Chitrakoot is a fine mixture of natural beauty and spiritual sojourn in the famed Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. Situated on the banks of the Mandakini River, it is also known as the ‘Hill of Many Wonders’ and ranks among the ‘oldest existing pilgrimages’ of India. The place is rich in mythical and religious connotations whereas legends suggesting it to be the birth place of the incarnations of the famed ‘Trinity’ of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh.
Chitrakoot is widely believed to be the place where Lord Rama stayed in his exiled years, alongside Goddess Sita and brother Lakshman. More so, another legend relates the place where Lord Rama did the final rites of his father, which drew all the gods and goddess. Many similar tales are steeped in the culture here and most of them elaborating on the beauty of the place.
Chitrakoot attracts lots of tourists for its deep religious connections to the past, and many festivals are grandly celebrated right through the year. The landscape is rich in natural beauty, however most of tourist attractions are of religious nature. The Kamadgiri Mountain is a must-visit place here, as it has several caves and a big lake. Ram Ghat is another popular site that has many temples.
Chitrakoot has some religious ashrams as well like the Valmiki Ashram and Sati Anusuya Ashram. On the other hand, the essence of nature can be felt at Pramod Van and Mayurdhwaj Ashram. The supposed bathing place of goddess Sita - Janaki Kund – draws big crowd right through the year. Similarly, the place where Lord Ram and Sita stayed during the exile - Ram Shaiyya and Sphatik Shila – ranks among the most popular here.
The Gupt Godavari cavern in Chitrakoot also receives a good number of visitors, as it’s the place where the Godavari River flows and disappears over a haze chain of rocks. Other notable sites here include Bharat Milap Mandir, Bharat Koop, Hanuman Dhara and Shabari Fall etc. In overall, Chitrakoot is for those whose mind and heart is full of spirituality, and who wish to feel the essence of the religion.