Chitrakoot is a town and a nagar panchayat in Satna district in the state of Madhya Pradesh, India. It is a town of religious, cultural, historical and archaeological importance, situated in the Baghelkhand region. It borders the Chitrakoot district in Uttar Pradesh, whose headquarters Chitrakoot Dham (Karwi) is located nearby. The town lies in the historical Chiktrakoot region, which is divided between the present-day Indian states of Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. It is known for a number of temples and sites mentioned in Hindu scriptures. Chitrakoot means the 'Hill of many wonders'. It falls in the northern Vindhya range of mountains spread over the states of UP and MP.
Chitrakoot Parvat Mala includes Kamad Giri, Hanumaan Dhara, Janki Kund, Lakshman pahari, and Devangana famous Religious mountains.Chitrakuta’s spiritual legacy stretches back to legendary ages: It was in these deep forests that Rama, Sita and his brother Lakshmana spent eleven and half years of their fourteen years of exile; the great sage Atri, Sati Anusuya, Dattatreya, Maharshi Markandeya, Sarbhanga, Sutikshna and various other sages, seers, devotees and thinkers meditated; and here the principal trinity of the Hindu pantheon, Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, took their incarnations.
The ghats that line the Mandakini river are called Ramghat. Here, amidst the chanting hymns and the sweet fragrance of incense, holy men in saffron sit in silent meditation or offer the solace of their wisdom to the countless pilgrims who converge here. The evening arti here witnesses a deep and abiding faith in the sanctity of Chitrakuta. During the exile period Rama, Lakshmana and Sita took bath here and believed to have appeared before the poet Tulsidas. Tulsidas has expressed that historical and religious incidence in the following metre in Hindi.
Kamadgiri, the original Chitrakuta, is a place of prime religious significance. A forested hill, it is skirted all along its base by a chain of temples and is venerated today as the holy embodiment of Rama. Lord Rama is also known as Kamadnathji which literally means fulfiller of all wishes. There is a five KM Parikrama Path around the Kamadgiri Mountain.
Bharat Milap temple is located here, marking the spot where Bharata is said to have met Rama to persuade him to return to the throne of Ayodhya. It is said that the meeting of four brother was so emotional that even the rocks and mountains of Chitrakut melted . Foot prints of Lord Rama and his brothers were imprinted on these rocks and are still present today and seen in Bharat Milap Mandir.
Janaki Kund is situated upstream of the Ramghat where it is believed that Sita bathed in the crystal clear waters of Mandakini river during the years of her exile with Rama.
Sati Anasuya ashrama is located further upstream, 16 km from the town, set amidst thick forests that round to the melody of birdsong all day. It was here that Atri muni, his wife Anasuya and their three sons (who were the three incarnations of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh), lived and are said to have meditated.
A few kilometres beyond Janaki Kund is another densely forested area on the banks of the Mandakini. One can climb up to the boulder, which bears the Rama's footprint and Sita. According to Ramacharit Manas it is said that Lord Rama with Lakshman was sitting on this shila (rock) when Hanuman returned from Lanka after setting it afire and confirmed the news to Lord Rama that Sita has been imprisoned in Ashoka vatika at Lanka.
Gupt-Godavari is situated at a distance of 18 km from town. Here is a pair of caves, one high and wide with an entrance through which one can barely pass, and the other long and narrow with stream of water running along its base. It is believed that Rama and Lakshmana held court in latter cave, which has two natural throne-like rocks.
It is situated in the valley of Devangana. Here we find sacred caves. Sacred caves related to Lord Rama.
Located on a rock-face several hundred feet up a steep hillside is a spring, said to have been created by Rama to assuage Hanuman when the latter returned after setting Lanka afire. A couple of temples commemorate this spot, which offers a panoramic view of Chitrakut.
Bharath Koop is where Bharata stored holy water collected from all the places of pilgrimage in India. It is small, an isolated spot a few kilometres from the town. It has a small well and temple situated next to it. The water in the well remains pure and clean round the year.
This place is located on the way between Chitrakoot and Bharat Koop, in an isolated location. It is the place where Shri Ram, Sitaji and Laxmanji used to sleep and rest in the evening after wandering around the forest of Chitrakoot. It is located between mountains with no town near-by, with absoluted silence in the environment. It has a large flat-bed rock which bears imprints of Shri Ram, Lakshman, and Sita Mata. There is a tree above it and the entire place is walled by brick structure on the sides to preserve it. It falls in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
175 Km from Khajuraho.
July to March.