Vridha Badri temple, one of the Sapt Badri temples devoted to Lord Vishnu, is located in the Badri-Kshetra area of Uttarakhand, India. The other temples in badri – Kshetra area are 1) Badri Vishal or Badrinath 2) Adi Badri 3) Ardha Badri 4) Bhavishya Badri 5) Yogdhyan Badri and 6) Dhyan Badri. These all temples are specifically dedicated to Lord Vishnu and the main temple among all these is Badrinath temple located in Badrinath town.
Vridha Badri temple is located in the Animath village (alt. 1380 mtr.) 7 km from the main Joshimath town on the national highway: Rishikesh – Joshimath – Badrinath highway. Lord Vishnu appeared here as an old man before Narad who was performing penance at this place. That is the very reason why the idol of Lord Vishnu here is in the form of an old man.
As per the ancient texts, it is believed that the idol was carved by Vishwakarma and later he worshipped at this place.
In the beginning of the Kaliyug, Lord Vishnu opted to go to other place. This temple is open all year round. The chief priests are Brahmins from South India which is usually a norm for other major temples of Uttarakhand.
In addition to Sapt Badri temples, there is an another group of 5 temples of Lord Vishnu (also known as Panch Badri) which is the combination of all the Sapta Badri temples except for Ardha Badri and Dhyan Badri. Sometimes, but rarely, Narsingh Badri, located in Joshimath, is also mentioned on the list of Sapt Badri or Panch Badri.
Apart from Sapt Badri and Panch Badri, Garhwal is also known for the “Panch Kedar” temples. The main temples of Lord Shiva are at five places: Kedarnath, Madmaheshwar, Tungnath, Rudranath and Kalpeshwar. These temples are known as “Panch Kedar” and the main temple among these temples is Kedarnath located in the district of Rudraprag.