Rishikesh is India’s 7th largest city, located near the foot of the Himalayas in the Indian state of Uttrakhand. The “Gateway to the Garhwal Himalayas” is another name for it. The town is a popular tourist destination as well as a prominent Hindu pilgrimage site. The Ganges River runs through Rishikesh, which is known for its numerous shrines and yoga ashrams. Rishikesh is also one of the few spots in India where visitors can participate in a variety of adventure sports. The city of Haridwar, which is only a few miles south of Rishikesh, is likewise known as a “holy city” and is vegetarian.
Rishikesh, known as the ‘Yoga Capital of the World,’ sprang to prominence after the Beatles, a prominent English rock band, visited the city in the 1960s. The legendary band visited Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s Ashram in search of spirituality.
While a visit to this ashram is a must while visiting this spiritual city, there are plenty of other attractions worth seeing. Start your day with river rafting in Shivpuri, then grab a quick bite to eat at one of the riverbank cafés before exploring the shops along Laxman Jhula.
Here is a list of the top 10 places to visit in Rishikesh:
1. Laxman Jhula
Laxman Jhula is a 450-foot-long suspension bridge that rises 70 feet above the river and is one of Rishikesh’s most famous landmarks. The bridge, which was built in 1939, is a popular tourist attraction since it is said to be the spot where Lord Laxman crossed the Ganga River on a jute rope.
While there are plenty of eateries on both sides of the bridge, Laxman Temple and Tera Manzil Mandir are two nearby attractions that you should not miss.
Stop in the middle of the bridge when crossing it to take in the vista of the hills all around you. Nothing could be more bizarre!
Things to Do near Lakshman Jhula:
- Visit Tera Manzil Temple.
- Eat at the nearby restaurants.
2. Neelkanth Mahadev Temple
The Neelkantha Mahadev Temple, located at a height of 1675 meters on a hill above Swarg Ashram, is one of the most important temples dedicated to Lord Shiva in the Republic of India. According to Hindu mythology, the temple lies on the exact location where Lord Shiva drank the Venom ‘halahala’ that formed after the Devas and Asuras churned the ocean in order to gain the Amrita, or elixir of life.
Things to Do near Neelkantha Temple:
- Shop for souvenirs.
- Adventure sports at Jumpin Heights.
3. The Beatles Ashram
The Beatles traveled to the Indian town of Rishikesh in February 1968 to participate in a session of transcendental meditation at Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram. This visit altered the world’s perception of Indian spirituality. This was the Beatles’ most prolific period; they composed a number of songs during their stay, the majority of which received widespread media attention and commercial success. This ashram is now part of the Rajaji National Park and must be accessed through it.
Things to Do near Beatles Ashram:
- Explore the Rajaji National Park.
- Jeep Safari.
4. Swarg Ashram
One of India’s oldest Yoga ashrams is located on the left bank of the Ganges River. The Swarg ashram was established in remembrance of Saint Swami Vishudhanand and spans the entire space between the ram and the Laxman Jhula. It’s the ideal location for those seeking seclusion in this holy city. You can sit and meditate for hours near the private river banks, which are devoid of any of the rituals present on the other banks, or simply sit and watch the sunrise over the Shivaliks, setting fire to the Ganga’s cold, glittering waters.
Things to Do near Swarg Ashram:
- Attend the Ganga Aarti at Triveni Ghat.
- Visit the ancient Ram and Laxman Jhula.
5. Parmarth Niketan
Parmarth Niketan is an ashram in Rishikesh that was founded in 1942 by Pujya Swami Shukdevanand Ji Maharaj. With over a thousand rooms, it is the largest ashram in Rishikesh. Thousands of visitors from all over the world visit Parmarth Niketan, which offers a clean, pure, and religious atmosphere as well as rich, beautiful gardens.
Things to Do at Parmarth Niketan:
- Yoga and Meditation.
- Ganga Aarti at sunset.
- Ayurvedic treatments.
6. Rajaji National Park
Located between the Shivalik ranges and the Indo-Gangetic Plains, Rajaji National Park represents one of India’s oldest ecosystems. It is Uttarakhand’s second tiger reserve and its unique location makes it an ideal location for some breathtaking flora too. The dense forests house a plethora of animals ranging from Bengal Tigers to Sloth bears and a trip down here would satisfy all wildlife enthusiasts.
Things to Do at Rajaji National Park:
- Jeep Safari.
- Stay in the cottages.
- Visit the Sureshwari Devi Temple.
Kaudiyala is regarded as one of Rishikesh’s most popular vistas. Kaudiyala is famous for offering its guests the adventurous activity of whitewater rafting and is one of the top destinations in the country for this sport. It is located 36 kilometers from Rishikesh towards Devprayag and 380 meters above sea level. The location is surrounded by dense hill forests, and it is also home to a variety of natural plants and fauna.
Things to Do at Kaudiyala:
- White water river rafting.
Shivpuri, 19 kilometers from Rishikesh, is situated on the banks of the Ganges and is named after a shrine devoted to Lord Shiva. This location has recently become known for water adventure activities, particularly white river rafting. A trip here is recommended if you want to see the Ganga in its most gorgeous condition.
Things to Do at Shivpuri:
- White water rafting.
9. Jumpin heights
Rishikesh is a site where visitors may get a dose of spirituality as well as a taste of adventure sports. The best example of such a facility is the Jumpin’ Heights Adventure Center, which is a must-see for adventure seekers. Because of its safety precautions, competent instructors, and location, it is one of the most recommended places to visit in Rishikesh for adventure sports.
Things to Do at Jumpin heights:
- Giant Swing.
- Bungee jumping.
Rishikund, also known as the Pond of Sages, is a must-see destination. Every year, numerous pilgrims flock to the hot spring, which has various legendary associations. This area is easily accessible and is one of the top spots to visit in Rishikesh because it is part of Raghunath temple and is close to Shani and Triveni Sangam.
Other places to visit in Rishikesh
- Triveni Ghat
- Kunjapuri Devi Mandir
- Lakshman Temple
- Garud Chatti Waterfall
The town is not only rich in Hindu cultural heritage and pilgrimage sites but it is also situated in a beautiful setting that helps tourists feel at one with nature. Making a list of just ten sites is difficult, but if any of you think we missed a must-see,’ please let us know.
How to reach Rishikesh?
The nearest airport to Rishikesh is Dehradun’s Jolly Grant Airport (21 km), while Haridwar Station is the main rail station serving the town (21 km). To get to Rishikesh, you can take a bus or hire a taxi from both the gates and adjacent cities.
Things to Do In Rishikesh
- Cliff Jumping
- River Rafting
- Bungee Jumping
Frequently Asked Questions About Best Places To Visit In Rishikesh
1. What are the top sightseeing places in Rishikesh?
Laxman Jhula & Ram Jhula, The Beatles Ashram, Shivpuri, Neelkanth Mahadev Temple, Triveni Ghat, Neer Garh Waterfall, Kaudiyala, Swarg Ashram, Rishikund, Geeta Bhawan, Vashishta Gufa, Kunjapuri Temple, Parmath Niketan Ashram, Bharat Mandir, Tera Manzil Temple, and Sadhaka Grama Ashram are the top sightseeing places in Rishikesh.
2. How many days are enough for Rishikesh?
Rishikesh is an ideal location for nature and adventure enthusiasts alike. If you want to get the most out of your vacation, schedule it for three to four days.
3. How can I stay in Rishikesh for free?
In Rishikesh, there are various Ashrams and Dharamshalas where you can stay for free. However, in exchange for the same, you will be expected to perform some Sewa, which entails assisting with other home chores. If you don’t want to participate in Sewa, you can provide charity according to your wishes before leaving the area.
4. What is there to do in Rishikesh at night?
The following are some of the best locations to go out in Rishikesh at night:
- Rishikesh’s Triveni Ghat is a significant landmark.
- Laxman Jhula is a hive of activity.
- Sit by the fireside at Camp Riverside.
- Kaudiyala Beach – relax and enjoy the peace.
5. Which are the best shopping markets in Rishikesh?
The shopping markets in Rishikesh described below are a must-see for all shoppers!
- Laxman Jhula Market
- Shyampur Haat Bazar
- Rishikesh Main Market
- Gole Market
6. What is the best time for river rafting in Rishikesh?
The best time to go river rafting in Rishikesh is from the end of the rainy season (mid-September) until the beginning of the summer (May). The months of November to March are ideal for crystal pure white water rafting. During the monsoons, rafting in the Ganges is prohibited because the river level rises, making rafting dangerous.
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