There are many Famous Temples in Rishikesh. The Kunjapuri Temple in one of the most popular tourist destinations. You must visit this temple if you are interested in visiting temples.
Kunjapuri Temple Rishikesh Beliefs
The Kunjapuri Temple is a famous pilgrimage site which pays tribute to Goddess Parvati or Maa Shakti. It has a mythological narrative attached to it.
During the ‘Tretya Yuga’ of the Hindu Mythology, there was a Yajna conducted by Daksha, Sati’s father, to celebrate his election as the head of all ‘Devas’, the ‘Prajapati’. Sati or Parvati is the other half of Lord Shiva. However, Lord Shiva was not invited by Daksha, since he opposed the election of Daksha as the leader. When Sati came to know about this insult of his husband, she got furious and went to Kankhala, where the Yajna was held. In her anger, she jumped into the fire to sacrifice her life.
This made Lord Shiva infuriated, and he went to Kankhala in his wrath. He saw her beloved Sati’s body burning in the fire. He decided to destroy all the ‘Devas’ and ‘Daksha’. The ‘Devas’ pleaded him to forgive them. Lord Shiva took the dead body of his wife on his shoulders and roamed around the universe in grief for years.
He was not ready to carry out the last rites of his wife’s body out of his devoted love for her. Shiva’s wrath was well known amongst the ‘Devas’, and they went to Lord Vishnu for help. It was decided that Lord Vishnu will use his ‘Sudarshna Chakra’ to cut Sati’s body into 52 parts without Shiva knowing and the last rites will be carried out by the Gods. The various parts of Sati’s body fell on earth, and each spot became a pilgrimage site or ‘Shaktipeeth’. Kunjapuri is a shaktipeeth where her chest had fallen.
How to reach Kunjapuri Temple Rishikesh
The distance between Rishikesh and Kunjapuri is 31 km. The sunrise and the sunset at the temple have their own glamour with a beautiful view of the peaks encapsulating it and the city of Rishikesh, and the Ganges can also be enjoyed. The trek to the temple is about 5 km so carrying trekking shoes or sports shoes is advisable. The landscapes are filled with meadows, farms, and villages.
It takes around 1 hour to reach the base of Kunjapuri temple where the trek starts. You can easily hire taxis at Ram Jhoola or Dhalwala to reach the shrine. There are around 80 steps to reach the temple which requires proper health conditions as they are quite steep. Kunjapuri is one among the triangle of ‘shaktipeeth’, the other ones being Chandrabadni and Surkunda Devi. There are some shops before starting the trek which offers tea and light breakfast.
Kunjapuri enjoys the picturesque view of the snow capped mountains Swarga-Rohini, Gangotri, Banderpunch, and Chaukhamba. The temple is situated at an altitude of 1665 m. The Navrataras (April & October) are the time when the temple is at its full glory. The grand Hindu festival of Dusshhera is also merrily celebrated here.