Cuddled on both sides by two majestic mountains named Nar and Narayan, the Neelkanth Peak gives an enchanting backdrop to Badrinath, which is one of the ‘Four Dhams’. Being one of the most popular pilgrim places in India, it houses the renowned Badrinath Temple. As per the legends, Lord Vishnu visited the area, known as 'Badri Van', (berry garden) for meditation when Narad distracted him with worldly pleasures. Thus, the main deity of the temple is a meditating Lord Vishnu.
This renowned temple belongs to two centuries and was raised by the Kings of Garhwal. It features three sections, including Garbhagriha (Sanctum), Sabha Mandap and The Darshan Mandap. The Garbhagriha (Sanctum) is home to the idols of Lord Badri Narayan, Narad Rishi, Kuber (God of wealth), Uthavar, Nar & Narayan. Lord Badri Narayan can be seen armed with Shankh and Chakra in his two arms in a lifted posture. The main idol is made of black stone, which represents Vishnu in a meditative pose. The temple also houses idols of Garuda and Goddess Mahalaxmi apart from the statues of Adi Shankar, Swami Desikan and Shri Ramanujan Guru.
Places to Visit
It is a beautiful looking natural hot water pool having medicinal properties. Pilgrims take bathe here before visiting Badrinath temple.
There are five blocks of mythological importance nestling the Tapt Kund namely
Narad, Barah, Narasimha, Garur & Markandeya Shilas (stone).
Panch Dharas in Badrinath
The popular Panch Dharas or five streams in Badrinath are Prahlad, Bhrigu, Kurma, Urvashi & Indira dhara. It is said that the sage Narad once performed meditation on this rock for few years.
Resting above Badrinath is a snowy peak called Neelkanth. This peak in the shape of a pyramid offers a spectacular view and is known as the 'Garhwal Queen'.
Situated in the north of Sri Badrinath temple, this spot is known as Brahma Kapal where Lord Brahma used to reside. Here pilgrims perform various ceremonies for departed souls like 'Shradh' and 'Pind daan'.
How to Reach
By Air: Jolly Grant, situated in Dehradun is the closest airport.
By Rail: The nearest railhead is at Rishikesh.
By Road: Visiting Badrinath by road is also an easy option.