Chitrakoot meaning “the hill of many wonders” falls in the northern Vindhya range of mountains spread over the states of Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. Lord Rama spend a major part of his exile here. According to the epic Ramayana, Chitrakoot is the place where Bharat, brother of Lord Rama came to visit him and asked him to return to Ayodhya and rule the kingdom. It is believed that the supreme Gods of Hinduism, (Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva) took incarnations here. The place is dotted with many temples and several religious sites. At Chitrakoot, everything relates to Lord Rama. One can also explore the amalgamation of culture and history on this land. Chitrakoot is a spiritual retreat, thronged almost throughout the year by travellers, who have a penchant for the unknown and unexplored. Chitrakoot is a perfect blend of divinity, serenity, and natural beauty.
Ganesh Bagh is located on the Karvi - Devangana road. It was built in the 19th century by Vinayak Raj Peshwa. This place consists of a temple which has carvings on its interiors, resembling the art and style of Khajuraho. This place is also known as mini Khajuraho, owing to its architectural similarity with original Khajuraho.
Steppededges leading into the river Mandakini and a serene environment is what onewill find here. This riverside is known to be the place where Lord Rama, Goddess Sita and Lord Laxman interacted with Saint Goswami Tulsidas. Ram Ghat is a place withmuch activity and seething crowd as it is one of the main Ghats of Chitrakoot.One can see the signs of it early morning onwards. Also adding to the view are thecolourful boats lining near the steps leading into the river. One should notmiss the evening Aarti on the Ram Ghat.
This Hanuman temple is situated on top of a huge rock. A steep climb of several carved steps lead to the temple. While climbing these steps one can see splendid views of Chitrakoot underneath. All along the way small idols of Lord Hanuman are placed to offer prayers. Legend says that inside this temple Lord Rama stayed with Lord Hanuman, after Lord Hanuman set Lanka on fire and returned back. Here Lord Rama helped him pacify his anger. Further up from this point are a few more shrines dedicated to Lord Rama, Mother Sita and Laxman.
Gupt Godavari is located 18 Kms from Chitrakoot. Legend has it that Lord Rama and Lakshman stayed here for some part of their exile. Gupt Godavari is a two cave system inside a mountain with knee high water level. The bigger cave has two stone carved thrones believed to be belonging to Rama and Laxman. The outside of these caves are covered with shops for purchasing memorabilia.
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