Vaishno Devi Tour Guide : Places to visit and Where to Stay in Katra Vaishno Devi

Vaishno Devi is one of the most sacred pilgrimage destinations for the Hindus. There is a popular belief that you cannot go to Vaishno Devi until and unless Mata Vaishno Devi wants you to come. Previously, the journey to the sacred temple was quite painful and difficult. But now things have been made easier by helicopter services and other transport facilities. However, reaching the shrine is still an uphill task but they say that Mata Vaishno Devi provides you all the strength to overcome the obstacles and reach her shrine. On reaching there, you are sure to get Mata’s blessings and your wishes also seem to be fulfilled. Some people also make a visit to the shrine to offer their prayers and gratitude to Mata for some wish that Mata has fulfilled for them.

How to reach Vaishno Devi

For reaching Vaishno Devi, you have to begin your journey from Jammu. From Jammu one needs to reach Katra, which is the base camp for the journey to Mata’s shrine. The distance between Jammu and Katra is about 50 kilometers and can be covered easily in buses, tourist vans and private taxis. Katra is also well connected with other cities of North India via interstate bus services. From Katra, there is a 13 kilometer stretch that has to be covered to reach Vaishno Devi’s shrine. This journey is a very steep one and almost liking trekking. Very interestingly, this entire 13 kilometer track has to be covered on foot but nowadays ponies, small vehicles and helicopter services are also available to make the journey easier.

Vaishno Devi

Halt and places to stay at Katra

Katra is the most important destination in the trip to Vaishno Devi shrine. After reaching Katra, you can put up at a hotel for the night and start the journey for Vaishno Devi early morning. There are many hotels and small inns where you can put up for the night comfortably. There are also innumerable places to eat.

Travelling the way up to Vaishno Devi shrine

Once the actual journey begins after Katra, there are beautiful places of visit on the way. These places also act as small halts for pilgrims.

    • The first halt is that of Banganga. Located at a distance of just one kilometer from Katra, you can have a holy bath at Banganga and have prasad.
    • The second halt is at a place named Charanpadhuka. Footprints of Mata have been found here. This is about 2.5 kilometers from Banganga.
    • Adkuwari is the third halt at a distance of almost 3 kms from Charanpadhuka. Reaching this place means half of the way to Mata’s shrine is almost complete. Many people prefer to take rest here for the night and continue journey the next day. The Adkuwari Temple and Gerbhjoon are sacred caves as it is said that Mata took shelter in these caves for about 9 months in fear of Lord Bhairon Nath.
    • The journey from Adkuwari to Sanjichat is really steep and is almost 4 kilometers. Again from Sanjichat, you have to travel almost 2.5 kilometers downhill to reach Mata Vaishno Devi’s shrine, the Bhavan. You can offer prayers at Mata’s shrine and stay there for some while before making journey to the Bhairon Nath temple.