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Haridwar, India is one of the seven most holy Hindu pilgrimage sites that are together known as moksapuri or saptapuri. Haridwar literally means gateway to Hari, an epithet for Vishnu who is said to be the Creator in the Hindu Trinity of Creator-Preserver-Destroyer. It is also known as Gangadwara as it is near Haridwar that Ganga, regarded as the holy river of the Hindus, enters the plains of India.

Haridwar TourReferred to as Mayapuri Kshetra in the Puranas, Haridwar is one of the famous pilgrimage sites in India of the Hindus. Regarded as a significant destination among the North India pilgrimage sites, pilgrims from all over the country come to Haridwar, to pray at the temples on the banks of the river Ganga. It is thus, regarded as one of the important places of worship in India. The Kumbh Mela, a one-month long fair, is another added attraction in Haridwar that draws huge crowds from across the country.

History says Haridwar is an old and ancient city. It is mentioned in the accounts of Huien Tsang, the famous seventh century Chinese traveler. In 1399, a Turkish named Amir Timur(Tamerlane) invaded the city of Haridwar. He had already annexed Persia, Afghanistan and Mesopotamia and was eyeing India. On the pretext of glorifying Islam, Timur gained the support of his courtiers and soldiers who were not for conquering a remote area as that of India. But, when he finally invaded India, people in Haridwar, comprising of mostly Hindus, were killed brutally by the strong Turkish army.

During the nineteenth century, Haridwar became an important place for Arya Samaj, which was a movement towards reforms in India. In 1902, the followers of this sect known as Arya Samaj's founded the Gurukul of Haridwar that became a famous centre for Vedic Studies. At present Haridwar is also fast growing as a tourist destination among the westerners who have been enthralled by its sacred culture and divine aura.

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