All posts by Sj

Anadara Point (Honey Moon Point), Mount Abu

On the north-west of the Nakki Lake, near by the old gateway to Abu is Anadara point named after the village Anadara. This place is at the height of 4,000 feet. Here from also the magnificient grandeur of the setting the sun can be witnessed. Near it is a Lover – Rock also popularly known as Honey Moon Point, is an attractive point for the visitors for it being in the natural creation in the shape of a man and a woman. For the newly – married couples, this is really a place full of very much charm. That’s why many visitors do come just to celebrate ‘Honey Moon’ at Mount Abu. It provides a serene aura with a pleasant view of the verdant valley and plains. It looks especially beautiful during the sun set hour.

Gurushikhar, Mount Abu

Gurushikhar holds the honor of being not only the highest peak of Mount Abu but the whole of Aravali mountain range; Situated at a height of 1722 meters (5676 ft) from the sea-level, Gurushikar provides a breathtaking panoramic view of Mount Abu town and green aravali range.

If you are traveling through the beautiful Mount Abu region in Rajasthan, you should ensure that you pay a visit to Guru Shikhar for postcard picture quality views of the town of Mount Abu and the Aravali Range, Guru Shikhar is also home to many beautiful and historic temples.

Coming to the peak of Guru Shikhar, you must make sure that you visit the temple of Guru Dattatreya. Many Hindus in the Western Indian regions believed that Dattatreya is a God. They believe that Dattatreya is an incarnation of the Divine Trinity Brahma, Vishnu and Siva. The word Datta means “Given,” Datta is called so because the divine trinities have “given” themselves in the form of a son to the sage couple Atri and Anasuya. He is the son of Atri, hence the name “Atreya.” Nearby is an huge & historic bell which was inscribed with 1488 V.S (1411AD.) Unfortunately the old bell has disintegrated and had to be replaced by a new one.

If you go to the peak just a little to the north-west of Guru Shikhar, you can visit the shrine dedicated to Ahilya, the mother of Dattatreya. Like those from the taller Guru Shikhar peak, the views are simply enchanting.

To get to the peak of Guru Shikhar, you need to travel the approximately 7km long Delwara AchalGarh road (15 km from Mount Abu). It you are already traveling through the Mount Abu region, this is a very short trip to see the panoramic views offered of both the town and the lush green Aravali Range. A visit to Guru Shikhar also gives you the ability to enjoy a visit to the historic temples and shrines.

The cold sweeping breeze in adjunct with the panoramic view of the natural scenery full of charm and dense distant forests fill in the visitors a throbbing thrill.

Nakki Lake, Mount Abu

Nakki Lake is the heart of Mount Abu and perfect for Romantic evening. The picture perfect location of the lake surrounded with mountains, gardens and rock formations also make it a very good location for photography. In the evening the setting sun makes the canvas. Situated within walking distance from the main market and most of Hotel’s and restaurent’s of Mount Abu, the hub of evening activity and boating, Nakki Lake is the perfect place to spend your evening with your partner, friends and family.

Nakki Lake is the mythological lake with a very interesting story behind its creation. The legend has it that this lake was dugg by Gods or Devtas using their nails or nakh that’s why the name Nakki Lake – few sections of local tribes also consider Nakki Lake as a holy lake and worship it. Nakki Lake is also the only Indian artificial lake situated at a height of 1200 Mtr’s above sea level.

The name Nakki is also derived from the romantic story of the aged sage Rasia Balam and the nubile teenager Kunvanri Kanya. The two lovelorn souls were prevented from tying their love in a nuptial knot, by the scheming parents and their conniving Gods. They had demanded that the sage could marry the teenager if he could dig up a lake for her with his nails over night. The sage was just about to accomplish the impossible feat when he was betrayed by all. It is said that the sage was the incarnation of Lord Shiva and the teenager was the embodiment of Ma Parvati. It is predicted that they would return again and then there would be upheaval in the universe.

Boating at Nakki Lake

Here is one fun activity in Mount Abu which is hard to miss. You can opt for a pedalo or boat or gondola which is like a shikara. For the couples, this boat ride is especially romantic since the boat passes by the beautiful scenery around. Remember for security reasons boat rides in Nakki Lake are done only during a favourable weather. Go for it and come back with lifetime pleasant memories. Cost of a pedalo is INR 100 per person for a 30 minute ride while you have to shell out INR 150 for boat or a shikara like boat per person for the same time.

Boating Timings: All days of the week 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM

Dilwara Jain Temple, Mount Abu

The Dilwara Jain Temples are open from 12 P.M. to 3 P.M. for tourists for free and No photography is allowed inside the temple complex.

These temples are open for Jain community from morning to evening for performing puja.

These famous Jain temples are situated at Delwara village about 2½ Km’s from the beautiful city of Mount Abu.

Dilwara Jain Temples is one of the finest Jain temples known world over for its extraordinary architecture and marvelous marble stone carvings. The design and accuracy of workmanship is unbelievable. Some experts also consider it architecturally superior to the Taj Mahal. It seems fairly basic temple from outside but every cloud has a silver lining, the temple interior showcases the extraordinary work of human craftsmanship at its best. These temples were built between 11th to 13th century AD, The beautiful lush green hills surrounding the temple gives a very pleasant feeling. The ornamental details of marble stone carvings are phenomenal and unmatched. The minutely carved ceilings and the pillars are just amazing. All this was done at a time when no transport or roads were available at a height of 1200+ Mtrs in Mount Abu; huge blocks of marble stones were transported on elephant backs from the Arasoori Hills at Ambaji to this remote hilly region of Mount Abu. Dilwara temples are also a popular Jain pilgrimage attraction.

Dilwara Temple complex consist of five major temples devoted to five Jain trithankaras(saints). All these shrines belong to different centuries. The first two are build wholly of white marble, they have got exuberant carvings and ornamentation work on the walls, doors, pillars, mandaps, torans, ceilings etc. The designs depict life stories of Jain Tirthankars, scenes of Gods & Goddesses and great men from Jain and Hindu Mythologies. There are many works that depict royal courts, marriage processions, dance figures and many other functinons. No design is repeated, this in itself is a proof of human ingenuity and creativity:

  1. Shri AdiNath Temple or Vimal Vasahi Temple –

This temple is build by Vimal Shah, Minister & Commander-in-chief of Bhima Dev I, Solanki ruler of Gujarat in 1031 A.D. Vimal Shah was remorseful and spent the rest of his life in religious discourse at Chandravati (near Abu road); inspired by Jain Acharaya, to wash-out his sins perpetrated in the battle fields, with the blessings of tutelary deity Ambika, constructed this temple. It took 1500 artisans and 1200 labourers and time span of 14 years to build this brilliant piece of architecture.

This temple is the oldest of all and dedicated to Shri Adinath Ji – The first jain trithankar, the temple has an open courtyard surrounded by corridors all beautifully decorated with marble carved stones. Cells inside this temple are containing tiny images of Jain saints artistically carved on marble stone minutely. The internal dome is aesthetically decorated with design’s of flowers and petals, the huge hall of the temple pillars decorated with the carving work of female figures playing musical instruments. The temple also has the “Guda Mandapa” – A simple hall decorated with the images of Shri Adi Nath.

The whole shrine covers an area of 140 ft. long and 90 ft. broad. As we enter the temple we get a glimpse of the grandeur of sculptured marble, exquisite carvings of ceilings, domes, pillars and arches of the temple which is beyond anyone’s expectations. It has a sanctum, a Gudha Mandap, Navchowki, Rang Mandap and a circumambulatory corridor having 57 cells. In each cell, image of one or the other Jain Tirthankar is installed. In front of every cell, double carved roofs are screened by double arcade of pillars. Cell numbers are marked and the name of the idol installed in it is also written.

One of the decedent of Vimal Shah named Prithvipal carried out constructions and repairs in 1147-49 A.D. and to commemorate the glory of his family erected a ‘Hasti-Shala’ in front of this temple.

As we walk along the corridor we enter the various cells. Each cell has an image of one or the other Tirthankar installed. All the images are unique in its creation.

Rang Mandap
A grand Hall supported by 12 decorated pillars and nicely carved out arches with a central dome in the most exquisite design. You can also see designs with heavy ornamentation work. On the pillars are placed the female figures playing musical instruments and 16 Vidhyadevis – the goddesses of knowledge – each one having her own symbol.

Navchowk
It comprises of the nine rectangular ceilings, each one containing beautiful carvings of different designs supported on the ornate pillars.

Gudh Mandap
Inside the profusely decorated doorway is installed principal deity – Lord Rishabdev, also called Adinath, the first Jain Tirthankar. Gudh-Mandap is simple, meant for obeisance and ‘Arti’ to the deity.

Hastishala (Elephant Cell)
This was constructed by Prithvipal, a decedant of Vimal Shah in 1147-49 A.D. In the front entrance statue of Vimal Shah originally carved in marble is seen, the statute was mutilated and was repaired by plaster. A Smavasaran, circular in shape, is also noteworthy.

2.  Shri NemiNathJi Temple or Luna Vasahi Temple –

This temple was built in 1230 A.D. by two brothers known as Tejpal and Vastupal, Ministers of Solanki Raja Bhindev II of Gujarat in memory of their late brother Luna. The Architect was Shobhandev. They dedicated this temple to the 22nd saint of Jainism – Shri Nemi Nathji. This temple is smaller than Vimal Vasahi but the ground plan and architecture is similar. This temple is far more in perfection and refinement. This temple has one hall named Rag Mandapa which has three hundred and sixty (360) tiny idols of Jain trithankar all minutely crafted on marble proving once again why these jain marble temples of Dilwara are superior to Taj Mahal, Among all these white marble idols the idol of Shri Neminath Ji is made up of black marble.The pillars of this temple were built by Maharana Kumbha of Mewar.

During the recent repairs of the 52 cells in the corridor four were newly built (23 – 26) and (27 – 30) were renovated. In front of every cell the ceiling is divided into two sections with double row of columns and in each cell image of one or the other Jain Tirthankar or Devi is installed.

Hathishala (Elephant cell) :- 10 beautiful marble elephants of fine worksmanship, neatly polished and realistically modelled etc are the main attraction of this cell.

Ragmandap :- This is the main hall, where in the centre of the dome hangs a big ornamental pendent of beautiful carving. Arranged in a circular band 72 figures of Tirthankaras in sitting posture and just below this band 360 small figures of Jain monks in circular band are depicted.

Navchowki :- The most magnificient and delicate marble stone cutting work can be seen here. Each of the nine ceilings exceed the other.

Gudha Mandap :- Black marble idol of 22nd Jain Tirthankara Neminath is installed here.

Kirthi Stambha :- A big black stone pillar ‘Kirthi Stambha’ stands on the left side of Tirthankar temple. It was constructed by Maharana Kumbha of Mewar.

Small cell :- There is a small cell, in between the trees, dedicated to the worship of foot-prints of ‘Dada Sahib’ Jain Acharaya Shri Jindutt Suri.

 

The remaining three temples are smaller, but, are as elegant as the above two.

  1. Shri Mahaveer Swami Temple –

This temple was constructed in 1582 and is devoted to Lord Mahaveer the 24th Tirthankara of Jain’s. This temple is relatively small. The temple’s upper walls have pictures of the porch painted by craftsmen of Sirohi in year 1764.

  1. Shri ParshavNath Temple or Khartar Vasahi Temple –

This temple was built by Mandika clan in1458-59 A.D. This temple has the tallest shrine with three storeyed along with four big Mandapa’s amongst all dilwara temples. The carving on the pillars of this temple is yet another example of Jain temples architectural superiority. This temple is dedicated to Lord Parswanath wherein in storey, in all the four sides, images of Parswanath are installed. The outer walls of the sanctum contains some beautiful and vibrant sculptures in grey sandstone, depicting Dikpals, double set of Vidhyadevis – one of standing figures and other sitting ones and a set of all the 24 Yakshinis, Shalabhanjikas and other decorative sculptures especially females comparable to the ones Khujrao, Konark etc.

  1. Shri Rishabdaoji Temple or Peethalhar Temple –

This temple is known as Pittalhari/Peethalhar temple because in this temple most of the statues are built using ‘Pittal’ (Brass Metal). This temple was built by Bhima Shah; a minister from Gujarat dynasty, like other temples of Dilwara this temple is also having Gudu Mandapa and Navchowki. A massive metal statue with rich carving of its elaborate parikar of Rishabdev (Adinath), cast in five metals, mainly Pittal ( brass) is installed. The Shrine consists of main Garbhagraha, Gudh Mandap and Navchowki. In Gudh Mandap on one side, big marble stone Panch-Tirthi sculpture of Adinath is installed. The niches were constructed in 1474 A.D. while some cells were created in 1490 A.D.

 

Sanwalia Ji Temple, Mandaphia

As per the say, three idols of Lord Krishna were removed from the earth in year 1840 on the bases of dream of Shri Bholram Gujjar. All three idols were identical.

First idol was installed at First temple at Mandaphia, also known as Sanwalia Ji. Mandaphia is 7 km from Bhadsora cross-roads which lies on the four-lanned highway no. 76 and is 40 km from Chittorgarh & 65 km from Dabok Airport, Udaipur.

Mandaphia is the second abode of Lord Krishna (the first one being Nathdwara). This temple of Shri Krishna is considered second only to the temple of the Lord Shrinathji at Nathdwara.The sanctity and religious atmosphere of the place is augmented by the various festivals and ceremonies organized round the year by the Mandir Mandal or by the devotees from different parts of the country. Especially, on the 11th day of Bhadra- Shukla (Dev-Jhulni Ekaadashi), the Mandir Mandal organizes a mela (fair) and a rath processesion of the Lord in which lakhs of people participate with great religious fervor and Zeal.

The temple symbolises the unflinching faith and devotion of the Vaishnavite Hindus for the Supreme Being. Thousands of pilgrims from far and near, many of them on foot, throng daily to Mandaphia to have a darshan of their Lord. In the hope of receiving divine blessings, they pray devoutly and make secret propitiatory offerings at the sacred altar of Sanwaliaji.
Their experience in the shrine, before the fascinating idol of Krishna, is spiritually so enriching that they immediately feel inspired to renounce their worldly procession for the sake of eternal bliss. It is indeed a miracle that the Lord disappoints none of his devotees–whether he comes to Him for pure spiritual joy or for celestial succor for his survival or success in the material world.

The temple is open from 0530 hrs to 1200 hrs and then 1430 hrs to 2300 hrs daily. Special Arti and Darshan timings are:

Timings Arti/Darshan
05:30 hrs MANGLA  ARTI
10:00 hrs to 11:15 hrs RAJBHOG ARTI & PRASAD
12:00 hrs to 1430 hrs REST TIME (LORD SANWALIA JI) (Temple close)
From 14:30 hrs ARTI, FALAHAR PRASAD SERVED DARSHAN
20:00 hrs to 21:15 hrs EVENING ARTI
21:15 hrs to 23:00 hrs BHAJAN & KIRTAN

 

Second idol was installed at Second temple at Bhadsoda-Bagund Chouraha, also known as Murti Parakatya Sthal. It lies on the four-lanned highway no. 76 and is 32 km from Chittorgarh & 65 km from Dabok Airport, Udaipur.

Third idol was installed at Third temple at Bhadsoda village, also known as Bhadsoda Sanwalia Ji. It lies 1 km from Bhadsoda cross road Chouraha.