When you travel to Shirdi, you will love to visit popular tourist spots and enjoy the local culture. Amongst other Things to do in Shirdi, you can surely explore some of the best things to do in Shirdi to make your trip a fulfilling one. On a trip to Shirdi things to do can include exploring Shirdi attractions and visiting the places of interest.
Abdul Baba was a devout follower and a close aide of Sai Baba. His house is an important monument in Shirdi. There are a lot carefully preserved photographs of Abdul Baba and Sai Baba in the house, as well as memorabilia.
The house of one of Sai Baba’s major devotees, Laxmi Bai Shinde, is also an important monument. Laxmi Bai Shinde was a devotee of Sai Baba, who gave her coins worth nine rupees which can be seen on display in the house.
Also known as the Mother Mosque, this holy place was the abode of Sai Baba for 60 years. This was also the place where Sai Baba prayed and did his namaz for most of his life. This two storey structure now houses many personal belongings of Sai Baba, including his portrait, a few sculptures and a sacred stone which is worshipped by the devotees.
This is the main temple of Sai Baba, and the most famous of all his monuments worldwide. This is also one of the most famous pilgrimage spots in India, thronged by thousands of devotees every day. The temple is situated in a colossal complex, with a lot of other temples located inside. People of religions, castes and creeds are allowed inside the temple, and everyone is treated equally. The temple also provides services like food and accommodation to the needy people. Thursdays are the busiest in the temple, and there is also a procession in which Sai Baba’s padukas (sandals) are taken out on a palanquin.
This temple is also located in the Shri Sai Baba Sansthan Complex. Initially meant to be a temple in honour of Muralidhar (Lord Krishna), this temple was dedicated to Sai Baba subsequently because as per the legends, the statue or Muralidhar transformed into Sai Baba. This is a very beautiful temple and looks grand with two silver engraved pillars which support the temple. The temple houses a big statue of Sai Baba on a throne, under a silver umbrella.
Chavadi is the building which Sai Baba used as his office and where he spent alternate nights. In the olden times, it was also the place where all the records regarding the village were kept and taxes were collected. Later, the building was acquired by the Sansthan and converted into a shrine for Sai Baba. Chavadi is also located in the Sansthan complex.
This place holds a lot of importance for the pilgrims visiting Shirdi. It was at Gurusthan that Sai Baba first appeared to the people of Shirdi. Sai Baba was 16 years old at that time and took shelter under a Neem tree. This site is a temple now and has been dedicated to the twelve Jyotirlings of Lord Shiva and Sai Baba. Devotees believe that lighting incense here can cure physical ailments.
Khandoba is the main deity of Shirdi, and the temple is one of the oldest in the town. It is believed that the temple was visited by Sai Baba when he came to Shirdi for the second time to attend a marriage. According to some, this is also the place where Sai Baba got his name, Sai, for the priest addressed him with that name.
This temple of Lord Ganesha is also located inside the main Sansthan complex and is visited by a lot of pilgrims. There are two other temples of Lord Shiva and ShaniDev in close proximity. It is believed that Sai Baba used to frequent these temples quite often.
This small museum showcases the life of Sai Baba through dated black and white photographs, his personal artefacts like clothes, shoes, his gramophone records and cooking utensils, etc. The building once belonged to a devout worshipper called Lawyer HariSitaram Dixit. Later Dixit bequeathed the building to the Shri Sai Baba Sansathan.
The trip to Shirdi can be both religious and informative for the young ones. It would work towards increasing their knowledge of Sai Baba, and they could also be taught about the moral values propagated by the saint. Another reason why children would love a trip to Shirdi is the theme park, Wet N Joy Water Park. This is one of the most famous water parks in India, and offers a lot of entertainment in the form of thrilling rides, swimming pools and other fun water activities.
The Lendi Garden or Lendi Baugh is one of the most beautiful and relaxing places in Shirdi. This garden was frequented by the Baba, who used to water the plants and trees here, taking rest under a massive Neem tree. This lush green and lovely garden also has a lamp which was lighted by Sai Baba, and today the lamp is kept lighted all the time.
There are a lot of places of interest around Shirdi, but the most notable are the Shani Shingnapur Temple and the Kalsubhai Wildlife Sanctuary.
Shirdi is mainly a town devoted to the great saint Sai Baba. Though the city is extremely clean and well kept, there are no major places with natural beauty, except for the Lendi Garden and a couple of local parks. To soak in a bit of nature, you can head towards Kalsubai Wildlife Sanctuary, approximately 85 km away from Shirdi. The sanctuary boasts of beautiful, rugged landscapes with hills and a lot of greenery. The sanctuary is home to a lot of animals, birds and reptiles, like leopards, wolves, civet, wild boar, barking deer, rabbits, monitor lizards, storks and herons, etc.
Shirdi is a multi-ethnic place, and you will find people of all religions visiting to pay their respects to Sai Baba. A major part of the population is Marathi Hindus, who follow Hinduism and quite a few Muslims too. Marathi is the most common language, spoken by most people. People in Shirdi also speak Hindi and English. A lot of festivals are celebrated in Shirdi with splendour, the most prominent ones being Ganesh Chaturthi, Dusshehra, Diwali and Holi.
The most prominent landmark in Shirdi is the Shri Sai Baba Sansthan complex. Other famous landmarks are the post office near the village centre and Gurusthan. Some other notable places in Shirdi are the Jungli Maharaj and Upasani Maharaj Ashram.
To get close to nature and for picnics, head to the Lendi Garden or towards Kalsubhai, and visit the wildlife sanctuary there.
For adventure related activities, head to Kalsubai, which is very difficult to access as it is the highest peak of the Sahayadri mountain range. Kalsubhai offers trekking and camping options.
The environs of Shirdi are tranquil and peaceful. This in itself is one of the major reasons why you would feel relaxed here. You can find a lot of places to meditate and relax in Shirdi; however, if you would like to rejuvenate and pamper your body too, your best option is the St Lauren Meditation & Spa, which is also a hotel.
There are several good restaurants in Shirdi, the most notables being The Tulip and Basil Leaves. For vegetarian Indian food lovers, there is Rajdhani, which serves excellent food.
You mostly find Indian, especially, North Indian, Marathi and Guajarati dishes in Shirdi. Some places also serve Chinese food. Don’t forget to taste puranpoli and modak, which are Maharashtrian delicacies.
Although there are no big departmental stores or malls in Shirdi, the street markets here would suffice if you are looking for necessities. The flea markets around the complex usually sell Sai Baba keepsakes and other artefacts. The Shirdi Sai Store in the complex is a good place if you are looking for books on Baba’s teachings.