There is no particular age limit for Char Dham Yatra. But, due to the high altitudes and breathing difficulties, it is recommended only for people between 7-65 years of age.
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There are several factors to be considered before embarking on the Char Dham Yatra. One such important factor is the age restrictions which are advised primarily for health concerns.
Badrinath Age Limit
Badrinath Temple: No age limit that has been decided upon by the temple authorities, but, it is a suggestion, widely offered, that devotees aged 7 to 65 years only travel to the temple. For anyone apart from this age group, it is important to get a health check-up.
It is mandatory to show a medical certificate as proof. This is because the Badrinath Temple is located at a high altitude of 3300 meters. Traveling to the temple can cause breathing problems due to low oxygen levels at such a height. The distance to be covered is also another factor to consider before planning a visit. Cars are allowed to travel up to a certain point. After this point, the devotees must trek in order to get to the temple. Ponies and palkis are available for those who cannot continue the journey on foot.
Kedarnath Age Limit
Kedarnath Temple: It is advised that kids below 10 years and senior citizens above 65 years of age should avoid pilgrimage due to the high altitudes. However, if medical fitness is proven, a devotee of any age can join the holy yatra.
Like the Badrinath Temple, the Kedarnath Temple is also located at a very high altitude of 3583 meters. To cover the distance on foot would vary from 5 to 8 hours. Since the journey to the temple is long, there is a provision of palkis and mules for those unable to trek. The time it takes to travel on a mule or a palki is approximately 4-5 hours.
Gangotri Age Limit
Gangotri Temple: The temple does not impose age restrictions, and hence with medical approval, a person of any age group can travel to this temple. However, it is advised that devotees aged 7 to 65 years only travel to the temple.
This is because, the Gangotri is present atop the Great Himalayan Range at an altitude of 3100 meters, on the banks of the River Bhagirathi. Since the temple is located in the valley, snowfall, as well as rainfall, is common throughout the year. This increases the risk of traveling up the slope and takes at least 3 to 4 hours to cover the distance from the Uttarkashi base camp to the Gangotri.
Yamunotri Age Limit
Yamunotri Temple: Like all the other Char Dham Temples, the Yamunotri is also located at a high altitude. But since the route is comparatively better structured, it makes it convenient for pilgrims of all age groups to travel to this temple. However, medical proof of ‘fit to travel’ is still required to be shown at the base camp at Uttarkashi.
Please carry a valid medical certificate as it is required to be shown at the camps as proof.
All the Char Dham Camps provide first aid boxes & oxygen cylinders, but it is advised to carry your own first-aid kits. The Char Dham Yatra is divided into two treks – one is a 6 km one-way trek from Jankichatti to Yamunotri and the other is a 21 km one-way trek from Gaurikund to Kedarnath. For those unable to walk the distance, such as senior citizens, ponies, pithus, and palkis are readily available.