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Rishikesh Travel Guide

Rishikesh is a holy town that is situated 24 Kms upstream on the banks of the Ganga. The banks are lined with ashrams, where saints and holy men rested before beginning their arduous pilgrimage up into the snow-covered land of the gods. Rishikesh is essentially a combination of five different districts- Rishikesh the commercial centre, Muni-ki-reti in the quiet suburbs, Shivananda Nagar to the north, Lakshmanjhula with its holy shrines and Swarg Ashram where most of the ashrams are located.

Rishikesh is the lap of Hindu philosophy and learning, with several ashrams devoted to the understanding and propagation of the faith. Signs of religious rituals can be seen all over Rishikesh –in the numerous temples lining the banks of the Ganga, the mythological tales that you hear about various spots and even the shops that sell books and religious objects.

Rishikesh acquired prominence in the west when the Beatles generation was influenced by the foray of their idols into this Hindu spiritual heartland. Because Rishikesh is where the Beatles met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and began their quest for spiritual salvation. Even today, several foreign travellers besides the steady stream of Indian students visit the ashrams to study Hindu philosophy, yoga and Ayurvedic medicine. Every year in the beginning of February an international Yoga week is organised at Rishikesh by the Department of Tourism. Rishikesh is not only popular for its religious significance, but also as a base for devotees on their journey to the Char Dham Yatra (Tour of Four Pilgrim sites).

Apart from being a popular pilgrimage destination Rishikesh is equally popular with adventure tourists heading for the tougher trekking trails to be found in the higher Himalayas. With its splendid opportunities for white water rafting Rishikesh is visited by thousands of adventure buffs every year who are seeking the thrill of braving the rapids of the Ganga.

While rafting at Shivpuri your guide is sure to bring you to the point from where you can cliff jump into the Ganga. It is an approximately 25 feet free fall into the water. The thrill is incredible, it cannot be described only experienced. If you are someone who seeks that kind of adrenalin rush make sure you don't shy away from that experience.

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