Yamunotri Dhaam

Yamunotri DhaamThe first stopover for the Char Dham Yatra is the westernmost shrine of Yamunotri in the Garhwal Himalayas.The Yamunotri temple is located in Uttarkashi District Uttarakhand, India, a full day's journey from Uttaranchal's main towns — Rishikesh, Haridwar or Dehradun.
The actual temple is only accessible by a six kilometer walk from the town of Hanuman Chatti and a four kilometer walk from Janki Chatti (horses or palanquins are available for rent). The hike from Hanuman Chetty to Yamunotri is very picturesque with beautiful views of a number of water falls. 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 guesthouses. 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.
This temple is dedicated to the goddess Yamuna. It was constructed in 1839 by the Tehri Naresh Sudarshan Shah. The deity of Yamuna is carved from black stone. Yamuna is the daughter of Surya (the sun-god) and Sangya. She is the twin sister of Yamaraja, the "Lord of Death". If you bathe in her waters, you are spared of painful death.

Yamunotri Dhaam

Surya Kund is known for its thermal springs. The hot water pool here is used to prepare the prasad or holy offerings to the deity, which is normally rice and potatoes, cooked by tying the food in cloth bags and dipping it into the hot water which is as high as 190°F. Divya Shilla is a rock pillar that is worshipped by the pilgrims before they enter the Yamunotri temple.

Yamunotri Dhaam

Getting There
By Air
The closest airport from Yamunotri is Jolly Grant airport close to Dehradun, 196 km from Gangotri.
By Rail
The nearest railhead from Yamunotri is Dehradun (172 km). Rishikesh (213 kms) is also an alternative.
By Road
Buses are available for Hanuman Chatti which is 14 kilometers from Yamunotri from Rishikesh, Haridwar and other important places in Uttaranchal. Important road distances are Rishikesh to Yamunotri 222 kms via Narendranagar 16 kms, Chamba 46 kms, Tehri 21 kms, Dharasu 42 kms, Bhramkhal 15 kms, Barkot 40 kms, Phoolchatti 5 kms and Jankichatti 3 kms.

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