of the Himalayas
Description: Badrinath, located in the
lofty Himalayan heights 10400 feet above sea level is a pilgrimage center held in the
greatest esteem all over India. It is an arduous mountain route to Badrinath from
Rishikesh or Haridwar in the Garwahl Himalayan region, where roads get blocked with
landslides during the monsoon season. Badrinath stays closed 6 months a year from
Deepavali all the way until the full moon day in the month of Chittirai (late spring in
the Himalayas). Please read Templenet's
special feature on Himalayan shrines, for more information on Badrinath.
Enroute are the pilgrimage sites of Devaprayag,
Rudraprayag, Karana Prayag, Nanda Prayag and Vishnuprayag. Enroute are Pandukeswar where
the Pandavas are believed to have been born, and the site where Bhima and Hanuman (sons of
Hot water springs of Taptakundam are seen on the banks of the Alaknanda at Badrinath.
The lofty peaks Neelakanta Parvatam and Nara Narayana Parvatam are visible from the
The image of Badrinarayanar here is fashioned out of Saligramam.
Badrrinarayana is seen under the badari tree, flanked by Kuberan and Garudan, Naradar,
Narayana and Nara. Mahalakshmi (referred to as Aravindavalli in the Sree Vaishnava
tradition) has a sanctum in the prakaram. There is also a shrine to Adi Sankarar.
The Bhrama Kapalam north of the temple on the banks of the Ganga, is the site of
performance of remembrance rites for the ancestors. Behind the temple of Badrinarayanar is
the Lakshmi Narasimha mandir, with shrines to Desikacharyar and Ramanujacharya.
Tirumangaialwar the Tamil Alwar saint of the 9th century CE, mentions
Badri in his work Siriya Tirumadal, and praises its glory in two decads of 10
verses each. In one of the verses, of a decad of paasurams dedicated to Tirukkandam,
Periyalwar states that Vishnu enshrined in Mathura, Salagramam, Dwaraka, Ayodhya
and Sree Vaikuntam is the same as the one
(Purushottaman) enshrined in Tirukkandam or Kadinagar (Devaprayag).