Gangotri pilgrimage tour is mostly part of Uttarakhand Char Dham Yatra. The summers are relatively cool and winters are freezing cold, with rains in the months of May and June. For the devotees and tourists, the gates of the temple are open only in the months of May to November. A trip to Gangotri during ‘monsoon’ season is avoided owing to impending ferocity of nature in the form of landslide, cloud burst, storm etc.
Significance of Gangotri Dham can be understood by its mention in religious scriptures and historical legend. According to an old legend, Lord Shiva rewarded King Bhagirath after his penance and the Ganga came down to earth. However, due to her pride, and the fact that the earth would be devastated if the Ganga came down in her full force. Lord Shiva caught her in his locks. It was then proclaimed that Goddess Uma or Parvati, Shiva's consort, would bathe in the Ganga daily and only then would she descend on the earth. The sacred stone near the temple denotes the place where Ganga first came down to earth. This is why the Ganga is also called by the name of Bhagirathi.Travel to Gangotri reminds a pilgrim about its cultural piousness.
Gangotri holiday packages offer a devotee to explore several religiously significant attractions. Submerged Shivling, the natural rock Shivling in the river, is an amazing sight reinforcing the power of the divine. According to legend, Lord Shiva sat at this spot to receive the Ganga in his matted locks. The 18th century's Gangotri Temple dedicated to Goddess Ganga is located near a sacred stone where King Bhagirath worshipped Lord Shiva. Ganga is believed to have touched earth at this spot. An arduous trek along the Gangotri Glacier leads to scenic Nandanvan - the base camp for the Bhagirathi peaks that offers a panoramic view of the surrounding Shivling peak. A trek across the snout of the Gangotri Glacier leads to Tapovan known for its beautiful meadows that encircle the base of the Shivling Peak. Uttarkashi, an important pilgrimage centre, is situated at an elevation of 1150 meter above sea level on the bank of river Bhagirathi and visited en route Gangotri. Gaumukh is the snout of the Gangotri Glacier and the source of the Bhagirathi river. Pilgrims trek up to the sacred spot on foot or on ponies to take a holy dip in the ice-cold water.