A quaint religious place where one can find an escapade from the maddening chaos and the hustle bustle of routine life, Joshimath is a small town nested in the hilly areas of Uttarakhand state. It lies in close proximity to Karnaprayag, where two holy rivers, namely, Alaknanda and Dhauliganga meet. It is often used as the gateway to access the other revered religious places and hill stations in northern India. The fact that the place is about 44 k.m. away from the holy town of Badrinath brings a large number of pilgrims to the town. Badrinath is one of the four religious sites in the country where the 8th century A.D. Adi Guru Shri Shankaracharya established four cardinal mathas (a religious institution). According to ancient traditions the matha in Badrinath is in charge of Atharvaveda, which is one of the holy religious bodies of texts in Hindu mythology. The matha houses a revered temple dedicated to Lord Badrinarayan and Goddess Rajarajeshwari Devi and is flocked by thousands of devotees. Plus, it is also believed that Adi Shankaracharya undertook a tapasya in the cave that lies in the locality.
Since the place is almost continually flocked by pilgrims and visitors yearlong , Joshimath also plays host to a good number of hotels. Hotels in Joshimath generally belong to budget hotel category, however, there are a few hotels that can be classified as luxury hotels. Additionally, there are some cheap government quarters and guest houses that are ideal for those who are a bit constrained on the budget and/or time.
Joshimath also carries some religious significance and is closely associated with Lord Vishnu, worshiped in his avatar of Lord Narasimha. Akin to most of the parts of Northern India where religion is a significant aspect of every city and town, the place is also highly religious and exhibits the traditions, beliefs, and rituals that are in practice for centuries. It is thus ideal to spend a few days here before heading to other destinations nearby. The Narsinh Temple is the centre of the place. Housing Lord Narasimha as the presiding deity the temple is the most revered temple of the town. It is said that Adi Shankaracharya laid its foundation. The locals believe that one day the presiding idol will break and the mountains of Jay and Vijay, situated on the way to Badrinath, will collapse and become one. On that day the idol will disappear from its current location and reappear in a new place about 10 k.m. away. Similar to the aforementioned, there are several other legends and religious myths circling the town, best told only by the elders of the town.
The town can only be reached via road. If you are travelling by train the nearest railway station is at Rishikesh which is yet another highly significant pilgrimage. Plus, Haridwar Junction is about 24 k.m. away. Head to the town for an offbeat and undisturbed holiday and pick from the best budget hotels in Joshimath.