|A view of Rishikesh with river Ganges in the evening|
It is known as the birth place of Yoga, the phenomenon that has caught the attention of people’s imagination around the world. Rishikesh is Uttarakhand is the hub for Yoga and meditation in India.
It burst into limelight after the Beatles arrived at the ashram of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in their quest for nirvana and bliss in the late ’60s; Rishikesh has been a lure for seekers of spirituality with its numerous yoga centers, ashrams and temples.
Rishikesh is often referred to as the World Capital of Yoga owing to its global renowned among seekers of peace and contemplation. It is believed that meditation and a dip in the holy water of river Ganges in Rishikesh brings one closer to attainment of salvation.
Notwithstanding its acclaim as a place for tranquility and meditation, Rishikesh has emerged as one of the popular adventure tour destinations in India. There are numerous adventure activities like white water rafting, bungee jumping and mountain hiking to offer the adrenaline rush to the visitors.
Rafting from Shivpuri to Rishikesh is quite popular among the thrill seekers. Camping options are also available and it is very much possible to undertake this adventure from Delhi even during short weekend breaks.
However, the fact that Rishikesh is considered a holy city by Hindus, it is vegetarian by law and even alcohol are not sold. But there are numerous joints offering Ayurvedic cuisines & teas and vegetarian delicacies. Visitors could also try the German Bakery (near Laxman Jhula) or the Chotiwaala Restaurant (near the Ram Jhula) for gourmet cuisines and snacks.
Where’s the Luxe you ask
Not far away from the bustle of this yoga town is Narendranagar, home to India’s first destination Spa. Ananda in Himalayas, with its Victorian Balustrades and Mughal archways is a fine specimen of Indo-Islamic Architecture.
Nestled at an altitude of 3,300 feet 180 kilometers away from Delhi, this sprawling 100 acres spa is a veritable oasis, an escape from the heat, dust and din of the bustling megalopolis. The awe inspiring views of the undulating Himalaya, the ancient town of Rishikesh and the meandering Ganges only heighten the delight of luxurious stay in this once Viceregal Palace and abode of the Maharaja of Narendranagar.
|A mesmerizing view of Rishikesh town and holy Ganges from the Himalayan View suite of Ananda in the Himalayas|
It was not an exaggeration then when Celia W. Dugger of the Times described Ananda in the Himalayas as offering “austere luxury for the sybarite, hiking, squash and rafting for the athlete and yoga, meditation and Ayurvedic massage therapies – among many other treatments – for the stressed out.”
Try out one of the therapeutic massages or spa session at this sprawling resort or just take a break from the teeming city life and enjoy bliss in natural surroundings with some yoga session at Ananda in the Himalayas.