Rishikesh is a city set in the beautiful mountainous state of Uttarakhand and a location so serene that it can melt the heart of the gods. Often known as the Gateway to the Garhwal mountains, the city has a rich cultural past that blends with the modern city that it has become. There are a plethora of things that people in Rishikesh can do, varying from Bungee jumping to eating at some eclectic cafes. Here are our top picks for things to do in Rishikesh
Best things To Do in Rishikesh for Adventure Lovers
1. Go River Rafting
The proximity of Rishikesh to the Himalayan range with the Ganga river flowing through it makes it an ideal place to go rafting. The sport has been gaining in popularity lately.
The activity caters to every adventure junkie’s need to feel the adrenaline rush. The chilly waters of Ganga add a different layer of excitement to the entire activity.
Cost of Rafting: Rs. 3900 to Rs. 5000
2. Bungee Jumping
Bungee Jumping is an activity where you jump off an edge of a railing with a suspended harness. The harness initiates a recoil until the harness is completely stretched out.
Rishikesh has India’s highest bungee jump, measuring a staggering 84 meters. The bungee jump requires a basic level of fitness and pregnant women and people with blood pressure are generally advised to avoid in engaging from the jump.
Cost of Bungee Jump: Rs. 4000 to Rs. 7000
3. Get on a Giant Swing
The giant swing is an activity quite similar to the bungee jump and is often conducted from the same platform. The main difference between a bungee jump and the swing is that instead of the free fall in a bungee jump, the ropes and harness are connected to a fixed point and once you jump, the motion of the swing resembles that of a pendulum.
The activity can be taken up by people with general fitness. The activity can be availed of throughout the year.
Cost of Swinging: Rs. 3500 to Rs. 7000
4. Do the Flying Fox
The Flying Fox is an activity very similar to zip lining. The activity involves sliding from two attached points along a horizontal drop. The entire process replicates the moments of a flying fox and hence the name. In Rishikesh, the activity is conducted over the Ganges (and the rapids) by a variety of tour operators, such as Zipline Tour Adventures.
Cost of Flying Fox: Rs. 2500
5. Go Camping on the banks of the Ganga
Rishikesh is a city blessed with a rich cultural history, a beautiful mountain range and the serene Ganga river that flows through it. The city perfectly blends modern and a bygone era into one place.
There are a lot of undiscovered things that you can do by the city and one of them is caping by the Ganga river. Aspen Adventure Camp and Outbound Adventure Camp are two well known operators in the area.
Cost of Camping: Rs. 1000 to Rs. 6000
6. Go Trekking
Rishikesh is set in a picturesque valley and is surrounded by beautiful flora and fauna. This makes Rishikesh the perfect place to go trekking. You can take a trek to the base of the Himalayas or take a trek to the near places like Gangotri, Kedarnath or Badrinath that are just as beautiful as Rishikesh.
You can be mystified in the lap of nature and can truly get lost in its beauty. Summer is the best time to go trekking here as winters can get really chilly here.
Cost of Trekking: Rs. 3000 to Rs. 10,000 depending on the location of the trek
7. Jump off a Cliff
As the name suggests, this activity involves jumping from a cliff that stands at an altitude of 20 to 50 feet into the waters of the Ganga. This is an adrenaline rush and definitely not for the faint-hearted. You can engage in this sport to prove the daredevil in you to your friends.
Rishikesh allows for people to jump into the Ganga river under strict supervision. So if you decide to visit the Ganga do jump off the cliff and make it an experience to remember.
Cost of cliff jumping: Rs. 1750 to Rs. 4000
Top Things to do in Rishikesh for Tourists
8. Witness the Ganga Aarti at Triveni Ghat
The Ganga river has been considered as one of the holiest rivers in India. The aarthi that is performed at the Triveni Ghat is a testament to the devotion of the people of Rishikesh towards the river.
Every evening the area lights up with the aarti and it is truly a majestic sight to witness. After sunset, several diyas (lamps) are set afloat in leaf boats in the holy river. One can truly feel the spirituality when witnessing the Ganga Aarti at Rishikesh.
Best time to visit: All around the year
9. Visit The Beatles Ashram
The Beatles have a fair history with Rishikesh than what most people might think. Rishikesh had a certain kind of appeal that made the Beatles undertake several trips to this beautiful city. Many of their songs had been formulated and created here.
The Ashram, although now abandoned, has a lot of memoirs and paintings that shed light on the Beatles’ time in India and their interaction with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. For any Beatles fan, this place is a must visit.
Best time to visit: All around the year
10. Get an Ayurvedic Massage
Exploring the entirety of Rishikesh can be taxing as well as tiring for the people there. To restore your energy and to feel relaxed, you can engage in an ayurvedic massage that will also end up rejuvenating your soul.
There are some well-known massage centers in the heart of the city that will leave you feeling peaceful. An Ayurvedic massage also uses herbal and scented oils that will relieve all the tension and stress out of your mind and body.
Cost of an ayurvedic massage: Rs. 600 to Rs. 1000
11. Try your hand at Yoga
Yoga has been part of the culture in Rishikesh for centuries. There are many practitioners who are willing to teach you this exercise and activity in Rishikesh. Engaging in yoga not only proves to be a good physical activity but also helps calm the mind and encourages focused clarity.
Rishikesh happens to be the yoga capital of the world and people from all around the world flock here to practice yoga. Anand Prakash and Rishikesh Yogpeeth are famous centres.
Cost of Yoga: Free to Rs. 2000 per session
12. Visit Lakshman Jhula
According to lore, it is said that Laxman of the Ramayana epic made a bridge out of rope to cross the Ganga river, along with Lord Ram and Lady Sita. The Lakshman Jhula is said to be constructed in the exact same spot.
You can enjoy a walk on the bridge in the evenings and can feel the cold air. During the day the bridge is bumbling with activity as the bridge connects the two important sides of Rishikesh.
Best time to visit: All around the year
13. Cafe Hop around Rishikesh
Besides being a city with a rich cultural history, Rishikesh is also home to some of the best cafes. These cafes serve some really delicious food, far exceeding your expectations. One of these cafes, Cafe Delmar, which is also known as Beatles Cafe, apparently hosted the Fab Four. While Delmar is usually overcrowded, you can visit Cafe Karma and Cafe De Goa for some lip-smacking grub.
Where: Mostly around Laxman Jhula
14. Visit Rajaji National Park
The Rajaji National Park is located in Uttarakhand is one the most famous national parks in India. The park is known for having the highest number of housed elephants and for the famous elephant safari it conducts in the dark premises.
The closest entry point to the park from Rishikesh is known as the Chilla range. Besides elephants, the park is also home to the Sambar deer, the barking deer and different variety of birds.
Best time to visit: Summer months
15. Eat a Traditional Garhwali Meal
The Chotiwala restaurant is one of the oldest restaurant in Rishikesh, having begun in 1958. The restaurant is located on the banks of the Ganga river and serves some traditional Garhwali food.
The food here, besides being scrumptious, is also known for its nutritional value. The restaurant is often crowded. You can expect to wait half an hour to get a table here. Besides this, you can also see the famous Chotiwala mascot that sits at the entry of the restaurant and welcomes customers.
Cost of a meal: Rs. 500 to 700
So if you are looking for top things to do in Rishikesh, do try our mentioned picks and let us know of your experiences in the comments sections below.