Yamunotri Dham is the source of the Yamuna River and one of the four holy sites of “Char Dham Yatra” (Pilgrimage). This dham is blessed with amazing natural beauty and charm. It is situated at an altitude of approximately 3,293 metres (10,804 ft) at the foot-hill of Kalind Parvat in the Garhwal Himalayas and located approximately 30 kilometers north of Uttarkashi in the state Uttarakhand. The Indo-China border is not very far away from here. The temple is usually the first site to visit for the “Char Dham Yatra“.
Altitude: 3165 mts
Climate: Winter: Snow bound. Touching sub-zero. Summer: Cool during the day and cold at night.
Clothing: April to July – Light woollens
Language: Hindi, Garhwali & English
The Sacred Origin of the Yamuna
The Garhwal Himalayas have been blessed with some of the holiest Hindu pilgrimage sites and Yamunotri is one such. One of the Char Dhams according to Hindu mythology, Yamunotri is the origin of the sacred river Yamuna. Famous for its thermal springs and glaciers, it is one of the most important stopovers on the itinerary of the Hindu pilgrim. According to an old legend, Asit Muni, the revered sage, used to reside here.
Location and Climate
Perched at an altitude of 3293 meters above sea level, Yamunotri is located in the Uttarkashi district of the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. It is very close to the Indo-Chinese border and is surrounded by the Himalayan offshoots on all sides. Yamunotri, lies near the Bandarpunch Mountain, which is 6315 m high and lies to the north. The glacial lake of Saptarishi Kund, on the Kalind Parbat, at an altitude of 4421 m, is the real source of the Yamuna River. Yamunotri is at a distance of 278 km from Dehradun, 236 km from Rishikesh, 176 km from Chamba, and 21 km from Sanya Chatti. It remains cool even during summers. The winters are snow-bound and temperatures fall below 0°C. One is advised to carry light or heavy woolens depending on the time of visit.
The first stopover for the Char Dham Yatra is the westernmost shrine of Yamunotri in the Garhwal Himalayas. Dedicated to Goddess Yamuna, it is perched atop a flank of the Bandar Poonchh peak (3165 mts. above sea level) and is situated opposite to Gangotri. The shrine attracts devotees in large numbers from May to October.
Yamunotri is the source of the revered river Yamuna which originates from the Champassar Glacier lying 1 km ahead of the shrine; at an altitude of 4421 mts. Pilgrims do not frequently visit the source of the river as it is not easily accessible.
Yamunotri finds a special mention in the Hindu mythology. According to a legend, this secluded hilly spot was the home of an ancient sage, Asit Muni.Among the major attractions of Yamunotri are hot water springs nearby. Devotees prepare rice and potatoes to offer at the shrine, by dipping them in these hot water springs, tied in muslin cloth.
The trek to Yamunotri is spectacular, dominated by a panorama of rugged peaks and dense forests.
From Rishikesh, a 213 kms. Journey by road takes one to Hanumanchatti. From here, the remaining 13 kms. Trek is covered on foot or on ponies. Palanquins and Porters are also available on hire.
Prime Pilgrimage Attractions
The main temple is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna. The present temple was built by Maharani Guleria of Jaipur in the late nineteenth century. Once destroyed by an earthquake, it has been rebuilt. A holy dip in the nearby tank filled by hot springs and cooking rice in its water are common rituals performed by the devotees.
One of the important thermal springs known for its very high temperature of 190°F. Pilgrims cook rice and potatoes here to offer to the deity in the temple.
A huge rock pillar venerated before entering the Yamunotri Temple.HanumanchattiThe confluence of Hanuman Ganga and Yamuna rivers forms the starting point for the scenic Dodi TaL Trek.
A scenic spot along the banks of river Yamuna that makes a lovely sight enroute the trek upto Yamunotri.
A sylvan spot on way to Tehri that offers an excellent view of the Himalayan peaks. Situated at an altitude of 1,676 mts., Chamba is an ideal summer retreat
Jolly Grant, 196 kms. From Yamunotri via Dehradun
Rishikesh, 213 kms. & Dehradun, 172 kms.
Dharasu, 107 kms. Tehri, 149 kms. Rishikesh, 213 kms. & Dehradun, 172 kms
YAMUNOTRI DHAM – 4 Nights/5 Days
PLACES COVERED:Delhi – Haridwar – Syanachatti – Yamunotri – Haridwar – DelhiDay 1: Delhi-Haridwar (230 Kms/6hrs)Arrival Delhi Railway Station, Meet & Assist further drive to Hardwar, enroute lunch. Later drive to Hardwar transfer to your Hotel. Visit Har-ki-Pauri for Ganga Aarti in evening. Back to your hotel, Dinner & Night halt.
Day 2: Haridwar – Syanachatti (240kms/7hr)Early morning, Drive to Syanachatti via Mussoorie. Enroute bifurcate from main road to Lakahamandal (5kms /one side), visit the ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. After darshan drive to your onward destination. Check in Hotel at Syana Chatti.
Lakhamandal – is a large village on the banks of Yamuna, known for its temple ruins. The ruins at Lakhamandal give an indication that in the past it must have been a major temple town. Many believe that Lakhamandal is the same Lakhshagriha described in Mahabharat.
Kaurava Prince Duryodhana had built a palace made of lac, in which he tried to burn the Pandavas alive. The villagers believe that there is a secret passage that emerges few kilometers downstream today in the center of the village there is a Temple dedicated to Bhagwati and Lord Shiva. In the temple complex stand two life size stone statues. Perhaps they are the Dwarpals of a much older temple. With the legend of Jay and Vijay, the Dwarpals at the gates of heaven. But most of the villagers believe the statues to be that of Bhima and Arjuna.
Sayanachatti : 27 km. from Barkot & 18 km. from Yamunotri is a scenic spot on the banks of river Yamuna.
Day 3: Synachatti – Yamunotri – Syanachtti (12kms drive & 7 Kms trek each side)Drive to Phool Chatti, trek start from here to Yamunotri. Either by walk or by horse or by Doli at own cost. Arr. Yamunotri, One can cook rice by packing it in a cloth and dipping it in the hot water of the hot kund. Pilgrims take this cooked rice home as “Prasad”.
Here near the temple “Pooja” can be offered to Divya Shila, After taking bath in Jamunabai Kund’s warn water and having “Darshan” of pious “Yamunaji” returning to Hanumanchatti. Later drive back to Syanachatti. Overnight stay at Hotel.
Yamunotri Temple: Maharani Gularia of Jaipur built the temple in the 19th Century. It was destroyed twice in the present century and rebuilt again.
Surya Kund: There are a Number of thermal springs in the vicinity of the temple, which flows into numerous pools. The most important of these is Surya Kund.
Divya Shila: A rock pillar, worshipped before entering the Yamunotri Temple.
Day 4: Syanachatti – Hardwar (240kms/7hr)
Drive back to Haridwar, Check in Hotel. Overnight stay.
Day 5: Haridwar – Delhi (230kms/6hr)
Morning visit Hardwar Local Sight Seeing. Later dep. to Delhi. On Arr. Delhi, Drop at Railway Station/Airport.