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Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh: All You Need To Know

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Last Updated:March 22, 2024

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Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh: Located amidst the Shivalik Himalayas, 32 kilometers from the pilgrim town of Rishikesh is the Neelkanth Mahadev temple. This majestic temple is dedicated to Lord Neelkanth, an awe inspiring form of Lord Shiva.

Pilgrims and spiritual seekeres from many parts of the country and also from foreign countries visit this spiritual haven. Devotees take the long trek from Rishikesh to appease their deity, Lord Neelkanth. This blog post covers the entire journey associated with Neelkanth Mahadev Temple.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple

Read the complete blog to know more about important details such as legend, significance, and trekking route associated with Neelkanth Mahadev Temple.

Legend of Neelkanth Mahadev

The legend of Neelkanth Mahadev is intricately connected to Samudra Manthan (divine churning of oceans ). Samudra Manthan is considered as the pivotal event in Hinduism. As per the authentic texts of Hinduism, devtas and asuras participated in the process of churning of ocean.

They were competing for getting amrit (for immortality) from the samudra manthan. It is believed that halahal (potent poison) also emerged from samudra manthan along with amrit. The halahal that emerged from the divine churning of the ocean had the potential to destroy all creation.

Lord Shiva recognized the impending catastrophe and decided to save creation from the possible destruction of halahal. In the divine selfless action to save creation, Lord Shiva ingested the halahal and stored it in his throat.

Due to the impact of halahal, his throat become blue in colour. Lord Shiva came to be known as Lord Neelkanth. Legend states that Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh is the spot where Lord Mahadev consumed halahal to save all creation. It is one of the most sacred sites in Hinduism.

This site possesses a unique aura. Devotees visit this place to seek blessings of Lord Neelkanth for peace, prosperity, and spiritual solace. They avail their chance to pay homage to Lord Neelkanth Mahadev who had averted destruction of the universe.

Temple Architecture of Neelkanth Mahadev

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh showcases unique architectural style. It is a blend of different captivating architectural styles. There is a significant influence of Dravidian architecture on the architecture this magnificent temple.

The towering shikhara of the temple catches the attention of the devotees. Intricate carvings on the walls of the doorways and walls. The sanctum sanctorum of Neelkanth Mahadev temple houses the revered idol of Lord Neelkanth. Blue throat of Lord Neelkanth acts as a constant reminder of the legendary sacrifice of Lord Mahadev during samudra manthan.

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Smaller shrines dedicated to other deities such as Lord Ganesh, Devi Parvati, and Lord Kartikeya are also present inside the temple complex. This special tapestry of Hinduism located in the Shivaliks attracts deevotees from all parts of India and foreign countries also.

Natural beauty of the site adds to the charm of this temple. Devotees visiting the temple embrace lush green hills and calm valleys. The journey to Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh offers a sense of peace and tranquility to the devotees.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple: A Spiritual Tapestry

Devotees from all walks of life seek blessings of Lord Neelkanth Mahadev. Large number of devotees visit Neelkanth Mahadev Temple during the holy month of Shravan to seek blessings of Lord Mahadev. Devotees participate in the holy Kaanwar Yatra during this time.

They carry holy water from Ganga River (Ganges) and offer it to Lord Mahadev in temples dedicated to Lord Shiva (Mahadev) such as Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh. The atmosphere of this temple is engulfed with spiritualism and devotion during this important month.

Natural Delight:

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh holds high spiritual significance for the devotees. Besides the spiritual significance, this place is a haven for nature lovers and people seeking respite from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The breathtaking views of the Shivaliks and the calm and serene environment creates an ideal environment for yoga, meditation, and spiritual rejuvenation.

Read further to know more about Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh.

Enduring Legacy of Neelkanth Mahadev

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh is more than just a place of worship. It is a testament to the faith, perseverance, and power of Hinduism. The legend of Lord Neelkanth serves as a constant reminder of the selfless sacrifice and compassiions of Lord Shiva.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh offer spiritual solace to a wide range of people. Devotees, pilgrims, nature buffs, travellers, and trekkers visit this temple. The Neelkanth Mahadev Temple offer unique experience to the visitors. People leave this place with a lasting impression.

Festivals and Celebrations

India is a land of celebrations and festivals. People celebrate many festivals in India. Every one or two months, people of India celebrate an important festival. Almost all the festivals are celebrated to seek the blessings of the deities.

For example, devotees celebrate Mahashivratri to seek blessings of Lord Mahadev. They also seek his blessings by celebrating Shravan Somvaars during the auspicious month of Shravan. Important festivals celebrated at the Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh are listed.

Shravan Maas (month)

Devotees take part in Kaanwar Yatra during the auspicious month of Shravan. Kaanwar Yatra is one of the busiest times at this temple. The whole atmosphere of the temple is filled with mantras chanting, devotional songs, and bhajans.

Maha Shivratri

The festival of Maha Shivratri is usually celebrated in the months of February or March. Devotees celebrate this festival to mark the wedding of Lord Shiva and Devi Parvati.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple

Special puja and rituals are performed to seek blessings of this divine pair on the occasion of Mahashivratri. Devotees come in large numbers to seek blessings at the Neelkanth Mahadev Temple.

Navratri

Navratri is one of the most important festivals in Hindusim. Special puja and rituals are held in the Neelkanth Mahadev Temple to worship nine different forms of Devi Durga.

Devotees associate the eighth form of Devi Durga, Mahagauri, with Devi Parvati. Navratri celebrations in the temple are held with full fervour and devotion.

A Glimpse into Local Culture

People visiting Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh get a chance to immerse themselves in the rich cultural tapestry of Garhwal, Uttarakhand.

Daily Aarti

Devotees visit the temple to take part in the daily arti. This rhythmic musical chanting and waving of diyas (earthern oil lamps) in front of the deities gives a mesmerizing experience to the devotees.

Community Kitchen

Free food (langar) is served at the temple on some occasions for the devotees. Taking part in the langar helps the devotees in connecting with members of the local community and getting a chance to experience their warmth and hospitality.

Faith and Religion

The Garhwal region offers a vibrant culture rich with history, religion, and natural beauty. Religion is one of the most important aspects of Garhwali culture.

Garhwal region is present in Uttarakhand which is renowned as ‘Devbhumi’. Numerous pilgrmage sites such as Neelkanth Mahadev Temple and Char Dhams are present in Uttarakhand.

Local Folklore

The Garhwal region has a rich tradition of folk music and local dance forms. The soulful beats of ‘Langvir Nritya’ and the energetic dance form of ‘Jhoomar’ creates a lasting impression for the devotees.

The tunes of local instruments, Ranisingha and Daf, resonates through the valleys and creates a unique experience for the devotees.

Evenings in this region can come alive with stories of legends and folk stories narrated by the elders. They keep the traditions alive and pass on the wisdom to next generations.

Garhwali Attire

The people of Garhwal are known for their hard work and resilience. They lead a simple life in harmony with nature. Garhwali attire is distinct and vibrant.

Women typically wear ‘Garhwali Angrakhas’ and sarees. Men wear kurta pyjamas along with Garhwali caps.

Garhwali Delicacies

Garhwali cuisine is rich in taste and nutrition. Devotees visiting Garhwal cherish delicacies such Mandua Ki Roti, Gahat Ki Daal, and bhutta. Other important dishes served in the region include Chainsoo, Kandalee Ka Saag, and Kafuli.

The people of Garhwal are known for their sense of community and support for members of the community. This connection is specially visible during celebrations and festivals.

Visitors in Garhwal are welcomed with open arms. They are treated with warmth, affection, and generosity. A visit to Garhwal leaves a lasting impression in the minds of the devotees.

Key Points To Remember

Best Time to Visit

The Neelkanth Mahadev temple remains open all round the year for the devotees. Devotees visit Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in large numbers during the holy month of Shravan (July – August). Significant number of devotees also visit this temple during weekends.

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Devotees visiting this temple for spiritual solace should visit the temple during weekdays. The best time to visit the temple is during the spring and autumn season. They can visit this temple during March to May and also during September to November for a pleasant experience.

Best Route

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple is located 32 kilomteres from Rishikesh. It is easily accessible by road. Devotees can easily book cabs or taxis from Laxman Jhula area in Rishikesh.

Devotees looking for adventurous journey amid natural beauty can also take the trek to reach Neelkanth Mahadev Temple. The starting point of this trek is located in the Rajaji Tiger Reserve. Nearest landmark to reach this spot is Geeta Bhavan Number 5.

Best things to Carry

Devotees visiting this temple should note that it is better to carry a water bottle and some snacks. It can take more than five to six hours for the devotees to return back to Rishikesh. Not many options are available for the devotees in the route.

Best Things to Offer

Devotees visiting the temple carry offerings such as milk, flowers, flower mala, bel patra, bael fruit, and dhatura to offer to Lord Neelkanth Mahadev. Devotees can also carry sweets and fruits to offer to Lord Mahadev.

They can easily purchase these articles from Rishikesh. It is better to purchase these articles from Rishikesh. In case they forget, they can also purchase these offerings from shops located near the temple. Do not forget to negotiate the price before purchasing.

Best Accomodation

Some devotees reach the temple after a lengthy trek from Rishikesh. In some cases they prefer an overnight stay near the temple complex.

Such devotees can find hotels and guest houses near the temple complex. It is better to find accommodation in Rishikesh. Devotees can select from a wide range of options such as budget friendly hotels, homestays, and luxury resorts.

Dress Code for Neelkanth Mahadev Temple

Neelkanth Mahadev temple is one of the most important temples in Hinduism. It is important for the devotees to adhere to a modest and respectful dress code to maintain the sanctity of this temple. Devotees can keep the following points in mind.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple

Devotees can avoid wearing excessively fancy clothing. It is appropriate to not wear revealing clothes for visiting the temple.

Devotees visiting the temple should consider wearing clothes as per the existing weather conditions. Weather conditions in Rishikesh are usually hot and humid except for the winter months of November, December, January, and February.

For summer months, devotees should consider wearing airy and comfortable fabrics such as linen and cotton. In the winter months, it is important to carry woollen clothing. Devotees planning to cover their heads should carry a scarf or a dupatta for this purpose.

Male devotees can wear traditional Indian outfits such as kurta pyjama or dhoti kurta. Female devotees can wear traditional clothing such as sarees or salwar suits. It is important to select traditional but comfortable clothing for the visit.

Last but not least, it is a common practice in Hinduism to remove footwear near the temple complex before entering. Devotees should be prepared to take off their shoes before entering the temple.

Nearby Places

Rishikesh is nested in the foothills of the Himalayas. This spiritual and holy town located on the banks of river Ganga (Ganges) holds immense spiritual significance in Hinduism.

It is a popular destination for adventure seekers, pilgrims, and people who want an escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Some of the most important must visit places in Rishikesh are listed.

Ram Jhula, Janki Jhula, and Lakshman Jhula

Ram Jhula, Janki Jhula, and Lakshman Jhula are suspension bridges. Janki Jhula was inaugurated after the Covid – 19 lockdown period. These bridges are the iconic landmark places of Rishikesh.

People get to experience picturesque views of the mighty river Ganga and the nearby hills by visiting these bridges. People visiting Rishikesh mostly take a walk across these bridges to get a feel of the essence of Rishikesh.

Triveni Ghat

Triveni Ghat is one of the largest ghats in Rishikesh. Mesmerizing Ganga Arti is held every evening. Devotees offer floating diyas to Devi Ganga. Melodious bhajans and chanting of mantras creates a spiritually uplifting atmosphere for the devotees.

The Beatles Ashram

The Beatles Ashram is also known as Maharishi Mahesh Yogi Ashram. This ashram gained popularity worldwide when music band ‘The Beatles’ visited this ashram in 1968.

In the present time, it is one of the most visited meditation centers in Rishikesh. People visit this ashram to learn yoga, meditation, and other traditional Indian practices.

Parmarth Niketan Ashram

The Parmarth Niketan Ashram is one of the largest ashrams located in Rishikesh. Devotees from many countries visit this ashram for their spiritual awakening.

They visit this ashram for spiritual programs, environment related activities, and yoga and meditation classes. The rooms available for the devotees in the ashram are spacious and comfortable for long stays.

Delicious vegetarian food is offered in the common kitchen of the ashram. Large number of devotees visit this Parmarth Niketan Ashram for the evening Ganga Arti.

Large number of people visit Rishikesh. The list of visitors includes adventure seekers, pilgrims, nature lovers, and foreign travellers. This blog post has already covered the most important locations in Rishikesh.

Other important locations include Vashishtha Gufa and Kunjapuri Devi Temple. People visiting Rishikesh should make their plans in a way such that they can cover most of the important locations in the least time. Read further to know more about the interesting activities in Rishikesh.

Activities

River Rafting:
Rishikesh is the go to destination for adventure enthusiasts. People from many parts of the country and foreign countries visit Rishikesh to take part in the river rafting.

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They come experience to experience the thrill in navigating through the various swirls and rapids in mighty Ganga river. River rafting is challenging but an exhilarating experience for the participants.

Bungee Jumping:
People get amazed when they come to know about ‘Jumpin Heights’. It is the highest bungee jumping spot in India (83 m).The experience offered here is unparalleled.

People experience the ultimate adrenaline rush when they take the leap of faith forward. The scenic view during free fall offers once in a lifetime memory for the participants.

Final Thoughts

The Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh is one of the most important temples of Lord Shiva. It is located in the foothills of the Himalayas. This place is a rich confluence of spirituality and natural beauty.

People seeking spiritual upliftment or a break from the daily routine visit Neelkanth Mahadev Temple. The visit to Neelkanth Mahadev Temple goes beyond the ordinary. The experiences created during the visit stay with the visitors for a long time.

Make sure to visit Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh next time you plan a trip to Rishikesh. Visit this divine temple to embrace the rich natural beauty, serenity, and experience the legacy of sacrifice of Lord Mahadev.

Find out more about important Hindu temples such as Mahakaleshwar Temple in Ujjain, Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi, and Konark Sun Temple in Konark on 99Pandit. Visit the website or application of 99Pandit to find out more.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q.What is the significance of Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh?

A.Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh is one of the most important temples of Lord Shiva. This temple is located in Shivalik mountains. It is the spot where Lord Shiva had saved all creation.

Q.How to reach Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh?

A.Neelkanth Mahadev Temple is located 32 kilometers from Rishikesh. Devotees visiting the temple can take a cab or a taxi from Lakshman Jhula to reach this temple.

Q.What is the entry fee for Neelkanth Mahadev Temple in Rishikesh?

A.There is no entry fee for devotees visiting Neelkanth Mahadev Temple.

Q.What are the timings to visit this temple?

A.Temple opens for the devotees at 5 am. It remains open till 6 pm. Devotees should make their plans in accordance with this timing.

Q.Is photography allowed inside the temple?

A.Photography is not allowed inside the sanctum of the temple.

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