Rishikesh, India – the Holy City

Beatles Ashram

Rishikesh is said to be the yoga capital of the world. You will find many ashrams and yoga schools there. The Beatles came to Rishikesh in 1968 to learn transcendental meditation. They were invited by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi to his ashram, which now is called The Beatles Ashram.  You can see couple of pictures from their stay there here. It is open for sightseeing – 600 INR for foreigners. It is a bit expensive but totally worth it.

The Holy City

Rishikesh is also known as the Holy City – you cannot buy any meat, alcohol or cigarettes in the city. It got its name from the God Vishnu, who appeared as Lord Rishikesh to Rabhya rishi after his austerities. It is also believed that Lord Rama did penance here to kill the demon king Ravana. His younger brother Laxman or Lakshman crossed the Ganga river using a jute rope bridge, which later got the name Lakshmana or Laxman Jhula.

Laxman Jhula Bridge

Millions of Hindus come here every year hoping to absolve their sins by bathing in the holy Ganga.

I came across this video Youtube – one of the cities futures in the video is Rishikesh. It is a special city.

Ganga aarti (river worship ceremony)

An aarti is a ritual that uses fire as an offering. It’s usually made in the form of a lit lamp, and in the case of the Ganges River, a small diya with a candle and flowers that’s floated down the river. The offering is made to the Goddess Ganga, goddess of the most holy river in India.

Restaurants and coffee shops

There are so many places with nice affordable food: Little Buddha Cafe, Oasis Cafe, Shambala Cafe (great view), Chatsang Cafe (one of my favorites), Cafe Madras, Omkar cafe.

Chatsang Cafe

Chatsang Cafe

There is one I would not recommend – Beatles Cafe (overrated and overpriced).

Temples

Parmath Niketan with its amazing Hanuman statue.

Bhootnath temple – nice view over the city.

Sita Ram Dham – stunning view over the Ganges. Check the gift shop – nice bracelets.

Rishikesh market

Whatever you need, you will find it there. Food, clothes, kitchen equipment – all is there.

To sum up – this is special place, tourist friendly, affordable. I liked it. But also be careful with all the healers, reiki experts and so on. Many of them are conmen.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s