Neelkanth Mahadev Temple is a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva (Neelkanth). The temple is situated at a height of 1330 meters and is located in Pauri Garhwal district and about 32 km away from Rishikesh.
The temple is one of the most sacred shrines which is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is a well-known Hindu pilgrimage place. It is surrounded by the dark jungles and is adjoining to the mountain ranges of Nar-Narayan. It is covered between the dales of Manikoot, Brahmakoot and Vishnukoot and is located at the convergence of the rivers Pankaja and Madhumati.
As per the mythodology, during the Samudra Manthan (churning of the ocean), Lord Shiva drank the poison halahala (Venom) to save the earth from the demons and destruction. It is said that only Lord Shiva had the capacity to hold the venom from entering into his body and kept it into his throat. Lord Shiva had the power that the poison could not harm him but just made his throat murky blue. Therefore, it gave the name “Neelkanth” to Lord Shiva. And this incidence took place at the place where this temple is located.
Interior and festivals
The top of the temple is decorated with the sculptures of many Devtas and Demons showing the Samudra Manthan story. The complex of the temple also has a naturally made spring in which the devotees take a holy bath before going to the temple.
Maha Shivaratri is the most prominent festival celebrated in the temple and lots of devotees come to the temple during the festival.
How to reach
The place is only 65 kms away from Haridwar, from Rishikesh, it is just 30 kms away, 60 km away from Dehradun and 100 kms from Mussoorie.