Rishikesh:  Things to do & Attractions

Rishikesh- Yoga Capital of the World

Famous pilgrimage town, Rishikesh is located in close proximity to Haridwar. It is popular as the Yoga Capital of the World and you will find many Ganga Temples here.

Sacred Ganga River attracts a lot of tourists here and other activities like spirituality, yoga, adventure activities and infamous Ganga Aarti held at the Ghats.

Rishikesh is also the starting point for the Char Dham Pilgrimage (Gangotri, Yamunotri, Badrinath, and Kedarnath). Located in the foothills of the Himalayas in Garhwal region, Rishikesh is just 24 km far from Haridwar and is surrounded by hills and greenery. Also, Rishikesh is popular for hosting the International Yoga Week that attracts visitors from across the world.


Many mythological stories are associated with Rishikesh. According to legends, Lord Rama performed penance here for killing Ravana, the Asura king of Lanka and his younger brother Lakshmana crossed the river Ganges, where the Lakshman Jhula has been built.

Also, according to another tale, Saint Raibhya Rishi did penance on the banks of river Ganges. In reward, Lord Vishnu appeared in front of him in from of Hrishikesh. This gave the name Rishikesh to this auspicious place.


The best time to visit Rishikesh for rafting is September to October and, other than that October to March is a pleasant weather to visit. Summers are warm here and during monsoon, the adventure activities are not conducted.


Hindi and Garhwali language are spoken in Rishikesh. The atmosphere is peaceful and the major festivals like Diwali and Holi are celebrated with great enthusiasm. The culture of Rishikesh is similar to other towns but what makes it different is the focus towards spirituality, yoga, and meditation.


There are many restaurants and eating joints located near the temples and River Ganga. Also, you will find some cafes that are quite pocket-friendly and are true to the culture in Rishikesh.

The food served in Rishikesh is mostly vegetarian. You can enjoy North Indian, Italian cuisines and dishes like Pasta, Samosa and Chole Bhature.


With Ganga temples, yoga centers in Rishikesh, the life of people in Rishikesh circles around spirituality and fitness. Yoga Ashrams, meditation centres see the daily participation of people and their daily lives are connected with Ganga Aarti, yoga and meditation.

Things to do in Rishikesh:

Maha Ganga Aarti at Triveni Ghat and Parmarth Niketan Ashram:

These sacred ghats host a major Ganga Aarti ritual and it is a major tourist attraction. The sunset Ganga Aarti held at Parmarth Niketan Ashram is a beautiful ceremony in which oil lamps are offered to God accompanied by song, prayer, and devotees from all walks of life. Maha Aarti held at Triveni Ghat is also performed in the same way as Parmarth Niketan Ashram. Ganga Aarti is an unforgettable ceremony and it soothes the soul.

River Rafting:

Rishikesh is quite popular for its adventure activities mainly river rafting on river Ganges. There are a number of river rafting spots like Brahmapuri, Shivpuri, Byasi, and Kaudiyala. River rafting can be enjoyed from September until June and it is an experience of a lifetime. Mostly river rafting package includes bungee jumping, body surfing, cliff diving, camping, and rappelling.

Vashishta Gufa:

It is an ancient cave and known as the place where Saint Vashishta meditated. It is visited by people for meditation. It is located at 25 kms away from Rishikesh and can be reached easily using public transport.

Yoga and Meditation:

Being the Yoga capital of the world, Rishikesh sees a lot of visitors who come here for yoga and meditation. With numerous yoga centres and ashrams, you can practice yoga and learn to meditate under guided supervision.

Kunjapuri Temple:

A short trek from Rishikesh will take you to this beautiful Kunjapuri Temple located at a height of 1700m. Once you reach the top, the view of the sunrise is amazing.


Places To Visit in Rishikesh & Attractions

here are many things to see and learn in Rishikesh. Famous Ganga Temples, Ashrams alongside the Ganga river should be on your visit-list in Rishikesh.

Lakshman Jhula:

It is a famous hanging bridge built across the river Ganga and it connects two villages. The bridge is made up of iron, situated at a height of 70 feet from the river. According to mythology, it is believed that Lord Lakshman had crossed the river Ganga on the same site.

Bharat Temple:

Bharat Mandir is an ancient sacred temple in Rishikesh and is dedicated to Lord Hrishikesh Narayan. You will find ancient trees like Vat Vriksh, Pipal and Bail tree that signifies Lord Tridev, Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahesh. In 789 AD, on Basant Panchmi, Jagadguru Adi Shankaracharya reinstalled the deity in the temple.

Neelkanth Mahadev Temple:

It is a beautiful temple dedicated to Neelkant, a form of Shiva, located in Pauri Garhwal district of Uttarakhand, at a distance of 32 km from Rishikesh. According to Hindu mythology, it is regarded as the place where Lord Shiva consumed poison and the neck turned blue. The temple is quite colorful and has a great style of architecture. Also, a natural spring is present where a holy bath can be taken.

Neer Garh Waterfall:

At just a distance of 2 km from Lakshman Jhula, Neer Garh waterfall is beautiful and a short trek will take you away from the daily hustle bustle. You can take a dip here and enjoy a cuppa along with your friends.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi Ashram:

It is one of the best places to visit in Rishikesh and was a famous Yoga and Meditation Centre where people from all over the world came to visit Guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. It became famous as The Beatles Ashram after it was visited by the popular English band “The Beatles”. Now it’s a tourist place where you can go and meditate in silence and look at wall paintings, murals done by the various communities.

Trayambakeshwar Temple:

It is a 13-storey Hindu temple situated on the banks of the Ganga river. On each storey of the temple, there are idols of Hindu God and Goddess. You can reach Trayambakeshwar Temple by a walk from Lakshman Jhula.

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