Mahashivratri is one of the most popular festivals in India which is celebrated in honor of Lord Shiva. It is observed on the 13th night/14th day of the Hindu month of Maagha or Phalguna. Shivaratri means “the great night of Shiva”. It is also known as “Mahashivaratri” or “Great Shivaratri”. On this day, Shiva temples across the country are thronged by devotees who offer special prayers and perform various rituals. There are 12 Jyotirlinga temples of Lord Shiva located in different parts of India. These are: Somnath in Gujarat, Mallikarjuna at Srisailam in Andhra Pradesh, Mahakaleshwar at Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh, Omkareshwar in Madhya Pradesh, Kedarnath in Uttarakhand, Bhimashankar in Maharashtra, Viswanath at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh, Triambakeshwar in Maharashtra, Vaidyanath at Deoghar in Jharkhand, Nageshvara at Dwarka in Gujarat, Rameshwar at Rameswaram in
Tungnath, Rudraprayag, Uttarakhand
One of the most popular pilgrimage circuits in Uttarakhand, the Panch Kedar comprises of five temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temples are spread across the Mandakini and Alaknanda valleys in the Garhwal Himalayan region and are known for their stunning locations. The Panch Kedar temples are some of the most sacred shrines in India and attract devotees from all over the country.
The Panch Kedar temples are:
1. Tungnath Temple
2. Rudranath Temple
3. Madhyamaheshwar Temple
4. Kalpeshwar Temple
5. Kedarnath Temple
Tungnath Temple is the highest of the Panch Kedar temples and is located at an altitude of 3,680 m (12,073 ft) in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. The temple is situated at the Tungnath peak and is believed to be the highest Shiva temple in the world. The temple is surrounded by snow-capped peaks and offers stunning views of the Himalayas.
The temple is believed to have been built by the Pandavas and is mentioned in the Mahabharata. Legend has it that when the Pandavas were searching for Lord Shiva to absolve them of their sins, he eluded them by assuming the form of a bull. However, Bhima was able to identify him andgrabbed his tail. Lord Shiva then emerged from the bull and blessed the Pandavas. The place where Bhima grabbed Lord Shiva’s tail is believed to be the site of the Tungnath Temple.
The temple is a simple structure with a small garbhagriha (sanctum sanctorum) and a mandapa (hall). The idol of Lord Shiva in the form of a lingam is placed in the garbhagriha. The temple is constructed of stone and has a pyramidal roof.
The temple is accessible by a 5 km (3.1 mi) trek from the village of Chopta. The temple is open from April to November and the best time to visit is from May to
Brihadeeswarar Temple, Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu
Thanjavur’s Brihadeeswarar Temple, also called Rajarajeswaram or Peruvudaiyar Kovil, is a Hindu temple dedicated to the deity Shiva and is one of the largest temples in India. It is located in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu. The temple was built by the Chola king Raja Raja Chola I in the 11th century CE and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is also one of the tallest temples in the world, with a height of 216 feet (66 m).
The temple complex covers an area of around 23 acres (93,000 m2) and is enclosed by high walls. The temple has four gateways, each with a gopuram (tower). The main gopuram, which faces east, is 12 stories tall and is adorned with stucco figures of deities, animals, and saints. The temple has two main shrines, one dedicated to Brihadeeswarar (Shiva) and the other to his consort Parvati, known as Periya Nayaki Amman Temple. There are also shrines to other deities such as Ganapati, Murugan, and Vishnu.
The temple is built with granite, which was brought from a quarry near Trichy. The stone was cut into blocks and then transported to the site on bullock-carts. The temple is a testament to the engineering skills of the Chola builders. It has a complex system of drainage and water supply.
The temple was consecrated on the day of the Maha Shivaratri festival in the year 1010 CE. It is said that the king Raja Raja Chola had a dream in which the deity Shiva told him to build a temple in his name. The king began the construction the next day.
The temple has been active through the centuries and is still in use today. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Tamil Nadu.
Amarnath Temple, Jammu
The Amarnath Temple is a Hindu shrine located in Jammu and Kashmir, India. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, and is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga temples. The temple is situated at an altitude of 3,888 m, and is accessible only by foot.
The Amarnath Temple is one of the most popular pilgrimage sites in India. Every year, lakhs of devotees make the arduous journey to the temple to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva. The temple is open for only a few weeks in the year, and the date of opening is decided by the priests based on the position of the moon.
The temple is located in a cave, and inside the cave is a natural Shivlingam. The Shivlingam is believed to be growing and shrinking with the phases of the moon.
The journey to the Amarnath Temple is considered to be very holy, and is said to wash away all the sins of the devotees. The temple is surrounded by snow-capped mountains, and the views are simply breathtaking.
If you are planning to visit the Amarnath Temple, then do keep in mind that the journey is not for the faint-hearted. It is a challenging trek, and you need to be well-prepared for it. But the effort is definitely worth it, and the blessings of Lord Shiva will stay with you forever.
Vadakkunnathan, Thrissur, Kerala
Vadakkunnathan Temple is one of the most famous Shiva temples in India and is located in Thrissur, Kerala. The temple is also known as the ‘Rudraksha Jyotirlinga’ and is said to be one of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. The temple is situated on a hillock in the middle of a lake called ‘Vadakkechara’. The temple is believed to have been built by Parasurama, the sixth Avatar of Vishnu. The temple has four entrances and the main entrance is through the ‘ eastern gate. The temple complex has several shrines and Mandapams. The main sanctum sanctorum houses the ‘Shivalingam’ which is said to be Swayambhu (self-born). The main deity is surrounded by smaller shrines of ‘Ganapati’, ‘Subrahmanya’, ‘Saraswati’, ‘Chandikeswara’ and ‘Nandi’. The temple complex also has a ‘Dhotiya Shiva’ shrine, which is said to be the place where Parasurama worshipped Shiva. The temple is also known for its ‘Chuttuvilakku’, a unique lamp which has seven wicks and is lit using coconut oil.
The temple is thronged by devotees from all over India during the Mahashivratri festival. The festival is celebrated in a grand manner at the temple and lakhs of devotees take part in the procession and offerings.
Kal Bhairav, Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh
Kal Bhairav is one of the most famous temples dedicated to Lord Shiva in India. It is located in the city of Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh. The temple is said to be over 2000 years old and is one of the most important pilgrimage sites for Hindus. Every year, hundreds of thousands of pilgrims visit the temple to offer their prayers to Lord Shiva.
The temple is built in the traditional North Indian style of architecture and is adorned with beautiful sculptures and paintings. The main attraction of the temple is the huge statue of Lord Bhairav, which is said to be made of black marble. The statue is so huge that it is almost impossible to see the whole statue from ground level.
The temple is also home to a number of other smaller shrines and temples, which are dedicated to different gods and goddesses. There is also a huge tank in the temple complex, which is said to be the place where Lord Shiva bathed after he killed the demon king Ravana.
Kal Bhairav is considered to be one of the most sacred temples in India and is a must-visit for all Hindus.
Neelkanth Mahadev, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand
India is a land of temples and there are numerous temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. Out of the 12 Jyotirlingas, 8 are located in India. Neelkanth Mahadev Temple is one such temple which is situated in the holy town of Rishikesh in Uttarakhand. The temple is situated atop a hill and is surrounded by the beautiful Himalayas. The temple is said to be more than 5,000 years old and is one of the most revered temples in India.
The temple is named after Lord Shiva, who is also known as Neelkanth. It is said that when Lord Shiva drank the Poison that was created during the churning of the ocean, his throat turned blue. Hence, he came to be known as Neelkanth.
The temple is situated at a height of 3,133 feet and is one of the highest temples in India. The temple complex has a number of small temples and shrines dedicated to different Gods and Goddesses. The main shrine is dedicated to Lord Shiva and has a large statue of the deity.
The temple is a popular pilgrimage site and is visited by thousands of devotees every year. The temple is also a popular destination for adventure seekers as it offers a number of trekking and hiking trails.
The best time to visit the temple is during the Mahashivratri festival which is celebrated every year in February or March.
Murudeshwara is a town located in the Bhatkal Taluk of Uttara Kannada district in the state of Karnataka, India. The town is located on the coast of the Arabian Sea and is also known for the Murudeshwara Temple, which is a popular pilgrimage site for Hindus. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is one of the twelve Jyotirlinga temples. It is also one of the most popular tourist destinations in Karnataka.
Murudeshwara is also known for its beaches, which are some of the most beautiful in Karnataka. The town has a number of temples and shrines, which makes it a popular pilgrimage destination for Hindus. Murudeshwara is also home to a number of educational institutions.
The town is located at a distance of about 150 km from Mangalore and about 250 km from Bangalore. The nearest airport is at Mangalore. Murudeshwara is well connected to Mangalore and Bangalore by road and rail.