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Mata Vaishno Devi Temple, Maa Vaishno Devi Darshan
Vaishno Devi Temple: The holiest place of pilgrimage in India known as ‘Mata Vaishno Mandir’ is dedicated to Maa Vaishnavi (Goddess Durga) by their devotees. This is the major pilgrimage in India that fetch tourist’s form all over the world every year. This sacred shrine is located at Trikoot Parvat, in Katra of Udhampur district, Jammu. There is an easy commutation made available for the tourists for a safe and sound travel from Jammu till the temple.

The temple is just 13 kms journey from Katra which is a small town in Udhampur, a district of Jammu. This shrine is located at 5200 feet above
from the sea level. Vaishno Devi is also known to be the embodiment of ‘Maa Durga’.

The historical background says that Maa Vaishno was born near about 700 years ago. The damsel was a pure disciple of Lord Rama who himself was the embodiment of Lord Vishnu on earth. She being a true devotee swore to stay celibate all through her lifetime. There stands a sacred story behind the holy cave where Maa Vaishno meditated forever.

There was a Tantrik (black magician) named as Bhairon Nath who cam to know about the immense powers of Goddess Vaishno. He tried to catch the girl so he started chasing her when she was going to the Trikoot Mandir. She ran to save herself from the tantrik and went to hide into a cave. Bhairon found the cave nine months later where the Goddess was doing meditation. Bhairon disturbed her meditation. Then the Goddess got angry and made another opening in the cave using her trident. That time onwards, the cave is known to be 'Garbha Joon'. The Goddess further ran towards the hill to escape from him and Bhairon tried to kill Vaishno Devi, there she appeared in the form of Maha Kali. Bhairon Nath's skull was separated from his body and there he asked the Goddess for forgiveness. Goddess Vaishno forgave him and said that whoever comes to visit her holy temple has to visit ‘Bhairon Ghati’ to complete his pilgrimage.  

In the Holy Cave, the ‘Pindis’ which are the boom-granters can be seen. Maa Vaishno is also considered as to be asked for the fortunate help by her devotees. There is a deep belief that no one goes back empty-handed. All the desires of devotes are fulfilled by Maa. People with faith in hearts and Maa Vaishno’s sacred name seek blessings from of the supreme power.
The way to the temple was pretty tough earlier as the ways to reach there were not too clean and safe, but now-a-days horses and helicopters have made the pilgrimage easy to be approached. There is a holy chant ‘Jai Mata di’ throughout the way by the disciples which give the whole place a pure and sacred essence. The temple of Maa Vaishno has is considered to be visited once when there is an auspicious occasion.     

How to Reach: The nearest airport is Jammu airport, which is at a distance of 50 km from Katra, Nearest railway station is also Jammu. This railway station is connected to all major cities in India. The National Highway no 1 passes through Jammu towards Srinagar. Regular bus services from all major North Indian cities are available for Jammu as well as Katra.

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