Day 1: Delhi - Haridwar - Rishikesh - Delhi
A full day trip allows you to explore some of the most significant places in the holy cities of Haridwar and Rishikesh. Finish your visit with a viewing of Ganga Aarti, one of the most powerful spiritual rituals held in honor of Goddess Ganga, the goddess of the holiest river in India.
06.00 AM: Our travel agent will pick you up and head for Haridwar, which is about a 4 hours’ drive.
Your first stop will be Har ki Pauri. Trusted to be one the holiest Ghats in the country, Har Ki Pauri is supposedly the first place where Ganga touches plains, leaving behind the pristine ranges of the Himalayas. The ghat is also known as the Brahma Kund where you can view the stone which has an imprint of Lord Vishnu’s foot, as pointed out by the name.
Then you will visit Mansa Devi Temple or Bilwa Tirath, believed to give blessings and execute every Mansa (wish) of its admirer. This is one of the five hegira destinations or Panch Tirath of Haridwar. This temple is the apex of the Siddh Peeth triangle – Mansa Devi, Chandi Devi and Maya Devi.
You will also explore two bridges in Rishikesh. First is Lakshman Jhula, the popular hanging bridge across the holy river Ganga. This 450 ft long Jhula is built at a height of 70 ft from the river and is about 3 kms away from the main town of Rishikesh. The other bridge is Ram Jhula which is the iron Parallax Bridge on the river Ganga in Rishikesh. Ram Jhula is the newer bridge named after Lakshman’s brother, Lord Ram.
You can enjoy lunch at a local restaurant (at your own expense) before visiting Sivananda Ashram, Parmath Niketan Temple, Gita Bhavan, Swarg Ashram, Ma Anandamayee Ashram, Sapt Rishi Ashram, and The Beatles Ashram.
In the evening during sunset, you will visit Ganga Aarti at Haridwar. Thousands of sects visit the ghats of the Ganga at Har ki Pauri at Haridwar to witness the aarti that started several decades ago.
The tradition continues unabated and is a sight to behold. It takes place on the other side of the banks where you will see the priests light up the lamps in a clockwise manner, accompanied by songs in praise of Mother Ganga. After the ritual is complete, devotees will cup their hands over the flame and raise their palms to their forehead in order to get the Goddess's purification and blessing.
Finally, head back to Delhi and get dropped at your hotel at around 10pm.