Day 8: Haridwar

Srila Rockstar

I love this swami! He sits on a golden throne in front of a family restaurant ringing his bell and wearing more eyeliner than Alice Cooper. His name is Chotiwala and he makes the best curd in Haridwar, a holy city in northeast India where Lord Shiva lets down his locks in the form of a river—the mighty Ganga.

Haridwar reminds me of Varanasi (in an uplifting kind of way). Both cities are very old with teeming ghats running along the same river. Sadhus are plentiful, living modestly and worshipping their deities of choice. The aarti ceremonies are awe-inspiring, using fire and song to glorify the five elements. And Lord Shiva is everywhere…

…watching over us with deep affection.

Giant Shiva

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Another Quiet Trip to India

Om India

Namaste! This August, I’ll be making my second trip to India. My plan is to fly into Delhi, hire a driver and visit the following cities: Rishikesh, Haridwar, Mathura and Vrindavan. Since I’ll be staying for 2 weeks, I’ll have more time to relish the sights, sounds and kindred spirits. I’m in the process of devising an itinerary, so if anyone has any suggestions, feel free to share. Thanks to you, my enlightened friends of India, I had a memorable experience my first time around. Now I look forward to another.

Here’s what I have so far:

Delhi to Haridwar to Rishikesh to Mathura

to Vrindavan and back to Delhi