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Yamuna at Yamunotri

Yamunotri, the source of the Yamuna River and the seat of the Goddess Yamuna is situated at an altitude of 3293 mts in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. It is one of the four sites in India's Chota Char Dham pilgrimage. The actual source of Yamuna River lies in the Yamunotri Glacier at a height 6,387 mtrs., near Bandarpunch peaks in Lower Himalayas[1].

Yamunotri temple

Yamunotri temple and ashrams

Yamunotri temple is situated in the western region of Garhwal Himalayas at an altitude of 3235 m in Uttarkashi district, Uttarakhand.[2]. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna. The Yamunotri temple is a full day's journey from Uttarakhand's main towns — Rishikesh, Haridwar or Dehradun. The actual temple is only accessible by a thirteen kilometre trek from the town of Hanuman Chatti and a six kilometer walk from Janki Chatti; horses or palanquins are available for rent. The hike from Hanuman Chatti to Yamunotri is very picturesque with beautiful views of a number of waterfalls. There are two trekking routes from Hanuman Chatti to Yamunotri, the one along the right bank proceeds via the Markendeya Tirtha, where the sage Markandeya wrote the Markandeya Purana , the other route which lies on the left bank of the river goes via Kharsali, from where Yamunotri is a five or six hours climb away [3].

The original temple was built by Maharani Gularia of Jaipur in the 19th century. The current temple is of recent origin as past iterations have been destroyed by the weather and elements. Lodging at the temple itself is limited to a few small ashrams and guest-houses.

Ritual duties such as the making and distribution of prasad (sanctified offerings) and the supervision of pujas (ritual venerations) are performed by the Uniyal family of pujaris (priests). Unique aspects of ritual practice at the site include hot springs where raw rice is cooked and made into prasad. It is located at an altitude of 3,235 metres approximately. A little ahead is the actual source of the river Yamuna which is at an altitude of about 4,421 metres approximately. Two hot springs are also present at Yamunotri offering relief to tired hikers, at a height of 3292 metres, Surya Kund, has boiling hot water, while Gauri Kund, had tepid water suitable for bathing [3]

Chota Char Dham

Kedarnathji-mandir.JPGBadrinathji temple.JPGGangotri temple.jpgYamunotri temple and ashram.jpg

KedarnathBadrinath
GangotriYamunotri

There seems to be a confusion about who built the temple of Yamunotri, however according to the official website of the district [4], the temple was originally constructed by Maharaj Pratap Shah of Tehri Garhwal.

References

External links

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Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Yamunotri is a city in the Indian state of Uttarakhand.

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