Mata Vaishno Devi Temple: Explore the Mystic Journey to Divinity

vaishno devi temple

India is a country of gods, with more than 6.49 lakh big and small temples. One such highly worshiped shrine of god located in the Trikuta mountains of Jammu and Kashmir is the Vaishno Devi Temple. 

Set amid the paradise of the lower Himalayas in Katra, this is one of the most sacred shrines for Hindus, which people visit from all over the world, just like the 12 Jyotirlingas. 

If you’re planning a trip to Vaishno Devi anytime soon, bookmark this article, since it has everything you need to know, from timings to where to stay. 

Vaishno Devi Temple Jammu Kashmir: A Brief Overview 

Vaishnodevi temple

Before visiting, it is important to come across the history and importance of that place to enjoy and appreciate it thoroughly. 

Pandavas have built the most well-known temples in the Himalayas like the 12 Shiva temples, but the Vaishnavi temple in Katra is known to have been built before the war of Kurukshetra.

Trek distance 13 km (from Katra) 
Time taken for the climb 5–8 hours 
Ideal Duration 1 Day
Best Time October–June 
Vaishno Devi temple height5200 ft

History of Vaishno Devi Jammu Kashmir temple

There is an interesting history behind why the temple was built in the hills of Jammu instead of anywhere else. Although this story may be different from what you might have heard since there are many different versions of Hindu texts. 

The story is set in the Treta Yug, when the Earth was suffering from evil forces and sought help from the Trimurti. The three goddesses, being unable to help her individually, combined forces, and a beautiful divine girl was born. 

As she grew older, she would go into deep meditation for hours straight to seek more knowledge to marry Lord Vishnu. Seeing her commendable faith in God, Lord Vishnu blessed her with immortality. Promising marriage in Kalyug, he set her off to Northern India, in the hills of Jammu. 

Goddess Vaishno Devi fulfilled her duties, killed the demons and monsters residing on the earth, and found refuge in a cave in the mountains. 

History of the Priest family of Vaishno Devi temple 

The well-known legend of the priest family of Vaishno Devi temple is about Pandit Sridhar Brahmin who was a devotee of the goddess Shakti. One day when the goddess Vaishnavi appeared in his dreams and assured him, he organized a Bhandara despite being very poor and not having enough space for the guests. 

But somehow, when the day of the Bhandara arrived Pandit Sridhar received many guests who easily lodged in his small hut and could even have their favorite food, despite Sridhar not being able to provide a glass of water. 

Later when Vaishnavi walked out of his hut he was sure that she helped him, but after that he couldn’t find her anywhere. Dejected he decided he took a fast unto death, just then the Goddess appeared in his dreams and showed him the vision of his cave and also blessed him with a boon of four sons. This is how Pandit Sridhar and his descendants started worshiping in the temple. 

Vaishno Devi Temple Katra Timings

The Vaishno Devi temple is open to all devotees the whole year round. Here are the Vaishno Devi temple Kashmir timings, along with Aarti, Prasad, Charan Paduka darshan, etc. 

Days Opening Time Closing Time Break Timings 
Monday to Sunday5:00 AM 9:00 PM 12:00 PM — 4:00 PM 

Vaishno Devi Temple Aarti Timings 

Aarti Timings
Morning Aarti 6:20 am — 8:00 am
Bhog Aarti1:00 pm — 2:30 pm 
Evening Aarti7:20 pm — 8:30 pm

Vaishno Devi Ticket Prices 

Visiting Vaishno Devi is free! Yes, there’s no entry fee to enter the temple, however, here are some other optional charges, like VIP entry that you need to know about ~ 

VIP Ticket Prices ₹500/person
Atka Aarti Darshn ₹1000/person
Individual Poojan (the devotees don’t need to be physically present)₹2100/person
Individual Poojan (the devotee needs to be physically present)₹11,000/person

Helicopter Services 

Helicopter services to the temple are offered to help old and disabled people reach the temple. The whole journey takes about 8 minutes starting from the foothills of Katra and ending at Sanjhichatti which is 2.5 km from the temple. One flight can accommodate around 5–6 passengers. 

Ticket Prices 

  • One-way ticket (either side) — ₹2100
  • Round Ticket — ₹4,200

Prices of Ponies 

Ponies Adult Pilgrim Adult + Child (3–6 years)
Katra to Bhawan₹700 ₹800
Katra to Adh-kumari or Adh-Kumari to Bhawan₹380₹430
Katra to Sanjichhat₹600₹675
Bhawan to Katra via Bharion₹850₹900
Bhawan to Sanjichhat or Bhawan to Bhairon₹275₹300
Bhawan to Adkuwari via Bharion₹425₹475

Prices of Pithoos 

Pithoos Luggage up to 25 Kg or Children up to 6 Years of Age
Katra to Bhawan and back₹700
Katra to Bhawan₹350
Bhawan to Katra via Bhairon₹400
Note — We do NOT recommend opting for Pitoos or Ponies, if you’re not fit enough to climb all the way, consider opting for Palkis or Helicopter services. Please DO NOT participate in animal cruelty!

Rates of Paliquins (Palkis)

PALANQUINS (PALKIS)Katra to Bhawan & Back to KatraKatra to Bhawan & Back Via BhaironSanjichat Helipad to Bhawan
For a Pilgrim upto 100 Kg weight (4 Carriers)₹4000₹4500₹1250
For a Pligrim above 100 Kg weight (6 Carriers)₹4500₹5000₹1500

Shraddha Suman Vishesh Pooja 

Devotees get the privilege of witnessing the auspicious Aarti Darshan of the Goddess Vaishno Devi, which otherwise is not allowed. Remember that once you’ve booked this pooja ceremony, it can’t be canceled, postponed, or postponed. There are different categories of this pooja ~ 

Category 1 

  • Cost — ₹26,000
  • Only 1 devotee is allowed for the Aarti Darshan
  • 1 child below 10 years of age is allowed to accompany the devotee
  • Includes a 2 bedded AC Room in Niharika 
  • Includes a 2 bedded Room at Bhavan
  • 3 meals are provided for one person free of charge at Katra/Bhawan
  • Prashad 

Category B

  • Cost — ₹48,000
  • 2 people are allowed for the Aarti darshan
  • 2 children below 10 years of age are allowed to accompany the devotee.
  • Includes a 2 bedded AC Room in Niharika 
  • Includes a 2 bedded Room at Bhavan
  • 3 meals are provided for one person free of charge at Katra/Bhawan
  • Prashad

Category C

  • Cost — ₹71,000
  • 3 people are allowed for the Aarti darshan
  • 2 children below 10 years of age are allowed to accompany the devotee.
  • Includes a 2 bedded AC Room in Niharika 
  • Includes a 2 bedded Room at Bhavan
  • 3 meals are provided for one person free of cost at Katra/Bhawan
  • Prashad

Category D 

  • Cost — ₹1,21,000
  • 5 people are allowed for the Aarti darshan
  • 2 children below 10 years of age are allowed to accompany the devotee.
  • Includes a 2 bedded AC Room in Niharika 
  • Includes a 2 bedded Room at Bhavan
  • 3 meals are provided for one person free of cost at Katra/Bhawan
  • Prashad

You can check for availability and book your spot for the pooja online. Remember that an additional amount of ₹21,000 per person will be charged on the occasion of Navratri. 

Devotees can book their slots online from the official website:

Must Know Before You Visit Vaishno Devi

A trip to Vaishno Devi is not at all easy, so if you’re visiting for the first time know that the trek is steep and can take up to 5–8 hours, so you have to be prepared. Here are some important things you need to know BEFORE visiting the temple ~ 

  1. The trekking involves walking uphill so ensure that you prepare for the same in advance so that you don’t have to face many problems going up. 
  1. Check the weather forecast before the trip. 
  1. Try to avoid visiting during winter since the snow might make it difficult and dangerous to trek. 
  1. Do not forget to apply sunscreen, since the sun damage is maximized at high altitudes.
  1. Wear proper trekking shoes to make the trek easier. 
  1. Carry light snacks and water bottles to keep yourself hydrated and full of energy. 
  1. Wear modest clothes and familiarize yourself with the customs and rituals of the temple. 
  1. Wear full clothing as you may find some creepy insects and beetles on the way.
  1. Prior permission is required to participate in the Shraddha Suman Vishesh Pooja.

Recommended Read — Ram Mandir Ayodhya: Inauguration Date, History, Location, and Architecture

Main Attractions at Vaishno Devi Temple 

The trek to Vaishno Devi temple is not an easy one, but if you still have the energy and drive to explore the surroundings, here are some main attractions to not miss near Vaishno Devi temple ~

Bhairo Baba Temple 

The temple belongs to Bhairo Nath, who was an accomplished tantrik who fell in love with Vaishnodevi and followed her to Jammu. In the end, he was killed by the goddess for the harassment, but she also later blessed him, saying that the devotees would have to visit him right after the goddess to complete their pilgrimage. 

Bhairo Nath temple 

Raghunath Bazar 

The Raghunath market is amazing place to shop for local stuff, dry fruits, and souvenirs for your family and friends. You can also eat some local food at the shops and stalls.   

Raghunath bazar

Ardh Kuwari Cave 

Ardh Kunwari Cave, also known as Garbajoon Cave is a 52-foot-long religious site just 11.2 km away from Katra. 


Dos And Don’ts at Vaishno Devi Temple 

While visiting the temple, it’s essential to adhere to certain ways and behaviors to uphold and respect the holiness of the temple. Here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind when visiting the Vaishno Devi temple ~

  • Maintain a reverent attitude.
  • Show respect for its religious significance. 
  • Dress modestly.
  • Maintain and observe the silence.
  • Dispose of the waste properly. 
  • Take care of your personal belongings .
  • Keep water bottles with you and stay hydrated. 
  • Keep small snacks and candies to keep yourself energized. 
  • Take precautions while trekking to the temple.
  • Carry sunscreen and other essentials. 
  • Carry extra batteries and a portable charger.
  • Do not carry valuables in your bag.
  • Do not consume non-vegetarian food.
  • Do not disrespect religious symbols. 
  • Do not photograph in the restricted area.
  • Do not smoke or consume tobacco.
  • Do not engage in commercial activity.
  • Do not cause damage to the property. 
  • Do not ignore the safety guidelines. 
  • Don’t engage in public displays of affection. 

Maa Vaishno Devi Dham Photos

Vaishno Devi Jammu
Vaishno Devi Jammus
Vaishnavi Devi
Vaishnavi Devi temple
Vaishno Devi location

Rules and Regulations at Vaishno Devi Temple

Let me warn you, Hindu temples are not at all lenient when it comes to the rules and regulations inside the temple. 

  1. Remove your footwear before entering the temple. 
  2. Dress modestly, covering your shoulders and legs. 
  3. Maintain silence and respect for fellow devotees. 
  4. Do not throw your offerings at the idol. 
  5. Photography and videography may not be allowed inside the temple. 
  6. Eating non-vegetarian food and drinking inside the temple is strictly prohibited. 
  7. Maintain cleanliness inside the premises. 
  8. Security checks may be conducted at various entry points. Visitors are required to cooperate with security personnel and follow their instructions.
  9. Visitors are expected to wait patiently in line for darshan since there might be a queue system during the peak pilgrimage seasons to manage the flow of devotees.
  10. Visitors should respect the religious customs and traditions observed at the temple, including rituals and ceremonies.

Things to Consider Before Visiting Vaishno Devi

Vaishno Devi temple is open for devotees all year round. Many devotees believe that you can only visit Vaishno Devi when you get an epiphany call from the goddess. But despite that, here is the best time to visit Vaishno Devi temple ~ 

  1. Weather — Katra experiences extreme temperatures in both summers and winters. It will get quite hot in the summer and freezing cold in winter. Katra is one of the best places to visit in India from March to June. 
  1. Monsoon — Avoid visiting during monsoon, which is from July to September, since it gets quite dangerous because of the heavy rainfall and landslides. 
  1. Festivals — Vaishno Devi receives many devotees throughout the year, but during Hindu festivals like Navratri and Diwali, the visitors double in number. 
  1. Accommodation Availability: Avoid visiting during peak pilgrimage seasons since the accommodation options in Katra may be limited and prices may be higher.

How to Reach Vaishnodevi Temple

How to Reach Vaishnodevi Temple

Here’s the Vaishno Devi location and a proper guide on how to reach the temple ~ 

Vaishno Devi

  • By Train — You can take a train to Katra Railway Station, and from there you can directly start your trek to the temple, which is about 12 kilometers. 
  • By Bus — The road network to Katra is well-connected to all the major cities of India. You can easily board a bus to Katra and from there, start your trek to the temple.  
  • By Flight — The closest airport to Katra is Sawari Airport, which is about 50 kilometers away from Vaishno Devi Temple. After arriving at the airport, you can either take a taxi or a cab to Katra, which will take about an hour. 

Contact Details of The Temple 

If you still have any queries or want to book the personal pooja, here are the contact details of Mata Vaishno Devi Temple~

For Inquiry & Current Reservations 24 * 7 Hours:

Phone — 01991-234053

Email —

For inquiries regarding Online Services during office hours 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM: 

Phone — 01991-232887, 232820.

Email —

For inquiries regarding Protocol Services during office hours 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM:

Phone — 01991-232029

Email —

Fax — 01991-232089

Round the Clock Call Center 24 * 7 Hours available all 365 days:

Phone — 01991-234804,

WhatsApp number — 9906019494

Email —

For Shraddha Suman Vishesh Pooja ceremony:

Address — Shakti Bhawan, Niharika Complex (Near Bus Stand), Katra – 182301 (J&K)

Official WebsiteShri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board

Phone — 01991–234053

Email —

For any complaints, suggestions, or feedback: 

You may send an e-mail to

Nearby Famous Places To The Temple 

Here are some must-visit places near Vaishno Devi temple Kashmir that you can cover in one visit ~ 

  1. Gori Pind (300 meters) 
  2. Bahu Fort (50.1 km)
  3. Gori Kund (300 meters)
  4. Sukhal Ghat (300 meters)
  5. Shiv Khori (16.5 km)

To know more about Mata Vaishno Devi Yatra, watch this YouTube vlog by Peace Mantra


Mata Vaishno Devi Temple stands as a timeless symbol of devotion, power, and spiritual enlightenment. In the tranquil embrace of the Trikuta Mountains, amidst the echoes of ancient chants, this temple stands as a testament to the spiritual center point. 

Reaching Vaishno Devi temple is not at all easy, you will have to trek for around 13 km, which will take 5–8 hours. If you’re not fit enough to walk up you can opt for the helicopter service. 

Frequently Asked Questions
Vaishno Devi in which state?

Vaishno Devi Shrine is located in the lap of Trikuta Hills, which is 13 Km away from Katra.

What is special about Vaishno Devi Temple?

Vaishno Devi temple is popular for the belief that the deity fulfills all the wishes of the devotees visiting her.

How many steps are in Vaishno Devi?

There are a total of 740 steps starting from Katra Gate to the temple.


Wikipedia — Vaishno Devi Temple

Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board — Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board

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