8 Places in India Where The Line, Dividing Reality and Mythology, Blurs | HolidayIQ Blog

8 Places in India Where The Line, Dividing Reality and Mythology, Blurs

8 Places in India That Reside on the Line That Divides Reality and Mythology wikimedia.org

India is haven for spiritual seekers, we have a legacy of ancient scriptures like the Puranas, Vedas and Upanishads. Each of them delving into different realms of divinity, if you like losing yourself in the colorful world of mythology then these places will appeal to you.


8 Places in India Where The Line, Dividing Reality and Mythology, Blurs:

  1. Manikaran (Himachal Pradesh)
  2. Himachal Pradesh
  3. Ayodhya (Uttar Pradesh)
  4. Adam's Bridge, Dhanushkodi (Tamil Nadu)
  5. Kurukshetra (Haryana)
  6. Hampi (Karnataka)
  7. Valley of flowers (Uttarakhand)
  8. Pachmarhi (Madhya Pradesh)

Day 1. Manikaran

Manikaransource: mapsofindia.com

Mani translates into ‘earring’, the story narrates a tale of how Lord Shiva and Parvati chanced upon Parvati valley. Enamoured by the beauty of the valley they stayed back for 3,000 years. During their stay, Parvati lost her earring in a stream while taking a bath. According to Hindu mythology, when her attendant couldn’t find the earring, Lord Shiva flew into rage and opened his third eye which wrecked havoc and anarchy in the universe. Finally, Sheshnag (lord of serpents) appealed to Shiva to stop the destruction. To appease Shiva and placate his anger, Sheshnag hissed and gave rise to a massive surge of boiling water that spread through the valley. This surge pushed up precious stones similar to the ones in the earrings; keeping Parvati and Shiva happy, thus ending the destruction.

Amit shares: "This place is really worth visiting. The scenic beauty here rejuvenates both mind and body. The sound of the fast flowing Beas river can be heard throughout the city. The unique identity of this place is the hot water springs almost after every 50 metres distance. There are hot water springs at the gurdwara premises."

Day 2. Kheerganga

Kheergangasource: parinde.com/

Kheerganga or Kheer Ganga as the name suggest is Ganga River as white as Kheer (Indian delicacy made with rice and milk). The name Kheerganga is inspired by the milky waters of the river flowing in all its vastness into Parvati valley from different sides of the mountain. There are many fables that surround the origin of Kheerganga. One of them revolves around Shiva’s son Kartikeya who wanted to meditate here but the forest was alive with the sound of rivers and wildlife. This distracted Kartikeya countless times, so Shiva struck the ground with his Trishul in order to bring silence to the surrounding forest. The spring emerged at the point where the Trident pierced the Earth. The other myth whispered in the nearby mountains states that the spring was made by Parvati to feed her son Kartikeya, some Kheer (the white sulfur in the water gives a milky appearance to the water) after his millennial long samadhi (meditation).

Amit shares: “The trek to Kheerganga is very exciting and adventurous. It was a two days trek. After reaching the top the feeling was really amazing. There is a hot water spring at the top in which it is believed to flow Kheer.”


Day 3. Ayodhya

Ayodhyasource: wikimedia.org

According to Ramayana, Ayodhya is the birthplace of Lord Rama and at that time it was the capital of Kosala kingdom. The scriptures also indicate that Ayodhya was an ideal kingdom free from misery during the Ram-rajya. It’s also said to be the capital of Suryavansha (Solar dynasty) of which Rama was the most celebrated king.

Sanjay Mishra shares: “You can visit this city anytime. Everyone should visit this place once. It will give peace to your soul and mind. Though the city is small in comparison with Allahabad and Varanasi, but since it's the birthplace of Bhagwan Shri Ram, it can give immense pleasure after having his darshan.”

Fun fact: The name Ayodhya literally translates to 'A city that cannot be fought and won over in a war' or 'unconquerable citadel'.


Day 4. Ram Setu

Ram Setusource: wikimedia.org

When the Asura king Ravana kidnapped Sita and took her across the ocean to Sri-Lanka, Lord Rama built a bridge to cross, which came to be known as Ram Setu or Adam’s bridge. According to Ramayana, to appease the Ocean gods, Rama organised a Yajna (a Hindu ritualistic ceremony) and asked for their guidance. The ocean Gods found a solution, all the rocks that bore the name of ‘Rama’ wouldn't sink in the ocean. The entire monkey army and all being (even the birds) joined the Rama army to build the bridge. The bridge facilitated the movement of Rama and his monkey army across to Sri-Lanka. The cyclone of 1408 AD has destroyed most of the bridge but a few remnants.


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Day 5. Kurukshetra

Kurukshetrasource: wikimedia.org

The legendary past of Kurukshetra associated with the Vedas and Vedic culture holds a prominent place in the history of the Hindu religion and scriptures. Kurukshetra is a holy place famous all over India for its rich cultural heritage that dates back to 2800 BC. As per ancient records, Kurukshetra was the foremost centre of Vedic Civilisation and learning. King Kuru of the Bharata Dynasty was the ancestor of Kauravas and Pandavas and Kurukshetra was derived from his name.

Saikrupa Nalkur shares: “War of Kurukshetra- the major revolution that created and brought to an end an era evolved in this land which also formed a base for our Holy scriptures - Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gita. Must see in Kurukshetra- 'Brahma Sarovar' and the beautiful 'Krishna Museum' that has a complete presentation of breathtaking artefacts and pictures/ paintings of Mahabharata and a complete enactment of the Kurukshetra war thereby creating an ambience of a battlefield. The historic moment when Lord Krishna delivered his discourse to Arjuna is embodied in a beautiful place called Jyotisar.”


Day 6. Kishkinda

Kishkindasource: wikimedia.org

Kishkindha is the Vanara (monkey) kingdom of the Vanara King Sugriva, the younger brother of Bali, from the Ramayana. This was the kingdom he ruled with the assistance of his friend, Hanuman. The Anjaneya hill near Hampi is said to be the birthplace of Hanuman.

Arjun Kumar Narayanaswamy shares: “Hampi is a place in Karnataka that has remnants of the 15th century Vijayanagara empire. The place is full of old temples and architecture and has an old and villages touch to it. Another experience is watching the sunset over Hampi from the top of Matanga hills and the top of Hanuman temple and if you're lucky and there are no clouds, you'll see the most spectacular of sunsets ever.”


Day 7. Valley of flowers

Valley of flowerssource: wikimedia.org/

Legends associate this valley of Garhwal Himalayas with the area from where Hanuman of Ramayana collected 'Sanjeevani’ herbs to revive Lakshmana, the younger brother of Rama. Hanuman had to visit far-flung areas in his search for the ‘Sanjeevani’ life - saving herbs.

Tarun Srivastava shares: “It's awesome experience of the natural beauty of Nanda Devi biosphere and its surroundings. Trekking and mule riding are other adventure activities you can enjoy. Nearby can visit Shri Badrinath temple along with Mana village also. Peace of mind and beautiful flowers take you close to nature and Shri Hemkund Saheb is world's highest Gurudwara also on the way which is must visit but open only specific time of year.

Day 8. Pachmarhi

Pachmarhisource: odetohistory.blogspot.com

Pachmarhi, located in the heart of India is home to the infamous Pandava caves. The name Pachmarhi is believed to be derived from the Hindi words Panch (five) and Marhi (caves). According to a legend, these caves were built by five Pandava brothers of Mahabharata era during their 14 years of exile. The caves are situated on a hilltop and provide an excellent vantage point.

PK Mohanty shares: “It is learnt that Pandavas during their days of exile were living in five caves. The view from the top after you ascend multiple steps is exquisite. small caves carved on the hill are very attractive and offer a peek into the life of the ancient era.”

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The views above are collated from opinions expressed by travellers on www.holidayiq.com

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