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Vashisht Temple and Hot Springs

view of Vashisht Village from across the Beas river
view of Vashisht Village from across the Beas river
Vashisht Temple at Manali
Vashisht Temple at Manali
Main entrance to Vashisht Temple
Main entrance to Vashisht Temple
Inside Vashisht Temple
Inside Vashisht Temple
A priest giving his blessings at Vashisht Temple
A priest giving his blessings at Vashisht Temple
Hot spring inside Vashisht Temple
Hot spring inside Vashisht Temple
Rama Temple, Vashisht
Rama Temple, Vashisht

Vashisht village is a green patch of steep hill hanging at the base on a cliff. The village is 6 km from Manali at the banks of the Beas River opposite Old Manali. Vashisht is reachable from Manali by half an hour walk or a short drive up a slanting road by Auto Rickshaw for Rs.50. Most foreign tourists preferred staying here or at the Old Manali than the downtown Manali. Rich traditions and nice cafes are integral for backpackers. Vashisht has all that. Like Old Manali, Vashisht is crowded with tourists during peak seasons.

Streams rise at the base of this mountain. I walked up from the main road near the Beas River through a small steep footpath. The road was idyllic. Clear streams cut through the road and a small bridge suspends over it. The rustic village has a calm soothing effect.The village still retains the traditional house making style. Every gully springs up surprise. At one corner there’s this German bakery and at the next turn we’ve the traditional houses with cows. Foreign tourists who have only seen cows on the road in India looked overwhelmed like they were seeing a deer or a Nilgai.

Vashisht was named after Rishi Vashisht one of the seven sages of Hindu. Legend has it that the saddened Rishi Vashisht after learning that his children were killed by Vishwamitra tried to commit suicide. But the river refused to kill him. The river was therefore named as Vipasha which literally means ‘freedom from bondage’. It was later shortened to Beas River. He began mediating and vowed to start his life anew. The Vashisht temple which exists even today is believed to be more than 4000 years. It’s difficult to imagine how a place so old could remain so small. Perhaps the village is protected by its difficult landscapes. Vashisht temple is built in a traditional style with lots of intricate wood carvings. It is also most popular for hot springs which is believed to have medicinal value. There are separate bathing arrangement for men and women. According to another legend Lakshman who paid a visit realized that the sage had to go for long walks to take bath. He shot an arrow into the ground and hot water began to gush out. There’s another temple ancient stone temple known as Rama Temple adjacent to the Vashisht Temple.Vashisht village is considered an important place by the Hindus in India. The place is often associated with pilgrims.

Most shops in Vashisht sell woolen clothes. There are beautiful cafes and dining places all along the main street. Vashisht offers by far the best view of the Beas River and the Old Manali. Watching the river valley spread below at sunset leaves a lasting photographic image in my mind.

3 Responses to “Vashisht Temple and Hot Springs”

  1. harshil panchal says:

    looking great place…. i want to visit………

  2. vineeta gautam says:

    i hve seen this vashisht temple but i have doubt aboUt warm water that it comes NATURAL SOURCES FROM THE EARTH.PLZ LET ME KNOW…
    THANK YOU

    • Suresh Kumar says:

      Hi Vineeta Sage Vassisthar lived on earth for
      more than 60,000 years during the era of the Ramayana serving The Lord Rama’s father King Dasaar athan as an advisor in the Ayodhya palace in India. Nothing was a suprise even the road sweepers,were wearing diamond rings.
      So talking about the hot water in the midst of the temple vicinity was no suprise cos they already had planes and flying saucer in that era.

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