Chitrakoot Tourism | 5 Top-Rated Tourists Destinations & Attractions in Chitrakoot (2021)
The city of Chitrakoot is one of the least populated districts of Madhya Pradesh and also is one of the most underrated tourist and pilgrim destinations of North India. Chitrakoot is closely connected to the mythological scripture of Ramayana, a holy book of the Hindus. The belief is that Lord Rama, the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu, used to reside in the forests of Chitrakoot when he was exiled from the kingdom of Ayodhya.
Then a forest, now it is a beautiful city with a great number of places of interest for both the pilgrims and tourists. A place of magnificent scenic beauty, the city of Chitrakoot, is an ideal option to consider for a peaceful, short weekend getaway in Madhya Pradesh.
History of Chitrakoot
The story behind the religious and cultural importance of Chitrakoot dates back to the period when Valmiki wrote the epic of Ramayana. Lord Rama, being the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu, who took his birth as the prince and heir of the throne of Ayodhya, was sent on exile by his father. Lord Rama with his wife Sita and brother Lakshmana stayed in the forests of Chitrakoot for nearly 12 years before Sita was kidnapped by Ravan.
The forests of Chitrakoot had many such locations which have been described beautifully by Valmiki in the books of Ramayana. The trio also met a lot of sages and stayed with them during this time. There is also a belief that Lord Rama performed the end rituals of his father in Chitrakoot.
Places to Visit in Chitrakoot
1. Gupt Godavari Caves
You don’t get to see a lot of temples in the big caves tracing back to the ancient period, and this makes the Gupt Godavari caves of Chitrakoot a must-visit one. The narrow caves in the surroundings resembling a thick and dense forest is one of the best experiences that a tourist could get. The feet will be touching the water when you enter the caves, which will take you to the shrine placed in the caves, dedicated to Lord Rama and Sita. The place is located near Ram Ghat, which makes the local transportation easy.
2. Ram Ghat
The sight of the river Mandakini is something you will never forget after your trip to Chitrakoot. Ram Ghat, located on the banks of river Mandakini, gives a heavenly sight of the Mandakini River and its scenic beauty. The boat ride from Ram Ghat in the river Mandakini is a popular and enjoyable tourist activity in Chitrakoot. This is one of the populated areas of the city, and the nearby markets are an attraction too for the tourists. The morning and evening Aarti in the Ram Ghat is also enjoyed by a good number of tourists every day.
3. Kamadgiri Temple
The Parikrama or Circumambulation at the Kamadgiri temple is considered one of the most sacred activities to take part in Chitrakoot. The Kamadgiri temple, located on a small hill that is covered by forests and hills and the top of the hill giving a spectacular view of the city. This is also one of the most visited places of interest among the pilgrims, and the Parikrama, which nearly takes 2 hours, is performed by the pilgrims in groups. Even though the temple is on the outskirts of the city, it witnesses a huge influx during festivals like Ram Navami.
4. Sati Anusuya Temple
Anusuya is one of the important characters of Ramayana, who happens to meet the trio of Lord Rama, Sita, and Lakshmana during their exile and stay at the forests of Chitrakoot. This temple is named after her and worships the idols of Lord Rama and Sita. One of the major attractions of this temple in Chitrakoot includes the wonderful tableau like structures and artworks which portrays all major events of the epic of Ramayana. This place is close to the city of Satna in Madhya Pradesh, a wonderful pilgrim destination to visit with your family.
5. Janaki Kund
Another beautiful pilgrim and a tourist destination in Chitrakoot, Janaki Kund, creates a beautiful connection between the Holy Scriptures and the natural scenic beauty of the place. As per the stories of Ramayana; Sita, during their stay at Chitrakoot, used to take a bath at this beautiful pond and thus the name, Janaki Kund. The early monsoon season is the best time to visit the pond as the Janaki Kund will be full of water and which simply adds to the beauty of this whole place. It also has a small temple dedicated to the worship of Sita.
How To Reach Chitrakoot?
By Road: The location of Chitrakoot is really favorable for the tourists and pilgrims traveling to the place as the city is very well connected with the nearby cities and other major parts of both Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. The local bus transport is preferred by most of the tourists and pilgrims, followed by cab services, which are also available on a huge scale.
By Rail: The Railway station at Chitrakoot has a pretty impressive set of lanes connecting to almost all parts of the country. Even if you can’t get a direct connecting railway service, most of the major railway stations in Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh connects to the city of Chitrakoot quite well.
By Air: Since there are no airports situated in the city of Chitrakoot, the closest airport which you can pick is the Bamrauli airport at Allahabad. The Bamrauli airport is just 106.1 km away from Chitrakoot, and it has very good connections to all parts of India. Other important airports that are also close to Chitrakoot, which you might want to consider the Khajuraho airport and the Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport of Uttar Pradesh.
Attractions Nearby Chitrakoot
The city of Chitrakoot is a little away from most of the popular and celebrated cities of both Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. The nearest cities to the pilgrim destination of Chitrakoot include Kanpur and Lucknow. Kanpur, being the closest city and a popular tourist destination, has a number of attractions that you might not want to miss visiting during your trip to Chitrakoot. Some of the major attractions for tourists and pilgrims which you should not miss at Kanpur includes:
- Kanpur Zoological Park
- Blue World Theme Park
- Moti Jheel
- Nana Rao Park
- J K Temple
- Kanpur Memorial Church
- Phool Bagh Park
- ISKCON Temple
- Massacre Ghat
- Dharmanath Swetamber Jain Glass Temple
Best Time to Visit Chitrakoot
Simply put, the winters indeed are the best time to visit the city of Chitrakoot as you will get to witness the auspicious festival of Deepavali during the early winters and other special occasions like Makar Sankranti during the mid-winters. Other important festivals celebrated in Chitrakoot include Ram Navami, which indicates the birth of Lord Rama, followed by Sharad Poornima and the great Ramayan Mela of Chitrakoot. Even relating to the weather, the late monsoon and early winters are preferred to visit Chitrakoot.
Chitrakoot is indeed one of the most important pilgrim destinations of India, which is closely connected to the epic of Ramayana, which is regarded as a Holy Scripture according to the followers of Hinduism. It has a huge number of pilgrim places of interest, which is associated with the events of Ramayana, which are considered sacred by the pilgrims. Moreover, Chitrakoot is also a place of fabulous scenic beauty with some breathtaking locations to explore for the tourists too. So prepare for your journey to this wonderful place when it is safe to travel again.