Spiritual Travel

Haridwar

The Haridwar Ganga Aarti is held at Hari-ki-Paurighat. The name of this famous ghat literally means "Feet of the Lord". A footprint on a stone wall there is said to belong to Lord Vishnu. In terms of spiritual importance, Hari-ki-Pauri is considered to be equivalent to DashashwamedhGhat where the aarti takes place in Varanasi. Legend has it that some nectar (amrit) landed there after falling from a pot carried by the celestial bird Garuda.

The Ganga Aarti at Haridwar is possibly the most interactive of the three Ganga Aartis in India and will have the deepest appeal to pilgrims, particularly those with an Indian background. It has a location of spiritual significance the same as the Varanasi Ganga Aarti but isn't as flamboyant and staged. Yet, it's quite the spiritual circus: people, pandits, babas, idols of various gods, loud speakers, clanging bells, singing, incense, flowers, and flames! All this combines to create a very sensory experience. Some people say that it's too commercial, crowded, and noisy. However, I found it to be one of the most-awe inspiring things I've ever witnessed in India.