Haridwar is an ancient city located in the state of Uttarakhand in northern India. It holds great religious and cultural significance and is one of the seven holiest places in Hinduism. The city is situated on the banks of the Ganges River, where the river leaves the Himalayan foothills and enters the plains.

History Of Haridwar

Ancient Roots: Haridwar’s history can be traced back to ancient times, and it is mentioned in various Hindu scriptures, including the Vedas and the Mahabharata.

Legend of Har Ki Pauri: One of the most significant landmarks in Haridwar is Har Ki Pauri, a ghat on the banks of the Ganges River. According to legend, Lord Vishnu left his footprint on a stone here, making it a sacred spot.

King Vikramaditya’s Connection: The historical king Vikramaditya is said to have constructed the famous bathing ghat, Brahmakund, at Har Ki Pauri in memory of his brother Bhartrihari. The ghat has since become a focal point for pilgrims during the Kumbh Mela.

Mughal Influence: During the Mughal era, Haridwar saw both periods of prosperity and destruction. The Mughal emperor Akbar visited the city and recognized its importance, while Aurangzeb is said to have destroyed several Hindu temples in the region.

Colonial Period: During the British colonial period, Haridwar continued to be a center for Hindu religious practices. The British recognized its significance and made efforts to improve infrastructure and facilities for pilgrims.

Post-Independence Era: After India gained independence in 1947, Haridwar became part of the state of Uttar Pradesh. In 2000, when the new state of Uttarakhand was carved out of Uttar Pradesh, Haridwar became a part of the new state.

Mythology About Haridwar

The name “Haridwar” translates to “Gateway to God,” and the city is considered one of the seven holiest places in Hinduism. Several myths and legends are associated with Haridwar, adding to its spiritual significance. Here are some prominent mythological aspects related to Haridwar:

Ganga Dussehra: One of the most significant festivals celebrated in Haridwar is Ganga Dussehra. According to Hindu mythology, it is believed that the Ganges River descended to the earth on this day. The river is considered sacred, and taking a dip in the Ganges during Ganga Dussehra is believed to wash away sins. Pilgrims gather in large numbers to participate in the festivities and take a holy dip in the river.

King Bhagirath’s Penance: Haridwar is associated with the legend of King Bhagirath, who performed severe penance to bring the Ganges to the earth. It is said that Bhagirath’s ancestors were cursed, and to liberate them, he sought the help of Lord Shiva. Pleased with his penance, Shiva released the Ganges from his hair, and it flowed onto the earth at Haridwar.

Chandi Devi Temple: The Chandi Devi Temple, situated atop the Neel Parvat, is dedicated to Goddess Chandi. According to mythology, it is believed that the temple was built to honor Goddess Chandi, who killed the demon kings Shumbha and Nishumbha. The temple is accessible by a cable car or a trek, and pilgrims visit to seek the blessings of the goddess.

Mansa Devi Temple: The Mansa Devi Temple, located on the Bilwa Parvat, is dedicated to Goddess Mansa Devi. According to the legend, Mansa Devi is believed to fulfill the wishes of her devotees. Pilgrims often tie threads to the sacred tree in the temple premises, symbolizing their wishes, and return to untie them once their wishes are fulfilled.

Har Ki Pauri: Har Ki Pauri is a sacred ghat on the banks of the Ganges in Haridwar. The name translates to “Footsteps of God.” According to mythology, it is believed that Lord Vishnu left his footprint on a stone at this spot. The evening Ganga Aarti performed at Har Ki Pauri is a mesmerizing and spiritually uplifting experience for visitors.


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How To Reach Haridwar

By Road

Haridwar is well-connected by road to major cities in North India. You can reach Haridwar by bus or private vehicle. The city is connected by a network of national highways. Regular bus services operate from nearby cities and towns.

By Train

Haridwar has a well-connected railway station, and it is a major railway junction in the region. Several trains operate to and from Haridwar, connecting it to major cities across the country.

By Air

The nearest airport to Haridwar is the Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, which is approximately 35 kilometers away. From the airport, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach Haridwar.

Frequently Asked Questions Registrations

1. What is Haridwar known for?

The Indian state of Uttarakhand is home to the holy city of Haridwar, which is well-known as a significant Hindu pilgrimage destination. Notable features include the Har Ki Pauri, the site of the well-known Ganga Aarti, and several temples, including Mansa Devi and Chandi Devi. Sacred Ghats, or river banks, along the banks of the River Ganges.

2. What is Haridwar famous for?

  • Haridwar is famous for its religious significance as one of the seven holiest places (Sapta Puri) in Hinduism. It’s situated on the banks of the Ganges River and hosts the Kumbh Mela, a massive Hindu pilgrimage that takes place every 12 years.

3. When is the best time to visit Haridwar?

October through February, the winter season, is the ideal time to visit Haridwar because of the excellent weather that is ideal for outdoor sports and sightseeing. The Kumbh Mela, which happens sporadically in accordance with Hindu astrology, and the festivals also draw large crowds of tourists.

4. What are the main attractions in Haridwar?

Some of the main attractions in Haridwar include Har Ki Pauri (a sacred ghat on the Ganges River), Chandi Devi Temple, Mansa Devi Temple, Maya Devi Temple, Bharat Mata Mandir, and various ashrams and ghats along the river.

5. Are there any adventure activities available in Haridwar?

  • Yes, there are adventure activities available in and around Haridwar, such as river rafting in the Ganges, trekking in the nearby hills, wildlife safaris in Rajaji National Park, and camping along the riverbanks.

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