Rishikesh is located about 24 Kms away from Haridwar. Located in the laps of lower Himalayas, and is surrounded by scenic beauty of the hills on three sides with Holy Ganga flowing through it. The whole place is considered to be sacred as it is believed that meditation at this place leads to attainment of salvation. There are many temples along the river Ganges. Rishikesh is important not only as pilgrimage centre closely associated with the Ramayana, but also as home for many important centres of Hindu religious thought and spirituality, and as a very great Yoga Centre. There are a great many ashrams and Yoga institutes here. Rishikesh is also the gateway and the start-off point for journeys to important religious places like Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, and Yamunotri.
It is claimed as Yoga Capital of the World. The holy Ganges flows through the town and there are many ashrams and sadhus along its banks. Rishikesh suggests a power to transform-sages first came here to find a splash of holiness along the crashing Ganga before wandering north toward the accessible pilgrimage sites. Every year thousands turn up in early February for International Yoga Week on the banks of the Ganga.
Rishikesh is also acquiring greater significance as a centre for white water rafting, other revering sports, a base for treks and hikes in the beautiful Garhwal Himalayas. Rishikesh is an ideal destination not only for pilgrims but also for those who want to delve deeper into meditation, Yoga and other aspects of Hinduism. For the adventurous, Rishikesh is the place for starting their trekking expeditions and excursions towards the Himalayan peaks. The International Yoga week, which attracts participation from all across the world, is held here every year from 2nd to 7th Feb on the bank of Ganga river.
Lakshman Jhula: This suspended iron bridge was build in 1939 and has been a major attraction among the tourists. Ram Jhula- The other suspended Iron bridge was recently constructed between Shivanand Ashram and Sawarg Ashram.
Gita Bhavan: This newly constructed building is famous for its attractive paintings and statues from the Hindu mythology. Situated just across the Lakshman Jhula.
Swarga Ashram: One can find numerous temples here. This place has the eating joints and shops where one can do shopping. The beautiful statues in the area mesmerise the visitors.
Neelkanth Mahadev Mela: Situated at a height of 1675 m, on a hill above Swarg Ashram, Neelkanth Mahadev is one of the most revered temples of Rishikesh.
Nilkanth Mahadeo: Mythology says that in the ancient times when the ocean was being churned for 'amrit' (Potion for immortality), first venom oozed out. Lord Shiva drank the venom at a place which is now called Nilkanth Mahadeo. It is 12 kms from Rishikesh and is surrounded by peaceful forests.
Triveni Ghat: This is a bathing ghat. Daily in the morning and evening there are thousands who take bath here and enjoy the Maha Aarti being performed. It very soothing to sit on the banks of the river and enjoy the cool breeze from the river.
Dehradun: Beyond the gardens amidst the low hill guarding the city lies the old pilgrim centre of Galtaji. Temples, pavilions and holy 'kunds' (natural springs and reservoirs) dot the serene green landscape. The small temple of the Sun god, built by Diwan Kriparam on top of the highest peak, is visible form all parts of the city.
White Water Rafting: The challenge of violent rivers is no less than that of the rugged mountains. The icy heights of the Himalayas are the source of some of India's mighty rivers. Fed by innumerable streams, they race along tortuous boulder-strewn beds, cutting deep gorges and breaking into silvery-white rapids.
Haridwar: Gateway to the four pilgrimages in the Uttrakhand region, is located on the foot hills of Shivaliks.
Mussoorie: The queen of hill stations.
Chila: It is just 20 kms from Rishikesh. The whole place is covered with forests and provides very pleasant environment. Government has declared Chila a sanctuary. A canal from Ganga feeds the reservoir where one can spot many animals. One can stay at the tourist lodge and enjoy the peaceful scenic surroundings.
Kunjapuri: Close to Narendra nagar, situated at 7000 ft this place is covered with dense forests. From here one can get a glimpse of the peaks and valleys.
Valley of Flowers: The famous Valley of Flowers with the largest concentration of various species of wild flowers is off the Rishikesh-Badrinath road, 16 km from Govindghat.
Narendra Nagar: 15 kms on the Rishikesh Chamba road is located the historical town of Narendra nagar. This town is of archaeological importance. The town was built by the King of Tehri Narendra Singh. Narendra nagar has recorded many events which have left their impact on the town. The Royal palace is worth seeing and the huge magnificent Nandi bull cannot escape your attention.
Auli: One of the well established Sports Circuit of the state of Uttar Pradesh. With their wide open spaces above the snowfields of Garhwal and Kumaon, the place offers an exciting possibility - ski touring amongst the glaciers. The cross-country runs of 10-20 km with added advantage of fresh powder snow from crisscrossing streams, tearing down the snowlines of the European Alps.
Devprayag: The rivers Alaknanda and Bhagirath leave the mountains and merge at this place. From here they get the name Ganga. A peaceful holy place. It has got the ancient Raghunathji Temple.