Distance from Rishikesh to Kedarnath: 201 Km
How to reach Kedarnath from Rishikesh, Uttaranchal
From private Taxi or Car:
From Rishikesh take NH58 for Shivpuri – Continue on NH58 for Dev Prayag - Srinagar - Rudraprayag - Ukhimath - Kedarnath
The road to Kedarnath ends at a town named Gaurikund (1,981m). A bus from Haridwar or Rishikesh (201km) takes all day to reach Gaurikund. It is best to catch the early morning bus at 6 am. If you get a later bus you will definitely have to stop for the night on the way.
Pawan Hans is resuming daily helicopter services from Agastya Muni (district Rudraprayag) to Kedarnath. Flight will depart from Agastya Muni daily between 6:30 am to 11:10 am, by a 5-seater Bell 407 helicopter. Agast Muni is located 17 km beyond Rudraprayag enrooted to Kedarnath. Rs. 8,501/- per person for the round trip (Agastya Muni-Kedarnath-Agastya Muni), including Rs 501/- for special darshan on priority basis.
Kedarnath is the seat of Lord Shiva. It is one of the twelve "Jyotirlingas" of Lord Shiva. Lying at an altitude of 3584 m at the head of river Mandakini, the shrine of Kedarnath is amongst the holiest pilgrimage for the Hindus. It is no wonder that Adi Guru Shankaracharya - a great scholar & saint, chose to enshrine Lord Shiva in this land, where the unholy becomes oly and the holy becomes holier. Kedar meaning powerful is another name of Lord Shiva the protector and the destroyer.
Situated in the backdrop of the majestic Sri Kedarnath range, Kedarnath is a 14 km trek from Gaurikund. During the winters, the shrine is submerged in snow & hence is closed. Fortunate are those who have good weather, but twice blessed are those who are at Kedarnath on a moonlit night- the snow peak gleams like hundred silver pinnacles atop the glittering mountains.
The holiest of Shiva's shrines is linked to Gold among base metals so that every pilgrim finds peace here, and it is said that devotees who die here become one with Shiva himself. Beyond the temple is the highway to heaven, called Mahapanth.
Best time to Visit Kedarnath:
The best time to visit Kedarnath is between May-October.
Climate is Kedarnath in Summer is Cool during the day and cold at night. And during Winter the weather becomes Snow-bound with temperature touching sub-zero.
Places to Visit in Kedarnath
- Chorabari (Gandhi Sarovar): A small lake from where Yudhishthir, the eldest of the Pandavas, is believed to have departed to heaven. The floating ice on the sparkling waters of the lake is a fascinating sight.
- Vasuki Tal: A picturesque lake, 4,135 mts. above sea level is encircled by lofty mountains and offers a commanding view of the Chaukhamba peaks.
- Gaurikund: The trekking base to Kedarnath. A temple dedicated to Gauri and thermal springs of medicinal value are noteworthy.
- Sonprayag: The confluence of Son Ganga and Mandakini rivers. The road to Triyuginarayan diverts from here.
- Triyuginarayan: A 5 kms trek from Sonprayag, it is the mythological venue of the marriage of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. An eternal flame, which is said to have been a witness to the marriage, burns in front of the temple even today.
Where to stay in Kedarnath:
In Gaurikund there are many private guest houses. For what you get most of them are way overpriced. Bharat Seva Ashram and Punjab Sindh are basic places and some of the rooms have bathrooms. Shivlok, next to Gaurikund and the Mandakini River is a decent place with double rooms
The best place in town is the well-located GMVN Tourist Centre. This place should be booked at least a week in advance at the GMVN office in Rishikesh. Hotel Pavan Hansh Restaurant, next to Gaurikund, is a well-managed, good vegetarian place.
Gauri’s Grand restaurant is a good place with an extensive menu.