Vaishno Devi is often called as Mata Rani or Vaishnavi. She is the manifestation of the hindu godess Durga. Vaishno devi Mandir is a popular temple which is dedicated to Durga. It is situated at Trikuta Mountains in the state of Jammu & Kashmir. The no. of pilgrims visiting here exceeds 10 million
every year. The temple cave is located at an altitude of 5200 feet. The base camp for this trek is Katra and it is 12 kms away from the Temple. The Temple is open all around the year. There are no statues nor Idols inside the cave but the darshans are in shape of natural rocks. The Shrine Board also known as the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board was formed in the year 1986. Since the formation of the Shrine Board several number of developmental activities have been taken place to increase the number of travelers visiting Vaishno Devi Temple.
Mythology and Legends
Vaishno Devi Temple is traditionaly believed as the holiest of all Shaktipeeths. Some people believe that the Skull of Mata Sati has fallen here. Some scriptures do not agree with this. Others believe that the right arm had fallen here. In this holy cave one can find stone remains of a human hand known as Varad Hast.
The main Darshans of the cave are the three Pindies. Pindi are decked stones or tree stumps ,in Hinduism it is seen as a manifestations of the mother goddess Shakti. They are, at the right side end we see the Holy Pindi of Mata Maha Kali who is known for the Supreme Energy of Dissolution. The colour associated with her is black. The second one, i.e, in the center we see the Holy Pindi of Mata Maha Lakshmi who is known for Supreme Energy of Maintenance who has a color of yellowish-red tinge. And at the left most side we see the the Holy Pindi of Mata Maha Saraswati who is known for Supreme Energy of Creation. It is colored in whitish tinge.
Nearest Airport: Jammu Airport is well connected to the rest of India by air. Both Jet Airways and Indian Airlines operate daily flights to Jammu, with 80 minutes average flying time from New Delhi.
Nearest Railway Station: One can also reach Katra by rail. Jammu/Katra is connected to other parts of country on broad gauge and numerous passenger trains ply from various parts of the country. In the peak season of summer and other holidays, the Railways introduce special trains for the comfort of the Yatris. Many superfast trains also ply on this route and one can reach Jammu/Katra overnight from New Delhi.
Nearest Town: Jammu (See Map)is well connected through road also to rest of India. National Highway No. 1A passes through Jammu towards Srinagar. Regular bus services from all major North Indian cities are available for Jammu as well as Katra. Many standard and deluxe buses of various State Road Transport Corporations as well as private operators connect Jammu with important cities and towns of North India.
Keep In Mind
*Pre Book the trip and get the yatra slip.
*Get permission for camera if required.
*Travel light as possible, and be careful.
*Check identity card and other permits.
*Be careful on the track and enjoy the view.
Vaishno Devi Official site.