My Trip to Pune The Mahabaleshwar Temple
My Trip to Pune
Date : 25th August 2022
Day : Thursday
Places : The Mahabaleshwar Temple
The Mahabaleshwar Temple
Mahabaleshwar temple is an ancient shrine and an ideal example of the Maratha heritage. Popularly known as the Mahabali, the temple is flocked by tourists and devotees throughout the year to bask in the serenity and tranquillity offered here. The temple is extremely popular among the Hindus, as Lord Shiva is the presiding deity here. Set up amidst the hilly terrain, this picturesque temple glorifies the Maratha Empire and its rule during the 16th century.
The Mahabaleshwar temple near Satara is one of the ancient temples of Maharashtra. It was built by Chanda Rao More dynasty in the 16th century. The magnificent temple is guarded by a five feet wall and has two sections- the inner area and the outer area. The inner part, known as the sanctum sanctorum, has Shiva as the presiding deity. There are many belongings of Lord Shiva in the premises of this temple, like his bed, damru, Trishul, carvings of his sacred bull and Kalbhairav (his bodyguard); that aptly defines his presence here.
The main and central attraction of this temple is the 6 feet long Shiva lingam of which only the tip is visible, depicting the stone incarnation of Lord Shiva. The Mahabaleshwar Temple has a very serene and spiritual environment. Devotees visit the temple around the year to witness the calm and peaceful aura of Lord Shiva. The site has two more temples nearby, namely the Atibaleshwar temple and the Panchganga temple. Mahabaleshwar Temple is quintessential of the authentic Hemadant architectural style of South India.
The temple is located on the shores of Arabian Sea on the west coast of India, near the city of Karwar. It is set in a lush, green environment in the holy town of Gokarna (also spelt "Gokarn") in Uttara Kannada (or North Kannada district).
Gokarna lies between the Gangavalli and Aganashini rivers.
National Highway 66 (NH66), a coastal highway on the Western Ghats (from Kanyakumari to Mumbai), passes close to Gokarna. The town is 56 kilometres (35 mi) from Karwar, 252 kilometres (157 mi) from Mangalore, 145 kilometres (90 mi) from Hubli, and 450 kilometres (280 mi) from Bangalore. The nearest airport is at Panaji, Goa, 155 kilometres (96 mi) away and 120 km away from Pune city.
The temple has immense religious significance, as it is the only temple in the world with a Linga in the form of Rudraksha. The 6 feet long ‘Swayambhu’ (self-originated) Shiva Linga, known as the Mahalingam, is thousands of years old. The sanctum sanctorum which houses the Linga is over 500 years old, while other parts of the temple were constructed subsequently.
The temple complex also houses the belongings of Lord Shiva, and it is believed that Lord Shiva still uses them when he visits the premises every night. A square platform in the temple complex is the main tourist attraction. It is the place where Shri Chhatrapati Shivaji conducted ‘Tuladaan’ to donate gold to the needy.
Being a major tourist attraction in Mahabaleshwar, it attracts visitors from across the country. Tourists visit the shrine to witness the majestic architecture and the unique Shiva Linga, which is one-of-its-kind.
Shiva devotees visit the temple throughout the year. Navaratri and Maha Shivaratri along with other Hindu festivals are celebrated with much fanfare. There are many famous tourist spots of Mahabaleshwar in the vicinity of the temple which can be visited on the same day.
Things to do at Mahabaleshwar Temple
Mahabaleshwar Temple is a highly revered Hindu temple set amidst the scenic backdrop of the Sahyadri Hills. You can seek blessings at the ancient Mahabaleshwar Temple and enjoy the natural grandeur of the surroundings.
Among, the other things to do at Mahabaleshwar Temple are:
1. The holy water from Shri Panchganga Temple is believed to have therapeutic properties and is consumed by devotees. Krishnabai Temple is another prominent black stone temple located over a majestic cliff.
2. Nature lovers and photographers can spend the day enjoying the tranquillity of the region. You can enjoy watching the sunrise and sunset from near the temple premises.
3. You can also visit the various vantage points around the temple and rejuvenate amidst nature. Popular spots are Wilson Point (Sunrise Point), Carnac Point, Elephant's Head Point, Helen’s Point, Arthur’s Seat, Falkland Point, Sunset Point, Kate’s Point.
4. Adventure enthusiasts can enjoy trekking, hiking, rock climbing, and camping in the area.
5. Chinaman’s Falls, Dhobi Waterfall, and Venna Lake are prominent picnic spots near the temple. You can enjoy a day of relaxation in the lap of nature at these places.
Interesting facts about Mahabaleshwar Temple
The Mahalingam is the only Rudraksha shaped Shiva Linga in the world.
The Shiva Linga appeared on its own and symbolizes a ‘Trigunatmak Linga’ with the spiritual significance of Mahabaleshwar, Atibaleshwar, and Koteshwar.
The temple has a central hall with exhibits dedicated to Lord Shiva like a Trident (Trishul), Rudraksha, and Damru. These are around 300 years old. It is believed that Shiva visits the temple to use them.
The Panchganga temple is the point of convergence of five rivers.
Priyanshi Singh [MBA]
AirCrews Aviation Pvt. Ltd.