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Somnath Temple

A Shiva Temple made by the Moon
Speciality
Jyotirlinga
Primary Idol
Lord Shiva
Opening Hours
Monday-Sunday, 16:00-20:00Hrs
Distance from Airport or railway Station
8 KMs from Somnath Junction
Capacity
1,000
Address
Somnath Mandir Rd, Somnath, Gujarat 362268

What you'll be reading-

Somnath is a historic town located on the western coast of India, in the state of Gujarat. It is known for its beautiful beaches and historic temple, the Somnath Temple, which is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, or sacred shrines of the deity Shiva.

The Somnath Temple is an imposing structure, with a high shikhara (tower) and intricate carvings and sculptures. The temple has a rich and tumultuous history, having been destroyed and rebuilt several times over the centuries. Despite these challenges, the temple remains an important site of pilgrimage for Hindus.

In addition to the Somnath Temple, the town of Somnath has many other attractions for visitors to explore. The town is located near the Gir National Park, which is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna, including the Asiatic lion. The town is also close to the Dwarkadhish Temple, another important religious site.

History: Ancient Mythology and Legends

The town of Somnath and the Somnath Temple has a rich and fascinating history. According to ancient mythology and legends, the temple was built by the Moon god, Chandra, in ancient times. The temple was destroyed and rebuilt several times over the centuries, with the most recent reconstruction being completed in 1951.

The temple has a tumultuous history, with many invasions and attacks by foreign invaders. In the 11th century, the temple was plundered and destroyed by the Turkic invader Mahmud of Ghazni. It was later rebuilt but was again destroyed by the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in the 17th century.

Despite these challenges, the temple has continued to be an important site of worship for Hindus. In the 19th and 20th centuries, the temple was rebuilt and restored to its former glory, and it remains an important religious and cultural landmark in Gujarat. The rich mythology and legends surrounding the temple add to its fascination and appeal to visitors and pilgrims alike.

 

Geography: Location and Tourist Attractions

The town of Somnath is located on the western coast of India, in the state of Gujarat. It is situated on the shores of the Arabian Sea, and its location has made it a popular destination for travellers and tourists.

In addition to the Somnath Temple, the town of Somnath is surrounded by many other popular tourist attractions. The Gir National Park, which is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna, including the Asiatic lion, is located near the town. The town is also close to the Dwarkadhish Temple, another important religious site.

Overall, the town of Somnath is a great destination for those interested in exploring the rich cultural and historical heritage of Gujarat. Its beautiful beaches, historic temple, and proximity to other popular tourist attractions make it a must-visit destination for travellers and tourists alike.

 

Religious Significance: Hindu Pilgrimage Site

Hindus from all over India and the world visit the Somnath Temple to offer prayers and perform puja (ritual worship) to the deity. The temple is a vibrant and lively place during religious festivals, such as Mahashivaratri and Navaratri when devotees gather in large numbers to participate in religious ceremonies and offer prayers.

The religious significance of the Somnath Temple adds to its appeal as a tourist destination. Visitors to the temple can learn about the Hindu religion and its customs and can experience the vibrant and colourful atmosphere of a Hindu pilgrimage site.

 

  1. The Somnath Temple is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas or sacred shrines of the deity Shiva.
  2. It is considered a highly auspicious place of worship and is a popular destination for Hindu pilgrims.
  3. Hindus from all over India and the world visit the temple to offer prayers and perform puja (ritual worship).
  4. The temple is a vibrant and lively place during religious festivals, such as Mahashivaratri and Navaratri.
  5. Visiting the temple allows visitors to learn about the Hindu religion and its customs, and to experience the atmosphere of a Hindu pilgrimage site.

Conclusion: An Unforgettable Experience

In conclusion, the town of Somnath is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in exploring the rich cultural and historical heritage of Gujarat. The town is known for its beautiful beaches and its historic temple, the Somnath Temple, which is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, or sacred shrines of the deity Shiva.

Whether you are a religious pilgrim or a curious traveller, the town of Somnath has much to offer. Its vibrant and lively atmosphere, beautiful beaches, and rich cultural heritage make it an unforgettable destination for visitors of all ages. Whether you are interested in religious festivals, local culture, or simply soaking up the atmosphere of this historic town, a visit to Somnath is sure to be a rewarding and memorable experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

What other attractions are there near Somnath Temple?
Besides the Somnath Temple, you can visit the Somnath beach, Bhalka Tirth where Lord Krishna is believed to have left his mortal body, the Triveni Sangam where three rivers meet, the Surya Mandir (Sun Temple), and the ancient Gita Mandir. The Somnath Museum, showcasing the temple’s rich history, is also worth a visit.
Is there any legend associated with the Somnath Temple?
As per Hindu mythology, the moon god Chandra married 27 daughters of Daksha Prajapati but favored only Rohini. Enraged, Daksha cursed Chandra to lose his brightness. Chandra then prayed to Lord Shiva at Prabhas, where he was blessed and regained his lost luminance. In gratitude, Chandra built a golden temple for Shiva, known as the Somnath Temple.
Are there any rules or restrictions for visiting the Somnath Temple?
Yes, there are several rules that visitors are expected to follow. Cell phones, cameras, and other electronic gadgets are not allowed inside the temple premises. Visitors must dress modestly, with shoulders and knees covered. Consumption of alcohol, non-vegetarian food, and smoking is strictly prohibited in the temple vicinity.
What festivals are celebrated at the Somnath Temple?
Somnath Temple witnesses a multitude of festivals throughout the year. Some of the most significant festivals include Maha Shivratri, celebrated with great enthusiasm, and Shravan month celebrations when the temple sees thousands of pilgrims. Other festivals include Kartik Purnima, Somnath Sthapana Divas, and Golokdham Utsav.
What is the architecture of the Somnath Temple like?
The architecture of Somnath Temple is a splendid example of the Chalukya style. The temple’s design represents an exquisite blend of intricate carvings and grandeur. It stands on the Arabian Sea shore with a lofty central shikhar (spire), flanked by smaller towers. It’s made of soft limestone, which allows for highly detailed sculptures and decorations. The temple also features a large sabha mandap (assembly hall), and its axis runs from east to west, with the main entrance facing east.
What are the timings of the Somnath Temple?
The Somnath Temple is open for darshan from 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Aarti timings are at 7:00 AM, 12:00 noon, and 7:00 PM. During these times, the temple remains closed for about an hour. The timings are subject to change on special occasions and during festivals.
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