Located at a height of 6150 feet, it is gateway to several Himalayan mountain climbing expeditions, trekking trails and pilgrim centres like Badrinath. Joshimath is the uttarāmnāya matha or northern monastery, one of the four cardinal institutions established by Adi Shankara, the others being those at Shringeri, Puri and Dwaraka. Their heads are titled "Shankaracharya". According to the tradition initiated by Adi Shankara, this matha is in charge of the Atharvaveda. This place can be a base station for travellers going to Guru Gobind Ghat or the Valley of Flowers National Park.
Shankaracharya Math This is the math established by Adi Shankaracharya in North India. The Math is having temple of Badrinarayan and Rajrajeshwari Devi. It has a sacred cave where Adi Shankaracharya supposedly undertook tapasya.
Narsingha Temple This is an ancient temple of Lord Vishnu in Narsingha Avtar and main temple of Joshimath. It has an idol of Lord Narsingha, that is considered to be established by Shankaracharya. As per local belief, the right hand of this idol has become as thin as hair. On the day when it will break, the mountains Jay-Vijay (which are situated on a way to Badrinath) shall join and become one and Lord Badrinath of Badrinath temple will disappear from present temple and re-appear as black stone (Shaligram) at new place called Bhavishya Badri, which is situated at a distance of 10 km from Joshimath. When Badrinath temple remains closed during winter every year, one idol of Lord Badri is brought to Narsingha temple and worshiped.
Bhavishya Kedar Temple As Per local belief, present Kedarnath will disappear along with Badrinath and re-appear in Bhavishya Kedar temple at Joshimath. This temple has a small shivling.
Tapovan Tapovan is situated 10 km from Joshimath. It has natural hot water springs. It has nice view of river Dhauliganga.
May to October is the ideal time for one to visit.
Joshimath lies on national highway NH58 that connects Delhi with Badrinath and Mana Pass in Uttarakhand near Indo-Tibet border. Therefore all the buses and vehicles that carry pilgrims from New Delhi to Badrinath via Haridwar and Rishikesh in pilgrim season of summer months pass through Joshimath. Rishikesh is the major starting point for road journey to Joshimath. Regular buses operate from Rishikesh bus station to Joshimath. The road distance from Rishikesh to Joshimath is 251 km via Rudraprayag and Chamoli.
Rishikesh railway station is the nearest railhead 251 Km from Joshimath. Taxi or jeeps are available to Joshimath from Rishikesh railway station.
Jolly Grant airport Dehradun is the nearest airport 293 Km from Joshimath through Rishikesh. Tourists find taxi or jeep to Joshimath from Jolly Grant airport.