Gaumukh, an important place according to the Hindus, is the origin of the sacred river Bhagirathi. Gomukh is also pronounced as “Gomukhi” or “Gaumukh”. It’s located at 13,200 ft. height in the Himalayas, and surrounded by extreme cold weather conditions. They say it is a beautiful and religious place, which depicts the natural beauty of the earth. The glacier is situated at the Uttarkashi in the state of Uttarakhand. People who visit the Chota Char Dham of Uttarakhand are likely to visit Gangotri Glacier and Gaumukh. It is around 20 km away from Gangotri. Pilgrims have so much faith in the river Ganga origin, that they love to trek even in difficult terrain to get the Darshana of Gaumukh. Let us know more about this adventurous and markable place in this blog.

Gaumukh Tapovan is famous for: 

It’s famous for its rare geographical and religious significance. As we mentioned, it’s understood as the origin of the river Bhagirathi. Let me tell you that river Bhagirathi is the other name of river Ganga and we all are well familiar with the importance of river Ganga among the Hindus. In geography, you might have studied that when the Alaknanda River comes and meets with the Bhagirathi at the Devprayag then the same river is known as the Ganga. Along with it, Gaumukh is the second-largest glacier in India. Gaumukh is a source of the holy Ganga River, as well as it is considered one of the holiest lands in Uttarakhand It is known for its adventurous, challenging difficult trek and the resemblance to a cow’s face. 

Gaumukh story

Now let’s know about the religious stories of this special place. Tapovan is famous for the holy Ramayana. At that time this place used to be occupied by sages or saints for meditation and spirituality. Still, people visit this place for mental peace. Besides that, tourists get goosebumps when they witness the precious beauty of the Himalayas. If you are the one who wants to experience the high spiritual vibrations then you must visit this peaceful place. 

New research has come out such as the snout is moving backwards as it has moved 1 km in 70 years. The beautiful sunset and sunrise in this place appear more memorable for all of us. If you have the chance then don’t miss this golden opportunity. The Ganga aarti is also held there to thank Ganga maa for the blessings. 

Gaumukh in Puranas

“Gaumukh” the name originates from the ‘Cow’s Mouth’. “Gau” means “Cow” and “Mukh” means “mouth”. It looks like a Cow’s mouth, there is one story mentioned in the Puranas. Once, a boy lost his sheep, when searching for it here and there, he reached a glacier in the Gangotri and saw a snout which exactly looked like the Cows mouth hence it is named Gaumukh. After that many people, saints, and sages visited there to travel, trek and for religious purposes. There are a few local sayings about the place that if you visit there with a dirty mindset or with a polluted body/your ancestors will fall into a burning hell. And if you worship or visit there with a good heart and mind or with a religious purpose, you will get the desired gains. 

A Complete Guide to the Trek 

The trek is a bit difficult, as there is no route to reach there by bike; you have to trek by foot to reach Gomukh from Gangotri. However, several devotees trek on this trail so you don’t need to be fearful. Once you complete the trek, you will be witnessing the origin of the holy river Gangotri. This mesmerizing view of Gaumukh will numb you for a few seconds for sure. 

Gaumukh trek starting point:

The trek starts from the Gangotri which is 19 km away from the Gomukh itself. The road is feasible for the pedestal yatra. Try to be with your group while trekking on this critical trek, so that if you feel any normal physical problem like fatigue then anybody can help you. 

Gaumukh Trek itinerary: 

After completing the few kilometres you will reach Chirbasa, the abode of Chir trees, which is at the height of 3,580 meters above sea level. Here you can enjoy the rare serene beauty of the Himalayan flora and fauna. Spend some time observing the beautiful Chir trees. You can click the pictures of the surrounding area as well. 

From there, the Gila Pahar is a few kilometres away from the Chirbasa. Here the Bharals and antelope are sometimes seen, which are a type of Himalayan fauna. Afterwards, you’ll reach Bhojbasa. After completing the trek of 4.5 hours from Bhojbasa, one will be witnessing Mt. Shivling before the Gomukh. After moving a little you will reach Gomukh, and you can seek the blessing and can do meditation there. 


Only 150 people are allowed to trek Gomukh from Gangotri daily. You can reserve your tickets by fax, after you permit you have to confirm your tickets from the district magistrate Uttarkashi office. Special permits are required because of the landslides and rockslides on the roads along with a guide for the safety of the one. 

How to Reach Gaumukh

You can reach Gaumukh By Air, Rail, or road and can accommodate the following with the means of transport.

By Air: 

Jolly Grant Airport located in Dehradun is the nearest Airport to Uttarkashi, with a distance of 150 km. From there you can easily grab cars and buses to Gangotri. 

By Rail:

Rishikesh Railway Station is one of the nearest Railway stations to Uttarkashi which is 163 km away. Uttarkashi has no railway connectivity. So firstly you have to reach any other city and can come to Uttarkashi by road vehicles. 

By Road:

There are so many buses going to Gangotri, you can take the assistance of private transport. Most people prefer booking private buses from the base cities of Uttarakhand like Haridwar, Rishikesh and Dehradun. Once you book your seat on the bus then they will manage everything about the itinerary to make you reach the places you have paid for. 

Gangotri Gaumukh Travel Tips

You might be aware of the fact that Gangotri to Gaumukh is a challenging pedestrian path and that’s why we are sharing some of the essential travel tips for you. 

  • The Gaumukh is located at a high altitude, so bring general medicines for coping with Altitude motion sickness. 
  • The Gangotri to Gaumukh trek is approximately 19 Km, so you can feel tired and dizzy after moving a few kilometres. So you should bring some energy chocolates, snacks and light packaged food that you can eat quickly. 
  • If you have some blood pressure or heart issues then please consult with your regular Doctor before going on this Gaumukh trek, which might appear a bit hard for you. 
  • The Gaumukh temperature remains very low and snowfall is also expected generally. So you should wear enough woollen clothes to save yourself from Frostbite or other cold consequences. Cover your soles and palms properly with hand gloves, socks, and shoes as well. 


Q1. Why is Gaumukh special?

A1. Gaumukh is one of the holiest places of Uttarakhand and the second highest glacier in India with a height of 13,200 ft and 18 km away from the Gangotri. It is the origin of the holy river Gangotri which is the origin of Ganga maa. The resemblance of the Gaumukh with the cow’s face makes it unique. 

Q2. When is the best time to visit Gaumukh?

The best time to visit Summer and Autumn i.e. from May to June and September till the last week of October. During the winters due to rain, the trek becomes closed. 

Q3. How far is Gomukh from Gangotri?

A3. Gomukh is the source of the Bhagirathi River situated in Uttarakhand and is approximately 18 km away from Gangotri. You can stay overnight at Bhojbasa by completing the 14 km trek from Gangotri. 

Q4. What’s the difficulty level of the Gaumukh trek? 

A4. This trek is moderately difficult as it is one of the highest of the Himalayas, and the journey is so thrilling with the beauty, culture, adventures and local wildlife.


Here in this blog, we have tried to share the information to reach Gaumukh. Usually, the pilgrims who leave their homes for the Chota Char Dham Yatra, keep the desire of visiting the Gaumukh as well. Besides that, some trekking freak people also go on the Gangotri to Gaumukh trek. If you have never seen the origin of rivers and want to enjoy this kind of unique scene then book your tickets for the Uttarakhand. We are a tour operator company Travel Acharya, working in the trails of the Himalayas to make your journey comfortable and convenient. If you want to book the tour packages for the famous sites of Uttarakhand then feel free to visit our home page and you can approach us also on our social media page. 

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