Site Name: Vridha Badri
Site Type: Ancient Hindu temple
Location: Near Joshimath, Uttarakhand state, India
Highlights: Lord Badrinath in the form of an old man
Nearest Railway Station: Rishikesh, around 250 kms
Nearest Airport: Dehradun, around 265 kms
How to reach: Reachable on road from Joshimath, which is at a distance of around 7 kms
Climate: Sep to Nov - winter; Dec to Mar - snow bound; the other months are pleasant
Best time to visit: May - Oct
Clothing: Light woolen in summer; heavy woolen in winter
Hotel: Mid-range to star hotels are available in the nearby hill stations; people stay right from Rudraprayag to Gaurikund
Restaurants: In Joshimath - vegetarian option alone
If you live in India, it is unlikely that you would not have heard about Kedarnath or Badrinath. They are two of the most popular pilgrimages for Hindus. It is located on the Himalayas in Uttarakhand state of India. On the way to Badrinath, 7 kms from Joshimath, Vridha Badri is situated. It has the ancient Vridha Badri temple. Let us explore about this site in this article.
The temple is located in a secluded place in the hilly area, which can be reached by trekking for about one and half kms. It is a small and beautiful temple situated in a calm and serene location. It gives pleasant feeling to anyone who visits this village as well as temple.
The temple enshrines Badrinath (Vishnu) in the form of an old man. There is no other idol found in this temple.
As per the legend, the sage Narad was performing penance towards Lord Vishnu. Vishnu appeared in the form of old man to Narad. Vishvakarma, the divine architect, crafted the idol of Badri as an old man and installed in this temple.
After many years, the area was flooded and the idol fell down into the nearby Narad Kund lake. Adi Shankaracharya discovered that idol and reinstalled the same in the present place.
Sapta Badri and Pancha Badri:
The seven temples of Badri in and around Badrinath are called as Sapta Badri temples. They are Badrinath, Adi Badri, Vridha Badri, Dhyan Badri, Ardha Badri, Bhavishya Badri and Yogadhayan Badri. Hence, Vridha Badri is one of the Sapta Badri sites. Some people include Narasingha Badri as one of the Sapta Badri sites.
Five Badri temples are considered as Pancha Badri sites. They are Badrinath, Adi Badri, Vridha Badri, Bhavishya Badri and Yogadhayan Badri. Few people omit Vridha Badri and instead include Narasingha Badri.