Haridwar is often mentioned in ancient scriptures and even referred during the British times. With Ujjain, Nasik and Allahabad, Haridwar forms the four important pilgrimage centres of India where Kumbh Mela is celebrated here after every 3 years rotated over these 4 destinations. Maha Kumbh Mela will be held in Haridwar in 2022. It is referred as the Mayapuri, Gangadwar, Mokhsadwar in ancient writings.
Haridwar is also one of the four places where drops of Amrit or nectar fell from the pitcher which was being carried by Garuda, the heavenly bird and the spot is known as Brahma Kund or Har-ki-Pauri.
Har-ki-Pauri is the most holy place in Haridwar where thousands of devotees take a dip. It is believed that Prince Bhagirath served self-punishment here to rescue the souls of his ancestors who had died due to the curse of Kapil Muni. His prayers were answered and Ganga flowed from the locks of Lord Shiva and revived the sons of King Sagara. Therefore, according to the Hindus salvation of the ancestors can be reached by standing on the holy waters at Har-ki-pauri.
Har-ki-pauri is the most important place of Haridwar where thousands of people take a dip in the holy waters of the Ganges. At twilight, when evening aarti is performed the reflection of the golden diyas that keep floating on the river offers an enchanting view of the ghat to the visitors.
The Chandi Devi temple built by Suchat Singh is located on the top of a Neel Parvat on the banks of river Ganga. The Maya Devi temple is located at a place where it is said that the heart and navel of Goddess Sati fell. This is an ancient temple of Maya Devi the Adhishtkatri deity of Haridwar. It is also famous as one of the Siddhapeethas. Another important temple is the Mansa Devi temple is located atop Bilwa Parwat and is dedicated to Goddess Mansa Devi. Festivals like the Kavad Mela, Somvati Amavasya Mela, Ganga Dashara, Gughal Mela are celebrated with lots of pomp and gaiety.
In and Around
Places to see in Haridwar
Chandi Devi Temple
The Chandi Devi Temple, situated atop the Neel Parvat, gives a spell bounding view of the entire Haridwar town. The temple was built in the year 1929 by the then king of Kashmir Suchat Singh.
Mansa Devi Temple
Mansa Devi Temple situated on the southernmost hill of the Shivalik ranges is the Durga temple called Mansa Devi. One can reach this temple either on foot or by a cable car. Perched on Bilwa Parvat, the temple provides a panoramic view of the Haridwar city with the Ganges flowing in its middle
Maya Devi Temple
The Maya Devi Temple holds great religious importance for the follower of Hindu religion. The temple is also regarded as one of the Siddhapethas dedicated to the Adhisthatri Devi of Haridwar.
Bharat Mata Mandir
The Bharat Mata Mandir is a massive eight-storey structure consecrated in 1983. Each floor of the temple houses statues of different mythological and historical legends, religious deities, leaders and heroes who played important role in the formation of the modern India. The temple was founded by Swami Satyamitranand Giri.
Shanti Kunj is another place to visit in Haridwar. It is the most important centre for the Gayatri followers all over India. The temple here houses 24 images of Gayatri. Shanti Kunj is also famous for yoga practices.
Har-Ki-Pauri is regarded as one of the major attractions of Haridwar. It is a sacred ghat built by the then King Vikramaditya in the memory of his brother Bhartrihari. This sacred bathing ghat is also known as Brahmakund. Thousands of devotees come here to take a holy dip in the river Ganga during the Kumbh Mela.
Sapt Rishi Ashram & Sapt Sarovar
Sapt Rishi Ashram & Sapt Sarovar It is at this place that Ganges is believed to have divided itself into seven small streams to not to disturb the Sapt (seven) Rishis meditating and worshipping here.
Haridwar is also famous for its local bazaars or markets. The main Haridwar bazaar is a long, winding street, probably the oldest part of the town, free of all vehicular traffic.
Rishikesh is an ideal spot for white water rafting and camping on the river beach. Rishikesh comer under the shivalik range of the Himalayas and the place is also the home of numerous temples. It is one of the busiest places of Uttarakhand where lakhs of tourists visit every month throughout the year. Rishikesh is situated 25kms from Haridwar.
It is an important picnic spot, people come here along with family and friends to spend some quality time, away from the frenetic rat race of the city life. The picnic spot of Lachhiwala lies along the Haridwar-Rishikesh Road, and is just a 30 minutes drive from Haridwar.
This is an Islamic shrine in the midst of countless Hindu temples and ashrams. Locally referred to as Piran Kaliyar, the Kaliyar Sharif (also spelled “Kalyar Sharif”) is the site where sufi saint Makhdoom Sayed Alauddin Ali Ahmed Sabir lies buried. It is a small village where the shrine is located. A 30 minutes drive from Haridwar takes you here. The shrine of Kaliyar Sharif has a history dating back 800 years.
Chilla Wildlife Sanctuary is the region open to visitors and abounds in wildlife as well as vegetation. The location of the sanctuary on the eastern bank of River Ganges adds much charm to it. The wildlife sanctuary expands over an area of 240 sq km. So, as you undertake a safari into the jungles of Chilla Sanctuary, you will not only watch a variety of animal species at close quarters but will also soak up scenic views of the Ganges and the northern Himalayas.
New Tehri is the only planned town of Uttarakhand state which was made during the construction of the Tehri Dam. Every month thousands of tourists visit Tehri to see the stagnant water of the massive Tehri Dam. The Dam is situated amidst high mountains many of which are submerged under water. New Tehri is very well connected with motorable roads. Tehri Garhwal is situated 98kms from Haridwar. There are many good hotels in New Tehri.
Devprayag is the sacred confluence of the two holy rivers Bhagirathi and Alaknanda making its water holier with the formation of Ganga River. Devprayag is one of the five confluences of Alaknanda River and the origin of Ganga River. It is also the seat of the priests of the Badrinath temple. Located at an elevation of 472mts above sea level at the confluence of Alaknanda and Bhagirathi River it is just 99kms ahead of Haridwar on NH58 connecting with Badrinath Dham
The city of Dehradun is the capital of Uttaranchal and the headquarters of Dehradun district. Surrounded by the Himalayas in the north, the Shivalk Hills to the south, the Yamuna to the west and the Ganga to the east, Dehradun is the gateway to the famous hill station of Mussoorie and the pilgrimage spots of Haridwar and Rishikesh.
Neelkanth Mahadev Temple
Thousands of devotees visit Neelkanth Mahadev every month throughout the year. It is situated on the summit of the mountain across the sacred Ganga River. According to mythology this is the place where Lord Shiva drank the venom produced during ‘Sagar Manthan’ which turned his throat blue and was thus the place was named as Neelkanth as Neelkanth and Mahadev are names of Lord Shiva. It is situated 38kms from Haridwar.
Chamba is one of the best excursion of Dehradun as the place offers panoramic views of the majestic Himalayan range and the sacred view of the Bhagirathi River. Chamba is situated 81kms from Haridwar at an altitude of 1676mts above sea level. Chamba is unlike Mussoorie as the place provides peace and tranquillity. The place is quite and serene with pine and Deodar trees everywhere.
Mussoorie is situated 85 kms from Haridwar and is set at an elevation of 2005mts above sea level. The place is situated amidst green hills and is rich in varied flora and fauna that’s why Mussoorie is also known as Queen of the hills.
Kempty Falls, the mall road, Bhatta falls, Gunhill and Lal Tibba are some of the popular places nearby Mussoorie.
The right time to visit would be February, March, August – October.
How to Reach
Jolly Grant Airport is the nearest Airport to Haridwarand is situated 36kms from Haridwar. Taxis are easily available from Jolly Grant Airport to Haridwar.
Haridwar is well connected by railway networks with major destinations of India. Haridwar has excellent rail network with all important cities of India. Trains to Haridwar run on regular basis from major cities across the country. Haridwar Junction Railway Station is well-connected by train, with frequent trains to Delhi (4-5 hours) and Dehradun (1 hour).
Haridwar is well connected with motorable roads. Haridwar is gateway to Shivalik range of Uttarakhand state. Luxury and normal Buses to Haridwar are available from ISBT Kashmiri Gate. Buses and Taxis to Haridwar are easily available from major destinations of Uttarakhand state. Haridwar is connected with National Highway 58.
Stay / Eat
Where to Stay
Aalia on the Ganges
Shyampur Noamabad Haridwar – 249408
Ambrosia Sarovar Portico
Opp. Patanjali NH-58,
12th Milestone, Badehri,Rajputna,
Haridwar – 249401
Where to Eat
For a town that serves strict vegetarian food, the fare turned out is remarkably good. You will find a lot of restaurants in Haridwar that serve varied cuisines ranging from South Indian dosas and thalis to Punjabi chana bhathura and parathas. Whether you eat at food stalls or at restaurants, the food is bound to be wholesome and tasty!