Gangotri is one of the main religious places among the four Char Dham pilgrimage circuit in Uttarakhand. This temple of Gangotri is related to Goddess Ganga, the river that is internationally known as Ganges. The temple was built by General Amar Singh Thapa of the Gorkha Regiment of Indian Army in the 18th century. This temple is located in a beautiful surrounding of deodar and pine trees on the left bank of Bhagirathi River.
The temple at Gangotri opens for only about seven months of a year (mid-April to early November) when the sun enters the zodiac sign of Aries and it is closed when the sun enters Scorpio.
Height: 3048 m
Climate: Gangotri remains cut off from other parts from mid November to mid-April due to heavy snowfall. Heavy woolens are required during this time. In summers, light woolens are recommended during daytime and heavy woolens are suggested at nights.
Getting There & Away: How to reach Gangotri
Rail: Dehradun is the nearest railhead to Gangotri, situated at a distance of 241 kms.
Air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport near Dehradun, at a distance of 241 kms.
Tourist Attractions in Gangotri
Gangotri Temple: The main attraction is the temple dedicated to Goddess Ganga. The temple is situated close to the holy rock of ‘Bhagirath Shila’ where the King Bhagirath is considered to have worshiped Lord Shiva. Every year, hundreds of devotees visit this temple to seek blessings from the goddess. The temple opens daily from 6:15 AM to 2 PM and then from 3 PM till 9:30 PM.
Tapovan: Located at an altitude of 4463 m and at a distance of 23 kms from Gangotri, this is a beautiful meadow covered with wild flowers and surrounded by enormous snow clad Himalayan peaks. Tapovan is also the base camp for Shivlinga Peak Trek.
Gaumukh Glacier: The Gaumukh Glacier is the source of the mighty river Ganga and is situated at a height of 4238 m, 18 kms from Gangotri. This can be reached by a 3 day trek from this place.
Shivlinga: The Shivlinga on the river Bhagirathi is a magnificent sight which is visible in early winters when the water level of the river decreases. It is believed that Lord Shiva sat at this spot to receive Ganga on his locks. This place is revered by many since this is the place where the river Ganga touches the earth for the first time.
Vishwanath Temple: This is one of the most famous temples in Uttarkashi, 100 kms short of Gangotri. This temple is only about 300 m away from the local bus stand and is revered by many. This temple has a ‘shivlinga’ which is 60 cms tall and 90 cms in circumference.
Bhairon Ghati: This temple lies near the confluence of river Bhagirathi and river Jat Ganga. Situated amidst thick forests, this site is a must visit for the tourists.