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Char Dham Yatra is a sacred pilgrimage journey that takes you to the four holy shrines located in the lap of Garhwal Himalayas in Uttarakhand. The journey is believed to be one of the most auspicious and spiritually fulfilling experiences for a Hindu. It is said that visiting the Char Dhams – Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath, helps one attain moksha or salvation.
The Chota Char Dham Yatra, also known as the mini-char dham yatra, is a smaller circuit in Uttarakhand that includes the four pilgrimage sites of Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath, and Badrinath. Each shrine is dedicated to a specific deity and must be visited in the order mentioned.
The journey to the Char Dhams is not just a physical journey but also a spiritual one. The picturesque Himalayan landscapes, the flowing rivers, and the majestic temples offer a truly divine experience that leaves a lasting impression on the pilgrims. Here are four stops of Char Dham:
- The first stop on the Char Dham Yatra is Yamunotri, which is dedicated to the river goddess Yamuna. The temple is located in the Gharwal region of Uttarakhand and is surrounded by stunning natural beauty.
- The second stop is Gangotri, dedicated to the goddess Ganga, the most sacred river in India. The temple is located on the banks of the river Bhagirathi and offers a breathtaking view of the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas.
- The third stop is Kedarnath, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva in the form of Kedarnath, one of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. The temple is located at an altitude of 3,583 meters and is surrounded by the majestic Kedarnath range.
- The final stop is Badrinath, dedicated to Lord Vishnu in the form of Badrinath, the lord of Badri. The temple is located on the banks of the Alaknanda river and is surrounded by the Nar and Narayan mountain ranges.
Best time to Visit Char Dham:
The Char Dham Yatra is usually undertaken between April and November. The journey involves a lot of walking, trekking and climbing, and requires a good level of fitness. Pilgrims can choose to undertake the journey on foot, by helicopter or by road.
Brief itinerary for Char Dham Yatra:
Day 1: Haridwar to Phoolchatti via Barkot – Drive from Haridwar to Barkot, and then continue to Phoolchatti (approx. 250 km, 10 hours).
Day 2: Phoolchatti to Yamunotri and Return – Trek to Yamunotri (10 km round-trip) from Phoolchatti and return.
Day 3: Phoolchatti to Harsil – Depart from Phoolchatti and reach Harsil (approx. 150 km, 11 hours).
Day 4: Harsil to Gangotri and Uttarkashi – Visit Gangotri and depart for Uttarkashi (approx. 120 km, 10 hours).
Day 5: Uttarkashi to Guptkashi via Chamba/New Tehri – Travel from Uttarkashi to Guptkashi (approx. 220 km, 11 hours) via Chamba and New Tehri.
Day 6: Guptkashi to Kedarnath via Gaurikund – Travel by bus (35 km) and trek (17 km) to reach Kedarnath.
Day 7: Kedarnath to Tilwara via Gaurikund/Rampur – Trek back to Gaurikund/Rampur (17 km) and then proceed to Tilwara (60 km).
Day 8: Tilwara to Joshimath to Badrinath – Travel to Joshimath (170 km) and then to Badrinath (approx. 160 km).
Day 9: Badrinath to Joshimath to Kaleshwar – Explore Badrinath, visit Mana, reach Joshimath (114 km), and continue to Kaleshwar.
Day 10: Kaleshwar to Kaudiyala to Haridwar – Depart from Kaleshwar, have lunch at Kaudiyala, and reach Haridwar (approx. 230 km, 10 hours).
Note: The distances and time taken are approximate and may vary based on the conditions and mode of transportation.
In conclusion, Char Dham Yatra is a once-in-a-lifetime journey that offers a unique blend of adventure, spirituality, and natural beauty. It is a journey that every Hindu should undertake to seek the blessings of the gods and attain spiritual liberation.
Duration: The entire Char Dham Yatra can be completed in 10 days / 9 nights.
Prerequisite: Prior high altitude trekking experience and good physical fitness are recommended.
Grade: The trek is of moderate difficulty.
Physicality: The trek requires a moderate level of physical fitness (7/10).
Trail Length: The total trail length for the yatra is approximately 800 km.
Highest Point: The highest point of the yatra is Kedarnath at an altitude of 3,583 meters.
Seasons: The best time to undertake the yatra is between April and November.
Further Option: There are additional side trips available, such as Kirti Bamak or Sumeru Bamak, Nandanvan, and Vasuki Tal (difficult grade).
Access: The trek starts from Gangotri, which is 245 km from Dehradun.
Railway Station: The nearest railway station is Dehradun (Station Code: DDN).
Airport: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant in Dehradun, with convenient access from Delhi.
Upcoming scheduled dates for Char Dham Yatra:
- You can check the scheduled Fixed Departure dates in the calendar available inside Booking Form or inside REGISTER NOW form. Tour starting Dates are highlighted as per our itinerary (Day 1 of 10 days itinerary).
- At present BOOK NOW functionality is disabled. You can get all the information in your email by submitting the REGISTER NOW form.
- If you are a group of people and available dates are not matching then you may select Custom date mode (by clicking the Select your custom date) and fill in the displayed form.
- You can also check all the available dates at a glance in our TREK CALENDAR.
- Trekkers need to reach Dehradun on Day 1 morning (latest by 7 am) or the previous night. Return to Haridwar on Day 10 evening (around 6 pm approx). Arrange your tickets for inward journey and return accordingly
Haridwar to Phoolchatti, via Barkot
Departing from Haridwar at 7 am, we embark on an exciting journey towards Phoolchatti, with a stopover in Barkot. The scenic views along the way will captivate your senses as we drive through the picturesque landscapes. After a delightful lunch, we continue our drive and reach Phoolchatti by 5.30 pm. Upon arrival, we check into the hotel and take some time to unwind, have a delicious dinner, and relax, preparing ourselves for the adventure ahead.
Phoolchatti to Yamunotri and then Return to Phoolchatti
An early start at 6 am awaits us as we set off from Phoolchatti. After a hearty breakfast at GMVN Tourist Rest House in Jankichatti, we begin our trek to Yamunotri, covering a round-trip distance of 10 km. As we tread the scenic trail, we reach the holy Yamunotri temple, where you can take a holy dip in the kund, offer prayers, and perform puja. After a satisfying lunch, we make our way back to Phoolchatti by evening, where we will spend the night in a comfortable guest house or hotel.
Phoolchatti to Harsil
With a fresh start at 6 am, we bid farewell to Phoolchatti and make a breakfast halt in Barkot. Our journey continues as we visit the revered Vishwanath Temple in Uttarkashi and depart post lunch. By 5 pm, we arrive at the beautiful destination of Harsil, where we will spend the night, enjoying the tranquil surroundings.
Harsil to Gangotri and then Uttarkashi
The day commences at 6 am as we leave Harsil, pausing for a breakfast halt in Gangotri. Our visit to Gangotri temple allows us to experience the divine atmosphere and take a holy dip in the sacred River Ganga. After a post-lunch departure from Gangotri around 1 pm, we reach Uttarkashi by 4.30 pm, where we will spend the night, surrounded by the serene ambiance.
Uttarkashi to Guptkashi, via Chamba/New Tehri
Embarking on our journey at 6 am from Uttarkashi, we enjoy a delightful breakfast at the GMVN tourist rest house in Chinyalisaur. We take the opportunity to explore New Tehri and witness the grandeur of the Tehri Dam. A lunch halt at the GMVN tourist rest house in Srinagar awaits us before we reach our final destination of the day, Guptkashi, by approximately 5.30 pm.
Guptkashi to Kedarnath, via Gaurikund
On this eventful day, we embark on a bus journey of 35 km followed by a 17 km trek to reach the sacred destination of Kedarnath. Starting early, we depart by bus at 6 am and arrive at Gaurikund by 9 am. From Gaurikund, we commence our trek at 10 am, reaching Kedarnath by 5 pm. Witnessing the evening aarti at the illustrious Kedarnath temple, we retire for the night, cherishing the spiritual experience.
Kedarnath to Gaurikund/Rampur to Tilwara
An early start allows us to offer prayers at the Kedarnath temple, followed by a fulfilling breakfast. After breakfast, we embark on the 17-km trek
back to Gaurikund/Rampur, arriving by 1 pm, where we relish a delicious lunch. Boarding the bus, we proceed to Tilwara, located 60 km away, where we will spend the night, rejuvenating ourselves for the next day’s journey.
Tilwara to Joshimath to Badrinath
We set off towards Joshimath, covering a distance of 170 km, and reach our destination by 12 pm. A halt for breakfast at the GMVN tourist rest house in Gauchar offers us the chance to recharge. We spend an hour visiting the Narsing temple in Joshimath before continuing our journey at 1 pm. By 4:30 pm, we arrive in Badrinath, where we immerse ourselves in the evening aarti at the sacred Badrinath temple and offer our prayers. The night will be spent in Badrinath, surrounded by divine blessings.
Badrinath to Joshimath to Kaleshwar
The morning calls for offering prayers and taking a holy dip in the kund at the Badrinath temple. We then explore Mana, the last Indian village situated approximately 20 km from the border, immersing ourselves in its unique charm. Around 11 am, we arrive in Joshimath and take a lunch break at the GMVN rest house. Departing from Joshimath around 2 pm, we cover a distance of 114 km, arriving at Kaleshwar in the evening. Optionally, we can visit Auli by cable car to add an extra touch of adventure and exploration.
Kaleshwar to Kaudiyala to Haridwar | Departure Day
The final day of our journey begins with a bus ride covering approximately 230 km. Departing from Kaleshwar at around 7 am, we make a lunch halt at Kaudiyala at 1 pm. Resuming our journey, we reach Haridwar by around 5 pm, marking the end of this memorable 10-day tour with Green Valley Himalayas. Departure from Haridwar concludes our expedition, leaving us with cherished memories of the divine Char Dham Yatra.
How to Reach Haridwar:
To begin your treks in Garhwal, Haridwar serves as the usual starting point. Rishikesh, located 25 km away, is also considered a gateway to the Garhwal Himalayas. You have the option to fly or take a train to New Delhi from any part of India, based on your convenience.
Direct trains from Kolkata to Haridwar include:
1. Kumbha Express – Train No. 12369: A great option that arrives in Haridwar by 5 pm. You can spend the night in Haridwar and continue your journey by car the next morning.
2. Upasana Express – Train No. 12327: Another good option that arrives in Haridwar by 5 pm. You can spend the night in Haridwar and proceed with your onward journey by car the next morning.
3. Doon Express – Train No. 13009: Avoid booking this train if you plan to embark on a long onward journey immediately in the same morning.
When booking train tickets, it is advisable to avoid waitlisted (WL) tickets in AC classes (1A/2A/3A) or Chair Car (CC). Instead, book Sleeper class (SL) or Second Sitting class (2S) tickets, which usually have more seats/berths and a better chance of confirmation.
From New Delhi, you can easily reach Haridwar by train or bus, which takes approximately 5 to 6 hours covering a distance of around 210 km.
By train, the following daily running trains are good options to reach Haridwar:
1. DDN Janshtbdi – Train No. 12055: Arrives in Haridwar in the evening at 7:30 pm, a suitable choice if you plan to stay the night in Haridwar and have a long drive ahead the next day.
2. Nanda Devi Express – Train No. 12205: Arrives in Haridwar early morning at 4 am.
3. Utkal Express – Train No. 18477: Arrives in Haridwar at night around 9 pm.
4. Mussoorie Express – Train No. 14041: Arrives in Haridwar in the morning at 5:45 am.
Again, it is recommended to avoid booking waitlisted (WL) tickets in AC classes (1A/2A/3A) or Chair Car (CC). Book Sleeper class (SL) or Second Sitting class (2S) tickets for a better chance of confirmation.
By bus, you can find frequent government-operated buses from Kashmiri Gate ISBT in Delhi, which provide day and night services. Tickets for these regular buses are available onboard. To reach ISBT Kashmiri Gate from Delhi Airport or Station, you can use the Delhi Metro service, and it is a mere 4 km distance from NDLS (New Delhi Railway Station). Private buses can also be booked online through various portals such as redBus.in, offering overnight Volvo, A.C, and push-back bus services.
The nearest airport is Jolly Grant near Dehradun (Airport code: DED), which is 35 km away from Haridwar. This airport is easily accessible from Dehradun, Haridwar, and Rishikesh. Flights to Jolly Grant Airport are mostly connected via Delhi.
Accommodation in Haridwar:
For trekkers arriving the day before their actual trek, it is necessary to spend the night in Haridwar. There are several accommodation options available in Haridwar, ranging from premium, standard, to budget choices. These options include privately operated hotels/lodges, state-run tourist rest
TREK FEE: ₹ 35,999 (Haridwar to Haridwar) + 5% GST
Book for 5 persons and get a 10% Group Discount on TREK FEE.
All meals during the trek. Regular Indian style nutritious vegetarian food during the trek, breakfast packed/hot lunch (depending upon the time you reach a campsite), snacks, dinner along with coffee/tea/soup.
Excellent trekking guide, who will be a local to this particular area and has profound knowledge of the trekking trails around.
Specialised Cook, Support staff, Porters/Packed Animals for carrying the central logistics of the trek.
Stay in tents (3 persons dome or ridge shaped tents) on sharing basis during the trek.
Camping equipment like Sleeping bag, Carry mattress, Gaiters, Micro spikes/Crampon. (Bring your own sleeping if you have a high altitude specific personal Sleeping Bag. This is always better for hygienic reasons.)
Kitchen tent, dinning tent and toilet tent as required during the trek.
All permit fee, camping charges, forest levy required for the trek.
Basic Medical & First Aid kit.
Stay in Haridwar (in case if you reach at Day 0 or plans to stay after trek ends).
We assume that you will carry your personal Rucksack/Backpack with all your personal belongings. If you want to offload your Rucksack and be carried by our Pack Animal/Porter then you need to pay additional ₹ 2500 for the entire duration of the trek. The Rucksack should not weigh more than 10 Kg.
Anything which is NOT mentioned in the “Inclusions” or personal in nature.
- We assume that you have read and understood our “Terms & Conditions” (https://greenvalleyhimalayas.com/terms-and-conditions) before Booking a trek/tour.
- To reserve your place in a scheduled Fixed Departure trek or a Customised/Private trek pay 25% of the TREK/TOUR FEE as the initial “Booking Deposit”. You can pay by Net banking/Draft/Cheque/Credit/Debit/AMEX cards. This will ensure your participation in the desired trek and we will reserve your place in the scheduled date. You need to pay the remaining amount at least 15 days before Trek Starting Date.
- If you book a Trek/Tour before 14 days or less from Trek/Tour Starting Date, you need to pay the full TREK/TOUR FEE.
- “Booking Amount” i.e.25% of the TREK/TOUR FEE is Non-Refundable at any stage.
- If in case you are not able to make it due to unavoidable reason(s), we provide you a very flexible choice of Shifting to another trek within next one year. One year is counted from the starting date of the trek/tour you booked initially with us.
- In case you postpone your trip you need to informminimum of 15 days before the trek/tour starting date. (Though we suggest to inform us earlier if known)
- In case you postpone a trek/tour before 15 days of the scheduled Trek/Tour Starting date or prior, you may shift to another group of the same trek/tour scheduled in the same season or within next one year. You may shift to another suitable route also. For changing any, you need our approval first. Your request must be in written communication through your registered email with us.
- If you cancel/postpone a trek/tour from 14 days to 8 days before tour starting date, your Booking Amount is Non-Refundable. We will not take any request of shifting dates. We will charge 50% of the amount as Cancellation Charges and process refund of remaining 50%. You may also shift to another group within next year but 25% Booking Amount will be deemed as Cancellation Charge and the rest amount will be transferred to the shifted group.
- If you cancel a trek/tour 7 days (i.e. a week) before Trek/Tour Starting Date or later, there will be NO REFUND.
- In case of any unforeseen incident including but not limited to natural calamities like flood, earthquake, landslide, forest fire or any political unrest, if we are compelled to cancel the trek/trip, you will be entitled to redeem the full amount for the same/similar kind of trek/trip within next one year.
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