Yamunotri – The source of the river Yamuna is one of the four places of pilgrimage to Char Dam. Yamunotri is located at an elevation of 3293 m above sea level. It lies close to the Indo-Chinese border, surrounded by mountains on all sides. It is famous for providing peace and tranquillity to the visitors.
The Bandarpanch mountain is located at an elevation of 6315 m north of Yamunotri. Yamunotri is 236 km from Rishikesh, 21 km from Sanya Chatti, 278 km from Dehradun, and 176 km from Chamba.
Yamunotri Temple is the first stop for the Char Dham Yatra. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna. A large number of devotees visit the temple during the period of May-October. According to legends, Yamunotri has a special mention in Hindu mythology, as the abode of Asit Muni, an ancient Sage.
One of the pilgrimage sites of Chhota Char Dham, the magnificent arrangement of this temple is enough to fill the hearts of the devotees with wonders. The river Yamuna flows from one side of the temple, where the goddess Yamuna resides in the form of a black marble statue. Ganga Devi also finds her place in the white stone near the Yamuna.
Yamunotri Temple, built by Maharani Guleria of Jaipur in the late 19th century, is a major attraction of Yamunotri. Before entering the Yamunotri Temple, the devotees pay homage to Divya Shila, a rock pillar.
Many hot springs are very close to the Yamuna Devi temple; The most important is Surya Kund. It comes out of the cracks in the mountain and comes with hot water. People wrap rice and potatoes in a cloth (preferably in muslin cloth) and boil it and consider it as a prasad (religious offering) from Goddess Yamuna.
It is a reddish-brown rock near Surya Kund which has to be worshiped before worshiping Yamuna Maa (Mother). According to the Skanda Purana, spiritual liberation can be attained by touching the sacred rock.
Yamunotri opening dates 2021:
Yamunotri temple opening date has not been announced yet. The Yamunotri Temple was inaugurated on April 26, 2020, on the auspicious occasion of Akshay Tritiya. The opening of the Yamunotri Temple is also the beginning of the Char Dham Yatra.
Yamunotri Temple Gates Closing Date 2020:
Yamunotri Temple has been closed on November 16, 2020 (during Bhai Dooj) and was announced on the day of Dussehra. The deity of Yamunotri is enshrined in the Kharsali village in Uttarkashi during winter pilgrimage travel.
The best time to visit the Yamunotri Temple is from April / May to June and September to October / November.
It is not advisable to travel during the monsoon season due to landslides, floods, and other problems related to rainfall. Traveling during heavy winters make Chota Char Dham inappropriate for travelers during the period due to extremely low temperatures.
The nearest airport to Yamunotri is the Jolly Grant Airport on Rishikesh Road in Dehradun. You can rent a cab or take a bus from here.
Regular trains to Haridwar and Dehradun are available at all times of the year. You can arrive at Dehradun railway station as cabs and buses are easily accessible from there and have a short distance compared to other railway stations.
By Bus: Buses and taxis are available from important places like Rishikesh, Dehradun, Uttarkashi, Tehri, and Barkot.
Yamunotri Dham is the first temple in the series of Char Dham circuits. To reach here, one can book a train to Dehradun, as it’s the nearest railway station to Yamunotri.
From Dehradun, you can do further traveling through a private vehicle, booked car, sharable jeeps/tempo travelers, or other public transport. The road to Yamunotri is also a short trekking distance. The journey to the Yamunotri Temple begins at Jankichatti, which is located at a distance of 6 km.
Below is a detailed travel guide to Yamunotri Dham in Uttarakhand.
Day 1: Dehradun – Jankichatti
Travel time: Approximately 6-7 hours (by road)
Total Distance: 180 km.
You can go to Yamunotri privately, but there are other public transport options available for commuters. At the Mussoorie Bus Stand near the Dehradun Railway Station, you can take buses from Dehradun to Barkot, the nearest town to Yamunotri. Barkot is located at a distance of 136 km from Dehradun. Jeeps/tempo travelers can be rented from Barkot to Jankichatti, which takes about 1.5 hours to reach the location. The distance will be about 45 km from Barkot to reach Jankichatti through shared vehicles.
You can have dinner at Jankichatti today and leave for trekking in the morning for Yamunotri. Accommodation is available for pilgrims at Jankichatti.
Day 2: Jankichatti – Yamunotri – Jankichatti
Travel time: 5-6 hours
Total distance: 12 km.
You will have breakfast and start your journey to Yamunotri Temple in the morning. Trekking to Yamunotri Temple is 6 km from Jankichatti. In addition to facilities, there are water points, benches, and rest areas. You can have some tea at the small tea shops along the way. It takes about 2-3 hours to reach the Yamunotri Temple.
You will travel trek white snow, wildlife, dense forests, lakes, and attractive streams. As you move forward, the snow-capped Himalayas surround you. The distance is not difficult, but it is somewhat steep and strenuous to climb, but worth doing!
Once you have reached the Yamunotri Temple and see the amazing scenery around you, you will feel content and tranquil within yourself. You can attend a puja ceremony at the Yamunotri Temple, have your lunch, and explore the area. You come back to Jankichatti the same day and stay there for the night.
Day 3: Jankichatti – Dehradun
You will return to Dehradun today. Before leaving for Dehradun, you can explore Jankichatti. However, it takes about 7 hours to reach Dehradun, so make sure you leave for Dehradun first.
Religious Tourism: Yamunotri is an important pilgrimage center in Hinduism. Explore the holy Yamunotri Temple, pray at Divya Shila and dip into the Surya Kund.
Trekking: Trekking from Jankichatti to Yamunotri is a bit of a challenge. When you go to Yamunotri, be surrounded by the mighty Himalayas and experience the wonders of nature.
Photography: The mesmerizing beauty of Yamunotri is an ideal environment for photography lovers. No photographer should miss capturing wild plants and vegetation and white snow on Yamunotri.
Village Tourism: The villages around Yamunotri are great places to explore. Learn about local cuisine and local culture while hiking through the villages.
Camping: Set up camps in beautiful places and experience nature while traveling. For those who love nature and adventure, camping in the Yamunotri area is a great option.
Village Tourism: Visit local villages and learn about their cultures, such as food, religious beliefs, and explore how they live.
There is plenty of accommodation facilities available on the way to Yamunotri. You can stay in Hanuman Chatti or Jankichatti, which is the starting point for trekking to Yamunotri and in the nearby areas of the location as well.
Food availability in Yamunotri is not an issue as there are many restaurants on the way to Yamunotri. Restaurants serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You will also find small shops serving tea and lunch while trekking.
Yamunotri Temple is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna, the symbol of the Yamuna River, the second holiest river in India. The goddess Yamuna is believed to be the twin sister of the Yama, the God of Death, and the daughter of Surya dev, the god of sun, and Sanghya, the goddess of Perception. In the Vedas, Yamuna Devi is represented as the Yami, the lady of life.
Named after the angry Surya Dev, who felt insulted when the Goddess Sangh Devi couldn’t see him in the eyes due to the dazzling light. She blinked as she tried her best to open her eyes in front of Suryadev. When Sangh Devi tries to open her eyes, Surya dev blesses the Yamuna to be revered as a Goddess and will be remembered eternally. Yamuna Devi also inherited a frivolous nature after this incident.
According to legends, at a great age, Shri Asit Muni lived as a hermit in the Yamunotri region. He bathed in the rivers Ganga and Yamuna for the rest of his life, but as he grew older, he could not go to Gangotri. The Ganges flowed over the Yamuna River for his continuous ritual. This rare sight of Ganga and Yamuna together is presented by Yamunotri.
The Kalind Parvat peak near the source of the river Yamuna is named after Lord Surya. Suryadev is also known as Kalind since it flows from Kalind Parvat; the Yamuna is also known as Kalindi.
According to legend, after burning Lanka, Hanuman extinguished the fire with his tail on the Yamuna iceberg at Bandarpooch. Hence the peak is called Bandar (monkey) Pooch (tail).
Devotees believe that immersion in the Yamuna’s holy waters removes the fear of death and washes away their sins. Pilgrims visit the Yamunotri Temple for the blessings of Yamuna, Yama, Sanghi Devi, Suryadev.
The road to Yamunotri is also a short trekking distance. The journey to the Yamunotri Temple starts with Jankichatti. Yamunotri is located at a distance of 6 km from Jankichatti. Below is a detailed travel guide to Yamunotri Dham in Uttarakhand.
In the Himalayas’ foothills, Asit Muni is adorned, and Yamunotri is immersed in majestic aura with turquoise lakes, bubbling creeks, and a wide variety of flora and fauna. Many adventure lovers love trekking here as dense woodlands and high peaks attract them.
The journey to Yamunotri Temple is fun and enjoyable. However, even the best treks can turn out to be a nightmare if you are not well prepared. These are the little things you need to take care of to experience a fun trek and make sure you are traveling responsibly.
During peak seasons, many water points, benches, and small sheds can be seen on the way to the Yamunotri Temple after every 500 meters. However, in the off-season, the sidewalks are less supervised. You can travel up to the Yamunotri Temple on a Palki, mules, Kandi, and ponies. You have to book them in Jankichatti.
The cost depends on the distance traveled. From Jankichatti to Yamunotri, Dandi costs Rs 1,900, Kandi Rs 840, and Pony for Rs 640.
Travel tips for your Yamunotri temple tour
Other places near and while traveling to Yamunotri
Fact: Yamunotri is also known as Yamnotri as well as Yamunotry.
Yamunotri is famous among tourists for its temple, Char Dham, rafting, trekking, natural beauty, and pilgrimages. Yamunotri is recommended for families, children, foreigners, groups, and solos.
With having various activities/interests such as Char Dham, pilgrimages, temples, and trekking, Yamunotri is a popular destination for tourists in India and around the world.