The Himalayan foothills are home to Rishikesh, the iconic city, which is also a popular pilgrim centre. Situated in Dehradun district of Uttarakhand, Rishikesh is surrounded by low hills and forests. The lanes of the city are dotted with temples, yoga and meditation centres and ashrams. The one major attraction that brings tourists from all across the world is the river rafting in Rishikesh.
The city is an eclectic mix of pilgrims and tourists who thirst for adventure. The city has its own hustle bustle complete with fruit and flower vendors and internet cafes in almost every lane. This is the city where spirituality and adrenaline rush walk hand in hand. Known for many other things, river rafting in Rishikesh is one thing that you must do at least once in your lifetime.
In Rishikesh, rafting is not just the only thing you can do; you can experience camping, hiking and other adventures. For people living around Delhi, Rishikesh is an ideal weekend gateway destination. With the number of travellers visiting Rishikesh every month, Rishikesh tourism board has taken special care to cater to the needs of every variety of traveller and tourist.
No Rishikesh trip is complete without a splash in the waters. Rishikesh tourism has many operators who can arrange for good and affordable river rafting packages. While you might want to wonder what is this entire hype around river rafting in Rishikesh all about? We give you seven solid reasons why Rafting Rishikesh is a must do adventure in a lifetime.
1. The strategic location
The foothills of the Himalayas are the place where you can see the best ever form of the River Ganga. Whitewater rafting is an adventure sport that is enough to shoot up your adrenaline. The mere thrill of this sport is best experienced here in Rishikesh. Nothing like experience the untamed waves of the great Ganges as you raft through the pristine white waters. Barring the monsoons, the rivers are a just perfect for making river rafting in Rishikesh an unforgettable experience. The Rishikesh rafting season is from September to June. The water currents in monsoons are sharp and uncontrollable.
2. Unadulterated Adventure
Rishikesh rafting has gained a lot of popularity and admiration for its long stretch of river. The Ganges is approximately 37kms long as it flows. The Himalayan waters offer tourists a great opportunity to witness the Rishikesh rafting where the waters with its untamed currents can thrill everyone, from seasoned rafters to novices. The rapids here are aptly named and go by names like “The Wall”, “Initiation” and many more. Rishikesh rafting is considered to be one of the best in the country. Hence river rafting in Rishikesh is something that features on every bucket list.
3.The Enticing Ganges
River Rafting in Rishikesh is a dream for many. It’s not just the adventure and the thrill but also the magnificent Ganges which can leave everyone awe-inspired. In Rishikesh, rafting packages vary depending on the rafting level. The levels start from beginner and go up to advanced. If you are not a novice and not an advanced rafter, you can choose the moderate levels. There is something for everyone here.
While the starting points across the Ganga vary, the endpoints are the same and that is the Laxman Jhula.
4. The River Rafting Route
River rafting in Rishikesh is not just another adventure. Kaudiyal is the greatest point in Rishikesh rafting. It is mainly intended for advanced or professional rafters. This 8-9 hour long rough route passes through the banks of Shivpuri, Bramhapuri, Marine Drive and Byasi. The route is full of whirlpools and rafters have to battle against 13 major rapids apart from other obstructions like rocks and sharp windings.
The route from Bramhapuri to Rishikesh is the easiest track and is about 9kms from Rishikesh. This is the track mainly used for beginners since it is the lowest point and have a rapid rate of 1 or 2. Rafters have to pass through rapids like Terminator and Hilton to get to the finish point.
5. Camping under the stars
Camping in Rishikesh is one of the second best things to do after the white water rafting. The pleasant environment, the picturesque views make it a great camping ground. The Rishikesh rafting season brings in not just rafters but also campers who love to watch the stars waltzing in the dark. Rishikesh is also known for its authentic local cuisine which can satiate your taste buds with simple yet delectable food.
6. Add another dash of adventure
Rishikesh rafting is well known, no doubt but the campsites in Rishikesh. Rishikesh is a land full of adventure sports. Be it rafting, kayaking rock climbing, cliff jumping, fox flying, zip lining, bungee jumping or any other outdoor games, the overall adventure quotient of Rishikesh is highly commendable and recommended.
7. Conquer your fears
A Rishikesh trip will be more than just a trip for all those trying to conquer their fears. Whether you are scared of water or heights, the adventure sports here will help you get over these in the best way possible. After all, the best way to get over the fear is to face it. River rafting in Rishikesh might look scary to many, but with the right protective gear and following instructions can make this experience a memory of a lifetime.
Places to visit in Rishikesh
1. Laxman Jhula
The Laxman Jhula is a suspension bridge across the Ganges and is known to have a historical and mythological significance. It is believed that Laxman crossed the river at the same exact point with a jute rope. It is open to public at all times. While at the Laxman jhula visit the Tera manzil temple and taste and savour the local cuisine at the restaurants around.
2. The Beatles Ashram
The Beatles visited India in 1968 and lived at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. They brought in a lot of media attention, making Rishikesh the place to go to in search of spirituality. The Rajaji National Park is close by and you could take a Jeep Safari to see the flora and fauna.
3. Jumpin Heights
After you are done with all the river rafting in Rishikesh, you could visit Jumpin Heights for some more adventure sports. Bungee jumps or go fox flying, it will be an experience to savour like no other. The place is open on all days.
Located 37 k.m. away from Rishikesh, this is the place where professionals and trained river rafters begin their trail from. River rafting in Rishikesh is something professionals, as well as the novices, swear by. The place has dense forests making it one of the places to visit in Rishikesh.
Shivpuri is about 19kms away from Rishikesh and is named after the Shiv temple in the town. This is another favourite water rafting spot in Rishikesh.
6. Neelkantha Temple
This Shiv temple is one of the most revered temples in India. It is believed that Lord Shiva consumed the venom that came out of churning of seas by the gods and the demons, at this exact location. The temple is located on a hill above the Swarg Ashram and is revered by Shiv devotees.
7. The Swarg Ashram
This is the place to come and meditate. The Swarg Ashram is located on the left bank of the Ganges and covers the entire area between the Ram and Laxman Jhula. Built in the memory of Swami Vishudhanand, this place offers solitude to anyone who seeks it.
How to reach Rishikesh
Rishikesh is well connected by railway, roadways and airport. The Dehradun Airport serves as the domestic airport and the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi is only about 260 k.m. The Rishikesh Railway station is well connected to other main cities in the country.
Best time to visit
Rishikesh has a great climate year round. However, the most ideal time to visit would be in between February and April and August to October. For all those who would love to go river rafting in Rishikesh, post monsoons would be a great time.
Things to do in Rishikesh
Apart from all the river rafting, adventure sports and temple hopping, when in Rishikesh don’t miss the Ganga Aarti at Triveni. Also, drop by at which are architectural delights. The temples have some pre-historic era carvings with images of god, goddess and even demons on the roof and walls of the temples. Take time out to watch the sunrise, sunsets and the Shivalik ranges.
The entire experience of river rafting and the adventure can be fun. It is highly recommended that you follow all the safety instructions. Carry essentials like sunscreen and sunglasses as the sun could get harsh at times. Make sure to carry warm clothes that are not too heavy. Do ask for guidance before you get on a river rafting trip in Rishikesh.
Rishikesh today is also known as the ‘Yoga Capital of the World’. The temples, the yoga and meditation, the spirituality, nature and environment are just conducive to let go of the world and soak into mind expansion and self-reflection. Rishikesh is home to spirituality and also to adventure. Whether you seek adventure in white water rafting or you prefer to backpack, this Himalayan getaway has something for everyone
Check out our Rishikesh Tour packages to explore the iconic city, which is also a popular pilgrim centre.