Being one of the oldest living cities, throughout history Haridwar has remained the abode of the weary in body, mind and spirit. This tiny, hectic town with an intensely reverential feel is flocked by pilgrims hoping for a glimpse into the divine. It has a long-standing position as a source for Ayurvedic medicines and herbal remedies, the unique Gurukul school of traditional education and an extensive database of Hindu genealogy that is maintained by the priests. Haridwar also boasts of some magnificent temples with intricate mirrored walls and huge, brightly painted and lifelike sculptures.
Every evening the Ganga here comes alive with flickering flames as hundreds upon hundreds of leaf baskets containing flower petals, incense and a lit lamp are released onto its cold yet comforting waters. Temple bells tinkle periodically, the sounds of rhythmic instruments chants prayers and Sanskrit shlokas reverberate in the air creating a pulsating drone. A heady blend of intoxicating aroma arising from incense sticks and fresh flowers wafts freely adding to the rather magical ambiance.
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