HARIDWAR-THE GATEWAY TO GODS
Located on the right bank of river ganga, Haridwar has the capability to capture you in its cultural magic. Ia casts a magic spell on all the visitors in such a way that they would wish to visit it again. The main attaraction of this place is in the belief that people performs penance here for the salvation of their ancestors. Haridwar has been given the adjective of "THE GATEWAY TO GODS" because it is one of the most famous sacred places all over the world. This place presents to you the whole Indian culture and a shadow of the previous civilizations. People's beliefs make this place more worth visiting. You will surely find yourself very close to god.
Haridwar is also famous by the names mayapuri, kapila and gangadwar. Its different names themselves indicate the value it is having in the Indian culture. In order to start the "char dham yatra", haridwar is the first place you must visit. It is the main entry point to the pilgrimage circuit.
According to the history, the ancestors of king bhagirath were cursed by kapil muni. He prayed a lot for them. His prayers were answered and ganga flowed from the locks of lord shiva. He brought the river ganga from heaven to earth in order to provide salvation to his ancestors. It is also believed that in this sacred place all the three gods, lord brahma, lord Vishnu and lord Mahesh showed their presence together. Lord Vishnu is even believed to have his footprint on a stone which is touched by the holy Ganga every time.
It is strongly believed that people can wash away all their sins after taking a dip in the holy ganga at this sacred place.
THE MAHA KUMBH MELA
The famous kumbh mela is a big occasion in india. It is celebrated once in every 12 years. While, the ardh kumbh mela is celebrated once in every 6 years. The specialty of this fair is that it is celebrated only in four special places in whole India and haridwar is one of those four sacred places. This huge fair is organized when brahaspati(Jupiter) and the aquarious sign(kumbh) meet. It happens only once in every 12 years. People from all over the country visit this place on this auspicious occasion in order to wash their sins. This fair is the most famous one all over the world. In many movies also you must have heard of this kumbh mela. So you can well imagine how popular the fair is?
POPULAR HARIDWAR ATTRACTIONS
-Har ki pauri
-Mansa Devi temple
-Daksha mahadev temple
-Chandi Devi temple
-Ganga aarti at haridwar
It is the most famous place in Haridwar where thousands of people take dip in the water in order to wash their sins away. The upper wall of har-ki-pauri contains the stone with the footprint of lord Vishnu. Holy ganga touches this wall every time it passes. It is strongly believed that some drops of 'amrita' fell into the brahmkund of har-ki-pauri. Hence according to the people's belief on the auspicious day of maha kumbh mela everyone must take a dip in the brahmkund in order to go to heaven.
MANSA DEVI TEMPLE
Dedicated to goddess mansa devi, this is a famous hindu temple in haridwar which is situated on the top of bilwa parvat. The main specialty of this place is the celebration of festivals like kaval mela, somvati amavasya mela, ganga dusshera and gughal mela. These festivals are celebrated with a great joy and happiness. This temple is also known by the name shakti peetha. This temple is believed to be built in the 11th century.
DAKSHA MAHADEV TEMPLE
Tthis temple is situated at a place called kankhal 6km away from haridwar. It is also one of the ancient temples of haridwar. It is also very popular due to the fact that it is one of the five sacred temples of haridwar. In your way from haridwar to daksha temple you will experience beautiful sceneries which will steal your heart away. This temple is dedicated mainly to king dakhsha prajapati(sati's father). It is the place where sati burnt herself when she came to know that her father din't invite her husband to the yagna. This temple reminds everyone of this legend.
CHANDI DEVI TEMPLE
Neel parvat is one of the most popular mountain of india situated in Uttaranchal along the banks of river ganga. Mansa devi temple is situated on the top of this mountain. The important festivals celebrated in this temple are chandi chaudas and navratri. The primary deity of this temple is goddess chandi devi(shakti) also known as chandika. This temple was built in 1929 by suchat singh. The temple is also known by the name Neel Parvat Teerth and is also one of the five pilgrimages situated within haridwar. It is also believed that at this place all our desires are fulfilled.
God indra is known to be the king of heaven. Long time ago, two demons named shumbha and nishumbha had captured the kingdom of indra(heaven). After many prayers goddess parvati took the form of beautiful and intoxicating chandi. When shumbha saw her, he was attracted by her beauty and he wanted to marry her. On her refusion he sent some demons to kill her but those demons were killed by goddess chamunda. Then both of them tried to kill her together but were killed. The rule of this temple is that all the leather accessories, non vegetarian food and alcohol are strictly prohibited in its premises.
GANGA AARTI AT HARIDWAR
This is the most attractive scene in haridwar. This aarti shows us the spiritual aspects of india. It seems as if all the stars themselves have come on earth to show us the magic. The environment is full of worships and prayers when ganga aarti ceremony is performed at the same time in all the temples. The river is full of offerings lamps and flowers with the sounds of mantras all around. It feels as if you are truly connected to god.