religion and spiritualism.
How to Reach
Badrinath can be easily reached by road and starting your journey from the gateway to the Garhwal hills in Rishikesh. There are several taxi services and state run buses heading for Badrinath. Roadways is the most convenient ways of getting to Badri Vishal.
Places to Visit
There are several places for people to visit around Badrinath Dham which is generally covered during a trip to Badrinath. These holy places include sites like, Vasudhara Falls, Mana Village (last village of India between the Indo Tibetan border, Vyas and Ganesh Gufa, Bheem Shila etc.
Located within the sacred village of Pandukeshwar and in close proximity to the villages of Hanuman chatti and Govind Ghat this ancient sacred temple is where Vishnu is worshipped in the form of a yogi. The village itself is named after the father of the Pandavas and is surrounded by pristine natural Himalayan beauty. this temple remains open throughout the winter months and the idol of lord badri from Badrinath is brought down to this temple for worship. The entire valley where this temple is located is extremely scenic and one of the most picturesque places to be in Uttarakhand.
How to Reach
From Joshimath Yogdhyan Badri is located at and equal distance as till Badrinath. It is also situated at a distance of 18 kms from Joshimath and 23 kms from Badrinath. It can be reached via a shared jeep service or one can even hire a taxi / cab service from Joshimath.
Places to Visit:
There are several scenic places to explore around Yogdhyan Badri for every type of traveller. These sacred sites include Charanpaduka, Saraswati River, charming and glorious trek of Satopanth Tal and others. Joshimath is also a significant pilgrimage town in Uttarakhand and allows you to savour some of the most breath taking vistas which the entire state is blessed with.
Situated within an offbeat pilgrimage village of Subhai located beyond the remarkable lush forest to Tapovan. This sacred and remote Vishnu shrine, which looks very humble, quaint and ancient does not get a lot of visitors but that won’t be the case in the future. This temple is predicted to be the next Badri Vishal after it gets unreachable after the twin mountain peaks of Nar and Narayan implode making it a significant place of worship. The image of lord Narsimha here sits majestically on the pedestal and is worshipped by everyone who makes it a point to visit this place.
How to Reach
Reaching the temple itself is a sure treat however it cannot be reached completely by road. One has to walk up to the temple and the trail takes you through the dense forest cover. Legend has it that this ancient trail used to be one of the ways for getting to kailash mansarovar.
Places to Visit
This holy temple is also located in one of the most scenic of all locations in India. From amazing scenery to soul-stirring magnificence some of these places include Auli. Tapovan, Narsingh Temple, Nanda Devi National Park and even Joshimath. These destinations guarantee natural beauty with adrenaline pumping adventure and fun activities.
Situated within the magnificent village of Animath is the remote part of Devbhoomi Uttarakhand. Located at a close distance of 7 km from the pilgrimage town of Joshimath this Badri worship site is a small and simple temple structure. The ancient temple is named after the sage version of lord Vishnu who had appeared in front of Narad after he had performed intense penance. It is a popular belief that before making Badrinath the Chardham it was here where the idol of Badrinath was placed which was enshrined by Vishwakarma himself. This unique and significant temple remains open throughout the year and people can come here to offer their prayer to the holy lord.
How to Reach
It can easily be visited via a road journey in a cab or a taxi service due to its proximity to the holy town of Joshimath. From here one can even make a journey further to Vridha Badri. The closest railway station is situated in Rishikesh railway station from where on one can continue their journey by road.
Places to Visit
There are a diverse range of places one could visit if you happen to plan on visiting Vridh Badri Mandir. These places of sightseeing include places like valley of flowers national park, Narsingh Mandir, Shiv Mandir, Gorso Bugyal, Auli and many more. it makes up for the perfect excursion or day trip to go on with your family and loved ones.
Located near Chulakot at a comfortable distance of 17 kms from the legendary pilgrimage holy town of Karnaprayag. This is technically the 1st of all the temples of Panch Badri circuit. This used to be the temple which used to be once worshipped as the winter abode of lord Badrinath. The temple complex is a fine work of architecture which is said to have been established a place of Vishnu worship by the great mystic, sage and thinker Adi Shankara between 5th and 8rh century AD was constructed completely by Gupta rulers. The deity here is seen holding a mace, lotus flower and chakra and as per Hindu scriptures this temple will be worshipped as Yogi Badri once Bhavishya Badri’s stature will be raised to the level of Badrinath in the future.
How to Reach
Adi Badri which is a group of 17 ancient temples is located at distance of 17 kms from the holy pilgrimage town of Karnaprayag on the Karnaprayag – Ranikhet road which is blessed with amazing scenic beauty and is reachable via cab / taxi and bus services throughout the year.
Places to Visit
Most of the places to visit around Adi Badri Temple hold immense religious significance and makes up for a great way of spending a holy day. The places worth a visit here are Chandika Devi Temple, Nand Prayag, Nauti Village, Karna Temple, Uma Devi Temple and others. All these temples are a great reminder of the rich and cultural-historical background that forms the core of Hindu religion.
Best Time to Go on Panch Badri Yatra
Being located within the mountainous region of Uttarakhand the best and the safest ways of completing the Panch Badri Yatra is during the summer season of March to early July. The weather is clear, pleasant and very comfortable for travelling. One must avoid going to the hilly areas during the monsoon season of July to September since the entire landscape remains prone to unexpected landslides and flooding situations. Some temples of the pilgrimage can be visited throughout the year however others remain buried in snow making accessibility difficult and, in some places, impossible.
The Panch Badri Yatra tour lasts from 7 days and 6 nights and the itinerary given below will give you brief idea about the sacred trip:
Day 1 – Delhi to Haridwar
Day 2 – Haridwar to Pipalkoti via Rishikesh, Devprayag and Rudraprayag
Day 3 – Pipalkoti – Badrinath
Day 4 – Badrinath to Yogdhyan Badri and Joshimath stay via Vishnuprayag
Day 5 – Joshimath to Bavishya Badri and Vridh Badri and stay in Pipalkoti
Day 6 – Pipalkoti to Adi Badri and stay in Haridwar via Karnaprayag
Day 7 – departure from Haridwar to desired destination
This itinerary will also allow you space for some nearby holy sightseeing.
Mythology of Panch Badri according to Puran:
The story mentioned in the Puran dates to ages and eons back when the deity pair of Nar and Narayan who were the incarnations of lord Vishnu. They were later on reborn as Krishna and Arjun during the Dwapar Yug and hence they hold a significant place in Hindu mythology. These twin brothers are believed to have performed their penance on the Himalayas and established their here. however, they were always on a lookout for a better place of hermitage. They travelled to all the 4 badri sites and their search for the perfect spot ended in Badrinath or Badri Vishal where they culminated their search while also simultaneously establishing these 5 holy places of sacred Badri shrines.
Travel Tips for Panch Badri Yatra
- These places in Panch Badri are located on high altitudes and require you to be physically and mentally fit. People are recommended to practise pranayama and breathing exercises before going on this journey to guarantee extra comfort and a peaceful soul.
- For a comfortable journey you can even choose to book a package of your choice. This will take you through almost 7 days and 6 nights to cover the entire pilgrimage circuits of Panch Badri. All these places are located in close proximity to each other and offer splendid views of the surrounding Himalayas.
Note: remember to go through the company’s cancellation policies and discuss it thoroughly with your tour manager.
- Be sure to pack enough warm and winter clothes to ensure you are warm in case of sudden weather changes. Since you shall be travelling on the hills the weather here remains unpredictable throughout the year and carrying a raincoat along also seems like a good idea. To be extra careful you must check the best time to visit the places for Panch Badri Yatra.
- One must keep a first aid kit with themselves at all times consisting of band-aids, bandages, Dettol, pain killers, anti-diarrhoea, fexofenadine medication for cold and cough etc. ointments like moov and relispray is also a good option for you to take your journey forward without any hassle.
- Be smart with your luggage carrying decisions and pack up only all the essentials that you definitely will be needing during the journey. Do not over pack and especially do not carry heavy and bulky baggage which will only slow you down.
- Pack up on a number of packaged protein bars and dry fruits and even chocolates for quick energy boost. If you feel like you are feeling lazy and lethargic then having one of these sweet treats will give you a complete surge of energy which will help you out during massively during the journey.
- It is advisable for you to go in a group of devotees which will keep you motivated throughout the holy trip.