About Beatles Ashram
Formerly known as Chaurasi Kutia, Beatles Ashram happens to be a popular ashram located at Rishikesh in Uttarakhand. The place received a lot of hype and achieved wide recognition after the Beatles band of Liverpool came to stay there in the year 1986.
The members of the band practiced meditation and composed many good songs in this place.
In the later period, the ashram was left abandoned but was reopened for tourists in the year 2015. At present, the Beatles Ashram is visited by locals as well as tourists, out of which most of the travelers are Beatles band fans. The place usually attracts history buffs, experience seekers, serenity and peace seekers, nature lovers, photo fanatics, and meditation enthusiasts.
The major attractions of the ashram include its stunning dome-shaped construction, amazing graffiti works, and the beautiful picture of the members of the Beatles band painted in one of the interior walls of Ved Bhavan.
Other interesting things that can be seen here are the mysterious writings done on the walls of Siddhi Bhavan and Anand Bhavan and the beautifully designed meditation chambers of Chaurasi Kutia.
The Beatles Ashram is believed to have a unique energy and inspiring vibe of its own that makes visitors realize the real power and value of spirituality.
The relaxing and rejuvenating environment of the place tranquilizes the body from within and refreshes the mind, filling you up with positivity.
Surrounded by other serene attractions of the city, this place is totally worth visiting when you’re on a trip to the country’s Yoga Capital, Rishikesh.
History of Beatles Ashram -
Established by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Beatles Ashram was in operation already before the arrival of the Beatles band.
The Maharishi used to teach Transcendental Meditation here to the individuals who were interested in learning and developing an educational career in this field.
The member of the British band The Beatles arrived at the ashram in the year 1968. Before coming to this place, the Beatle band had participated in the Maharishi’s seminar in Wales, which propelled them to visit Rishikesh and stay for three months in his ashram.
They undertook the TM course and stayed in accommodation provided at the extreme back of Beatles Ashram.
They enjoyed better facilities than the other students and were supplied with 24/7 running water, private toilets, and electric heaters.
According to history, the Beatles band had to leave the place before their planned duration of stay after the Maharishi was accused of sexual assault.
The ashram was then abandoned and taken into the administration of the forestry department.
In December 2015, the site was finally opened for public visits and was officially declared as a tourist hub. In February 2018, an exhibition was held at the Beatles Ashram to observe the completion of fifty years of the arrival of the Beatles band in Rishikesh.
How to Reach Beatles Ashram
Beatles Ashram in Rishikesh is well-connected to the major cities of the country through railways and airways. The place is located at a distance of around 30 kilometers from Jolly Grant airport and 13 kilometers from the nearest railway station. Local taxis can be easily hired to reach the ashram from the railway station and the airport.
Best Time to Visit Beatles Ashram
Beatles Ashram is best visited in the spring months of March and April. You can also visit the place in the winter months when there is a slight cold in the city’s air and the weather feels amazing for taking a walk inside the ashram and sightseeing. However, avoid visiting the ashram in the summer season as the weather is a bit hot during this time.
What Not to Miss at Beatles Ashram
Attractions near Beatles Ashram -
1. Rajaji National Park - Rajaji National Park happens to be one of the most recognized national parks in India. The place is home to multiple exotic species of fauna and flora.
Some of the interesting animals that can be seen in the park are Himalayan Yellow-Throated Marten, Indian Porcupine, Nilgai, Hanuman Langur, Common Krait, Indian Cobra, Crested Kingfisher, Great Hornbill, and Lineated Barbet, among others. Rajaji National Park is open for visiting from 7 AM to 10 AM and 2.30 PM to 6.30 PM.
2. Ram Jhula- Built in the year 1986, Ram Jhula happens to be an iconic tourist attraction near Beatles Ashram. It is basically a hanging bridge running across river Ganga and establishing a connection between Shivananda Nagar and Swargashram.
The 750 feet spanning bridge is a mesmerizingly engineered, offering a magnificent panoramic sight of the Ganges.
3.Triveni Ghat- Located at a distance of 13.7 kilometers from Beatles Ashram, Triveni Ghat happens to be the meeting point of three rivers – Ganga, Yamuna, and Saraswati. In accordance with popular belief, taking a bath in Triveni Ghat purifies your soul and washes away every sin you have committed.
The place usually attracts pilgrims, experience seekers, and God lovers.
4. Sivananda Ashram- Situated at a distance of 12.1 kilometers from Beatles Ashram, Sivananda Ashram happens to be a religious spot that guides visitors towards achieving happiness and peace.
The ashram is popular among tourists as a renowned meditation and yoga center and the best destination to attend Satsang. This tourist spot usually attracts yoga lovers and spiritual knowledge seekers.
5. Tera Manzil Temple- Trimbakeshwar Temple, better known as Tera Manzil Temple happens to be a thirteen-storeyed shrine, located at a distance of 2.1 kilometers from Beatles Ashram.
The temple is famous for its breathtaking architecture and the panoramic landscape sight it offers from its topmost floor.
Things to do at Beatles Ashram -
1. Visit the Ashram - Pay a brief visit of around 30 minutes to the iconic ashram, which was once home to the members of the Beatles band, who stayed there for a long time, seeking peace and spirituality.
2. Click Good Photographs and Take Them Home as a Memory- Take some beautiful pictures and upload them on your social media profiles to show your peers your happiness for having visited the spot where the world-famous Beatle band once lived.
3. Witness the Wall Arts- Catch a glimpse of the impressive paintings done on the ashram’s walls by the visitors.
4. Experience Trekking- Enjoy trekking to Laxman Jhula and Ram Jhula and experience the beauty of both bridges.
5. Visit Ved Bhavan- If you’re a real Beatles fan, do not forget to visit Ved Bhawan or the Beatles Cathedral. This spot offers the best feeling in the entire ashram. Once visitors enter the hall, they can watch the beautiful images of Ringo Starr, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, and John Lennon on their right-hand side.
You can also see the seat of the Maharishi inside the Ved Bhavan.
6. Experience the Unique Chaurasi Kutia- As you walk towards the end of Beatles Ashram, you can see a structure, which has a similar design as that of a hostel. This structure is known as Chaurasi Kutia.
The name of the building is inspired by the fact that it has about eighty-four meditation rooms. The rooms have been constructed with stones from the nearby river and look amazingly beautiful.
7. Visit Siddhi Bhavan and Anand Bhavan- When you are at the Beatles Ashram, never miss out on visiting Siddhi Bhavan and Anand Bhavan, the ashram’s largest buildings.
This place happened to be the residential area of the people who visited the ashram for advanced learning.
When in this place, don’t forget to take a look at the mysterious and weird writings done on the interior walls of the buildings.
Other Essential Information About Beatles Ashram
Location: The Beatles Ashram is situated to the east of the river Ganges, in the Himalayan foothills, opposite to Muni Ki Reti region of Rishikesh.
Address : Swarg Ashram, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand 249304.
Timings: The Beatles Ashram is open for visiting from 9 AM to 4 PM, throughout the week.
Price: The entry fee is INR 150 per head for Indian nationals and INR 600 for foreign nationals.
Facts about Beatles Ashram -
1. Everything started with a newspaper advertisement-
Pattie Boyd, the wife of George Harison came across a newspaper advertisement of the Transcendental Meditation classes in 1967. She immediately registered for the same and later told Harrison about the same.
In the same year, Harrison went to attend a lecture of the Maharishi with the entire Beatles band in London. After getting impressed by the speech of the Maharishi, the Beatles band decided on visiting Beatles Ashram in Rishikesh.
2. Along with the Beatles band, other English celebrities also visited the ashram-
The Beatles band arrived at the Beatles Ashram back in the year 1968.
Other westerners, who stayed in the ashram, were – song-writer and singer Mike Love, singer Donovan, actress Mia Farrow, jazz flautist Paul Horn, American socialite Nancy Cooke de Herrera, Mia’s siblings John Farrow and Prudence, American actor Tom Simcox, model Jenny Boyd, photographer Saltzman, journalist Lewis Lapham, and Greek inventor Alexis Mardas.
3. The stay at Beatles Ashram was just like a summer camp-
The Beatles Ashram was built by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the year 1963 with a donation of 100,000 US dollars from Doris Duke, the then heiress of America.
The property was developed on a land of 14 acres and consisted of 6 bungalows, each featuring 5 to 6 rooms, multiple vegetable gardens, and flower beds. The bungalow of the Maharishi consisted of a lecture room, swimming pool, and post office.
The Beatles had been supplied with beds, mattresses, window curtains, mirrors, and toilet essentials.
Life at Beatles Ashram was just about eating, meditating, and sleeping. At night, the musicians played music together whereas others sat and experienced the amazing night sounds that featured a dramatic chorus of parrots, crows, and peacocks.This simple, fun-filled, and engaging life inspired the songwriters to come up with the best songs of their lives.
Tips for Beatles Ashram -
1. Consider visiting the Beatles Ashram with a local as the caretaker generally demands a heavy charge from tourists for entering the campus of the ashram.
2. Carry a mosquito repellant spray or apply a mosquito repellent cream on your skin before stepping into the ashram.
3. If you have an allergy to dust, consider covering your nose and mouth before entering the ashram.
4. Avoid urinating anywhere you feel like and use the toilets provided in the ashram.
5. Do not carry any eatable as there is a café inside the ashram to fill your stomach when hungry.
6. Be ready to capture a spectrum of pictures!