As you enter Rishikesh via the Badrinath Road, the one-kilometer area from the main road to the River Ganges on the right forms the lower Tapovan. All the roads in lower Tapovan lead to the river, which is the main attraction in Rishikesh. Here, you can expect many guesthouses, small hotels, a few shops, and a small market—plus the general stores on the main road where you can buy all kinds of groceries. Above this is Tattva Restaurant, a good spot to work and eat while looking out at the hustle-bustle of the main road. The windows are big, the staff is polite, and it has high-speed internet.
A little down towards the Laxman Jhula, a suspension bridge on the River Ganges, you’ll find the Sweven Hotel which is run by a young couple from Delhi. Sweven offers everything one looks for in Rishikesh: a perfect cafe on the ground floor with good WiFi and board games; clean, spacious, and reasonable rooms; and a glass-walled terrace with a lovely view of the river. The couple, Manish and Saumya, also organize book reading sessions, yoga classes, and movie screenings on weekends.On a free day, one can also plan to visit the nearby Vashisht cave in the Shivpuri area situated 20 kilometers from Rishikesh. Revered by spiritual seekers, the cave was once known to have been occupied by Sage Vashisht, one of the first sages of Hinduism.
Cheena Kapoor is a Delhi-based independent journalist and photographer focusing on a broad range of topics, including travel.
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