Gauri Kund is an important Hindu pilgrimage site on the way to Kedarnath Dham, which is another 14 kilometers uphill from there. It is situated at an altitude of more than 6000 feet in the Garhwal Himalayas. Gaurikund also has a temple dedicated to Goddess Parvati Devi, the Gauri Devi Temple. This is the place where Goddess Parvati Devi meditated to attain Lord Shiva. From Gaurikund Chardham yatra need to trek 14 km to reach Kedarnath Temple. The most Superior time to visit the place is fall in between the month of May to October. Kedarnath is one of the most sacred sites in Hinduism and it is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Gaurikund is related with Lord Shiva wife Parvati commonly known as Gauri in all parts of the Country. There are several hotels, lodges, dharamshala, and guest house facilities for Chardham pilgrims in Gaurikund. His pilgrimage site boasts of a natural hot spring and this is one of the reasons that supposedly prompted Devi Gauri to pick this as a place to indulge in hard penance. A portion of the tank or kund has been covered to serve as the bathing place for ladies. They were finally married at Triyugi Narayan, which is not too far away from Gauikund.
Char Dham Yatra and Gaurikund
Gaurikund is base camp for Kedarnath trek and pilgrims take a night halt before starting trek to Kedarnath temple during their Char Dham yatra. Gaurikund is the final road-head towards Kedarnath and here one continues their yatra towards Badrinath. Several areas are preserved like so as to conserve the beauty of the nature and avoid extinction of the flora and fauna.
History and Mythology
Gauri Kund is connected with Shiva’s wife Parvati, also known as Gauri in various parts of India. In Hindu folklore, Gauri committed herself to penance involving many ascetic and yogic practices to win over Shiva’s affections. Local tradition claims that Gauri Kund is the spot where Gauri lived while carrying out these practices and it was here that Shiva proposed her for marriage and were finally married at Triyugi Narayan, which is not too far away. This place is also associated with the legend of how Ganesha acquired his elephant head. The lake is also famous as “Parvati Sarovar” as this was the place where goddess Parvati had acquired her son Ganesha.
Goddess Parvati had formed an image of Ganesha from the soap lather on her body and breathed life into it. She placed Ganesha at the entrance of her home as her janitor to prevent anyone from entering while she was bathing. Now Lord Shiva happened to return at this point of time and was stopped by Ganesha. The offended Lord Shiva cut off the boy’s head. Parvati insisted that the boy be brought back to life and Shiva took the head of a wandering elephant and placed it on Ganesha’s body and and life was restored and Parvati had her son back.
How to Reach
By Air : Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun is the nearest Airport located at the distance of about 239 km from Kedarnath and 20 km away from city center of Dehradun.
By Train : Rishikesh Railway Station is the nearest Railway Station located 220 km away from Gaurikund where as Kotdwara Railway Station is located about 246 km from Gaurikund are the nearest rail-heads.
By Bus : Gaurikund is well connected by road with Haridwar, Rishikesh, Dehradun, Kotdwara and many other important hill stations of Garhwal and Kumaon Hills.