Kedarnath Dham

Kedarnath Dham, located in the Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand, is one of the most paramount locations for worshipers of Shiva. The air appears to be reverberating with the name of Lord Shiva amid the mighty snow-clad peaks, enchanting meadows and forests of the lower mountain range of Himalayas. Situated in a breathtaking location, near the source of Mandakini River and at the height of 3,584 meters, Kedarnath Dham celebrates the greatness of Lord Shiva. Kedarnath temple is one of the 12 Jyotir Lingams and is also the most important temple among the Panch Kedars (group of 5 Shiva temples in Garhwal Himalayas). It is also one of the significant temples of the sacred Chota Char Dham Yatra in Uttarakhand, raising the glory of the place to further heights.


History of Kedarnath Temple

Kedarnath Temple's history is a testament to the power of devotion and faith.

According to Hindu mythology, the temple was built by the Pandavas, the legendary heroes of the Hindu epic Mahabharata. As per legends, after the great Kurukshetra war, the Pandavas wanted to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva to atone for their sins. However, Lord Shiva was not pleased with them and refused to meet them. The Pandavas then followed him to the Himalayas, where he took refuge in the form of a bull. The Pandavas then built temples at the sites to worship Lord Shiva in his bull form where they found the body parts of the bull. Kedarnath Temple was the site where the hump of the bull was seen. The current temple is believed to have been built by Adi Shankara in the 8th century CE. However, the temple has undergone several renovations over the centuries due to damage caused by natural disasters such as earthquakes and avalanches. The current structure is believed to have been built in the 19th century.


Kedarnath Temple Portals Opening & Closing Dates 2024

The opening and closing dates of the Kedarnath Temple are decided by the priests based on the auspicious dates in the Hindu calendar. The dates are generally announced on Mahashivratri, in February. Generally, the temple opens in the last week of April or the first week of May and closes in the second week of November.

This year, Kedarnath Dham will open on 10 May at 6:20 AM. The closing date is not announced yet; in general, it is announced on the day of Bhai Dooj.


Kedarnath Opening Date : 10 May 2024

Kedarnath Closing Date : November 2024


Best Time to Visit Kedarnath Dham for Yatra

The summer months of May to June are ideal for visiting Kedarnath as the weather is pleasant with temperatures ranging between 15°C and 30°C. September to November is another good time to visit Kedarnath as the weather is cool and pleasant with temperatures ranging between 5°C and 20°C. During this time, the crowds are lesser. However, it's important to note that Kedarnath receives heavy rainfall during the monsoon season from July to August, and the region is prone to landslides, making it unsafe for travel during this time.



Kedarnath is a high-altitude town located in the Indian state of Uttarakhand, which experiences a cool and pleasant summer climate from May to June. During this time, the temperature ranges from 10°C to 25°C (50°F to 77°F), making it an ideal destination to escape the scorching heat of the plains.



During the winter months, the climate in Kedarnath is extremely cold and the town receives heavy snowfall. The average temperature during the winter months (December to February) ranges from -2°C to 7°C. In January, the temperature can drop as low as -15°C.



Kedarnath experiences a monsoon season from July to September. During this time, the town receives heavy rainfall, making it difficult to travel and trek in the area. The region is prone to landslides and flash floods during this period, which can be dangerous for tourists.


Char Dham Yatra Tour Packages 2023

Kedarnath Temple
Kedarnath Temple Architecture

Kedarnath Temple features North-Indian style architecture. It is made of grey stones or slabs which are interlocked with each other using iron clamps. It is worth noting that there is no mortar used in the construction of the temple. The main attraction is the magnificent Kedarnath, which has an irregular shape and is accompanied by a pedestal measuring 3.6 metres (12 feet) in circumference and height. Additionally, visitors can also explore a small pillared hall situated in front of the temple. This hall features captivating images of Parvati, the consort of Lord Shiva, as well as the five Pandava princes. As you step inside the Kedarnath Temple, the first hall welcomes you with a magnificent display of statues. Here, you will find striking representations of the revered Lord Krishna, and Nandi, the trusty vehicle of Lord Shiva himself apart from the five heroic Pandava brothers. You will also come across the fierce Virabhadra, one of Shiva's loyal guards, standing tall and proud among the deities.

Kedarnath Temple
Kedarnath Temple Arti Timings

In Kedarnath Temple, daily pujas or rituals take place under the guidance of Rawal, who is the main priest of the temple. The darshan timings are also chosen by the main priest and other board members.

Maha Abhishek starts everyday at 4:00 AM and the Shyan aarti marks its end at 7:00 PM. For the general public, darshan is available from 6:00 AM onwards, with a break between 3:00 and 5:00 PM. Darshan at the Kedarnath temple ends at 7:00 PM.

Before 3:00 PM, guests can perform Abhishek with Ghee. After 5:00 PM, visitors are allowed for darshan from a distance.

Kedarnath Temple
Religious Significance of Shri Kedarnath Temple

Kedarnath Mandir is a famous Hindu temple located in the state of Uttarakhand in the Garhwal Himalayas. It is one of the most revered pilgrimage sites in India and holds significant religious importance for Hindus, which is the main reason why it is visited by lakhs of devotees every year. The temple is located at an altitude of 3,584 metres above sea level, in the midst of the majestic Himalayan ranges, and is surrounded by stunning natural beauty. The temple is also situated near the source of the Mandakini River, which is considered sacred by Hindus. As per legends, it is believed that the original temple was built by the Pandavas during the Mahabharata era and was later renovated by Adi Shankaracharya in the 8th century.

Special Puja Booking at Kedarnath Temple

In Kedarnath Dham, there are several types of puja devotees can book prior to their journey. Among all the types, the two main types are ‘Attending’ and ‘Non-Attending.’ In the first type, the presence of pilgrims is required if they book this type of puja, and in the latter, no presence is required.

Other than these two types, there are three more types of puja pilgrims can book, which are Atka Bhog, Long Term Puja and Special Occasion. The minimum price for puja starts at INR 100 and goes up to INR 26,000 according to the latest information on the official website of Puja Booking.


Popular Attractions to See in and around in Kedarnath

Kedarnath Temple

Top Places to Visit in Kedarnath Dham

Apart from the religious significance, Kedarnath also boasts of unmatched natural beauty and stunning landscapes, a combination of snow-capped ranges and alpine forests, making it a must-visit destination for tourists. There are several popular attractions to see in and around Kedarnath which you can easily visit after seeking blessings from Lord Shiva in the temple. Visitors generally explore other popular attractions in the area, including high altitude lakes such as Vasuki Tal and Gandhi Sarovar, holy shrines like Triyuginarayan Temple, and scenic towns like Gaurikund and Sonprayag. For adventure enthusiasts, there are also trekking and hiking opportunities to destinations like Tungnath Temple and Chandrashila Peak, providing a perfect blend of spirituality, natural beauty, and adventure.

Some of the top tourist attractions in Kedarnath are:
  • Kedarnath Temple

    • Kedarnath Temple

      The grand and impressive structure of Lord Shiva's shrine is made of grey stone. Steep climb stretching to 14 km from Gauri Kund brims with abundant beauty of nature. The paved and steep path gifts the pilgrims the fantastic views of snowy-peaks, alpine meadows and delightful forests of rhododendrons. A large stone statue of Nandi Bull stares at the shrine, guarding it, sitting right opposite it.

      There is one Garbha Griha which houses the primary idol (pyramid shaped rock) of Lord Shiva. The idols of Lord Krishna, Pandavas, Draupadi and Kunti find a space in the Mandapa section of the shrine. The temple has withstood natural calamities like avalanches, earthquakes and floods for over thousand years and still stands as strong and elegant as it must have originally been.

      With the onset of winters, the portals of the temple are closed on the 1st day of Karthik (Oct/Nov) amid elaborate rituals, and a moveable idol of Shiva is shifted to Omkareshwar temple in Ukhimath (Rudraprayag district). The Shiva idol is welcomed back and the temple is opened again after 6 months in the Vaisakh (Apr/May) period of Hindu calendar.

  • Adi Shankaracharya Samadhi

    • Shri Adi Shankaracharya Statue in Kedarnath

      Adi Shankaracharya, an eminent Indian philosopher, and theologian, established the Advaita Vedanta philosophy. He achieved spiritual enlightenment, known as samadhi, in the Kedarnath Temple situated in the Uttarakhand state of India. The samadhi shrine of Adi Shankaracharya is a revered pilgrimage site for Hindus and is located in close proximity to the Kedarnath Temple.

  • Shri Bhairavnath Temple

    • Bhairavnath Temple Kedarnath

      In the temple complex, to the south side, there is another ancient and important temple. It is dedicated to Bhairav Nath, who is believed to be the one who guards the temple compound when the shrine is closed in the winter season.

  • Vasuki Tal

    • Vasuki Tal Kedarnath

      Located at 3,135 meters, the crystal-clear blue-water lake of Vasuki is about 8 km from Kedarnath. It is quite a difficult trek and involves going across glaciers, but the walk among the untouched Himalayas is worth every bit of effort.

  • Gaurikund

    • Gaurikund

      It is the starting point of the trek towards the temple of Kedarnath. As per a legend, Goddess Parvati (also known as Gauri) meditated over here in order to marry Lord Shiva. It consists of natural thermal springs and offer refreshing bath to pilgrims before they embark for the holy darshan of Kedareshwar (the Lord of Kedar, Shiva).

      There is also an ancient Gauri Devi temple over here, honouring the goddess. Half Kilometre from Gauri Kund is the temple of Sirkata (headless) Ganesha. According to Skanda Purana, this was the place where Shiva beheaded Ganesha and then attached the head of an elephant on his headless body.

  • Chorabari Tal

    • Chorabari Tal

      Fed by Chorabari glacier, the serene and pristine Chorabari Lake can be reached after undertaking a trek of less than 4 km from the Kedarnath town. It is also known as Gandhi Sarovar as some of the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi were immersed in its waters. On the way, there is a waterfall which one needs to cross. It looks amusing but care should be taken while going across it.


How to Reach Kedarnath Dham?

Kedarnath Yatra by Road

Kedarnath Dham, the town is accessible by road, although the last stretch of the journey involves a trek of about 14 km from Gaurikund to Kedarnath. The nearest major city to Kedarnath is Haridwar, which is well-connected with all major cities in the country, such as Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai by road. Once you reach Haridwar, you have to take a bus or taxi to Gaurikund, which is the last motorable road near Kedarnath. From Gaurikund, you have to trek the last stretch to reach the temple.

Kedarnath Yatra by Train

Rishikesh Railway Station is the nearest railway station to Kedarnath from where you can take direct bus or taxi to Gaurikund, the last motorable road to Kedarnath. The distance is around 200 km and it will take around six to seven hours to reach. However, from Gaurikund, you have to trek for at least 14 km to reach the temple.

Kedarnath Yatra by Air

The nearest airport to Kedarnath is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, which is well-connected with major cities of India by air. There are direct cabs or taxis available between the airport and Gaurikund. However, you can also take a cab to Haridwar (38 km) from the airport and take a bus to Gaurikund. Whatever transport you choose, you have to trek the last part of 14 km from Gaurikund to Kedarnath Temple.


Best Hotels & Resorts to Stay in Kedarnath


Kedarnath Yatra Important Travel Guides

We highly recommend that you take the time to carefully read the valuable information provided below to help you in planning for your upcoming Kedarnath Dham Darshan Yatra of the Himalayas.

Kedarnath Dham Distance from Major Cities

Below, you can find information about the distance of Kedarnath Dham from major cities.

  • Kedarnath Distance from Delhi – 458 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Haridwar - 252 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Dehradun- 271 km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Rishikesh- 228 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Devprayag- 154 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Gangotri- 355 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Yamunotri- 355 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Srinagar Garhwal- 120 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Rudraprayag- 87 Km (Approx)
  • Kedarnath Distance from Badrinath- 290 (Approx)
Kedarnath Temple
Online/Offline Registration for Kedarnath Yatra

There are two types of registration available for Kedarnath Yatra, which is included in Chardham Yatra. It means, if a person registers for Chardham Yatra, he or she can visit Kedarnath without any extra formalities. As per Chardham Yatra or Kedarnath Yatra 2024 updates, devotees have to register their names and other details online, through Dehradun Smart City Portal. Offline registration is also available at various registration centres in different locations throughout the route of Chardham. As per the latest information, this year, 2024, the physical registration point for Kedarnath is Sonprayag. Otherwise, in Haridwar, the centre is Rahi Hotel and in Rishikesh, there are three centres, such as ISBT, RTO and Gurudwara.

Kedarnath Temple
Guidelines on How to Register Yourself Online
  • Go to the official website for registration.
  • You can register yourself as an individual or family.
  • Enter correct details such as Full Name, Mobile Number, Password and create a new account.
  • Sign in and check your name on the left of the dashboard.
  • Click on Create/Manage tour. A page named ‘Plan Your Trip Page’ will be opened.
  • Click on ‘Add New Tour.’
Kedarnath Temple
Helicopter Booking for Kedarnath Yatra

Helicopter services for Kedarnath Yatra as well as Chardham Yatra are available between Kedarnath and Guptkashi, Phata and Sirsi. Pilgrims have to book their seat through the official website of Heli services or they can contact their travel or tour agent for a hassle-free journey. There are different authorised heli companies available at different points. However, if the weather does not permit flying for the day devotees have booked their seats, the ticket price will be refunded. Helicopter service comes at minimum INR 2,360 for one way and round trip at INR 5,500.

Kedarnath Temple
Health Precautions & Tips for Kedarnath Yatra

Every year lakhs of devotees take Kedarnath yatra to seek blessings from Lord Shiva. The town where the temple is situated is now well-connected to other major cities in Uttarakhand by road up to Gaurikund, the last motorable point. And, the last stretch of 14 km from Gaurikund to the temple has to be covered by foot. The trek is not that difficult but keeping in mind the high altitude of the place, devotees have to take some health precautions to conduct their journey safely. To ensure a safe and comfortable journey to Kedarnath Dham, here are some essential health tips that every pilgrim should keep in mind.

Kedarnath Temple
Where to Stay in Kedarnath?

When it comes to finding a place to stay in Kedarnath, there are plenty of options available. You'll be pleased to know that some hotels are situated in close proximity to the temple itself. Whether you're looking for a hotel, ashram or homestay, you'll be able to find comfortable and clean rooms with basic amenities such as hot water, clean bathrooms and food. However, during peak season, hotel bookings can fill up quickly, so it's advisable to plan and book in advance. To help you get started, here are the names of some hotels in Kedarnath:

Kedarnath Temple
From Devastation to Restoration: The Journey of Kedarnath Temple after the 2013 Disaster

The Kedarnath temple disaster refers to the devastating flash floods and landslides that occurred in the state of Uttarakhand, India, in June 2013. During that month, the town received a huge amount of rainfall which became the main reason for melting Chorabari glacier. The melting of the glacier then caused the eruption of the Mandakini River, which is situated near Kedarnath Temple. The disaster caused widespread destruction and loss of life, and the Kedarnath temple, one of the most revered Hindu shrines, was severely damaged.

Kedarnath Temple
Travel Tips for Kedarnath Dham Yatra

Kedarnath Dham 2024 Tips for pilgrims planning to have the journey this year are:

  • Kedarnath Dham Yatra is only open from May to November, and the weather can be unpredictable, so plan your trip accordingly.
  • Make sure to book your accommodation and travel tickets in advance to avoid any last-minute hassles.
  • Kedarnath is located at a high altitude, so the weather can get chilly even during the summer months, so pack accordingly.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • How is the Mobile Internet Connectivity in Kedarnath Dham?

    • With BSNL and Airtel telecom services there is good Mobile Internet Connectivity in Kedarnath Temple.
  • When does snowfall occur in Kedarnath Dham?

    • From the first week of October, snowfall in Kedarnath Temple starts to occur.
  • How many minimum days are required to visit Kedarnath temple?

    • From Delhi, a minimum of 5 days is required to visit Kedarnath Temple.
  • How is the road condition from Haridwar to Kedarnath temple?

    • The road condition from Haridwar to Kedarnath Temple is good and one can reach without any hassle.
  • Does Kedarnath Temple remain open during the monsoon season?

    • Kedarnath Yatra begins from May to October/November. So, one can plan a trip to Kedarnath Dham during the monsoon season.
  • How to book accommodation for Kedarnath Dham?

    • Our Tour experts can assist in booking accommodation for Kedarnath Dham as per our client’s requirement.
  • Is any medical certificate required for Kedarnath Yatra?

    • Yes, the medical certificate is required for Kedarnath Yatra.
  • Apart from the main temple, what places would you suggest us to visit in and around Kedarnath, and how much time will it take?

    • The only place to visit in and around Kedarnath would be Kedartal. One needs to indulge in trekking which can be done on the very same day and then return. Other tourist places which lie in close proximity to Kedarnath and which one can visit are Trijuginarayan temple, Chopta Valley & Tungnath temple.
  • What is the history of Kedarnath Temple & who built it?

    • The history of Kedarnath Temple dates back to the 8th-12th century. Some versions claim it was built by the 8th-century philosopher Adi Shankaracharya while other leads on from the time of Mahabharata that inspired for the construction of the temple. After the Kurukshetra war, Pandava brothers sought to meet Lord Shiva to seek his forgiveness for killing their kin during the war. However, Lord Shiva did not want to forgive them. Later Lord Shiva appeared as Nandi-the bull in Guptkashi but the Pandavas found him and tried to catch hold of Nandi. Lord Shiva again escaped and this time, he reappeared in five different parts in different places, the face at Rudranath, the locks at Kalpeshwar stomach at Madhyamaheshwar, arms at Tungnath, navel and the hump at Kedarnath. Collectively, these five places came to be known as the five Kedars (Panch Kedar). Yet another tale associated with the Kedarnath temple construction is Nara-Narayan, a Hindu deity, went to worship Parvati and Shiva appeared. Nara-Narayan requested Lord Shiva to stay there for the welfare of humanity. This wish was granted by Lord Shiva and since then Kedarnath became his abode.
  • When did the massive flood occur in Kedarnath and how many casualties were reported?

    • The massive flood of Kedarnath Yatra occurred in the year 2013 and a total number of 5748 casualties were reported.
  • Why is Kedarnath so famous in the traveller communities?

    • The ancient shrine of Kedarnath is also considered as one of the 12 jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva making it so famous in traveller communities.
  • Which God/Goddess is worshipped in Kedarnath?

    • Pilgrims can attain the blessings of Lord Shiva in Kedarnath Shrine.
  • Can we book an online puja for Kedarnath?

    • No, you can’t book an online puja for Kedarnath.
  • What kind of clothes should we take along with us for the Kedarnath Yatra?

    • For Kedarnath Yatra, one should carry woollen clothes like down jackets, thermals, socks, caps, mufflers, gloves etc.
  • How much time does it take for darshan of Shri Kedarnath Ji?

    • The time taken for darshan of Shri Kedarnath Ji depends on the length of the queue.
  • Can I complete Kedarnath Darshan by Helicopter in one day?

    • Yes, you can complete Kedarnath Darshan by Helicopter in one day.
  • Can I offer flowers in Kedarnath Temple?

    • Yes, you can offer flowers in Kedarnath Temple.
  • Usually, how much time is required for Kedarnath Darshan Ji?

    • The time required for Kedarnath Darshan Ji depends on the length of the queue.
  • How much time does it take for the darshan of Kedarnath Ji for an elderly person?

    • The time taken for an elderly person for the darshan of Kedarnath Ji depends on the length of the queue.
  • How much time does it take to reach Kedarnath from Gaurikund?

    • From Gaurikund it takes around 7-8 hours to reach Kedarnath.
  • What is the distance between Gaurikund & Kedarnath Temple?

    • The distance from Gaurikund to Kedarnath temple is approx 16 km.
  • Is Doli or Horse-Riding Facility available in Kedarnath?

    • Yes, pilgrims can enjoy the facility of a Doli or Horse riding facility in Kedarnath.
  • Can I complete Kedarnath Darshan by Doli in one day & come back to Gaurikund on the same day by night?

    • Yes, if you start early in the morning at around 6:00-7:00 AM, you can complete Kedarnath Darshan by Doli in one day & come back to Gaurikund on the same day by night.
  • What are the charges for Doli/Horse riding at Kedarnath?

    • Charges for the Doli/Horse riding for Kedarnath might vary every year. Usually, it is around INR 2500 from Sonprayag to Kedarnath and INR 1500 from Kedarnath to Sonprayag.
  • Can I hire a personal priest/pundit at Kedarnath Dham to perform my special puja?

    • Yes, you can hire a personal priest/pundit at Kedarnath Dham for a special puja.
  • Are Doli/Horse riding services available in Kedarnath both during the day and night?

    • Yes, you can avail the doli/horse riding services available in Kedarnath both during the day and night.
  • Can I return to Gaurikund from Kedarnath at night?

    • No, you can’t return to Gaurikund from Kedarnath at night as the roads are pitted and bumpy which makes it difficult to travel during the night time.
  • Can we place flowers on Kedarnath Ji and touch him?

    • Yes, you can offer flowers on Kedarnath Ji and touch him.
  • What is the legend behind Kedarnath Temple?

    • Burdened with the guilt of killing their blood relatives, Pandavas sought Lord Shiva to absolve themselves of their sins. Shiva didn't want to release them from their wrongdoings so easily and disguised himself as a bull to roam in Garhwal Himalayas. On being discovered by Pandavas, Shiva dived into the ground. Bhim tried to catch him and could only get hold of the hump. Other body parts of Shiva (in the form of bull), came up at different places. Hump of the bull was found in Kedarnath, navel emerged at Madhya-Maheshwar, two forelegs appeared at Tunganath, face in Rudranath, and hair came up at Kalpeshwar. Together these five sacred places are called Panch Kedar. It is believed that originally Pandavas built the temple of Kedarnath; the present temple was established by Adi Shankaracharya who restored and revived the glory of the shrine.

More Detailed Information
About Shri Kedarnath Dham

Kedarnath Dham is one of the major pilgrimages and holiest shrines in India located in Uttarakhand. It is perched at a height of 3,584 metres in the Garhwal Himalayas and dedicated to Lord Shiva. Kedarnath is also one of the four shrines of the popular Char Dham Temples, which also include Gangotri, Yamunotri and Badrinath. Moreover, it is one of the twelve jyotirlingas in India.

The history of Kedarnath Dham dates back to the Mahabharata era. According to Hindu mythology, the Pandavas, after winning the Kurukshetra war, wanted to seek forgiveness from Lord Shiva for the sins committed during the war. Lord Shiva, being displeased with the Pandavas, took the form of a bull and went into hiding in Kedarnath. Later, when the Pandavas found him, he disappeared, leaving behind his hump at the site of the temple. And, that’s why in Kedarnath, the hump of the bull is worshipped.

The Kedarnath Temple is an architectural marvel that showcases the distinctive style of North India. Crafted from grey stones or slabs that are carefully interlocked using iron clamps, this temple stands tall without any mortar holding it together. What makes this temple even more remarkable is its centrepiece - the magnificent Kedarnath - which boasts of an irregular shape and is accompanied by a pedestal measuring 3.6 metres (12 feet) in circumference and height. And if that's not enough, visitors can also explore a small but stunning pillared hall located in front of the temple, adorned with captivating images of Parvati, Lord Shiva's consort, and the five Pandava princes. A visit to the Kedarnath Temple is an experience that is bound to leave you in awe of its incredible beauty and craftsmanship.

The temple is open only for six months, from April to November, due to extreme weather conditions, it remains closed in the winter. The idol is transferred to Ukhimath where Kedarnath Ji stays from December to April.

Kedarnath is accessible through Haridwar, Rishikesh and Dehradun as these three places are well-connected with other major cities of India and Kedarnath by road, train and air, respectively. However, whatever transport the devotees choose, the last motorable road is up to Gaurikund and they have to trek for at least 14 km to reach the temple. Though, pony rides and heli services are available.