Place to stay in Joshimath ::--> Place to Eat in Joshimath ::--> Things to buy in Joshimath ::--> Sight seeing in Joshimath
Joshimath is a popular hill station and a famous centre for pilgrimage at a height of 1,890mts above sea level in Chamoli district of Garhwal division in Uttarakhand. In ancient scriptures Joshimath is described as Kartikeyapura as it has been named after Kartikeya, the God of Katyuri kings. Joshimath is one of the four maths or monasteries established in the 8th century by Adi Guru Sri Shankaracharya. The rivers Alkananda and Dhauliganga meet at the confluence of Vishnuprayag located just below Joshimath. Joshimath is the base for trekking to the famous Valley of Flowers. The best time to visit Joshimath and for the trek is from mid July till end-August. Among the important attractions of Joshimath includes a temple dedicated to Narashima, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Some other temples are dedicated to Hanuman, Gaurishankar, Ganesha, and Naudevi and Surya.
In winters, the town becomes home to Lord Badri who is brought down from Badrinath to Vasudeva temple at Joshimath. Some nearby places of excursion are Auli, one of the best skiing destinations in India and Nanda Devi National Park which is 23kms from Joshimath. You can also trek up to the exotic Valley of Flowers from Joshimath. One of the routes used for the trek is from till a small market at Ghangaria. Overnight accommodation is available at Ghangaria. Camping at the Valley of Flowers is not allowed. An alternative route is from Hemkund Saheb, a Sikh pilgrimage centre to Ghangaria which is about five and a half kms. Joshimath is connected with a 4km cable car upto Auli making it the longest and highest trolley of Asia. Joshimath is the also the home of the oldest tree of India, Kalpavriksha which is stood at Joshimath from the time of Adi Shankaracharya. Joshimath is also called as Jyotirmath. The average literacy rate of Joshimath is 77% which is higher than the literacy rate of India. Joshimath is a traveler's delight and devotees temple as well. The view of the Hathi Parbat (Elephant Mountain) from Joshimath is mystifying.
The Best Times to Visit Joshimath
A region's climate and seasonal weather patterns form an important factor for touring. As such, it is important take note of Joshimath climate, including temperatures. The climate in the Joshimath region is generally cold all year through. Even the summers remain mildly cold. It is therefore mandatory for those travelling to the place to carry an assortment of heavy clothing. Still, there are better seasons to visit Joshimath. Generally, heavy rains are expected in the monsoon season when extensive showers fall throughout the days. In winter, mostly between December and February, the place becomes extremely chilly, with occasions of snowfall. The temperatures in Joshimath during this period can be as low as 0 degree Celsius and barely go above 8 degrees Celsius.
During the summer months, i.e. between the months of April and June, the temperatures in Joshimath are generally mild and can rise to as high as 34 degrees Celsius. However, on average, the temperatures during the day are mostly in the mid-twenties.
The monsoon season usually runs between July and September. During this time, the place receives some heavy rainfalls from the South West Monsoon. As such, travelling during the monsoon season is difficult, which means touring is affected. The temperatures also grow colder during the nights.
However, it is important to note that certain attractions, such as some specific species of flowers, may only thrive during the colder periods, e.g. winter. These issues may be of great importance to botanists, for instance. Therefore, depending on the main reason to visiting, different people may visit throughout the year.
However, if the temperatures are anything to go by, then the summer months constitute the best season to tour Joshimath. The absence of rains and fair travels make it easy to travel, trek, sight seeing, camping, etc. thus make the tour worthwhile.
How to Reach Joshimath
You can travel to Joshimath by air, rail or even take the road.
Joshimath by Air
The Jolly Grant Airport, also known as Dehradun, is the closest one to Joshimath. It is 250 kms from Joshimath. Jolly Grant Airport receives several daily flights from Delhi, the capital city, which inturn receives several daily flights from international destinations. From here, you can either hire a taxi (a non A/C sedan) at a cost of about Rs 3000 or travel by train. This is the best and most comfortable option for a road trip. The journey takes about 6 hours.
Joshimath by Train
Trains are cheap, costing about Rs 120. They are also comfortable to travel in. There are trains that connect to Joshimath from Ahamadabad, Delhi, Rishikesh, etc. Also, you can travel from Delhi to Joshimath by train. Trains are the most used means of transport here, so it is important to book in advance. You can then travel by road, taking a Haridwar to Joshimath bus.
Joshimath by Road
As is seen in the online Joshimath map of road networks, there are several roads that link Joshimath to many destinations. Depending on how much money you have, and which one on the list of hotels in Joshimath you are booked, you can take a bus from anywhere to Joshimath. There is a Haridwar to Joshimath bus service. You could also take a Delhi to Joshimath bus, or take a taxi/bus from Rishikesh to Joshimath.