Haridwar and Rishikesh are both considered to be holy places in Hinduism. Both of these places are mentioned in Hindu legends, and both of these places are situated along the Ganges River, and is considered sacred.
On the banks of the Ganges in Haridwar, people congregate to bathe themselves in the holy water of the Ganges. There were even naked little children doing the same. Since my trip here somewhat coincided with Kanwar, there were people (the ones in orange) here collecting water for their pilgrimage.
I seriously question the cleanliness of the water with so many people swimming in it and the constant stream of garbage that the locals throw into the river (at one point, I saw a rat run across the street in front of me in broad daylight). Despite this, the water is still considered holy.
Upstream of the Ganges at Haridwar, and situated at the foothills of the Himalayas, Rishikesh is another holy place to Hindus and is famous around the world as the yoga capital of the world.
Here, a bridge connects the two sides of the river. Both sides of the river have many temples and yoga retreats where travellers from around the world come to learn yoga, and Ayurveda (tradition Indian medicine).