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Overview of Joshimath
Joshimath is also popularly known as Jyotirmath. This place is one of the 108 most revered temples dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It is also a very sacred place, it is one of the 4 peethas believed to have been constructed by the renowned saint, Adi Sankara. The most important temple of Joshimath is the Narasimha Temple. Lord Vishnu takes the form of Narasimha, in this temple and is the presiding deity here. This main deity was constructed by Adi Shankara himself. Joshimath serves to be the ideal gateway for trekkers who undertake in climbing expeditions on the mighty Himalayan mountain range and for pilgrims who want to visit the very reputed Badrinath shrine, which is quite close to Joshimath. Joshimath is located in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand.
The Narasimha temple at Joshimath is the main tourist attraction of this place. The main deity of Lord Narasimha was constructed by Adi Sankara. It is believed that the right hand of this idol has been thinning in size over the last few centuries and now it is just as thick as a strand of hair. The local inhabitants of Joshimath believe in an interesting history behind this thinning process. According to them, the day when the right hand breaks, the twin mountains on the way to Badrinath shrine, Jay and Vijay will be united and begin to appear as one mountain. This will also be the time when the main deity at Badrinath will move from there and bless the devotees in the form of a Shaligram (black-coloured stone) at Bhavishya Badri (future Badri) area. There has been a strong connection between Badrinath and Joshimath for the past so many years. The temple at Badrinath remains closed for public during the nerve-wracking winters. During this time, one idol of Lord Badri is brought from there and placed in Joshimath, where it is worshipped for 6 months in a year.
Joshimath is a scenic and religious spot located in the district of Chamoli in Uttarakhand. This place is at a height of 6150 feet above sea level and located at 30.57 degrees towards the North and 79.57 degrees towards the East.
How to reach and local transport
Air - Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, at a distance of 293km, is the closest to Joshimath.
Rail – Rishikesh railway station is the nearest to Joshimath. Since it is a big religious spot, it is well connected to other parts of North India.
Road – There are lots of buses and share jeeps that are available between Joshimath and the famous Badrinath temple. It is also well connected with other big places like Rishikesh and Haridwar through a series of government and private sector buses.
Local transport – Joshimath is best experienced when explored on foot.
Tourist attractions and things to do
Narasimha temple, Sankaracharya Math, Bhavishya Kedar temple and Tapovan (place of hot water springs), ropeway trips to Auli and Gari Bhawani Temple are some of the major sight-seeing places in and around Joshimath. Tourists can undertake in trekking activities and go on ropeways to the hot tourist spot of Auli temple when they come to Joshimath.
Places to eat and local cuisine
Ahaar, Hari Om, Panwar Hotel and Saawan Hotel are some of the good restaurants in and around Joshimath. Being a religious town, only vegetarian food is available here. The local specialities of Kulfi, moong dhal papads and dalma are must-try dishes.
Places to stay
Joshimath Char Dham Camp is a 3-star accommodation option. Set in a lovely ambience, guests are able to drink in the natural beauty at its best form as they stay in these luxurious camps. Some of the decent 2-star hotels are Mount View, Himalayan Abode and GMVN Joshimath at Main Bazaar. Budget and single star accommodations that offer neat rooms and good services are GMVN Joshimath Expedition Hostel and Sri Ram Hotel.
STD, PIN code and Emergency Contact Numbers
The STD and PIN codes of Joshimath are 01389 and 246443 respectively. The Police Control Room of Chamoli district can be reached at 01372 251487 during all times, in addition to the helpline numbers for Police (100), Fire (101) and Ambulance (102).
Banks, Hospitals and Tourist Office
State Bank of India
Joshimath, Chamoli district, Uttarakhand, Ph: 01389 222360
Gopeshwar, Chamoli district – 246424, Uttarakhand, Ph: 01372 252245
District Tourism Development office, Gopeshwar, Chamoli district
Contact person – Mr. Sobat Singh Rana (District Adventure Sports Officer)
Ph: 01372 253185, 09410342577