Kedarnath – Most Popular Pilgrim Place
Located in the north Indian state of Uttarakhand, Kedarnath is one of the most popular and visited pilgrim towns in the country, extremely famous for the holy temple called the Kedarnath Temple. It comes under the Char Dhams in Hindu culture, the other three being Badrinath, Gangotree, and Yamunotri.
The town of Kedarnath happens to be the most remote one from the lot and is located in the picturesque beauty of the famous Himalayan ranges, at a height that is approximately 3,583 meters above the sea level on the head of renowned River Mandakini.
The town is surrounded by beautiful snow-clad mountain peaks and one can truly witness nature’s beauty on their visit to this pilgrim town.
According to historians, the town was named Kedarnath after King Kedar, who was the ruler during the Satya Yuga. It is also said that he had a daughter who was named Vrinda, and believed to be a partial incarnation of popular Hindu deity—Goddess Lakshmi.
It is believed that she would perform rigorous hours of meditation and pay her respect to Lord Shiva, and it was after her that the land here was named Vrindavan.
The town of Kedarnath has its mentions in the great Indian epic Mahabharata, and since then it has attained a lot of attention among Hindu devotees. The Kedarnath Temple that happens to be the primary and most popular religious structure here is devoted to Lord Shiva, and is also regarded as the lord of the Kedar Khand.
Although the temple is enveloped in nature’s beauty, the extreme and dangerous weather conditions here make the temple open for pilgrims only during a specific period of time of the year; that is from the month of April to November.
It is said that the Pandavas were the one to build this temple first and later on popular Indian theologian and philosopher Adi Shankara amended it. The Kedarnath Temple also happens to be one among the 12 holiest Hindu shrines in India, which are traditionally regarded as 12 jyotirlingams. Not just this, but it is also the highest among the list of remaining 11 jyotirlingams in the country.