Haridwar is one of the most ancient pilgrimage centers in India that has been reverence from times immemorial. Hari means Lord/God and Dwar means Gateway. Hence Haridwar means Gateway to the Lord. According to the India mythology, it is one of the four places where drops of elixir, Amrita accidentally spilled over from the pitcher or Kumbha, in which it was being carried away by the celestial bird Garuda, the vehicle of Lord Vishnu. These four spots have today become places where the Kumbh Mela is celebrated every 12 years in succession - Nasik, Ujjain, Haridwar and Allahabad. Millions of devotees and tourist congregate from all over the world to celebrate this celestial event and perform ritualistic bathing on the banks of the river Ganges.
Mansa Devi Temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to goddess Mansa Devi in the holy city of Haridwar in the Uttarakhand state of India. The temple is located atop the Bilwa Parvat on the Sivalik Hills, the southernmost mountain chain of the Himalayas. The temple also known as Bilwa Tirth is one of the Panch Tirth (Five Pilgrimages) within Haridwar.
The temple is known for being the holy abode of Manasa, a form of Shakti and is said to have emerged from the mind of the sage (Rishi) Kashyapa. Mansa is regarded as the sister of the Naga (Viper) Vasuki. The term Mansa means wish and it is believed that the goddess fulfils all the wishes of a sincere devotee. Devotees who want their wishes to be fulfilled by Mansa tie threads to the branches of a tree located in the temple. Once their wishes are fulfilled, people come back again to the temple to untie the thread from the tree. Mansa is also offered coconuts, fruits, garlands and incense sticks in order to appease her.
Mansa Devi Temple can be reached in two ways: on foot or by cable car. Walking requires a one and a half kilometer hike uphill. The track is sealed but the exertion can be draining during the hot months. Hence, many people prefer to take the cable car (also referred to as a ropeway) up, and walk down. The first cable car starts running at 7 a.m. during April to October, and 8 a.m. the rest of the year. Tickets cost 48 rupees per person, return. The departure point is centrally located in town.
Things to do in Mansa Devi Temple:
Devotees who visit the temple usually like to take some Parasad (offerings) for the Goddess. There's no shortage of sellers, either where you board the cable car or outside the temple. Bags containing a coconut and flowers sell for around 50 rupees, and it's possible to buy plates of flowers for around 20 rupees. The entry to the temple is also lined with vendors peddling everything from jewelry to music. Navaratri festival is celebrated here. People came here for full fill their requirement.