Badrinath is a famous holy town in Chamoli district in Uttarakhand state. The name of the holy place originates from the local word, badri that is in fact a type of wild berry. About the history of the Badrinath temple, it is famously said that when Lord Vishnu sat in repentance in the mountains of this place. Goddess Laxmi then existed in the form of a berry tree to shade Him against the harsh Sun. Besides being the dwelling place of the Lord, the place has also been home to countless pilgrims, sages as well as saints; who come to meditate here in search of enlightenment.
Being the habitat of Lord Vishnu, Badrinath is one of the four dhams across four directions of India. The temple is positioned between two mountain ranges called “Nar” and “Narayana” with Neelkanth peak in background. Standing in a beautiful valley on the bank of Alkananda River in Himalayan heights, the temple looks immensely beautiful and serene. The present temple was originally built by Garhwal rulers back in 16th century, from where the deity later got moved to present temple. There is more to the history of Badrinath temple that mentions, Jagath Guru Shri Adi Shankaracharya found the Badrinarayan idol and restored that from the Narad Kund and sanctified it in a cave near Tapt kund. It has become a ritual for pilgrims to take a holy dip in the Tapt Kund before going to the main shrine.
It is a well-known fact that the temple has faced so many earthquakes ever since there were just 20 huts, but the site drew thousands of pilgrims each year at different festivals. Apart from the shrine value of the site, Badrinath is also known for being a gateway to several mountain climbing voyages for mountains such as Nilkantha. The temple remains open for six months in a year (between April and November), due to the extreme weather surroundings in Himalayan region. Besides the Badrinath temple, there are some other holy places to visit in Badrinath, including Hot Springs, Neelkanth Peak, Charanpaduka and many more that have been acknowledged for their spiritual values; which also makes the place one of the most visited pilgrimage sites in India.