Rishikesh is one of the most tranquil places in Uttarakhand, surrounded by hills and graced by the wide and sacred river Ganges. The beautiful environs is said to have a calming effect on people’s minds and hence attracts people from all walks of life. Rishikesh is also known as the ‘Yoga Capital of the World’ because a lot of people come here to learn yoga and meditation. There are numerous ashrams that are dedicated to the study of philosophical studies, yoga and meditation. For the adventure junkies, there’s much to do such as white water rafting on the Ganga and also trekking, where you can enjoy a good trek starting from Laxman Jhula.

Although it’s great to visit Rishikesh any time of the year; this is a particularly good time because it is hosting its next edition of International Yog Festival, which started on March 1 and will go on till March 7. The global festival is taking place at Hotel Ganga Resort and is being organised by Uttarakhand Tourism Development Board in association with Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam, where yoga enthusiasts from around the world get a chance to experience the divine art of uniting mind, body and soul.

This weeklong festival is divided into 3 themes: ‘Traditional Yoga’ (day 1 and 2), ‘Contemporary Yoga’ (day 3 and 4) and ‘Shakti – the power of creation’ (day 5-7). The last 3 days especially is a celebration of divine feminine spirit, wherein prominent female spiritual figures and yoga practitioners come and share their knowledge and conduct the energy invoking sessions of yoga in a variety of styles.

Besides yoga classes, various discussions on topics, such as Yoga for Women, The Yogic way of Life, Traditional vs. Contemporary Yoga, Yoga before and beyond the Asanas, The goal and the foundations of Yoga – An integrated (body-mind-soul) approach to Yoga are held and the sessions are attended by eminent personalities who share their knowledge with the travellers.