Kedarnath and Badrinath: Complete Travel Guide

We all must have heard the statement of going to “Char Dham Yatra” at least once in our lives. Char Dham Yatra is one of the most pious activities in the life of a Hindu. It refers to four holy sites for hindus including Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath, and Badrinath. All these holy sites are located in the Indian Himalayan state Uttarakhand. In this travel blog, we will be looking at “Places to Visit in Kedarnath and Badrinath”.

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In this blog we will be enlisting all the major points to completely cover this topic. The topics that we will be looking at includes:

1. Places to Visit in Kedarnath and Badrinath

2. How to Reach Kedarnath and Badrinath

3. Travel Essentials to carry for Kedarnath and Badrinath

4. Best Weather for Kedarnath and Badrinath

    Places to Visit in Kedarnath and Badrinath

The captivating beauty of Kedarnath and Badrinath offers an extremely peaceful vibe.

Doesn’t matters whether you are religious or not, vacation to these two beautiful places will always be memorable.

Kedarnath and Badrinath are referred as the Last Salvation point of Char Dham Yatra. 

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This Place is located at a height of 3900 meters and promises an exciting journey over the green valleys of Garhwal Himalayan Range.

Now let’s have a look at major places to visit in Kedarnath and Badrinath.

Kedarnath

Gandhi Sarovar:

Gandhi Sarovar is a small lake having pure crystal water. It is located on the foot of Kedarnath and Kirthi Stambh peak at a magnificently beautiful altitude of 3900 meters.

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The 14km Trek from Gaurikund to Kedarnath passes from deodar and oak forest with the amazing scenic beauty of waterfalls. The last 3km Trek through an iron bridge of Kedarnath ends up at Gandhi Sarovar. 

Phata:

Phata is a small village that you will come across in your journey to Kedarnath. This place is located at a distance of 32 km from Kedarnath.

Visitors use the helipad located in this place to reach Kedarnath Dham.

It takes around 8 minutes journey from Phata to Kedarnath in a Chopper. Pinnacle Air, Pawan Hans and other companies provide 5 to 7 seater charter Helicopter Service for visiting Kedarnath Dham.

Sonprayag:

As its name denotes, Prayag means junction and Sonprayag lies at the junction point of two holy rivers Mandakini and Basuki.

Taking bath at Prayag is considered as highly religious and peaceful deed.

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This place is situated at an altitude of 1829 meters and offers the beauty of mountains covered in snow and lush green Sonprayag Valley.

Gaurikund Temple:

Gaurikund is a temple devoted to Goddess Parvati. She is also addressed as Maa Gauri and that’s why name of this kund is Gaurikund. It is believed that Lord Shiva accepted to marry Goddess Parvati at this place.

It takes a strenuous Trek of 14kms from Gaurikund to reach Kedarnath. 

 Kedarnath Temple:

Kedarnath Temple comes under Twelve Holy Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva. This magnificently beautiful temple is located at an altitude of 3580 meters. This religious place is part of 275 most powerful and peaceful temples of  Lord Shiva. 

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The site of this temple promises an amazing view with the Mandakini River along its side. Throughout the year thousands of Hindus visit this place to seek blessings of Lord shiva.

Vasuki Tal Lake:

It is a glacier lake located at an altitude of 14,200 feet in Kedarnath Dham, Uttarakhand. Hindus believe that Lord Vishnu took bath in this lake. And thereby this place got its name “Vasuki Tal Lake”.

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You can easily spot Brahma Kamal and other glorious Himalayan Flowers around this lake.

Visitors can also enjoy the view of Chaukhamba Mountain peaks from Vasuki tal lake.

Shankaracharya Samadhi:

Shankaracharya was a great  philosopher and theologian of Hindu Religion. At the age of 32 he decided to attain moksha at Kedarnath.

For that he merged under the land near Kedarnath. And since then this place is referred as Shankaracharya Samadhi.

It is located behind the Kedarnath temple and takes about a trek of 16kms from Gaurikund to reach here.

Triyuginarayan Temple:

This temple is a famous Hindu pilgrimage located in the Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand. Triyuginarayan Temple is situated at an elevation of 1980 meters. This place offers a great view of snow covered mountains of the beautiful Garhwal region.

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Lord Shiva married Goddess Parvati at this Temple after accepting her love at Gaurikund.

Bhairavnath Temple:

Bhairavnath is considered as the guard of Kedarnath Temple and the whole Valley, during winter when the temple is closed.

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Bhairon Baba Mandir is located south of the Kedarnath temple on the eastern hill of the Himalayas of Uttarakhand. 

Rudra Cave Kedarnath:

Nehru Mountaineering Institute constructed an underground Meditation Cave known as Rudra Cave. This cave is located 1.5km towards the left side of Kedarnath Temple.

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This cave offers paid entry and visitors can book their slot from Gharwal Mandal Vikas Nigam. You can get a slot of minimum 24 hours and maximum 3 days.

Badrinath

Charan Paduka:

This place is located at an elevation of 3380  feet and situated at a distance of 3 kms from Badrinath. Charan Paduka is a beautiful rock having the foot impressions of Lord Vishnu.

Vasudhara Falls:

This captivating Waterfall drops from the height of 400 feet. To reach here you will have to take a 3km ride from Badrinath to Mana Village. After reaching Mana Village, a trek of 5 km will take you to the Vasudhara Falls.

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From Vasundhara Falls, one can get a majestic view of mountains like Neelkantha, Alkapuri and Chaukhanbha.

Neelkanth Peak:

Neelkanth Peak is situated at an altitude of 6,596 meters over Alaknanda Valley and the town of Badrinath. It is located over Chamoli district of Uttarakhand.

In older times it was believed that Kedarnath and Badrinath were directly connected with each other.

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But once, Lord Shiva was displeased by the sins committed by a priest. 

After that Lord Shiva made a high sky mountain in between Kedarnath and Badrinath.

Tapt Kund:

Tapt Kund, as the name suggests is a hot water spring, which lies between Badrinath shrine and Alaknanda River. This shrine is located in the chamoli district of Bardrinath, Uttarakhand.

It is located on the right side of Badrinath Temple.

Bheem Pul:

Bheem Pul is located in Mana Village, which is the last village located at the border of China.

This place is located at a distance of 3 km from Badrinath and is built over Saraswati River.

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It is believed by Hindus that one of the Pandava brothers, Bheema built this natural bridge for his wife Drawpadi.

Moreover, it is said in Hindu Mythlogy that, from here, Pandavas started their journey to heaven called Swargarohini.

Saraswati River:

It is a tributary of Alaknanda River that flows in Uttarakhand. Saraswati river meets Alakanda at Keshav Prayag, near Mana village of Chamoli district.

After joining the Saraswati River, Alaknanda merges with Ganga at Devprayag.

And later on considered as Bhagirathi.

Mana Village:

Mana Village is known as the last Indian Village located at the border of India and China. It is located at a distance of 3 km from Badrinath and is referred as the best Tourism Spot.

This peaceful village is situated at an altitude of 3219 meters, surrounded by Himalayan Hill Ranges. Mana village holds a deep presence in Hindu Mythology. It is believed that Pandavas on their way to heaven passed from this village.

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Major points of attraction of this village are: Bheem Pul, Neelkanth Peak, Tapt Kund, Vasundhara Temple, Mata Murti Temple, Vyas Gufa and Ganesh gufa.

Narad Kund:

Narad Kund is situated in the main part of Badrinath town. This is the second prominent attraction of Badrinath. It is believed that Lord Shiva found an idol of Lord Vishnu at Narad Kund.

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Narad Kund is a bay in river Alaknanda. This place is naturally surrounded by various types of rocks. As per Hindus, Narad Muni wrote Narad Bhakti sutra here.

Also Read: Dandeli: Complete Travel Guide (2020)

How to Reach Kedarnath and Badrinath

Kedarnath

By Road-

Delhi and Dehradun are well in touch with Kedarnath. If you land in New Delhi, the best way is to take a bus to reach Dehradun. Which is about 260 km from the Indian capital.

Kashmiri Gate and Anand Vihar Bus Terminal in Delhi are the two major  bus depots. These two run regular bus services to Dehradun.

After reaching Dehradun, you can take a bus or cab to Kedarnath.

By Train-

There is no railway station at Kedarnath. Rishikesh Railway Station is the nearest railway for Kedarnath. This railway station is 210kms from Gaurikund. And from Gaurikund it takes a km trek to reach Kedarnath.

All the major cities of India are in touch with Rishikesh Railway Station. This station has regular trains, running on time. From Rishikesh, one can take a bus to Gaurikund.

By Air-

Kedarnath does not have its own airport. Jolly Grant Airport of Dehradun becomes the nearest airport for Kedarnath. This airport has plenty of flights from major cities of India.

After reaching Dehradun, you can either take a cab or bus to Kedarnath.

Badrinath

By Road-

Haridwar, Rishikesh, Dehradun and other major towns of Uttarakhand, are easily connected with Badrinath. State transport and private buses run regularly on the route. If you are going to Badrinath after visiting Kedarnath, there are direct bus services from Gaurikund to Badrinath

By Train-

The nearest railway stations to Badrinath are Ramnagar, at a distance of 154kms or Kotdwar at 146kms. For better connectivity and convenience, you can head to Badrinath from Haridwar or Rishikesh, which have better rail connectivity. The distance from Haridwar to Badrinath is about 315kms.

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By Air-

The Chardham helicopter service includes rides to Badrinath.

Hence, in order to avoid a road journey, you can go for the helicopter service instead.

Travel Essentials to carry for Kedarnath and Badrinath

Travel Bags-

All along the way through Kedarnath and Badrinath, you will be doing a trek. It’s easy to carry lightweight backpacks to avoid any kind of problem in the way.

Shoes-

On any trek it becomes really important to wear good shoes to avoid any kind of injury. In your journey of Kedarnath and Badrinath you will need to walk a lot on mountains and rocks.

Power Bank-

It is one of the basic essential things to carry on any journey.

You should carry at least two power banks while visiting Kedarnath and Badrinath. 

Camera-

A good quality camera is an essential thing to carry on a vacation. It’s good to carry a camera with you to capture beautiful memories. Kedarnath and Badrinath will promise you an amazing scenic beauty and peace to capture. 

Umbrella-  

You should carry umbrella in your journey to Kedarnath and Badrinath in between June to August.

In the monsoon season this place witnesses heavy rainfall, so umbrella is must in that time.

Medical Kit-

If you are going to Kedarnath and Badrinath, you must carry a pack of medicines and pain killers with you.

Best Weather for Kedarnath and Badrinath

Summer- 

Kedarnath is always to a certain degree cold, summer months(April-June) are perfect for visiting Kedarnath and Badrinath. 

During this time the temperature varies from 5 to 18 degrees and thereby considered as pleasant weather.

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Hence if you are planning to have an amazing experience of sightseeing, then summer is the best time for you. 

Monsoon-

The monsoon season starts from July and stays up to August. In monsoon Kedarnath and Badrinath experience heavy rainfalls along with devastating landslides. In this period it becomes quite risky to visit the town. 

But in monsoon also, the weather stays pleasant and offers ultimate feeling of peace. 

Also Read: Chopta-Tungnath: Complete Travel Guide

Winter-

The winter season starts from November and stays till April in Kedarnath and Badrinath.

In winter season, Kedarnath witnesses heavy snowfall and thereby becomes inaccessible. Snow covers the whole town and because of which Kedarnath Temple also remains shut in winter. 

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This was all in this travel guide for Kedarnath and Badrinath.

Wish you a very Happy Journey and Keep reading our blog for some amazing content related to more travel guides.

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