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Introducing Omkareshwar

One of a number of holy places with ghats referred to as a ‘mini Varanasi’, this Om-shaped island attracts pilgrims in large numbers and has become a popular chill-out destination on the backpacker trail.

The controversial dam has changed the look of Omkareshwar considerably, but the island has retained its spiritual vibe and remains a pleasant place to stay.

Much activity takes place off the island, at a market square known as Getti Chowk (from where the old bridge crosses to the island), and on Mamaleshwar Rd, which links Getti Chowk to the bus stand. If you continue straight along Mamaleshwar Rd from the bus stand, without turning left to Getti Chowk, you’ll find steps leading down to the ghats (where you can cross the river on boats for ₹5). Beyond is the new bridge and the dam.

The path leading from the old bridge to Shri Omkar Mandhata temple is the hub of the island.