At the northwest face of Mt. Kailash and near the banks of holy Sutlej river at an altitude of 4310 meters, Tirthapuri is a popular place to visit during Kailash Mansarovar Yatra among pilgrims.
How to get there- Drive 65 km west of Darchen after completing holy Mt. Kailash Kora Parikrama pilgrims are exhausted by this time post completion of Kora Parikrama they thus need some solace from the travel fatigue.
Pilgrims soak themselves in HOT Springs a natural GEYSER and thus are free of any physical strain and feel relaxed. We know these hot springs as a cure to physical hardship and travel fatigue. Pilgrims perform KORA around Tirthapuri which usually takes about an hour to complete circumambulation.
Hindu Connection and legend
A story about demon BHASMASUR and Lord Shiva-There was a mighty demon called BHASMASUR who performed deep self-mortification (punishment) to please Lord Shiva
Our easy to please God-Shiva was pleased and appeared in front of demon Bhasmasur and asked him for a wish.
Bhasmasur was cunning to ask for IMMORTALITY to which Lord Shiva replied that this is not in his hands to fulfill the wish and ask for another one.
Demon Bhasmasur wickedly asked for another wish “that anyone’s head he touches should burn immediately and turn to ashes”
Lord Shiva said it granted TATHASTU and wish, however, Bhasmasur chased Lord Shiva to touch his head and tried to burn him and wherever Shiva went Bhasmasur followed him.
Lord Shiva fled and went to Lord Vishnu for help and this wish could devastate the existence of life and humanity.
Lord Vishnu promised to help Lord Shiva and thus Lord Vishnu took an AVATAAR of a gorgeous lady-Mohini and appeared infant of Bhasmasur.
Demon Bhasmasur immediately fell in love with super beautiful Mohini and asked her to marry him to which Mohini said that only if Bhasmasur could dance along with her and match her moves then she could marry him.
They danced and matched each other move after move this feat went for days and Mohini very viscously struck a dance move where her hand was on her head Bhasmasur was tricked by this move and have forgotten about the wish Shiva granted him.
Thus Bhasmasur followed Mohini and posed exactly like her with his hand on his head and burnt like an Effigy and turn into ASHES thus Bhasmasur dug his own grave and was defeated by Mohini-avatar of Vishnu and they thus established peace. Bhasmasur parvat or Tirthapuri has a special mention in all Hindu legends including Bhagwad Gita. It has a deep intriguing spirtiual connection with the Hindu belief system.
Buddhist connection and legend
There is another landmark known as Tirthapuri monastery along the Kora path, containing the Guru Rinpoche’s footprints. On the way, you could see the colorful prayer flags clattering in the wind lot of pilgrims perform prayers at the monastery and spend some time here in the super calm and scenic monastery.
Tirthapuri is recognized at 3rd most holy pilgrimage site after Mt. Kailash and Lake Mansarovar.Tirthapuri is a place of great significance and associated with Hindu mythology and many other religions.Without this sacred Kora around Tirthapuri or Bhasmasur parvat Kailash Yatra seems incomplete.