In 1968, The Beatles came to Rishikesh to take part in a Transcendental Meditation training course at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. While there, they wrote many songs, including "Blackbird", "Dear Prudence", "Revolution", and George Harrison's "Dehradun".
For centuries, Rishikesh had already been a major Pilgrimage site for Hindus and Sikhs. As a result of the Beatles' visit, Rishikesh has also become something of a Pilgrimage site for Hippies.
Ganga, or the Ganges River, is one of the most sacred rivers to Hindus. Rishikesh is where Ganga first leaves the Himalayas to flow into the plains of northern India. From here you can explore Rajaji National Park, Patna Water Fall, Himshail Waterfall, Garud Chatti Waterfall, Neer Garh Waterfall, Patna Waterfall, and even go White Water Rafting on the river itself.
During your visit, you can see Garud Chatti Temple, and visit Geeta Bhawan to attend Satsang and other meditational programs. On the bank of Triveni Ghat you'll find Gita Mandir, and Lakshminarayan Temple. There is also Tera Manzil Temple, Rishikund, Lakshman Temple, Neelkanth Mahadev Temple, and Trayambakeshwar Temple, an ancient three-story temple by the river. The Sikh pilgrims, coming in jathas or individually from India and abroad, make their first halt at the beautiful Gurdwara here in Rishikesh. In addition, you'll find Shri Bharat Mandir, Raghunath Temple, Shatrughana Temple, Mahadev Mandir, Bhootnath Temple, Maa Kunjapuri Devi Temple, Virbhadra Temple, Shri Saccha Akhileshwar Mahadev Temple, and Trimbakeshwar Mandir.
If you're considering joining an ashram here, Watermelon Hostel is an ideal place to stay as you visit Sivananda Ashram, Parmarth Niketan Ashram, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's Ashram, Omkarananda Ashram Himalayas, Madhuban Ashram, Ganga Nivash Swarg Ashram, Maa Yoga Ashram, Baba Kali Kamli Vanprasth Ashram, Kriya Yoga Ashram, Aurovalley Ashram Rishidwar, and Vanamali Gita Yogashram to find out which is the best fit for you.
The skyline of Rishikesh wouldn't be complete without the famous suspension bridges Lakshman Jhula, and Ram Jhula. Lakshman Jhula was completed in 1929, and It is said that the Hindu deity Lakshmana crossed the Ganges on jute ropes where it is built. It is currently closed. Ram Jhula is similar in design, but was built in 1986. It is currently open to pedestrian traffic only.
At the end of each day of exploring these places, you'll come home to a nice cup of tea, and a community of fellow travelers and Pilgrims.