Shri Mata Vaishno Devi is a religious place located in the Jammu & Kashmir at a height of 1560m above sea level and it is home of Mata Rani/ Goddess Vaishnavi/ Trikuta, who is the incarnation of the Hindu mother goddess, Durga. The holy cave of Mata Vaishno Devi located in Katra & devotees needs to cover 13 km of Yatra to reach the Mata Darbar. Hindus have a great belief and every year, a thousand devotees visit the temple which has a cave and idol of Mata Vaishno Devi.
Looking for details related to accommodation, how to reach Vaishno Devi from Delhi, useful tips and many more things, we are here to help you with all the details. Whether you read a complete post or not, it is up to you but it is advisable to read useful tips written in the last.
The holy cave of Vaishno Devi Shrine is visited by millions of Hindu pilgrims every year to get the blessing of Mata Vaishno Devi. Hindus have a belief that if they visit this place with a pure soul, then every desire would be fulfilled by Mata Rani. Owing to these massive numbers of pilgrims, transportation has been developed for this place in the last few years. This place is very well connected by air, road, & rail.
The two nearest stations from Shri Mata Vaishno Devi are Shri Mata Vaishno Devi railway station at Katra (Station Code: SVDK) & Jammu Tawi Railway Station (Station Code: SVDK). The Jammu Tawi railway station is approximately 46 km away from the Katra & the distance between the Bhavan & Katra is approximately 20 km. Shri Mata Vaishno Devi railway station is a very popular one among all the tourists especially for the devotees of Delhi.
Jammu Tawi is the second most popular railway station as it is connected to the major cities in India such as Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai, Trivandrum, Chennai, Pune & many more. The popular trains serve this station are Jhelum Express, Himgiri Express, Jammu Tawi Express, Jammu Rajdhani, etc.
The temple of Mata Rani is connected to the rest of India through the wide network of national & state highways. Most of the major cities of India like Delhi, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Gurgaon, Shimla, etc. are connected with Jammu and regular government & private bus services are available. Once you reach Jammu, you can either hire a cab or private & public government buses to reach Katra.
The nearest airport to Mata Vaishno Devi Temple is Jammu Airport which is 50 km away from Vaishno Devi. It a domestic airport that connects to various cities of India and Delhi is one of them. Devotees from Delhi can board the flight and reach to the Jammu airport in 1:30 hrs. We already shared the information once you reached Jammu in the above section. Various Flight operators like Air India, Go Air, Indigo, SpiceJet & Vistara provide flights between Delhi & Jammu.
I visited Vaishno Devi this year (2019) and I personally experienced the quality of accommodation. It is very good and various private hotels, dharmshalas & Government accommodation are available. You may opt for anyone of them as per your convenience & need. The Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board also provides accommodation of 3 types i.e. free accommodation, rented rooms & rented dormitories. Rented rooms & dormitories are available to the devotees against the advance reservation.
The temple of Mata Vaishno Devi is open for Devotees throughout the year, but the recommend time to visit this place is between March to October. Millions of pilgrims visit the holy shrine in these months due to pleasant & cool weather. The maximum visitors plan their trip during Navratri’s.
Let me share my experience when I visited there. We were a group of 6 peoples and we visited there in the month of February. We boarded the train (Shri Shakti Express) on the 15th of February from New Delhi Railway Station (NDLS). On the very next day, we reached to Vaishno Devi at the right time. We deboarded the train and heading towards our hotel. We reached there around 6 a.m. and requested hotel staff for early check-in. The hotel staff was very cooperative and allowed us early in. We had taken two rooms and started taking shower one by one. We were ready around 9 and started our journey at 9:30. We started moving towards Katra Bus stand to get Yatra slip from the Yatra registration counter at the tourist reception center. This slip was absolutely free but mandatory for the trekking of Vaishno Devi. After getting the slips, we started our journey and took several halts for food and drinks and finally reached Ardh Kuwari (the holy cave of Mata) which is approximately 6 km from the Katra. Ardh Kuwari is the Place where Mata meditated for nine months. We took Darshan of Holy cave and headed towards Mata Vaishno Devi. We reached there around 6:30 p.m. in the evening, took prasad, locked our luggage in the cloakroom and stood in the queue for the darshan. We were shivering due to cold weather and waited there for 1 hour approximately due to ongoing aarti & pooja inside the temple. Finally, the darshan started and we got the darshan of Mata ji around 9:15 p.m. We took food and then headed towards Bhairo Baba Mandir. It was hardly 2 km and we got the darshan of Bhairo Baba around 12:00 a.m. After some rest at Bhairo Baba, we started again downwards and reached Ardh Kuwari around 2:30 a.m. We took some rest over there and started again towards our hotel. We reached the hotel around 6:30 a.m. and took some rest. We all woke up around 11:30 a.m. and headed towards Patnitop after having our breakfast cum lunch.
I will share our experience of Patnitop very soon in the next post.
Disclaimer: I don’t remember the exact time so writing timings based on memory only.
|| Jai Mata Devi ||