Karnaprayag is among the five confluences of river Alaknanda (Panch Prayag). It is present at the point where both rivers namely, Alaknanda with Pindar unify. The meeting point of the two rivers is in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. A string of peaks like Trisul, Drona Giri, Narad Ghunti, Mrigathuni and Maiktoli wrap around the place.
Devotees believe Karnaprayag to be the place where Karna of Mahabharata rigorously worshipped the Sun God. Moreover, it is a famous pilgrimage destination that falls in the holy pilgrimage of Char Dham Yatra.
Karnaprayag is third among the five holy confluences of Alaknanda river starting from Vishnuprayag. Also, other confluences of river Alaknanda surpassing it are Rudraprayag and Devprayag.
Making donations after taking bath at the Holy confluence is considered meritorious.
Chronicles of Karnaprayag
There are a few mythological tales that relate to Karnaprayag like:
The first tale highlights the confluence as the place where Karna worshipped the Sun god. Hence, the Sun god granted him an impregnable armour.
However, the second story foretells that after the use of Anjalika Astra on Karna. Krishna found that Arjuna had wounded him, however, Karna was still alive. Hence, Krishna told Arjuna that Dharma Devta or the Goddess of Righteousness protected Karna for the charities he did in his lifetime.
So to break through the protective shield, Krishna put up the disguise of a brahmin and went to Karna. Further, he asked Karna for all his abilities as a warrior in charity. Hence, being how he was Karna respected the Brahmin’s wishes and donated his blood to him along with all his skills.
Hereafter, Karna requested Krishna to cremate him in a land that was still virgin. Hence, beliefs are that in honour of Karna’s wish Krishna cremated him at Karnaprayag. Also, we have a temple on that land dedicated to the great warrior, Karna.
Essence of the Confluence
Karnaprayag has a holy essence to it. The place has a mythological attachment to the epic occurrence of Mahabharata. Hence, we have a temple dedicated to Karna by the banks of Karnaprayag. Moreover, the place also flaunts a famous Uma temple, dedicated to Goddess Sati, the wife of Lord Shiva. Furthermore, Sati’s reincarnation as Goddess Parvati is quite popular.
Swami Vivekananda is believed to have meditated here along with Guru Turianand Ji and Akharanand Ji for eighteen days in a row. Moreover, Karnaprayag lies on the pathway of the major shrines of the Charm Dham Yatra namely, Badrinath and Kedarnath.
Apart from religious strings, Karnaprayag stands out for its lush green scenic beauty that captures every eye-crossing the Prayag. So, it affirms its positions as a major stop on the tour of the Char Dham Yatra destinations within Uttarakhand.
Ways to Reach Karnaprayag
Different modes to reach Karnaprayag:
- Air: Nearest airport, Jolly Grant is at a distance of 192 km.
- Train: The nearest railway station is Rishikesh. It is 172 km away from the place.
- Bus: Buses to Rishikesh are available from ISBT Kashmere Gate. Hereafter, one can avail state as well as private transport for commuting to Karnaprayag.
Stays nearby Karnaprayag
Stays near Karnaprayag that devotees can hail during the Char Dham Yatra in Uttarakhand are:
- The Kedar Dev’s: The hotel offers a blend of all the modern facilities. Hotel rooms are given unique designs and have cozy interiors. Moreover, the rooms offer exclusive facilities and services.
- Shri Krishna Palace Hotel and Restaurant: The hotel is set amidst beautiful natural surroundings. Moreover, it offers a comfortable and hygienic stay to its guests.
- Hotel Riverview: Hotel River view offers comfortable accommodation with spic and span rooms. Also, the view from the rooms opens up to the soulful confluence.
Other Panch Prayags
The other Panch Prayag destinations are:
- Vishnuprayag: Vishnuprayag is present 1372 metres above sea level and is the first Prayag falling on the route of river Alaknanda. It is 91 km away from Karnaprayag.
- Nandaprayag: It is the second Prayag among the Panch Prayag. It is present at the confluence of the rivers Alaknanda and Nandakini. It is 20.9 km away from the Alaknanda-Pindar confluence.
- Rudraprayag: It observes the confluence of river Alaknanda and Mandakini, in Uttarakhand. This place is at a height of 895 metres above sea level. Rudraprayag is the holy confluence number four starting from Vishnuprayag. It is 33.2 km away from Karnaprayag.
- Devprayag: It maps the confluence of river Alaknanda and Bhagirathi, in Uttarakhand. Hereafter, the rivers Alaknanda and Bhagirathi unify and flow under the name Ganga or Ganges. It is 98.9 km away from Karnaprayag.
The Panch Prayag are a part of the Char Dham Yatra within Uttarakhand.
Frequently Asked Questions About Karnaprayag
It is the place of merging of river Alaknanda and Pindar.
The place can be visited easily in around a budget of 4k-5k.
The temperatures in summer vary from 15°C-40°C, however, in winter temperature can fall down to 2°C.
Read about the whole five Prayag in Panch Prayag – Five Sacred Confluences in Uttarakhand.