Where Alaknanda Meets Pindar
A small city in Uttarakhand, Karnaprayag is famous for being home to the pious confluence of the rivers Alaknanda and Pindar. It is after this confluence, the small stream like river Alaknanda becomes the mighty and devout Alaknanda. Being such a perfect combination of beauty and devotion makes it hard to miss when in Uttarakhand. Located in the Chamoli district, it is one of its own kind. It is not very often that we come across such holy confluences, in India, we have five-
These five are the confluence of river Alaknanda with different rivers, namely- Bhagirathi, Mandakini, Pindar, Nandakini, and Dhauliganga respectively.
We also have Prayag near Allahabad, or Prayagraj as it is being called recently, where we witness the biggest river confluence of India, the meeting of Ganga, Yamuna, and Saraswati underneath.
What is truly remarkable about Karnaprayag is how pristine it is. It is its pristineness which attracts tourists. Being not a very famous tourist destination, it is visited mostly by people who are heading toward Badrinath. Pilgrims generally tend to take a stop here and enjoy all the beautiful places it has to offer. Some choose to stay overnight and relax in this very charming place. Overall, it emerges out as a little spot which garnering attention day- by- day.
The Historical Importance of Karnaprayag
The name Karnaprayag instantly rings bells in mind and reminds of the great Mahabharat warrior Karn. It indeed is named after Karn. There are multiple theories about the place. Some suggest that it is this very place where Karn had worshipped Sun God. It is also believed he worshipped Goddess Uma here for the well-being of his wife and family.
Some religious beliefs say that Karnaprayag is named so because this is where Lord Krishna had cremated Karn. Even after Arjun had used the Anjalika Astra on weaponless Karn, he did not die but was seriously injured. Later Lord Krishna got to know this was because Karn was being protected by Dharm-Devta. This made it impossible to kill Karn, even by the mightiest Lord Shiv. Thus, Krishna took the disguise of Brahmin and asked for Karn's goodwill as charity. Being the extremely benevolent giver he was, he readily and happily gave away all his charitable deeds and goodwill yet again in a charity. Thus this made Dharm-Devta not protect him anymore. Before getting killed Karn made a wish to be created in a virgin land. Thus Lord Krishna cremated him here, which was further known as Karnaprayag.
Top things do in karnaprayag
How to reach
The best way to reach is through roadways as the nearest railway station and airport too is around 150-200 kms away.
How to Reach by Flight
The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, 213 kms away. From there a bus can be taken which quite regularly heads to Badrinath and then disembark in Karnaprayag.
Else, a cab can be rented for the entire journey from Dehradun itself.
How to Reach by Train
The nearest railway station is in Rishikesh, 147 kms away which is quite small, and not a stop for major trains. So the major nearest railway station is in Haridwar, around 200 kms away. From there, a bus/taxi can be taken.
How to Reach by Bus
A lot of buses are available to reach Karnaprayag from Dehradun, Haridwar, Rishikesh and Mussoorie. Maximum buses head towards Badrinath, so tourists can disembark at Karnaprayag.
How to Reach by Road
The best way to reach Karnaprayag is by roadways. It lies on NH58 that connects Delhi with Badrinath and Mana Pass in Uttarakhand near Indo-Tibet border, making it quite accessible. A private cab or taxi can be rented from any major city in Uttarakhand or Delhi.
How to travel within
Since all the tourist's spots lie in proximity to each other, people tend to travel by foot only. Being on hilly terrain and not a very big city, Karnaprayag does not have local transportation options.
Else, who choose to come by their own vehicle or rented vehicle can travel by that.
Fooding and Lodging
Karnaprayag is the busiest town and a commercial hub in the Chamoli district, facilities like ATMs and petrol pumps are easily available, thus preferred by the Char-Dham pilgrims for a night halt.
Karnaprayag does not have luxurious hotels but has good basic hotels and guesthouses with limited amenities.
People can indulge here in shopping of handicrafts, idols of Gods and Goddesses and woollen items.
For fooding, it has multiple dhabas and small restaurants, offering limited cuisines like north India, Chinese and sometimes South Indian.
- Start off by visiting the temples nearby like- Aadi Baadri temple, Uma Devi temple, Karna Temple, Chandika Devi temple.
- Visit the holy confluence of the two rivers.
- Visit the beautiful Nauti Village.
- Enjoy the local delicacies.