The Place Vindhyachal as well as Goddess Vindhyavasini has been liberally mentioned in many ancient scriptures of India. Some of them are: Mahabharat, Vaaman Puran, Markandeya Puran, Matsya Puran, Devi Bhagavat, Harivansh Puran, Skand Puran, Raja Taranginee, Brihat Katha, Kadambaree and many Tantra scriptures.
The very famous war between Goddess Durga and Demon King Mahishasur, which has very deep spiritual, metaphysical as well as contemporary meanings, is supposed to have occurred at Vindhyachal. This is the reason that another name of Goddess Vindhyavasini is ‘Mahishasur Mardini’ (Killer of Demon Mahish– Literal Meaning Buffalo, since Mahishasur used to take guise of a Buffalo). So, next time, in Durga Puja festival or anywhere else, you see the image of Goddess Durga killing Demon Mahishasur, just remember that this great war happened at Vindhyachal; and temple of Vindhyachal commemorates this great victory of divine female power over malefic forces of the society.
Lord Ram had visited this place and surrounding areas, along with wife Sita and brother Lakshman in his period of exile. The places Sita Kund, Sita Rasoi, Ram Gaya Ghat, Rameshwar temple are testimony to the journey of this great Hero of Humanity to this divine place.
In the ancient times, the temple of Vindhyachal was surrounded by thousands of temples and other religious places of ‘Shakti’ cult; however, in the reign of fanatic Muslim Emperor Aurangzeb, many were razed to the ground.
The literal meaning of word ‘Vindhyachal’ (Vindhya + Achal) is ‘Mountain (Achal) named Vindhya’; and literal meaning of ‘Vindhyavasini’ is ‘Goddess having dwelling in Vindhya Mountains’.
The uniqueness of this divine place is derived from the fact that this is the only place in the world, where ‘Devi’ (Goddess) is worshipped as per tenets of ‘Vaam maarg’ as well as ‘Dakshina Maarg’ of ‘Shakti’ cult of Hinduism.
Furthermore, in the ‘Shakti’ cult of Hinduism, Goddess transforms herself into three forms, Lakshmi, Kali and Saraswati. Vindhyachal is the only place in the world, where all these three forms of Goddesses have specific temples dedicated to them, strategically located for creating highly energetic and spiritually very potent ‘Trikona’ (Trine).
As described in the ancient scriptures, the surrounding area of Vindhyachal was engulfed with thick forests, which were inhabited by Lions, Elephants and other animals. However, in the present time, all the forests have eloped with passage of time; and except areas of Kali Khoh, Sita Kund and Ashta Bhuja, where you can see remnants of ancient Jungles, the entire Vindhyachal zone has converted into a modern mid Size Township.
In the middle ages, notorious and murderous Pindari thugs, Hindus as well as Muslims, as described in the memoires of Col. Sleeman, used to worship Goddess ‘Vindhyavasini’ of Vindhyachal.
Although, the idol of Goddess ‘Vindhyavasini’ in the ‘Vindhyavasini’ temple is very ancient; however, structure of Vindhyachal temple does not appear to be from time immemorial. Interestingly, Current Indian Standard Time Line, which decides time zone of whole India, passes through idol of Goddess ‘Vindhyavasini’.
Chandra Prabha Wild Life Sanctuary, once a habitat of Asiatic Lions, has all the natural ingredients to become a beautiful tourist/picnic spot. It has been endowed with beautiful picnic spots, dense forest, and scenic waterfalls like Raj Dari & Dev Dari & a dam nearby called Chandra Prabha Dam. The Sanctuary was established in 1957 and sprawls over an area of 9,600 hect. The core area of the Sanctuary covers over 2,686 hect., while the buffer area covers 66000 hect., which also includes Kashi Wildlife Division. It was the habitat of Asiatic Lion from 1957-1970 but after that lions disappeared from here. In the past when naxal problem was not there people used to flock around here & enjoy the wildlife, forest & natural beauty in winter season, and also during rainy season when waterfalls add greater attraction to the lush green environment of the sanctuary. It serves as a natural & ideal habitat with its grasslands, many caves in Vindhyan area & waterfalls for a host of animals & plants (medicinal also) and has a great potential to develop Jungle Tourism in the sanctuary where people can enjoy natural beauty & bio-diversity.
Animals like Leopard, Black Buck, Chital, Sambhar, Nilgai (blue bull), Wild Boar, Porcupine, Indian Gazelle, Rabbit, Monkey, Chinkara, Chausingha, Hyena, Wild Cat, Jackal, Wild Fox & others. Beside this, there is wide variety of colourful birds & creeping animals (poisonous & non poisonous) in the sanctuary. Chandra Prabha & Karmnasha rivers, flowing through the sanctuary have a variety of fish.
The spot is located up stream on Chandra Prabha River near the sanctuary and is the source of water for both the waterfalls. The dam named Chandra Prabha has been constructed by Irrigation Department. One Nature Interpretation Centre, showing the names of different species, a library & resource centre, a small Canteen and a Guest House of Forest Dept. (under DFO, Ramnagar)
Vindhyachal 70 km. (one and a half hour drive) from Varanasi, Vindhyachal is a renowned religious city dedicated to Goddess Vindhyavasini. Mythologically goddess Vindhyavasini is believed to be the instant bestower of bendiction. There are several temples of other deities in the vicinity, the most famous ones being Ashtabhuja Devi Temple and kalikhoh Temple, which constitute the Trikona Parikrama (circumambulation). The Vindhyavasini Devi Temple, the Ashtabhuja temple, dedicated to Goddess Mahasaraswati (on a hollock, 3 km from Vindhyavasini temple) and the Kali khoh temple, dedicated to Goddess Kali (2 km from Vindhyavasini temple) form the Trikon Parikrama.
Kali Khoh is an very old cave temple out-and-out to Goddess Kali, situated in Vindhyachal. The temple is located just 2 km from the Maa Vindhyavasini Devi Temple, dedicated to Goddess Vindhyavasini Devi.
The base of Vindhya Hill is an ancient cave site where Ma Kali rejuvenates the devoted souls' innate good qualities to surpass negative traits. God is worshipped as Ma Kali here, one who dispels darkness of thought, action and character. Kalikhoh is forested. Black-faced langoor monkeys hang around in groups, sun themselves, nibble shoots and socialize graciously. Visitors love their trust in human company and indulge them with jaggery, fruit and peanuts. They add another dimension to the already teeming hillside!
Behind the Kalikhoh temple is Bhairo temple from where steps lead to a trekking route to Ashtabhuja temple, the third tangent of the expression of feminine divinity in Vindhyachal.
Ashtabhuja Devi Temple is situated at the top of the Vindhya Mountain in Vindhayachal. According to legends the girl child born to Vasudev and Devaki, parents of Lord Krishna, flew miraculously from the grip of Kamsa when he attempted to bash her to death, and descended here. This temple within a cave of a hillock, 3 km from Vindhyavasini Devi temple, is dedicated to her.
Ashtabhuja Temple is recorded in the ancient Purana scriptures as a cave in the Vindhyachal Hill. Her temple entrance here is low, so that devotees bend in surrender and devotion when they enter, and the exit is high, so that they leave with their heads held high reassured by the eight armed Ashtabhuja Devi's loving care and protection…as an infant is fearless in his mother's care. The cave is 12 ft in diameter and Ma Saraswati is worshipped here. There are 222 steps to the temple. Nagara drums played in the temple premises echo through the hillside to lead visitors.
The road to Ashtabhuja is as engrossing as the temple and the meeting with divinity therein. It offers a panoramic view of the hillside accompanied by stunning River Ganga at its base. Bharat kund and Sita Kund near Ashtabhuja temple bubble with sweet spring water and tempt even adults to play in water as joyously as children.
A visit to the three temples on Vindhya Hill is a pilgrim's Maha Trikon Parikrama - circumambulation of the divine triangle.
Ramgaya Ghat and Taradevi temple, 2 km west of Vindhyachal, near Shivpur's Ganga Ghat is of Pauranic importance. Lord Ram offered prayers here for peace for his demised father. There is a pret-shila here. Rameshwaram Mahadev temple here is also a legacy of Ram. Taradevi temple is an important center for Tantric learning, in holy company of Ganga
Vindham Waterfall is managed through the woodlands divisions of Mirzapur. The spellbinding beauty of Vindham fall is all the more alluring because of the close proximity of various other tourist destinations. One can go to Tanda Fountain which is located at a distance of 2 km from Vindham falls. Mirzapur is famous for its temples, Ghats and clock towers that are examples of contemporary architecture. The district also has cave paintings of riding horse-charioteers that is about to hurl a wheel. This cave paining is often identified as Lord Krishna. The cave painting dates back to 800 BCE. Mirzapur has a legacy that is worth exploration.
Lakhaniya Dari Waterfall is a hidden beauty and an epitome of serenity in Uttar Pradesh. One interesting and exciting fact about this place is this- you are the bottom and the water falls on you. Chunar is a place in Mirzapur which is at a distance of about 28 km from Lakhaniya Dari Waterfall, has ancient forts, dams and waterfalls. Also several other places are in the proximity which is a famous tourist destination such as- Siddhanath Dari Waterfall which is almost 15 km and Saketgarh fort which is at a distance of few kilometers from Lakhaniya Dari Waterfall. Visitors who visit these places also visit Jirgo Dam which is at a distance of 14 km from Chunar. Chunar fort lies between Varanasi and Mirzapur. The Chunar fort stands on a rock at an elevation of 280 feet above sea level. The fort is located on a rock which rises abruptly from the plain, and encroaches into the river for some distance. Geographically the Chunar town is in triangular shape. It is situated on the right bank of river Ganga and on the left bank of jirgo. As the place is of historic importance, the tradition is also in its environment.
Devdari waterfall is situated on chandraprabha river near to the chandraprabha dam. Along the course of Karmanasa, at an edge of the Rohtas plateau, Devdari waterfall is 58 meters high.
The waterfall is one of the most natural beautiful scenes of Uttar Pradesh. For the security purpose the waterfall is barricaded with stone wall because there is forest near the waterfall and always there is a fear of wild animals. Best time to explore the Devdari waterfall is from the month of July to November. Lakhs of tourists visit every year to enjoy the beautiful natural scene. The waterfall is a famous picnic spot for the tourists. Major attractions are:- Baba Latifshah Tomb, Dhanapur Martyr Memorial, Baba Kinaram, chakiya Kali mandir
Sidhnath dari waterfall is a very famous waterfall which has various other tourist destinations at close distance from it. One can visit Shakteshgarh fort, Lakhaniya dari fall and Jirgo dam. Shakteshgarh fort is situated at a distance of 15 km from Sidhnath dari falls. One can visit the beautiful Lakhaniya dari fall which is situated at a distance of 15 km from this waterfall. The dam is at a distance of few miles from here.
Rajdari Waterfall is the greatest waterfall in this area. The fall height is more than 65 meters. The road to the waterfall is very scenic. Around 700 meters from Rajdari is Devdari Waterfall. Best time to visit is from September to March. It is in the midst of the Chandraprabha wildlife reserve. Forest rest houses are available near the waterfall if you want to relax.
Mukha waterfall tour is an interesting tour that is taken by all the tourists that come to the district of Sonebhadra. There are many things to be seen in the district and the Mukha waterfall is one of the most interesting and well known attractions of the place. The water body lies close to a Devi Mandir and Karia Tal or the lake on the Belan River. It is one of the largest waterfalls in the district. It represents a breathtaking sight during the rainy season. There are rock paintings called Lakhaniya Cave Paintings near Mukkha Fall in the cave which were drawn by Early Man.
Tanda Falls is another one of the beautiful waterfalls in Mirzapur district, 80 kms from Varanasi. The spot offers a very rejuvenating break from the hustle bustle of the city. The waterfalls especially come alive during the rainy season when the gushing waterfalls is sparkling in all its glory and fervour. Besides, there is a beautiful reservoir opposite to the falls, known as Tanda Dam. The 86 years old dam is the chief source of water supplies in this area. Situated at a distance of 14 km from Mirzapur, the spot is frequented by tourists round the year
Chunadari's location is in close proximity to the Lakhiyana Dari falls but mind you the approach is not very smooth via road. The height of the pristine waters is about 165 ft and it allows its water to gush into the Lakhania Dari. If you judge by the base of the waterfall, the exact depth is difficult to determine. Let us talk about a big stone at the base of the waterfall: this highlights the elegance of the glamorous waterfall. As watching it from the stone could be a tad bit risky, folks