The holiest of all Hindu rivers, the River Ganga takes shape in Uttarakhand. In Uttarakhand, the Ganga flows in many places in the form of smallest stream, rivers and tributaries. With its source at Gaumukh, the river begins in the heights of the Gangotri Glacier.
The glacial waters then take a 25 meter plunge into the Gauri Kund, from where the river starts her cross-country journey, which terminates at the island town of Ganga Sagar in West Bengal. The Ganga river system drains a large chunk of the Himalayas right from the eastern slopes of the Shimla ridge to eastern Nepal, which is actually the central Himalayas that incorporates the Kumaon and Garhwal regions. With its famous tributaries, the Yamuna and Kali, three smaller river systems are formed, namely the Yamuna system, the Ganga system and the Kali system. The river in its upper stages is known as Bhagirathi. As it flows down, it acquires different names crowned with religious significance. Before merging with the ocean, the river divides itself into several streams and drains into the Bay of Bengal. Also merging with the Ganga here is the River Brahmaputra.
The Ganga assumes other names here, such as the Padma and the Meghna. Hindus believe that a dip in the holy waters of the Ganga purges mortal souls of all sin. The Ganga is not just an attraction for soul-searching pilgrims, but is also a very popular hub for water sports. The raging rivers are perfect for adventure enthusiasts who can get their fill of thrill with white water rafting in the upper reaches of the river, where rapids are many and challenging. If hurtling over steep rocky river terrain on speedy icy waters isn’t your thing, other river activities like boating or kayaking can be enjoyed.