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How To Reach Amarkantak
Amarkantak in MP is at the meeting point of two mountain ranges and where three rivers emerge. The mountain ranges that meet are the Satpura and the Vindhya while the rivers are the Sone, Narmada and Johila. It is at a height of 3438’ and the roads that run through Jabalpur, Katni, Rewa and Shahdol connect Amarkantak. Narmada, which has its origin in Amarkanatak is known to the Hindus as the holiest of holy rivers. This is because Narmada, according to Hindu scriptures, is the daughter of Lord Shiva. It is therefore believed that those that die in Amarkantak will get eternal salvation. Amarkantak therefore finds mention in all the religious books, the Puranas, Ramayana and the Mahabharata. The great sage and litterateur Adi Shankaracharya was born in 788AD and also consecrated on the banks of the Narmada River. In recent history, between 10th and 11th Century AD, the Chedi King gave away Amarkantak in dowry to the Kalachuri King. Amarkantak’s significance is then purely religious, since time immemorial.
The Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary is located only 40 km from Amarkantak while the green forest- cover in this town is a part of a biosphere known as Achanakmar Amarkantak Biosphere. The best way to reach Amarkantak is by air to Jabalpur and from there by taxi to Amarkantak, which is 200 km and four hours away. One could also catch a train to Jabalpur and then travel to Amarkantak.
The small town Amarkantak is surrounded by two mountain ranges and thick forests. The road connection is good between Amarkantak and Jabalpur, Pendra and Katni. A driver’s first-hand account of his road trip from Jabalpur says that the drive was lovely and he passed through a countryside that was lush green with villages. The roads, he said “were in good shape”. A drive from Delhi will take you almost 17 hours to cover the 1055 km of road. Today drives such as this will be generally good with patches under maintenance.
Though Amarkantak does have a railway station it does not have a good link with the rest of the country. It is therefore a better idea to travel by train to Jabalpur which has a direct service with New Delhi and Mumbai besides Chennai, Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Kolkata among almost all the principal cities. Check up the IRCTC portal and it will surely have a train suitable to your needs. In all likelihood the train will be a superfast one.
Jabalpur airport known as Dumna Airport comes after Indore and Bhopal airports in the order of its flight schedule. The importance of this airport is primarily because of its connectivity for tourists who are headed for Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Amarkantak among others. As per available information Alliance, Indigo and Spice Jet operate flight services to Jabalpur. Since Amarkantak does not have its own airport it is a good idea to take a flight to Jabalpur and take a taxi to Amarkantak on landing.
Amarkantak is a small place and it is possible to cover all travel on foot. However, auto rickshaws are also available and these can be hired. Taxis are also available although these are not as visible compared to the auto rickshaws. Buses can be hired for large groups.