Places to visit in Somnath

When you travel to Somnath, you will love to visit popular tourist spots and enjoy the local culture. Amongst other Things to do in Somnath, you can surely explore some of the best things to do in Somnath to make your trip a fulfilling one. On a trip to Somnath things to do can include exploring Somnath attractions and visiting the places of interest.

It is one of the oldest structures in the city, and dates back to thousands of centuries. The structure is actually a gateway into Somnath from the neighbouring town of Veraval. The gate has intricate carvings and is one of the most popular monuments in the area.  

Also known as the Abadhit Samudra Marg Tirsthambh, this ancient route marker has an arrow atop which points towards an unhindered sea course to the South Pole. This ornately carved tower is adorned by beautifully carvings. 

The temple is very close to a beach, and children could spend some time playing here, making sand castles and beach-combing. There are also provisions for a camel ride on the beach. A must watch for the children is the Light and Sound Show ‘Jay Somnath’, which will kindle their imaginations and interest in the history and increase their knowledge. Besides these activities, you take the children to the local parks and your hotel may be children friendly and have playing/ activity areas for the young ones.

The Somnath temple is one of the most foremost places to visit in Somnath. It is one of the most significant places of pilgrimage for Hindus. It is a gigantic seven storied building which is approximately 155 feet tall. The spire of the temple is a sky reaching 50 metres, and the temple is extremely spacious. The architecture is inspired by the Chalukya period and reflects the artistry of the stone-masons who constructed the temple.

This temple is located very near to the main temple for worshipping Lord Shiva. It was built by the Rajmata (Queen Mother) AhilyabaiHolkar in 1782, to substitute for the main temple during times when temple was under attack or being ravaged due to hostile wars. This was done to ensure that the worship of Lord Shiva went on smoothly. 

This is a revered pilgrimage place for Hindus, located 5 km from Somnath. There is a temple and a banyan tree on this spot. It is believed that towards the end of Dwapar Yuga, it was here that Lord Krishna was fatally wounded on his heel by an arrow from a Hunter, who mistook Lord Krishna for a deer. 

This temple is located near Triveni Ghat. According to mythology, this was the place where Parshuram prayed for his atonement to Lord Somnath.

This is temple devoted to Lord Shiva in his Shahsibhushan avatar and his son Lord Ganesha as Bidhbhanjan Ganpati. The temple is located about 4 km away on the highway while going towards Veraval.

Dehotsarg is located about 1.5 km away from Somnath, and is a pilgrimage spot for Hindus. It is said that from here Lord Krishna, after being hit by the arrow, departed on his journey to Neejdham to attain moksha. There are several other temples near Dehotsarg Tirtha, like Geeta Temple and Laxmi Narayan Temple. The Geeta Temple is very famous because the most sacred book of Hindus, which is considered to be preached by Lord Krishna, the BhagwatGeeta, is inscribed here on eighteen pillars.

These caves are situated near Lalghati and have a temple dedicated to the five Pandava brothers. The temple was built here in 1949 by a sage called Baba Narayandas. There are shrines of Lord Shiva, Lord Rama, Sita, Laxman& Hanuman here as well.

It is the point of confluence of three sacred rivers of the region, namely, Kapila, Hiran and the invisible Saraswati, with the sea. 

 

This museum is located very close to the Somnath Temple. It is designed like a courtyard centred building, with rooms around it. The museum is home to ruins from the earlier temples and some other artefacts. The remains of the old temples, though severely weathered, are still beautiful and are adorned by magnificent carvings. 

There are two very famous parks in Somnath for children to play and for you to relax or perhaps take a stroll. One is Harihar Van in Prabhas Patan, about 4.2 km away from the temple. The other is the Nagar Palika Garden on RajendraBhavan Road, Krishna Nagar, Veraval, located 3.4 km away from Somnath.

Girnar National Park in Junagadh is 74.4 km from Somnath. While in Junagadh you may also look at the Junagadh Fort and other monuments. Another religious place of great importance is Dwarka, where you can visit the Dwarkadhish Temple. Dwarka is the home of Lord Krishna and is 230 km west of Somnath. For lovers of nature and sea beaches, Diu is 85 km from Somnath, and would be a good addition to the tour. Diu is blessed with some of the most beautiful beaches and seascapes in India and is a must visit. 

This magnificent beach is situated 5 km from the Somnath Temple, and offers spectacular views of the Arabian Sea. The beach is very breezy and has refreshingly clean waters. 

This is the meeting place of three rivers, namely Kapila, Hiran and the mythical river Saraswati. This tranquil and calm place is located in Lati, approximately 4.9 km from Somnath. You may take a boat ride here or just sit on the ghats for expansive and exquisite views of the delta and the sea. 

Somnath is a trove of cultural heritage and traditions. The majority of the population in the area understands and speaks Hindi and Guajarati and follows Hinduism. One of the best cultural activities you can indulge in is the Light and Sound Show called ‘Jay Somnath’. The show is all about the history and importance of the Somnath Temple. One can also see the beautifully lit up Somnath Temple in the backdrop during the show. People in Somnath celebrate festivals like Shivratri and Diwali with a lot of fanfare. 

The Somnath temple itself is the most notable landmark in Somnath. Other than this, the most famous landmark in the area is the office of Shree Somnath Trust in Prabhas Patan. The other major landmarks are the Somnath Bus Stand near Vir Hamirji Gohil statue, Shree Somnath Sanskrit University, and the Government Hospital in Veraval.

 

The Somnath Beach is one the most tranquil beaches in the region. Vallabh Ghat in Somnath offers excellent sunset views and seascapes. 

Religious representation of the Supreme God, Lord Shiva, the twelve Jyotirlingas are the shrines where the power of God is instilled. The word Jyoti means to shine, or radiance and the word lingam denotes the sign or image of Shiva. Here is a brief description of the twelve Jyotirlingas:

 

Name of Temple

Location

Opening Hours

Nearest Places to 

Visit

Somnath Temple

Gujarat

6 am to 9 pm

Triveni Ghat, Lakshmi-Narayana Mandir, Gita Mandir

Mallikarjuna

Srisailam, Andhra Pradesh

8 am to 6 pm

Patala Ganga, Srisailam Tiger Reserve, Akkamahadevi Caves

Mahakaleshwar

Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh

3 am to 11 pm

Kal Bhairav Temple, Kaliadeh Palace, Chintaman Ganesh Temple

Omkareshwar

Madhya Pradesh

5 am to 9:35 pm

Kedareshwar Temple, Siddhanath Temple, Parikrama.

Kedarnath

Uttarakhand

4 am to 9 pm

Vasuki Tal, Shankaracharya Samadhi, Agastyamuni.

Bhimashankar

Pune, Maharashtra

4:30 am to 9:30 pm

Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary, Hanuman Lake

 

 

 

Somnath

Located at the Prabhas Pata of the Saurashtra region in the state of Gujarat, the Somnath Temple is an architectural wonder built in the name of Lord Shiva.

Significance: It is considered to be the first pilgrimage site of the Dwadash Jyotirlinga pilgrimage.

How to reach: The Keshod airport is the closest to Somnath Temple. Veraval Rail Head is the closest railway station. The state transport provides various private and public buses from various centres of Gujarat to Somnath.

Interesting facts: This temple was destroyed and re-built around sixteen times, and it still stands strong.

 

Mallikarjuna

The second pilgrimage site of the Dwadash Jyotirlinga pilgrimage, this temple is located in Srisailam of Andhra Pradesh.

Significance: The shrine of deity Mallikarjun, which is located at the peak of the Nallamalla hills. 

How to reach: Though not regular, there are a few flights available from various cities to Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, which is the closest airport. Markapur railway station is the closest to Srisailam. Srisailam is connected to many cities and towns through private and public buses. Otherwise, you can also hire taxis.

Interesting facts: The temple was built around six centuries ago by the King Harihara Raya of Vijayanagara Empire.

 

Mahakaleshwar

Located in the ancient Ujjain city of the Madhya Pradesh state, the Mahakaleshwar temple is one of the sacred abodes of Lord Shiva.

Significance: It is believed that all the devotees who pray here, realise the most significant wishes of their lives

How to reach: The Ujjain railways station is well-connected with the cities of India. However, the Ahilyabai Holkar Airport at Indore is also one of the nearest airports to Ujjain. 

Interesting facts: The temple has five levels, where one of the levels is situated underground. 

 

Omkareshwar

Situated on the Mandhata hills, this temple has many fascinating legends connected to it.

Significance: One lingam is located at the Omkareshwar Temple known as the Omkareshwar, and the other known as Mamleshwar is located to the opposite of the holy Narmada River

How to reach: Ujjain and Indore are the closest airports to Omkareshwar. The nearest railway station is 12 km away but is not well-connected. You can also board a bus from Indore, Ujjain or Khandwa.

Interesting facts: The island on which Omkareshwar is located is shaped in the written form of the sound Om.

 

Kedarnath

Located in the district of Rudraprayag of Uttarakhand, Kedarnath is one of the holiest among the twelve Jyotirlingas.

Significance: It is known to be the point where the Pandavas had come to seek forgiveness for the killing of their cousins from Lord Shiva.

How to reach: The Jolly Grant Airport is the closest to Kedarnath. You can either take a rail at the Rishikesh railway station or the best way to reach the temple is by road. Either walk or rent a pony.

Interesting facts: It can be reached either by foot or by helicopter service; there is no other way in which you can climb up the temple which is the highest placed among all the twelve Jyotirlingas.

 

Bhimashankar 

Standing tall at an altitude of about 3200 feet above the sea level, the Bhimashankar rests on the Sahyadri Hills.

Significance: It is believed to remove all the sins of the devotees from their seven lives and open the path to Paradise if they see the temple after sunrise every morning.

How to reach: You can easily reach either by road or by rail. Several private and public buses run to Pune every day. Another way around, there is also an airport in Pune for you to land directly and catch a bus or cab to the temple.

Interesting facts: The occasions of Shivaratri or Mahashivaratri are celebrated grandly in this temple.

 

Name of the Temple

Location

Opening Hours

Nearest Places to Visit

Kashi Vishwanath

Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh

4 am to 11 pm

Dashashwamedh Ghat, Assi Ghat, Sankat Mochan Hanuman Temple

Triambakeshwar

Nashik, Maharashtra

5 am to 10 pm

Vallonne Vineyards, Lake Vaitarna Waterfalls, Anjaneri Fort

Biadyanath

Deoghar, Jharkhand

4 am to 3:30 pm and 6 pm to 9 pm

Nandan Pahar, Tapovan Caves, Naulakha Mandir

Nageshvara Jyotirlinga

Dwarka, Gujarat

6 am to 12:30 pm and 5 pm to 9:30 pm

Beyt Dwarika, Rukshamanee Mandir, Gomti Ghat

Rameshwar

Rameshwaram, Tamil Nadu

4:30 am to 1 pm and 3 pm to 8:30 pm

Jada Tirtham, Dhanushkodi Temple, Gandhamadhana Parvatham

Grishneshwar

Ellora, Aurangabad, Maharashtra

5:30 am to 9:30 pm 

Ajantha Caves, Kailasanatha temple, Buddhist Caves.

 

 

Kashi Vishwanath Temple

Standing tall on the western bank of the River Ganga, the Kashi Vishwanath temple is considered to be the holiest of all the twelve Jyotirlingas.

Significance: The golden chhatra at the top of the temple holds all its power. It is believed to fulfil people’s wishes if they looked at the chhatra and prayed. 

How to reach: Babatpur Airport is the closest to Varanasi. It is approximately 21-22 km away from the city. The Varanasi Junction is 6 km away from the city. Varanasi is well connected to other cities by private and government buses that run on a daily basis.

Interesting facts: It is believed that Lord Shiva has actually stayed in this place for a while, and hence the word Kashi is designated from KAS, which means to shine.

 

Triambakeshwar 

Built by the Peshwa Balaji Bajirao the third during his reign from 1740 AD to 1761 AD, this temple is one of the most elegant constructions by the Maharashtrian Empire.

Significance: Lord Shiva is believed to be landed up at this place due to a curse received from Lord Brahma.

How to reach: The Chhatrapati Shivaji Temple is the closest to Nashik. It is approximately 179-180 km away. The Nashik Railway Head is approximately 36-37 km away. Nashik is connected to the major cities by regular buses that ply between the cities.

Interesting facts: This temple took 31 years to complete the construction, and the word triambak means three-eyed giri.

 

Nageshvara Jyotirlinga 

Ninth one among the twelve shrines, the Nageshvara Jyotirlinga holds a special place in the Dwarka region. 

Significance: It is believed to protect all the devotes from different kinds of poison.

How to reach: The Veraval railway station is just 7 km away from Dwarka and is connected well to the major cities in the country. The Jamnagar airport is the closest one, to where you need to travel to Dwarka and reach the temple henceforth.

Interesting facts: The lingam in this temple is made from a special stone which is referred to as the Dwarka Stone.

 

Baidyanath Temple 

Also known as Vaidyanath Dham or baba Baidyanath Dham; this tenth Jyotirlinga among all the twelve is one of the most sacred places of worship in India.

Significance: It is believed that Shiva himself landed at this place to cure Ravana who was injured due to a cause. He was referred to as the Vaidhya in this instance, and hence falls the name of Vaidyanath Dham.

How to reach: The Jasidih Railway Station is the closest to Baidyanath Temple. It is approximately 7-8 km away from the temple and is easily accessible and is connected to most of the major cities in the country.

Interesting facts: According to the beliefs of the Hindu culture, Lord Shiva was ardently worshipped by the demon Ravana at this same place, centuries ago.

 

Rameshwar 

The southernmost shrine among the twelve Jyotirlingas, Rameshwaram Temple, is located at Rameshwaram in Tamil Nadu

Significance: It is home to the Ramesvara pillar, which is believed to be of Lord Rama. 

How to reach: It is well-connected to other parts of the country through air, rail, and road. The nearest airport is in Madurai which is approximately 162-163 km from there. It is also connected to cities like Trichy, Chennai, Thanjavur, and Coimbatore by train.

Interesting facts: It is considered to be the holiest temple in India after Kasi.

 

Grishneshwar Temple 

Also referred to as the Dhushmeshwar temple, this shrine holds a special place in the Shiva Purana.

Significance: This is the 12th Jyotirlinga among the Dwadash Jyotirlinga pilgrimage which beings at the Somnath Temple.

How to reach: The Grishneshwar Temple is located close to the Ajanta and Ellora caves. The nearest airport is at Aurangabad. You can hire a cab from there or even take public buses to reach. 

Interesting facts: This temple was built by Ahilyabhai Holkar and is also known as Kusumeswar or Ghushmeswara. It is the most ancient and the most pious temple among the Jyotirlingas.

The sea in Somnath is pretty rough and not fit for deep sea swimming and other water sport activities, but you may splash in the water and keep swimming restricted to shallower waters. For adventure activities, drive to Chorwad Holiday Camp about 31.9 km away and try trekking on its rocky shores and other activities.

A stroll on the beach would be very relaxing for anyone visiting Somnath. Moreover, you should also try taking out time to visit Agravat Ayurveda & Nature Cure, which is in Chorwad, about 28.2 km from Somnath. This is a great place for travellers seeking to pamper their bodies and treat ailments with the help of Ayurveda and Naturopathy. 

A must watch is the Light & Sound Show on the beach with Somnath Temple as a backdrop. 

Most people who visit Somnath like to eat out at the restaurants run by the Somnath Temple Trust. Prasadam Hotel, Bhabha Hotel, and LilavatiBhojanalaya are the ones preferred by most travellers. The food is vegetarian and the restaurants are clean and well maintained. There are several other small shops and restaurants like Bhabhia Restaurant and SukhSagar Restaurant around the temple which could offer you good food.

Most restaurants serve North Indian, Gujarati and South Indian dishes in Somnath. Do try Khaman Dhokla, thepla and khandvi, which are Gujarati delicacies. 

The flea market near the bus stop sells excellent handicrafts and souvenirs. A must buy from this flea market are pretty hand-made dolls made by local artisans. You could also buy shells and souvenirs made of sea shells from the Sharda Math.

Two of the major departmental stores in Somnath are Adarsh Departmental Store on 60 Feet Road and Shakti Departmental Store on Veraval Road. 

Vakhariya Bazar in Veraval village is your best bet where street markets are concerned. You will find a lot of small shops here selling their wares at competitive prices.

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