Joshimath, also known as Jyotirmath, is a hill station in the lap of the mighty Himalayas in Uttarakhand. It attracts both tourists as well as pilgrims equally. Joshimath is the gateway to the famous shrine of Badrinath and Hemkund.
Joshimath is breathtakingly beautiful and is surrounded by scenic view points. It is also the base camp to the trek to the much-famed Valley of Flowers. At an altitude of 6000 ft, the town is filled with a spiritual vibe as it has a large number of temples.
Joshimath is one of the four maths established by Adi Shankaracharya. It is the winter home of Lord Badrinath. The idol of Badrinath is brought down to Joshimath during winters as the temple becomes inaccessible during winter.
The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport at Dehradun which is at a distance of 272 km. The airport is well connected to all the major cities in the country and has regular flights from Delhi.
The nearest railhead is Rishikesh Railway Station which is at a distance of 250 km. It is well connected to all the major towns and cities in the country.
Joshimath is well connected by roads, and has a good network of roads connected to various other major tourist places in the state of Uttarakhand. There are plenty of buses which operate from Rishikesh to Joshimath as well as from Srinagar.
PC: Anshul Dabral
Best Time To Visit
The months from April to November are the best months to visit the place to capture the natural beauty of the place.
PC: Anshul Dabral
Food And Accommodation
Being a major hub of pilgrims, there are plenty of options to stay here. One can find budget hotels to hotels which offer luxurious stays as well. There are a number of tourist bungalows set up by the state government. It is advisable to pre-book rooms for comfortable stay without much trouble.
There are several dhabas and restaurants which offer north Indian and south Indian cuisines. The options are pretty slim for those looking for Chinese and Continental.
PC: The Himalayan Abode
It is an old mulberry tree, which is said to have a lot of religious significance in Hinduism. The tree is said to be 1200 years old and remains evergreen throughout the year and has never shed leaves on its own till now.
Kalpavriksha is said to be the Kalpatru mentioned in the various scriptures and holy books. Adi Shankaracharya sat below this tree and worshiped Lord Shiva. The Shivalinga installed by Shankaracharya has been enshrined at the Jyoteshwar Mahadeo Temple built under the Kalpavriksha.
2. Shri Shankaracharya Math
The Shankaracharya Math was established by Adi Shankaracharya himself in the 8th century along with his disciple Trotakacharya. It is one of the four maths established by Adi Shankaracharya in the various parts of the country.
3. Narsingh Temple
The Narsingh Temple is home to Lord Badrinath during winters. The idol is brought here and placed along with the idol of Narsingh or Narasimha, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu.
According to legends, there would be a devastating landslide in the area which would block the route to Badrinath and it would mark the end of Kalyug. The landslide would occur when the right hand of the idol of Narsingh would fall of. It is believed that the idol has been shrinking slightly day by day.
Known for its natural hot springs, the hot water is said to have medicinal properties and can cure a number of skin-related aliments. It also offers a scenic view of the surrounding mountains and is a prime destination in the trek to Kuari Pass.
PC: Dinesh Valke
5. Auli Ropeway
The ropeway provides a breathtaking view of the Himalayas. It is the longest ropeway in Asia after Gulmarg. The ropeway covers a distance of almost 4 km at an altitude of 1110 m. The ropeway is open only during summers and costs INR 750 for a cable car ride and INR 300 for a chair lift per person.