Yoga & Trekking Tour Gangotri & Gomukh Trek

Region: Uttarakhand, India
Start/End: Rishikesh
Duration: 8 nights/9 days
Altitude: 12,760 ft/3890 m

Grade : Moderate to Challenging
Approx Trekking Km : 38 Kms.
Trail Type : Round trail. The trek starts and ends at Mahatma Yoga Ashram
DATES: Spring Spiritual Yoga Tour: 28th April 2019 – 6th May 2019
Winter Spiritual Yoga Tour: 22nd September 2019 – 30th September 2019
Price: $ 850 USD

ABOUT THE TOUR

India offers its visitors the original teachings of yoga, some of the best treks of the world and a fascinating and rich culture. This Spiritual Yoga & Trekking Tour in India takes you to The Source of the Holy River Ganges! We will trek to Gomukh and Gangotri glacier (12760 ft/3890 m) past a sacred Himalayan town Gangotri. The trek to the Source of the Ganges is one of the most popular treks in Indian Himalayas! The rare and close sights of Mt Shivling (21,467/6543 m), bare and totally wild landscapes, solitude and deep spirituality have fascinated everyone on the trek.
Mahatma Yoga’s Spiritual Yoga & Trekking Tour to The Source of the Ganges is for you who have a passion for yoga and mountains and want to experience the best that India has to offer – in just one week you will learn yoga in it’s original surroundings, trek in an amazing region of the Himalayas and witness the unique culture of the spiritual Himalayan people. The Tour starts and ends in Rishikesh and is part of Mahatma Yoga’s much-loved Spiritual Yoga Retreat - The Source (https://mahatmayoga.org/spiritual-yoga-retreats-india.html).
Our Spiritual Yoga & Trekking Tours are all inclusive. From the moment you arrive to Rishikesh in Mother India we at Mahatma Yoga will take care of everything for you. The transportation, accommodation, drinking water, food, trekking permits, spiritual guide and yoga/meditation lessons are all organised for you!

THE SOURCE OF THE GANGES

Our 8 days Spiritual Yoga & Trekking Tour in Himalayas takes you to the Gomukh and Gangotri glacier – the very source of the river Ganges! We will start the pilgrimage from Gangotri, a sacred mountain town close to the Indo-Tibetan border, dedicated to the Goddess Ganga.
We chose The Source of the Ganges as a spiritual destination of our Yoga & Trekking Retreat in India because in Hinduism the auspicious and healing Goddess Ganga is the symbol of Life. Among the many symbols of India endowed with spirituality, water is the most sacred, at once the purifier and the origin of the mystery. It is the real and imagined Source of Life.
According to mythology it was Lord Shiva who brought Mother Ganga down from the heaven with his long locks of hair and spread her powers into seven streams that flowed to the far corners of the Earth. Because of this she released the troubled souls of the Kings who were seeking her purity. Our Spiritual Yoga and Trekking Tour will take you on a journey to the mountains that give birth to the holy river.
We practice walking meditation and perform puja – the ceremony of worship – at the very Source of the Ganges. The magical mountains where the pristine nature meets ancient pilgrims and yogis meditative energies will give us a special opportunity for spiritual growth and self-realization.

QUALITY YOGA IN THE PURE NATURE OF THE HIMALAYAS

On the trek you are learning yoga by the program of a yoga retreat: you will have daily yoga lessons, pranayama practice (yogic breathing exercises) and evening calming meditations. Your Indian yoga and meditation teacher on the Tour is Mahatma Yoga Ashram’s Yoga Master Yogi Ji.

THE SPIRITUAL LANDSCAPES OF HIMALAYAS

You wake up to a birdsong and fresh mountain air, finding yourself in one of the most beautiful and magical areas in the world - in the Mighty Himalayas. After sipping your morning hot cup of chai and admiring the pristine nature around you, you get your energies moving and spirit awake with a warming yoga practice - overlooking the white mountaintops, witnessing eagles gliding through the sky and feeling the mystical mountain spirits around you. You are in North Indian Himalayas, in the land of yogis, and one of the most special spiritual experiences in the world is waiting for you– the trek to the Gaumukh, to the actual source of the Ganges, the holiest river in Hinduism. This amazing yoga and trekking retreat will bring you closer to the Mother Nature and to your own mystical being.

MAHATMA YOGA ASHRAM IN RISHIKESH

We start and finish the Yoga and Trekking Tour in Rishikesh, India. You spend the first and last night of the Tour at Mahatma Yoga Ashram on the banks of the holy river Ganges. You will have a bright private room with attached bathroom, free WIFI and join a group dinner with your fellow trekkers from all around the world! After returning from the mountains, the day in our Rishikesh Yoga School’s peaceful surroundings gives you an appreciated time to reflect on everything you have achieved in the last week and the memories you have made with Ganga and with your new friends! On the last morning along with a delicious breakfast we will say farewell to the group.

  Highlights

All inclusive Spiritual Yoga and Trekking Tour package
Trekking in Himalayas with expert trek leader/spiritual guide
Gomukh & Gangotri glacier - The Source of The Holy River Ganges
Porter & horses with us on the trek
Yoga retreat program: Yoga, pranayama & meditation
Nice & clean accommodation in mountain guesthouses
Tasty vegetarian meals 3 times daily
Visit of an Indian mountain village – cultural exchange
Group of travellers from all over the world, max group of 15 persons
Private transport Rishikesh – Gangotri – Rishikesh
The Tour starts from Mahatma Yoga in Rishikesh, India

WHAT IS INCLUDED?

Transportation
Our own private transport throughout the Tour (starting from Rishikesh).

Accomodataion
Two nights (first & last nights of the Tour) at Mahatma Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh with private room, attached bathroom and free WIFI

Nice & clean accommodation in village guesthouses.

Spiritual & Cultural experience
Visit of local Indian mountain villages
The Source of The Ganges
Puja at Ganga Temple in Gangotri
Visit of other historical spiritual sites (temples, caves, mythological places).

Food
3 delicious vegetarian meals daily

Yoga teachings
Morning Yoga lessons in the nature
Pranayama practice
Evening Meditations
Living discussions of Yoga Philosophy

Mountain trekking experience
Trek to the Gangotri glacier and Gomukh
Trekking up to the altitude 12760 ft/3890 meters
Expert trek leader/spiritual guide
Quality trekking equipment
All government taxes and permit fees
Porter & horses on the trek

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED?

Flights
Pick-up service from Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL) to Rishikesh – 70 USD extra
Pick-up service from Dehradun Jolly Grant Airport (DED) to Rishikesh – 15 USD extra

NOTES

For the trek you should have good health, normal physical condition and some previous hiking/trekking experience
Yoga for beginners, intermediate and advanced levels
Trekkers must carry with them a photocopy of visa and passport throughout the tour
Last ATM in Rishikesh
Mobile connectivity: Only BNSL network in Gangotri. No mobile connectivity on the trek

Name Dates Status Price
➢ Spring Spiritual Yoga Tour 28th April 2019 – 06th May 2019 Booking Open USD $ 850
➢ Winter Spiritual Yoga Tour 22nd September 2019 – 30th September 2019 Booking Open USD $ 850

Reservation:To reserve your seat, you need to pay 20% of the fee as non-refundable advance deposit. Remaining fee is also non-refundable and it needs to be paid upon arrival before starting of the trek.

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SHORT ITINERARY

DAY 1: Arrival at Mahatma Yoga in Rishikesh, India. Group dinner & information exchange.

DAY 2: Rishikesh - Gangnani Hot Springs - Dharali: 249 KM Drive :: 8792 feet / 2680 m

DAY 3: Dharali - Trek to the Seven Lakes :: Visit to the Tibetan village :: Cultural exchange :: 8792 ft / 2680 m

DAY 4: Dharali to Gangotri: 19 KM Drive :: Evening Ganga Aarti ceremony :: 10,200 ft / 3100 m

DAY 5: Gangotri to Bhojwassa: Trekking 14 KM :: 12, 385 ft / 3775 m

DAY 6: Bhojwassa-Gomukh-Gangotri Trekking 24 KM :: The Source of The Ganges :: Highest altitude 12760 ft/3890 m

DAY 7: Gangotri to Uttarkashi or Lamgaon (Drive) Gangotri - Uttarkashi 100 KM Drive :: Uttarkashi – Lambgaon 54 KM Drive

DAY 8: Uttarkashi / Lambgaon to Rishikesh (Drive). Night stay at Mahatma Yoga Ashram

DAY 9: Breakfast and farewell to the group

THE GANGOTRI GLACIER & GOMUKH TOUR DAY-BY-DAY

Day 1: Arrival at Mahatma Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh, India
On the first day of the Tour you arrive and settle in at Mahatma Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh, India. We gather 8 PM for group dinner and exchange information about the Tour. The group dinner at the Ashram is a nice opportunity to meet everyone from your group before the trek. We chat, eat tasty vegetarian food and get all the necessary information about the upcoming Yoga and Trekking Tour. Night stay at the Ashram in private room with attached bathroom and free WIFI.

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Day 2: Rishikesh - Gangnani Hot Springs - Dharali: 249 KM (Drive)
On our first day of the Tour, we will depart Mahatma Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh and begin venturing up to Gangnani Hot Springs in our own private transport. Make sure you have your warm clothes packed! It's going to be quite a drive. We'll be covering 216 km and working our way up to 7860 ft / 2620 m at Gangnani. Come prepared with some wide-open eyes to admire our colourful way of life out of your window. We'll pass through many delightful villages and towns, with Mother Ganges below us. We will take regular breaks for some soothing, hot cups of delicious chai and visit the holy sites like little temples along the way to prepare our mind and soul for the Ultimate Spiritual experience ahead.
We will soon reach our magical destination for the day in the afternoon: Gangnani Hot Springs to energize your soul. Dip your toes, or your whole self into these steaming hot purifying waters to relax your feet before your yogic hike later this week! With separate facilities for men and women, let yourself slowly sink in and relax. After Gangani holy dip at hot spring water we will be ascending even higher into the Himalayas but with a much shorter drive to Dharali just 33 kilometres. At 8792 ft / 2680 m, you will find yourself in the quaint, relaxing, picturesque tiny hamlet of Dharali. Night stay at Dharali.

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Day 3: Dharali - Trek to the Seven Lakes :: Visit to the Tibetan village :: Cultural exchange
Our second day stay will be at Dharali which is a beautiful, tiny village, at an altitude of 2680 metres in the Gangotri. This beautiful Himalayan region is enriched with the blessings of innumerable Rishis and Sages who have spent countless hours in meditation, prayers and penance before attainment of Samadhi. It is believed that sage Bhagirath meditated here to bring Mother Ganges down from heaven. After the breakfast we will trek to mythological Saat Taals also known as Seven Lakes on top of the mountains. Here 7 glistening stunning lakes await you. It is here that we will do our yoga practice, enjoying the beauty around us. After this blissful experience of yoga and meditation we will come back for lunch break. A short break of relaxation and then visit to local neighbouring Tibetan village at the bank of Bhagirathi river, you will feel like you are moving back in time as we venture into the local neighbours. Peace and tranquillity greet you amongst traditional wooden homes, through gentle swirls of smoke as teapots boil and wood fires glow. The villagers are incredibly kind and welcoming; happy to share their culture with you. Night stay at Dharali.

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Day 4: Dharali to Gangotri: 19 KM Drive
You wake up in the blissful village of Dharali. After morning yoga asana session and pranayama practice, it’s time for breakfast before we will make our way 19km further to Gangotri; the fascinating pilgrimage village which marks the start of our yogic trek to the Gomukh. With Mother Ganges running directly through the centre of this Himalayan hub, Gangotri consists of one long street. It's lined with delicious filling treats, and plenty of religious trinkets and keepsakes. You'll find Lord Shiva statues, framed photos of Mother Ganga and bundles of bottles, which you can fill up to keep your own part of Mother Ganga with you. We will have ample time to explore this magical town, visit the ashrams, meditate along the river, followed by lunch and trek to Pandav Gupha about 6 to 7 km both ways. In the evening we will attend Ganga Aarti Ceremony at Ganga temple. Ganga Aarti is your chance to receive purification and a blessing from Mother Ganges. We will sing songs in praise of Mother Ganga, acquiring her power through the fires and lamps we light. It is a beautiful moment full of transformative energy. This special ceremony you will also experience during your stay at Mahatma Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh.

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Day 5: Gangotri to Bhojwassa: Trekking 14 KM (From 3048 meters to 3775 meters sea level)
This is it! Wake up ready and willing. We are going to start our pilgrimage today, hiking 14 kilometres within 6 hours towards the Gangotri glacier in Gomukh! Starting from 10,000 ft / 3048 m, we will be ascending to a height of 12,385 ft / 3775 m.
Leaving Gangotri behind, we will be entering another world. Past grazing donkeys and ashrams in the wilderness, we will reach the checkpoint of Gangotri National Park. From here the views are instantly wondrous. With the sun's rays bursting through the peaks, we will wind along the dusty path, underneath the mighty Himalayan Mountains towering above. It's a panoramic paradise to practice walking meditation!
We will traverse rickety wooden bridges, past inquisitive fluffy 'blue' goats, walking in the imaginable footsteps of ancient times pilgrims. Just when your energy is starting to fade, there will likely be a Sadhu walking along beside you, in his humble sandals and orange robe, encouraging you to carry on!
On way we will stop by at Chirbasa (3600m) for lunch and will continue to trek until we arrive in Bhojwassa. Now we are just 4 km away from The Source! But first, we must rest, eat, rejuvenate and get a good night's sleep in this final humble resting spot before we reach our destination.

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DAY 6: Bhojwassa-Gomukh-Gangotri. Trekking 24 Km two ways (From 3775 meters to 3890 meters sea level)
Good morning! You'll be waking up to the finest views of the Bhagirathi peaks, with a cup of hot chai in your hand and some hearty Indian breakfast in your tummy. It is time for us to finally meet the Source of the Ganges. Are you excited? We really are! This is the last stretch of our journey.
With all your might, traverse this rocky terrain and scale the boulders before you. The hike is not easy but the reward awaiting you is everything you hoped for. At a height of 12,760 ft / 3890 m, we have made it! Congratulations! This is an ultimate spiritual experience to witness the first appearance of the sacred Goddess Ma Ganga in daylight!
After the meditation we will walk back to Gangotri which will be easier trek as it will be descending compare to first half to spend one more night. This is time to reflect on everything you have achieved in the last 5 days and to treasure the memories you have made today with Mother Ganga.

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DAY 7: Gangotri to Uttarkashi or Lamgaon (Drive) Gangotri - Uttarkashi 100 Km:: Uttarkashi – Lambgaon 54 KM
We will drive back from Gangotri to either Uttarkashi, which is 100 km drive from Gangotri or move forward another 54 km to Lamgaon village. Uttarkashi, which is also known as Kashi of the north means abode of Lord Shiva in Northern India. Uttarkashi city is situated on the banks of Ganges (Bhagirathi), lies next to a hill Varunavat Parvat and between the confluence of two holy rivers - Varuna and Asi river. Similarly to city of Kashi i.e. Varanasi, this city has a famous Manikarnika Ghat and has a temple dedicated to Shiva (Kashi Vishwanath Temple) in the centre of the city. After a day relaxation we will visit to this ancient temple in evening followed by dinner and rest at hotel/guesthouse. In case we opt for moving ahead to Lambgaon village, we will acknowledge the cultural exchange with the local villagers and a beautiful opportunity to see the real Indian village life and visit Sem Mukhem Temple nearby! Night stay at this beautiful village.

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Day 8: Uttarkashi / Lambgaon to Rishikesh (Drive)
On our final day, we will drive back to Rishikesh in private transportation; on way will have lunch and snacks. We will reach Mahatma Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh by afternoon: accomplished, refreshed and renewed! One can opt to check out for their destination on same day or stay at our ashram accommodation and can have early morning check out next day.

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THINGS TO BRING WITH YOU

Backpack with rain cover
Warm waterproof jacket
Warm cap
Comfortable trekking shoes
Thermal long underwear
Extra pair of socks
Sleeping bag (possible to rent in Rishikesh)
Personal medication
Sunglasses
Sunscreen SPF 30-50+
Torch or headlamp
Camera power bank/portable charger

The best trekking clothing is warm, light, quick dry and breathable.
Make sure you have good trekking shoes (brake in your new shoes before the trek!).
As nights can get cold in the mountains, thermal long underwear and woollen socks are perfect for sleeping.
We provide water, snacks and first aid medication during the hike.
We provide trekking equipment like trekking poles and sleeping bag (if you don’t have your own).

GANGOTRI WEATHER BY MONTH