Rishikesh, the holy town in Uttrakhand is a refreshing getaway. Different in every possible way. Alive with colors and art everywhere.
Tucked in the Himalayan foothills, it is the abode of ancient marvels, the swinging bridge- Laxman and Ram Jhula. The scenic landscape is mystic and the melody of pious River Ganges, soothing.
A favorite haunt for travel enthusiasts and free souls. It is world-famous for its authentic Shanti vibes and an array of adventure possibilities.
Rishikesh is a great budget vacation place and also ideal for a laidback luxury vacay.
Each day in Rishikesh is bright, soulful, and exciting!
Suggested Read: Hidimba Temple - The Tribute To Devi Hidimba
What’s The Best Time To Visit Rishikesh?
Any month! Winters are cold and January is the peak winter month. Winters are a good time as any to make the most of the adventure activities.
June is the hottest month here with temperatures as high as 40 °C.
July to September are monsoon months and while you may not be able to raft, you get great discounts around this time of year.
March is a sweet spot to visit Rishikesh, The winter's wane out and summer starts to set in. The town is high on energy and activity around the International Yoga fair and Holi festival’s electrifying celebrations.
Some Unique Facts About Rishikesh
Rishikesh, named after the Lord of senses Vishnu is a land out of epics and legends. Considered as one of the holiest places in India, it will soon be the first among the two cities acclaimed, the national heritage site.
Its ancient streets hold a very respectful place. Pilgrims and locals completely have to adhere to No Alcohol and Non-Vegetarian food. It's the norm in the famed Yoga Capital and the Adventure Capital of the world!
Rishikesh is rising as one of the most tranquil destinations in India. This great land has a lot of shades to it-yoga, meditation, Ayurveda therapy as well as a wildlife sanctuary!
Rajaji National Park is home to the Bengal Tiger and Asiatic Elephants.
Let's sort through all the fun things you can do here in a day!
River rafting and jumping heights (bungee jumping, cliff jumping) are the best at Rishikesh.
From watching the sunrise on a view high to close glimpses of flora and fauna, the list of things to do in Rishikesh is as diverse and colorful as Incredible India!
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Things To Do In Rishikesh
1. Sunrise Trek
Join in the organized trek to the Kunjapuri Temple at sunrise! Watch the sky come alive with shades of red stretching far amidst the panoramic Himalayas. Have an early drive uphill and hike down, to capture the lifestyle of the hill people-Paharis.
Your walk around the local villages, farms, ends with the rousing Neer Gaddu waterfall.
Wash away all your stress in the chilling waters and get ready for a fun-filled afternoon.
The trek is about 5 miles and you should be back by 11 am-12 pm.
2. Beatles Ashram Ruins And Art Museum
The world is fast-moving, ease off with a visit to The Beatles Ashram in Rishikesh. Explore the ruins and come across random rooms painted with delightful graffiti by anonymous artists.
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The Beatles spent time here in the 1960s, in the little huts made of pebbles to get away from drugs and practice transcendental meditation.
The place is being taken over by nature, yet the harmony and peaceful aura are intact.
3. Drop-In And Do Yoga
Learn some original Yoga. A Rishikesh special, this is a top recommendation for all. When in the Yoga Capital of the world, stretch it out a Lil'!
All around Rishikesh, you will find drop-in yoga classes, you can stay for an intense session or not. These are best to learn body, mind, and soul connections through breath, yoga, and Ayurveda philosophy.
4. Binge On Flavors And Art
Reward yourself with a delicious meal or two! Give 'eating with your hands' a try and do obsess over Chai(Tea) at The office-A cool hangout place.
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Crafty cafes line up the streets of Rishikesh amidst people, cows, tuk-tuks, and monkeys. Every cafe has a unique recipe and ambiance. People gather around to especially do nothing except having a good time.
5. Ganga Aarti
Be there at Parmarth Niketan Ashram at 5 pm for the most blissful hour ever. Every evening, people from all walks of life gather to be one and sing in the devotion of all and whatever they hold sacred.
People wish and pray for peace and well being. Sail flower boats on the divine waters of the river Ganges. You can take a holy dip too.
You are in a different time zone here, it is a different experience for every individual, one that is usually beyond any words.
Smile and go Namaste!
The other venue for Divine Aarti is at Triveni Ghat nearer to the Lakshman Jhula.
6. Sunset Jam
Rent a bike, and zig-zag your way across this happy town. The banks of the River Ganges have their separate fanbase. Sadhus and Yogi meditate. Travelers gather round to sing and dance and celebrate life.
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Art is omnipresent in Rishikesh. You’d never find the local people in dark shades of clothing, people wear bright and breathable clothes.
So do spare some time in your day to hop around temples and float down the narrow streets.
After all our discoveries reflect on our experience!
7. Ayurvedic Miracle Massage
India is the birthplace of Ayurveda, therefore why not nourish your body and soul while in Rishikesh. After all the entertainment and activity, calm your senses with a healing ayurvedic massage.
Ayurveda Bhavan, Ananda in the Himalayas, and Braham Yoga and Healing are great options for a soothing massage. among others.
8. Classic Concert
There are many music schools in Rishikesh and students put on the most beautiful performances. Watch Indian Traditional instruments like sitar and tabla in action and come alive to their soulful melody.
A great way to end the great day.
Some Famous Treks From Rishikesh
Along With The Many Adventure Sports Options Like
• Rappelling, rock climbing, fly foxing, cliff jumping, parasailing, body surfing, and kayaking.
Rishikesh is also the gateway to many awesome Himalayan Treks. Gear up and hike on. The most famous treks in Rishikesh are best suited for all nature lovers.
• Nag Tibba trek.
• Chopta Chandrashila trek.
• Valley of Flowers trek
• Kuari Pass and Pangarchulla trek
• Rupin Pass trek
• Har Ki Dun trek
These trails take you to the high points in the Himalayas and abodes of some rare Himalayan flora and fauna. Don’t miss out on them, if you’d like to challenge yourself and add more to your travel experience
Where To Stay In Rishikesh
Ashramas, Zostels, bunk stays, great hotels, and resorts-Rishikesh has a bunch of stay options. Avail great discounts in low tourist season (Monsoon/Winters).
Some places to stay in Rishikesh:
• Bunk Stay Rishikesh
• GANGA KINARE - A Riverside Boutique Hotel
• Aloha On The Ganges
• Divine Resort: Hotel in Rishikesh
Day Trips From Rishikesh
Half an hour away from Rishikesh and is like Rishikesh in essence and spirit. It is of utmost religious value to Hindus, and you can visit Haridwar if you'd fancy visiting the most divine temples in India.
• Tehri Lake
2-3 hour drive from Rishikesh, Tehri Dam is a manmade reservoir, best to spend a while boating amidst peace and nature’s splendor.
A half-hour drive from Laxman Jhula gets you the beautiful beaches and most loved place for river rafting. Shivpuri Uttarakhand provides adventure sports like river rafting, rock climbing, cliff jumping & rappelling.
• Rajaji Tiger Reserve
Another short drive from Rishikesh (19km away), Rajaji Tiger reserve boasts of tigers, elephants, leopards. A fun point for wildlife enthusiasts.
• Neelkanth Mahadev Temple
One of the most famous temples in Rishikesh (32 km away) from Rishikesh. Neelkanth Mahadev Temple worships the great Lord Shiva. Many pilgrims consider their journey to be incomplete without a visit to this quaint blue shrine.
For an Unforgettable Uttarakhand Tour, you can add the famous romantic Hill station Mussoorie to your itinerary. A 3-hour long drive will get you to this heavenly land bound by snow-capped peaks.
Extra Tips For Rishikesh
• Visit Rishikesh even if you do not plan to do yoga.
• Make most of the thrill opportunities.
• Dress Code: Colorful and comfortable. To blend into the atmosphere, carry or shop for loose, flowy, and bright clothes.
• Do wear comfortable footwear and must carry sturdy hiking shoes if you plan o a trek.
• Please adhere to the pure vegetarian and no alcohol rule.
• Monsoon months are best avoided due to plenty of rains and no river rafting.
• If you plan for a visit in winters, pack light and heavy woolens.
• Want to experience yoga or get teacher training? don't pre-book. Explore your options once you get there.
• Beware of the monkeys! Please do not carry your stuff in polythene bags, instead, keep it inside your backpack.
• Above all do new things, and as you absorb the cultural differences don’t forget to be grateful for this great life.
"This article originally appeared in Onedayitinerary "