Introduction

Badrinath dhaam is considered as one of the most sacred centres of pilgrimage situated in the lofty Himalayan heights in the Tehri-Garhwal hill tracks (Uttarakhand) at the height of 10,248 feet above sea level. The route to Badrinath is one of the most arduous one due to the lofty hilly terrain, curves and cliffs amidst the most scenically beautiful place on the earth.Throughout the route to Badrinath there are numerous pilgrimage sites at Deva Prayag, Rudraprayag, Karana Prayag, Nanda Prayag, Vishnuprayag as well as Pandukeswar where the Pandavas are believed to have been born, and the site where Bhima and Hanuman (sons of Vayu) met.Lord MahaVishnu is believed to have done his penance in this place. Seeing the Lord doing his penance in the open, Goddess Mahalaxmi is believed to have assumed the form of Badri tree to provide him shelter to face the onslaught of the weather conditions, therefore the name Badri Narayan. It is believed that Lord Vishnu revealed to Narad Rishi that Nar & Naryan forms were his own. It is also believed that Narad Rishi, who also did his penance here, is even now is worshipping the supreme God in the form of Nar and Narayan with Ashtakshara mantras.The image of Badrinarayan here is fashioned out of Saligramam. Badrrinarayan is seen under the badri tree, flanked by Kuber and Garuda, Narad, Narayan and Nar. Mahalakshmi has a sanctum in the prakaram. There is also a shrine to Adi Sankara The image of Lord Badrinarayan here is fashioned out of Saligrama. Shri Badrinarayan is seen under the badari tree, flanked by Kuber and Garuda, Narad, Narayan and Nar. Mahalakshmi has a sanctum in the prakaram. There is also a shrine of Adi Sankara at Badrinath. . Behind the temple of Lord Badrinarayan is the Lakshmi Narasimha mandir, with shrines to Desikacharya and Ramanujachary.At Badrinath one can witness one of the greatest wonders of Nature in the Hot water springs of Taptakund on the banks of river Alaknanda. The temperature of the water in this Kund is 55 degree centigrade whereas the normal temperature in this region for most part of the year at 9-10 degree centigrade to sub-zero levels. Before visiting the temple the pilgrims take a holy bath in the Taptakund.