Believed to be constructed by the Pandavas, this shrine is one among the oldest of the all shrines in India. At an altitude of 5200 feet, this temple depicts almost all the divinity of the Hindu Pantheon. Legend says that in order to escape from the tantric Vaishnodevi went to Trikoot and when her meditation was disturbed she killed the tantric. The idol of the main goddess is in the form of natural Pindies, representing Goddes Kali, Saraswathi and Lakshmi. These three stone structures signify creative, preservative and destructive characters of the mother goddess.
Pilgrims have to get down at Katra, from where the new route to the shrine begins. Some adventurous travelers opt for the more tedious steeply pathway which is much harder to ascend. It is mandatory that the tourists should register their names and get a yare slip from the registration office. A slip in hand is so required that without it one would not be allowed to cross the Banganga check post. The authorities do not charge any cost for the slip.
The experience one get in the darshan is so miraculous that they would even forget all haphazard, they have under taken during their arduous journey. The feeling is so amazing that it would fetch the devotee again and again to this holy abode of the mother goddess. Nothing would conquer the deep belief and fondness of the devotees and the uphill path offers the unusual site of all class of people walking with the same devotion. Another attribute of travelling this sacred place is the trudging like experience it provides throughout the mounting path.
Do’s and Don’ts while visiting the holy cave of Vaishno Devi –
- Get a yatra slip before proceeding for trekking to temple.
- Drink, blanket and food are freely available and hence it is good not to carry valuable things.
- Start for Darshan only on announcement of your group number.
- Take token and deposit coconut in main waiting hall.
- Visit Bhairon temple only after Darshan at holy Cave.
- Mobile camera, video camera and similar electronic equipments are not allowed on the track.
- Respect co pilgrim’s sentiments and co operation with security.
- Must not rest in areas which are land slide prone areas.
- Avoid valuables in trek, avoiding tobacco and such other things, discourage begging etc.
- Do not throw dirt and do use dust bin and reduce using plastic to a minimum.
You must visit holy cave of Vaishno Devi this summer to revitalize yourself because being located in the snow clad mountain ranges, this sacred shrine commands the pictorial beauty of the majestic Himalayas. Natural splendors at its zenith can be delightful throughout the sojourn. A salubrious climate and the enthralling darshan of the goddess make the arduous journey a worthy one.