Often referred to as the gateway to the lofty Himalayas, Rishikesh is a peaceful town located about 24 km away from Haridwar. The place also serves as the entry point of the Char Dham (four holy Hindu pilgimages). There are a number of meditation and Yoga Institutes in the place which are frequented by the restless souls from all over the world seeking rejuvenation of the body and the mind. The popularity of Rishikesh as an adventure tourism destination is also growing steadily as the place affords numerous thrilling possibilities to the adventure tourists such as white water rafting and trekking.
» Lakshman Jhula : This is a suspended iron bridge which was built in 1939. It is said that it is a replacement of a jute rope bridge that was built by Lakshman, brother of Lord Rama. Since the bridge has been immensely popular among the tourists, another suspended iron bridge, called Ram Jhula, has been constructed in Rishikesh itself.
» Swarga Ashram : The Swarga Ashram stretches across a vast area and here you can find a large number of temples, some of the finest vegetarian eating points and curio and memento shops. The area is also replete with fascinating statues.
» Neelkantha Mahadeo : It is among the most sacred temples of Rishikesh and it is located on a hill above Swarga Ashraam. This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Staying in Rishikesh
Rishikesh is very popular among the pilgrims and the adventure tourists alike. The place is also famous for the finest of facilities for the Yoga and meditation enthusiasts. Rishikesh has a variety of accommodation facilities in deluxe as well as budget categories. The prominent hotels in Rishikesh include Ananda in the Himalayas, The Glasshouse on the Ganges, Ganga Beach Resort and Hotel Ganga Kinare.
Shopping in Rishikesh
Since Rishikesh is the place from where you enter the major Hindu pilgrimage centres of the region, you can easily guess what might be the popular items on the tourist shopping lists here. The items that are in demand here are brassware, incense sticks, sweets that are offered to God and rudraksh beads. The other popular items of Rishikesh are ayurvedic and herbal medicines of the place. Rishikesh is also the source of various handicrafts made of shells, beads, pearls and wood.
The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport near Dehradun which is about 17 km away. Indian Airlines operates five flights a week from Delhi to the Jolly Grant Airport. As far as railway network is concerned, Rishikesh has a railway station but you can only use the shuttle service that connects Haridwar with Rishikesh. Haridwar, on the other hand, is well connected with all the major cities of India. There is an excellent network of roads in place which connects Rishikesh with Haridwar, Chandigarh, Agra, Dehradun, Nainital and Delhi.