The Char Dham of Uttarakhand are Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath, Badrinath these all are Ancient temples that marks the spiritual sources of four holy rivers as Yamuna from Yamunotri, Ganga from Gangotri, Mandakini from Kedarnath, Alaknanda from Badrinath.
The pilgrimage start from Haridwar which means door for God, Hari means God and Dwar means door. And it is located where Maa Ganges emerges from the Himalaya Haridwar.
For Kedarnath The Majestic Kedarnath Range stands one of the twelve Jyotirlings of Kedar of Lord Shiva. Lying at the height of 3584 mts on the head of river Mandakini, the shrine of Kedarnath is amongst the holiest pilgrimages for the Hindus.
It is a pyramidal Lingam unlike its usual form. A statue of Nandi the celestial bull stands at the entrance of the temple and exquisitely carved images adorn the interiors of the temples.
For Badrinath, it is cradled in the twin mountains ranges of Nar and Naryani is the holiest place of four main shrine, Badrinath, along the left bank of river Alaknanda. Where lord Vishnu was sitting in meditation pose which is also known as Yog Dhyan Badri with the splendid Neelkanth Mountains as the backdrop, it is a important destination on the scared itinerary of every devotees. The Temple is on the banks of river Alaknanda dates back to the Vedic times. Situated at an Altitude of 3133 mts. The present temple is believed to have been built by Adi Guru Shankaracharya in 8th Century philosopher saint who also established a ‘math’ here.
The first journey starts for the pilgrimage for the mountain start for Yamunotri.
For Yamunotri it is said that it is traditional Char dham Yatra this is the western most shrine of Himalayas dedicated to Goddess Yamuna, it is perched top a flank of the Bandarpunch peak (3165 mts) and is situated opposite the Gangotri. Yamunotri or Yamuna “utri” is the source of the scared river Yamuna which originates from the Champasar Glacier lying 1km ahead of the shrine at the altitude of 4142 mts. There are several hot springs. The Temple of Yamuna on the left bank of Yamuna was construted by Maharaj Pratap Shah of Tehri Garhwal. The Yamuna like the Ganges has been status as a Divine Mother for us as Hindu.
For Gangotri, it is the source of Maa Ganga River for us and it is winter land for the pilgrimage for Himalayas and most scared spot where Maa Ganga the tream of life touching the earth for the first time. According to mythology Goddess Ganga the Daughter of heaven manifested herself in the form of the river to absolve the sins of king Bhagirath’s predecessors following his servere penance for several centuries. Lord Shiva received her into his matted locks to minimise the immense impact of her fall to earth. She came to be called Bhagirathi at her legendary source. The physical source of the river is at Gaumukh.