Vridha Badri Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand. It is the third among the ‘Sapt Badri’ temples which are a group of seven holy shrines in honour of Lord Vishnu. Also, all the Badri temples are present in Badri-Kshetra.
It extends from Satapanth to Nandaprayag in the Alaknanda river valley. The main temple among the Sapt Badri temples is the Badrinath. And in ancient times, the path to the temple went through the badri van (Forest of berries). Hence, the suffix ‘badri’ is added to the seven holy shrines of Lord Vishnu. It is also a part of the Char Dham Yatra Package in Uttarakhand.
What is the history of Vridha Badri?
According to a legend associated with the history of Vridha Badri, sage Narada performed penance in this region to appease Lord Vishnu. Later, Vishnu appeared in front of Narada in the form of an old man. Hence, the idol installed in this temple has the form of an old man.
Moreover, beliefs say that Vishwakarma carved the image of Badrinath and worshipped it. Years later, Shri Adi Shankaracharya found that image in this place and reinstalled it in the temple premises. Devotees also believed that Adi Shankaracharya worshipped Badrinath here before enshrining Him in the main Badrinath temple.
What is the significance of Vridha Badri?
The significance of Vridha Badri is that this temple is open for devotees and pilgrims throughout the year. The temple has been built in North Indian style of architecture and has a sanctum which contains representations of Lord Vishnu. Moreover, the chief priests of the temple are from Southern India.
What are the timings of Vridha Badri?
Here are the timings of Vridha Badri:
|Morning||5 AM||12 PM|
|Evening||2 PM||9 PM|
What are the festivals celebrated here?
Some of the festivals celebrated at Vridha Badri are:
- Krishna Janmashtmi: It is a popular Hindu festival which celebrates the birth of Lord Krishna, the eighth incarnation of Lord Vishnu. It occurs according to the Hindu luni-solar calendar and is a very important festival for the followers of Lord Vishnu.
- Makar Sankranti: This festival is celebrated each year in January and is to appease the Sun God. It is the first day when Sun enters Capricorn and marks the lengthening of daytime in the forthcoming days. This day also includes colourful decorations, preparation of sweets with sesame seeds and children asking for treats and pocket money.
How to reach Vridha Badri?
Here’s how to reach Vridha Badri:
- Air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport about 268 km from Joshimath
- Train: : Rishikesh is the nearest railway station251Km from Joshimath.
- Road: Buses are available to Rishikesh from ISBT Kashmere Gate. One can use state transport to reach Joshimath. From there, one has to trek to Vridha Badri.
Where to stay nearby?
Some of the places where one can stay near Vridha Badri while undertaking the Char Dham Yatra are:
- Hotel Sudarshan Palace: Hotel Sudarshan Palace has facilities such as 24-hour front desk, garden area and parking facility within its premises. Amenities such as bed, bottled drinking water, access to common balcony and attached bathroom are available.
- Hotel Kuber Annex: The facilities offered here are front desk, room service, power backup, STD PCO facility, doctor on call. Massage service is also available here so that guests can relax after trekking. Helicopter booking facility is also available at the hotel.
- Hotel Heaven: The hotel offers facilities suchlike parking and telephone. With a team of skilled professionals, the property ensures the fulfilment of all needs of guest. Moreover, in case of medical emergencies, one can avail doctor on call facility at the hotel.
What are the other Sapt Badri destinations?
The other Sapt Badri destinations are:
- Adi Badri: It is the second among the ‘Sapt Badri’ temples. When Badrinath temple remains closed due to extremities in weather, devotees worship Lord Vishnu in Adi Badri temple. Moreover, the sanctum of the temple has an image of Lord Vishnu which is 1 metre high and has been carved out of black stone.
- Bhavishya Badri: It is the fourth among the ‘Sapt Badri’ temples. According to beliefs, Lord Badri will take abode in Bhavishya Badri at the end of Kaliyuga. Even the name of the place literally translates to ‘Future Badri’, implying that it will be the future residence of Lord Badri.
- Yogadhyan Badri: It is the fifth among the ‘Sapt Badri’ temples. As per mythology, the Pandavas were born here, and Pandu attained salvation and died here. Yogadhyan Badri has a bronze image of Lord Vishnu. Devotees believe that Pandu installed this image, which depicts Vishnu to be meditating (Dhyan). Hence, the name of the shrine comes from the posture of the image, and it is popular as’Yoga-dhyan’ Badri.
- Dhyan Badri: It is the sixth among the ‘Sapt Badri’ temples. It has an Image of Lord Vishnu which was estabished by Urvarishi. This image of Vishnu is four-armed, made of black stone and in a mediatative posture. Also, Brahmins from Southern India serve as head priests in the temple.
- Ardha Badri: It is the seventh among the ‘Sapt Badri’ temples. In comparison to other temples, the idol of Lord Vishnu here is smaller. Hence, the name of the temple roughly means ‘the little Badri’.
These temples are also a part of the Char Dham Yatra destinations within Uttarakhand.