Gangotri 2022 | Gangotri Temple Yatra 2022 | Gangotri Temple History | Gangotri Yatra Travel Guide 2022 | Gangotri Temple 2022
In Hinduism, the river Ganges, which flows out of the Himalaya Mountains, is called “Ganga Maiya” and “Maa Ganga”. The Ganges river is considered the most sacred and revered in Hinduism. Gangotri is believed to be the origin of this river Ganges.
Lakhs of devotees visit Gangotri every year to visit the Gangotri Temple (the temple dedicated to Mother Ganga) located in Gangotri, one of the Chota Chardham Yatras of Uttarakhand. There is a small town named Gangotri at a distance of 100 km from Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand, which is famous because of the Gangotri temple (the temple of Mother Ganga situated at the highest altitude above sea level).
It is because of the Gangotri temple built in the town that the town got its name as Gangotri. By the way, the origin of the Ganges river is Gaumukh, which is located 19 km from Gangotri in the largest Gangotri glacier of the Himalayas. Devotees can trek 19 km from Gangotri to reach Gaumukh.
According to Hindu religious texts and mythological beliefs, when the Ganges river first descended from heaven to earth, it was at this place that Lord Shiva held the river Ganges in his hair.
The present temple at Gangotri was built by the Gorkha commander Amar Singh Thapa in the 18th century. The reconstruction work of which was later done by the Jaipur royal family. Like Kedarnath temple and Badrinath temple, this Gangotri temple is also open for devotees only for six months a year.
Devotees can visit the Gangotri temple every year from April or May to October to November. According to the Hindu calendar, the doors of the Gangotri temple are opened for the devotees during Akshaya Tritiya and the doors of the Gangotri temple are closed for the devotees after Bhaiya Dooj which comes after Diwali.
History of Gangotri
The existence of Gangotri town is believed to be 1200 years ago which gradually developed in the vicinity of the ancient Gangotri temple. Even before this town came into existence, it is believed that this holy place has been a major centre of Hindu faith for many centuries.
It is believed that in ancient times there was no temple at this place. Here the embodied form of Mother Ganga (stream of Ganges) was worshipped by the priests of the Semwal community.
At that time, the idols of gods and goddesses were placed near Mukhba and other places at a stage-like place near the Bhagirathi Shila (it is believed that Bhagirath had done severe penance while sitting on the rock). It was duly established by being brought from the villages.
And as soon as the season for pilgrimage ended, the idols of the deities were returned to the same villages from where they were brought. In the 18th century, the temple priests requested Amar Singh Thapa, the Gurkha general of the Garhwal region, to build a temple at the place where Bhagirath had meditated.
Many years after the construction of the temple, in the 20th century, Maharaja Madho Singh of Jaipur got the temple reconstructed. There was a time when the trek to Gangotri used to be very inaccessible, but in 1980 to facilitate the pilgrimage of the pilgrims, the then government got the road construction done till Gangotri.
legends of Gangotri
Two mythological stories telling the religious importance of Gangotri are very famous. According to the first story, King Sagara, the great-grandfather of Bhagirath, had organized “Ashwamedha Yagya” for the expansion of the empire. A horse was let loose during the Ashwamedha Yagya.
But after some time the horse disappeared. King Sagar sent his army to find the horse, but there was no success in the hands of the king’s army. In the end, King Sagar ordered his 60,000 sons to find the horse. While searching for the horse, all the sons of King Sagar reach one place.
Upon reaching that place, they all see that Sage Kapila is sitting in a meditative posture and a horse with Ashwamedha Yagya is tied near him. Seeing this the son of King Sagar accuses Sage Kapila of stealing the horse. Hearing the allegation of theft, the sage becomes very angry and in anger turns all 60,000 sons of King Sagara into ashes.
On hearing the news of the death of his sons, King Sagar went to Rishi Kapila and prayed for his forgiveness so that his sons attain heaven. On praying for forgiveness of King Sagara, sage Kapila says that when the ashes of his sons come in contact with the river Ganges flowing in heaven, only then everyone will attain heaven.
For this reason, Bhagiratha, the great-grandson of King Sagara, did severe penance for about 1000 years to get salvation for his ancestors, due to which the impure holy mother Ganga accepted to come to earth. The place where King Bhagiratha did severe penance is now known as Gangotri.
And the place where King Bhagirath did penance while sitting is known as Bhagirath Shila. According to another story, when Mother Ganga agreed to come to earth by the severe penance of Bhagiratha, a big problem arose. It is said that at that time the flow of the Ganges was so fast that if it had come directly to the earth, then the whole earth could have been destroyed by the fast flow of the Ganges.
Therefore the gods suggested to Bhagiratha that the earth could be saved from destruction if Lord Shiva carried the Ganges in his hair. After this, at the request of King Bhagiratha, Lord Shiva agreed to wear Ganga in his hair. Thus Mother Ganga descended in the hair of Lord Shiva before coming to earth and after that, she touched the earth.
It is said that the place where there is a submerged Shivling in Gangotri, Lord Shiva held Mother Ganga in his hair at the same place. According to the mythological events related to Mahabharata, after the end of the war of Mahabharata, Pandavas had come to this holy place and performed a great god Yagya to get salvation for their families who died during the war.
Architecture of Gangotri
The Gangotri temple was built during the early 18th century. The main temple is made of shiny white granite stones 20 feet high. The structure of the Gangotri temple is capable of attracting devotees from afar.
There is also a Shivling in the Bhagirathi river flowing near the temple which remains submerged most of the time. In the winter season, when the water level of the river is slightly lower, the Shivling can be seen at that time.
Geographical location of Gangotri
The elevation of Gangotri is 3415 meters (11204 feet) above sea level. This temple is built in the foothills of the Santopanth mountain of the Himalayas. The temple is surrounded by dense forests of Bhoj trees and deodar from all sides.
Gangotri temple opening time in 2022
The Gangotri temple remains open for the devotees to visit for only six months in a year. In the last week of April or the first week of May, the doors of the Gangotri temple are opened for the devotees.
According to the Hindu calendar, the doors of the temple are opened for the devotees on the day of Akshaya Tritiya. This year, the doors of the Gangotri temple will be opened for the devotees to see on the day of Akshaya Tritiya, 03 May 20212.
Gangotri temple closing time in 2022
Due to heavy snowfall in Gangotri during the winter season, the doors of the temple are closed for the devotees for six months. The doors of the temple are closed around the last week of October or the first week of November. According to the Hindu calendar, the doors of the temple are closed for devotees during Bhaiya Dooj after Diwali.
After the doors of the temple are closed, the doli of Mata Ganga is taken to Mukhba village near Harsil. Where Ganga Maiya is worshipped for the next six months. The date of closing the doors of the temple in the year 2022 has not yet been decided.
Gangotri Temple Aarti Timings
In Gangotri temple, the time of Prabhat Aarti of Mother Ganga is done at 06:00 in the morning and Sandhya Aarti is done at 07:45 in the night. Gangotri Temple is open for devotees from 06:15 am to 02:00 pm, and from 03:00 pm to 09:30 pm.
Local food in Gangotri
Apart from being a famous religious tourist destination in India, Gangotri is also a part of Chhota Chardham Yatra. For this reason, for the devotees and tourists visiting Gangotri, there are many eateries and restaurants around the temple area where you can enjoy North Indian and South Indian food.
Apart from this, you can also enjoy the local food of Uttarakhand here.
Hotels in Gangotri
For the stay of pilgrims and tourists, you will get the facilities of Dharamshala, Hotels and Guest House very easily available in Gangotri. There are many hotels and Dharamshalas built in the vicinity of the temple. If you want, you can book a room in the hotel for yourself with the help of an online hotel booking website before coming to Gangotri.
Apart from this, you can also book a room for yourself in the hotel and Dharamshala after reaching here, for which you may have to work a little hard. It would be good if you book a hotel for yourself before reaching here.
If you are travelling to Gangotri with any travel agency, then they keep a room book in the hotel in Gangotri for you people in advance. Apart from all this, the local administration has also made GMVN Guest House for the devotees coming to Gangotri, where you can stay comfortably by paying the prescribed fee.
Treks near Gangotri
Due to being situated in the Himalayan mountains, Gangotri and its surrounding area also have many tourist places to see which tourists from all over the world come to Gangotri. Apart from the tourist spot, there are many famous treks around Gangotri. Trekkers from all over the world come to Gangotri to complete the trek located near Gangotri.
Gaumukh, Bhairon Ghati, Mukhba Gaon, Harshil, Nandanvan Tapovan, Gangotri Chirbasa and Kedartal are some of the villages and treks that you can explore by giving some extra time while travelling to Gangotri.
How to reach Gangotri
How to reach Gangotri by Air
The distance of Gangotri from Jolly Grant Airport of Dehradun is just 265 km. This airport is well connected to the major airports of the country. From Dehradun, you can easily reach Gangotri by taxi and cab service. Apart from this, helicopter service is also available from Dehradun to Gangotri.
How to reach Gangotri by Train
Haridwar and Rishikesh railway station is the nearest railway station to Gangotri. The distance from Rishikesh to Gangotri is only 267 km. Haridwar railway station is very well connected to major cities of India by rail. You will get regular bus, taxi and cab services to Gangotri from both these cities Rishikesh and Haridwar.
How to reach Gangotri by Road
Gangotri is well connected to major cities of Uttarakhand by road. You can easily reach Gangotri from Haridwar, Rishikesh, Dehradun Tehri Garhwal and Uttarkashi by bus, taxi and cab service. If you want, with the help of your vehicle, you can reach Gangotri very easily by road.
Haridwar to Gangotri Distance – 289 KM
Rishikesh to Gangotri Distance – 267 KM
Dehradun to Gngotri Distance – 242 KM
Delhi to Gangotri Distance – 528 KM
Uttarakashi to Gangotri Distance – 100 KM
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