In the fair region of Jammu and Kashmir, there lies an exquisite hamlet known as Vaishno Devi, a haven for those seeking the divine presence of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Mandir, a sanctum within a cavern dedicated to the Goddess Durga in her Vaishno Devi form. BYBNEWS.COM entreats thee to partake in the splendor and culture of this wondrous settlement with our diverse assemblage of Vaishno Devi sojourns.
Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Mandir resides within the bosom of Trikuta Mountains, where one may witness the majestic rock formations embodying Maha Lakshmi, Maha Kali, and Maha Saraswati, the three divine facets of the Goddess. En route to the holy temple, thou may also visit Ardhkuwari, known as the Garbajoon Cave, wherein the Goddess is believed to have meditated before vanquishing the demon Bhairavnath.
To reach the hallowed Vaishno Devi Mandir, which draws more than 10 million pilgrims annually, thou may choose from several options to journey from Katra to Ardhkuwari and thence to Bhawan on your familial excursion to Vaishno Devi.
Trekking presents a delightful means to relish the picturesque vistas and spiritual ambience of Vaishno Devi. Choose from two paths leading from Katra to Ardhkuwari, and two more from Ardhkuwari to Bhawan, each varying in distance and challenge. Extend thy trek to the Bhairavnath shrine, a few kilometers above the temple, or opt for ponies and palkies as thou wilt.
2. Helicopter Ride
For a touch of exhilaration and adventure, consider a helicopter ride, ferrying thee from Katra to Sanjhichhat in a mere 8 minutes. Revel in the aerial views of the mountains and valleys as thou soars above. The helicopter accommodates 5 to 6 passengers at once, but requires a booking at least 2 months prior. The helipad is situated on Udhampur road, a mere 2 km from Katra’s bus station.
Upon reaching Sanjhichhat, Vaishno Devi Mandir lies but half an hour away. Choose from ponies, porters, palkis, or walking, as thy preference dictates. The helicopter ride’s cost is approximately Rs. 1800 for a one-way journey and Rs. 3600 for a round trip per person.
3. Ponies and Palanquins
For those not keen on walking or trekking great distances, ponies and palanquins are available for hire, transporting thee to Vaishno Devi Mandir. Managed by the municipal committee at reasonable rates, relax and enjoy the scenic journey as the ponies and palanquins bear thee onward.
Temples to Visit on a Vaishno Devi Journey
Here are a few remarkable temples to visit on thy familial pilgrimage to Vaishn Devi:
Mata Vaishno Devi Temple
The primary attraction, dedicated to Vaishn Devi, a form of Goddess Durga. Within the cave temple, behold three natural rock formations symbolizing the Goddess. This holy site is one of the 108 Shakti Peethas, revered places of power and worship amongst Hindus.
Adh Kumari Temple
Another cavern temple, situated midway to the Mata Vaishno Devi Temple, approximately 6 km from Katra. Named for Adh Kumari, the eternal virgin, it is believed the Goddess resided here for nine months before proceeding to the main cavern.
Bhairon Nath Temple
Dedicated to the demon Baba Bhairavnath, who sought to assail Vaishno Devi but met his demise at her hands in her Kali form. Repenting his transgressions and pleading for mercy, the Goddess granted him the boon of his temple being part of the pilgrimage. Located 2 km from Mata Vaishn Devi Temple, the site offers a panoramic view of the valley.
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A sacred location where the Goddess’s footprints may be seen upon a rock slab. At an elevation of 3380 feet, it lies approximately 1.5 km from Banganga. Pilgrims often pay their respects and seek the Goddess’s blessings before continuing their journey.
These captivating temples await thee on your family’s Vaishno Devi pilgrimage, enriching your cultural and spiritual understanding whilst providing an unforgettable experience. Secure your journey with BYBNEWS.COM and prepare for an extraordinary adventure in the realm of the Goddess.