1. Yamunotri Temple
The sacred Yamunotri temple is devoted to Goddess Yamuna. Yamunotri temple lies in the Western Garhwal Himalayas at an elevation of about 3291m. the second most holy river of India river the Yamuna originates at Yamunotri. One gets mesmerized by the majestic mountains, pristine springs of Surya Kund and Gauri Kund gushing hot and cold water and river Yamuna flowing peacefully around Yamunotri temple. The interior of the Yamunotri temple has a Garba Griha and a Mandap where the devotees gather for darshan and prayer. The Garba Griha holds an idol of Goddess Yamuna that is made with Black marble and decorated with garlands.
Oen can even find an idol of Goddess Ganga in white stone beside the idol of Goddess Yamuna. This temple is believed to be constructed by the King of Tehri- Naresh Sudarshan Shah in the year 1839. It was then reconstructed by Maharani of Jaipur Gularia Devi in the 19th century AD after a massive part of the temple was damaged due to an earthquake.
2. Surya Kund
Surya Kund is a hot water spring that is situated near the Yamunotri temple. It is a thermal spring that has got its name from the Yamuna river that is considered to be the offspring of Surya or the god as per Hindu mythology. Surya Kund is located in the vicinity of the Yamunotri temple. The thermal spring is surrounded by snow-capped peaks that truly makes the aura divine.
Devotees from all over the world come to visit this holy Kund and prepare Prashad out of potatoes or rice mixed with salt and tie it in a muslin cloth. After this, it is dipped into the hot spring where it gets boiled and then it is offered to the temple deity. After offering it to the deity the prasad is taken back home.
3. Hanuman Chatti
Hanuman Chatti is situated at the confluence of Hanuman Ganga and Yamuna rivers located 13kms before Yamunotri Dham. Hanuman Chatti is a tranquil [laces that offer an ample amount of accommodation facilities. Just enjoy the riverside picturesque beauty at Hanuman Chatti that makes it a fantastic place to spend some peaceful time with family. It is also visited by trekkers as it is the popular trekking spot in the region. A lot of travellers visit Hanuman Chatti from May to October. One can purchase medicines, raincoats, and other major items at Hanuman Chatti.
4. Saptrishi Kund
Saptrishi Kund is located at an elevation of 4421mts and is a high-altitude lake and the source of the Yamuna river. The lake is fed by Champasar Glacier set in the upper parts of the mountain range that is created by Bandarpunch mountain. The beautiful Saptrishi Kund is situated at a distance of around 7kms from Yamunotri and one has to go through an arduous trek to reach here.
This glacial lake is just half a kilometre long surrounded by rocky glaciers and is fed by the Champasar glacier. Saptrishi Kund trek is considered one of the most difficult treks in the state of Uttarkhand and one must undertake this trek with a guide. The best time to visit Saptrishi Kund from April to June and September and October.
5. Dayara Bugyal
Dayara Bugyal is located around 45kms from the beautiful town of Uttarkashi. It is popular with travellers for its vast expanse of a lush green meadow. One can even visit Barnala Tal while travelling to Dayara Bugyal. Dayara Bugyal trek is a fantastic choice for beginners as the trek route is easy to traverse as compared to other difficult treks.
It is indeed one of the most beautiful treks in Uttarakhand state. In the winter season, skiers visit Dayara Bugyal as the region receives heavy snowfall during the winter season. The ideal time to visit Dayara Bugyal is from May to November that is considered the best time to explore Dayara Bugyal.
6. Janki Chatti
Janki Chatti is situated at an elevation of 2650m above sea level and is renowned for these hot water springs. Janki Chatti encompasses the last village in the region and acts as the major hub for the pilgrims travelling to Yamunotri. The thermal spring of Janki Chatti acts as an inevitable part of the Yamunotri pilgrimage.
One can find ponies and palanquine at Janki Chatti. Capture the fantastic views of the majestic mountains on all the sides that lie close to the Indo-China border.
Kharsali, the winter seat of Goddess Yamuna is a stunning village also known as Khushimath. It is perched at an astounding elevation of 2675 meters above sea level. When the Yamunotri temple becomes accessible during the winter season due to heavy snowfall the deity is brought here for worshipping and thus Kharsali has a religious significance as it acts as the winter seat of goddess Yamuna. Visit this place and get drenched in spirituality.
Make sure to visit the oldest Shani Dev temple here where the idol Goddess Yamuna is kept during the winter season. This temple is made of stone, wood and mortar created from the Urad dal. One can even enjoy camping here. Bonfire at night just adds to the camping flavour. Just lay under a clear night sky with a cup of coffee.
Barkot is a small yet beautiful town situated on the way to Yamunotri just 49kms away from Yamunotri. Barkot ave one of the ancient temple and is ideal for meditation. One can capture the majestic views of Banderpoonch peak and other massive peaks of the Himalayan range from Barkot. Barkot is truly an ideal holidaying and adventure destinations as this place offer many trekking excursions. One can relish the fresh fruits from the glittering apple orchards of Barkot. Barkot is the major stopover for the pilgrims visiting Yamunotri and Gangotri Dham during Char Dham Yatra.
There are several holy shrines and ashrams in Barkot where the travellers can find mental bliss and indulge in activities like white water rafting in the Yamuna river. The months from April to November months is the time when numerous tourists visit the sacred Yamunotri Dham.
9. Dodi Tal
Dodital is an emerald lake situated amidst high mountains at an altitude of 3310mts above sea level. Dodi Tal is one of the most beautiful high altitude lakes of North India. This lake is one of the very few water bodies where Himalayan Trouts are found. One can find a holy temple near this lake that is devoted to Lord Ganesha. As per the mythology, this is the place where Lord Ganesha was born. One can reach Dodi Tal in two days by trekking 22kms from Sangam Chatti. The trekking to Dodi Tal is easy but the trail gets moderate if one trek towards Darwa Pass. This Tal is considered one of the most pristine lakes of India and is popular among nature lovers and trekking enthusiasts. The origin of Dodital is from the natural springs and the source of the river Asi Ganga.
10. Shani Dev Temple
Shani Dev temple is situated in the beautiful Khasali village in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand state. It is considered the oldest temple of Shani Dev. This temple is nestled at 7000 feet above sea level and acts as the winter seat of Goddess Yamuna. It is the first temple site in the Char Dham yatra circuit to be visited by the pilgrims. This temple is highly revered by the local people as they believe that this temple was constructed by the Pandav brothers. The facade of the temple reminds of the tower monasteries of Tibet. The temple is constructed by using stones, wood, and Urad dal from which the mortar part is built to fix the stones together. Devotees visiting this temple offer Urad Dal to appease the god.