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Gauri Udiyar Cave Temple

Gauri Udiyar Cave Temple

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Facts

Built in - Ancient
Diety - Lord Shiva
Location - 08 km from Bageshwar
Timings - 05:00 A.M. to 06:00 P.M.

Gauri Udiyar Cave Temple, Bageshwar, Uttarakhand

In the deep roots of the unexplored Kumaon division of Uttarakhand, there is an infamous cave temple called Gauri Udiyar. It is located about 8 km from Bageshwar valley and houses several idols of Lord Shiva. In Kumaoni dialect, ‘Udiyar’ stands for a small rock cave, where tigers and other wild animals live. As the name suggests, this cave has a temple of Gauri Mata and Lord Shiva.

About the Cave

It is a large natural cave which measures about 20 x 95 square metres. There is a picture of the divine marriage along with doli, wedding gifts and other finely crafted artistic ware. There is a very narrow cave which is supposed to lead to Kailash Parvat. This sacred place has a natural kund that has hot water in winters and cold water in summers.

Legend and Mythology Associated With the Gauri Udiyar Cave Temple

It is believed that Dev Shilpi Vishwakarma (Divine architect, sculptor and master of arts) has created this masterpiece. According to another legend, all the gods and goddesses rested (stayed) here during the marriage of Lord Shiva and Parvati Devi. Situated in the beautiful Kumaon division, this temple actually has many formations of Lord Shiva that are ancient.

There is no information about its origin or when it was discovered or how old it really is but locals say that the temple is of ancient times. It is said that the natural formations of Lord Shiva have fresh cold water coming out of them in summers and hot water coming out of them in winters. Locals say that there is a legendary milk used to manifest from these formations in the earlier days.

Best Time to Visit Gauri Udiyar Temple

The journey of Gauri Udiyar can be done throughout the year, but the best time to visit here is between the months of October to May. Travelling here in these months is the best and enjoyable. During the winter season, the weather here is cold. Due to snowfall on the surrounding hills in the winter season, the temperature here goes down very much. Due to heavy rains in the rainy season, it is a bit difficult to travel here because of heavy rains threatening landslides.

Bageshwar

Dev Bhoomi Uttarakhand is a mysterious place full of secrets and unexplored gateways to the Himalayas and Kailash Mansarovar. This place is a matter of great fascination for archaeologists, naturalists, historians, palaeontologists, geologists, architects as well as theologists who are flummoxed by the wealth of natural resources.

In the Kumaon region lies the valley temple town of Bageshwar. This town is surrounded by the majestic Bhileshwar and Nileshwar mountains and sits pretty at the confluence of rivers Saryu and Gomti. Not just natural and scenic vistas, Bageshwar is also home to the revered Bagnath temple. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, this temple is visited by devotees in large numbers all year round but witnesses a whopping footfall during the annual Shivratri festival. Legend has it that the temple sits at the site where Lord Shiva had appeared in his tiger (bagh in Hindi) avatar here to bless sage Markandeya, who had worshipped the deity. The annual Uttarayani fair, which is held on Makar Sankranti at the confluence of river Saryu and Gomti, is a grand affair and is attended by visitors from far and wide.

This fair is considered one of Uttarakhand’s ancient events. As the headquarters of the Bageshwar district, the eponymous town attracts a steady stream of tourists and trekkers throughout the year. Bageshwar is a place of extreme religious and historic significance. The towering mountains of Bhileshwar and Nileshwar are dotted on the east and west side of Bageshwar, while the north and south are marked by the Suraj Kund and Agni Kund respectively. This great place was traversed by Jagadguru Adi Shankaracharya who spent a lot of time in meditation in various locations on His way to the Himalayas.

Other important Hindu shrines located in and around Bageshwar are Ram Ghat temple, Agnikund temple, Nileshwar temple, Kukuda Mai temple, Shitla Devi temple, Trijugi Narayan temple, Hanuman temple, Nileshwar Dham, Swarg Ashram, Ramji temple, Jwala Devi temple, Bhileshwar Dham, Suraj Kund, Gopeshwar Dham, Golu temple and Praktishwar Mahadev.

How to Reach Gauri Udiyar Cave

Gauri Udiyar Cave is one of the popular attractions of Kumaon, Gauri Udiyar is located about 8 km from Bageshwar and can be reached within a short drive of 24 minutes. Bageshwar is located at a distance of 435 km from the national capital, Delhi and about 322 km from the state capital, Dehradun via NH7. 

By Road : The lively city of Bageshwar boasts a great network of roads and is linked with major destinations of Garhwal and Kumaon region. Luxury, as well as normal buses, operates from ISBT Anand Vihar, Delhi to cities like Almora, Nainital, Haldwani etc, from where you can easily get the local transport to Bageshwar. 

By Rail : Kathgodam railway station in Haldwani located about 157 km from Bageshwar is the closest railhead. It is well connected with the major destinations of India like Lucknow, Delhi, and Kolkata. Trains are frequent to Kathgodam as it is the ‘Gateway to Kumaon’. Also, taxis and buses can be easily available from Kathgodam to Bageshwar.

By Air : Pantnagar Airport in Udham Singh Nagar district about 191 km from Bageshwar is the nearest airport. The airport operates four round trips per week between Pant Nagar and Delhi. Taxis and buses are easily available from Pantnagar Airport to Bageshwar.

What is Gauri Udiyar Cave Temple Famous for?

This temple is famous for a variety of reasons:

  1. This holy place is famous for offering spiritual and mental bliss to the devotees and is a must visit place in Kumaon.
  2. Locals say that saints and yogis from across the country stay in this mystical place and meditate for many years immersed in the radiance of Lord Shiva and Parvati Devi.
  3. Hundreds of tourists come to this cave to worship and darshan Lord Shiva. During their visit to Bageshwar, tourists visit this natural cave.

Nearby Temples

Bagnath Temple

Bagnath that literally suggests the ‘Tiger Lord’ is a temple after which the Bageshwar city is named. This famous Hindu temple is a Shaivism site dedicated to Lord Shiva the transformer within the ‘Trinity’ namely Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh (Shiva himself). This ancient shrine is adorned in the Bageshwar city of Kumaon and is flooded with devotees during the auspicious Shivratri festival.

Chandika Temple

The Chandika Devi temple is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Chandika Mai also known as Kali. This sacred shrine is located about half a kilometre away from Bageshwar district of Uttarakhand.

Shikhar Temple

Shikhar Temple is located in a village of Kapkot tehsil in Bageshwar district. This temple is on the Shikhar Mountain, also known as the name of Mool Narayan. This temple is dedicated to Lord Mool Narayana. It is believed that Lord Mool Narayana is the nephew of Goddess Nanda. It is said that Lord Mool Narayana was born in the “Mool Nakshatra”, due to which he was considered inauspicious for parents. Therefore Goddess Nanda saved Lord Mool Narayan and brought him to this place. Since then, there is a temple at this place, which is known as Shikhar Temple.

Pindari Glacier

Situated in the mesmerising Kumaon Himalayas, Pindari Glacier is the most accessible of all glacier treks and attracts amateur as well as experienced trekkers. Pindari Trek is one of the most beautiful treks in summers and early winters.

Baijnath Temple

Baijnath mandir  is popular for the Baijnath Temple and other ancient temples, a lot of which are now in ruins. Situated in the easternmost corner of Uttarakhand on the banks of River Gomti, Baijnath is a wonderful little town with rich history and heritage. The famous capital of the Katyuri Kingdom in the mediaeval era of Indian history, Baijnath today is full of ruins belonging to that bygone era with the crowning jewel being the Baijnath Temple.

Tourists Can Visit This Temple During Their Char Dham Yatra

Uttarakhand, also known as Devbhoomi or the Land of Gods, is home to numerous temples and welcomes devotees all year round. Among the countless religious sites and circuits that devotees visit in Uttarakhand, one of the most prominent is the Char Dham Yatra. This Yatra or pilgrimage is a tour of four holy sites – Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath – nestled high up in the Himalayas. The Yamunotri temple, lodged in a narrow gorge close to the source of River Yamuna (the second-most sacred Indian river after River Ganga) in Uttarkashi district, is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna. The district of Uttarkashi is also home to Gangotri dedicated to Goddess Ganga, the most sacred of all Indian rivers. Located in the Rudraprayag district lies Kedarnath, dedicated to Lord Shiva. Badrinath, home to the sacred Badrinarayan Temple, is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.

It is believed that every person should visit these sites for once in their lifetime. It is also believed that if you visit these places and worship with full devotion then you can also attain the ultimate moksha.

You can also visit the district of Bageshwar during your yatra and the Gauri Udiyar Cave is accessible from there. This temple has a lot of significance as it is one of the famous temples of Uttarakhand. Therefore, it is very much advisable to visit this temple and this valley during your Char Dham Yatra.

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