Chota Char Dham is defined by 8th century Hindu reformer Aadi Shankaracharya. Apart from the main Char Dham i.e. Jagannath Puri dham, Dwarka dham, Badrinath and Rameshwaram, Chota char dham is also gaining popularity among Hindus. It is often known as ‘Uttarakhand Char Dham’ or ‘Himalayan Char Dham’. Situated in the Garhwal region of Himalayas, the four holy shrine is the source of spirituality of four holy rivers. River Yamuna at Yamunotri, river Ganga at Gangotri, river Mandakini at Kedarnath and river Alaknanda at Badrinath. Visiting these four shrines together has been termed as ‘Chota Char dham yatra‘. In Hinduism it is believed that every person must have a char dham yatra or chota char dham yatra once in there lifetime to get ‘moksha’. Besides Hindus every year lakhs of foreigners do this yatra to witness the beauty of the nature as well as to get some inner peace. Chota char dham yatra begins every year at a particular time and remains closed during winter because of heavy snowfall. The picturesque surroundings, snow covered peaks of Himalayas, dense forests, beautiful large valleys and captivating environment makes this place a great combination of spirituality and tourism. It is believed that the Char Dham Yatra must be done in a clock-wise direction from West to East. So the yatra starts from the Western corner at Yamunotri, then proceeds towards Gangotri and Kedarnath before culminating at Badrinath. The Chota Char Dham yatra starts from ‘Akshay tritiya and remains open till ‘Diwali’.
Shri Yamunotri Dham
How to reach Yamunotri
By air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant, which is at a distance of 193 kms. From the airport taxis are available for Yamunotri.
By train: The nearest railway station is Dehradun, which is 176 kms away. Buses and Taxis are available.
By road: Nearest bus stand is Hanuman Chatti Bus stand at a distance of 13 kms.
Route: Haridwar/Rishikesh -> Dehradun -> Mussoorie -> Naugaon -> Barkot –> Hanuman Chatti -> Janki Chatti -> Yamunotri.
Places to visit in Yamunotri
Below is the list with photos of prominent places to visit in Yamunotri.
Shri Gangotri Dham
How to reach Gangotri
By air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant at a distance of 280 kms. From the airport, Taxis are available for Gangotri.
By train: The nearest railway station is Rishikesh railway station which is 234 kms away. Buses and Taxis are available for Gangotri from the station.
By road: There is no direct bus for Gangotri. Nearest bus stand is at Rishikesh from where local buses and taxis are available to reach Gangotri.
Route: Haridwar/Rishikesh -> Chamba -> Uttarkashi -> Bhatwari -> Gangnani -> Harsil -> Shri Gangotri Dham
Places to visit in Shri Gangotri Dham
Below is the list with photos of prominent places to visit in Gangotri.
How to reach Kedarnath
By air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant at a distance of 239 kms. Taxis are available from the airport for Kedarnath.
By Train: Rishikesh is the nearest railway station. From the station buses are frequently running for Kedarnath.
By road: Nearest Bus stands are at Rishikesh and Kotdwar. After reaching here one have to go for a local bus to reach Kedarnath or can hire a taxi.
Route: Haridwar/Rishikesh -> Devaprayag -> Srinagar -> Rudraprayag -> Agastmuni -> Gaurikund -> Kedarnath.
Places to visit in Kedarnath
Below is the list with photos of places to visit in Kedarnath.
How to reach Badrinath
By air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant at a distance of 317 kms. From the airport taxis are available for Badrinath
By train: The nearest railway station is Rishikesh, which is 300 kms away. Buses and taxis are available for Badrinath from the station.
By road: There is no direct bus for Badrinath. Nearest bus stand is at Rishikesh from where local buses and taxis are available to reach Badrinath.
Route: Haridwar/Rishikesh – Devprayag – Srinagar – Rudraprayag – Joshimath – Badrinath.
Places to visit in Badrinath
Below is the list with photos of prominent places to visit in Badrinath.
Chota Char dham yatra is a perpetual journey in search of divinity. It is a must travel divine destination for everyone. Every effort and hardship during this journey is worth enduring and the reward that you will get is ever lasting peace of mind and serenity.