Somnath Temple of Gujarat

Usha Biswal Rout

14, Sep 2017 @ 05:10 PM
get the quote for your happy trip
Related to: Gujarat Travel Guide

About - The western coast of Gujarat in the Saurashtra region stands the famous Somnath temple in Prabhas Patan. It is believed that it has the first shrine among the twelve jyotirlinga shrines of Lord Shiva. This temple was destroyed and reconstructed several times in the past but the structure which persists now was built in 1951. It resembles the Chalukya style of Hindu temple architecture. The reconstruction of this building was given a thought by Vallabhai Patel but K.M Munshi ensured its completion and also became the head of the temple trust in those days.

Gujarat Somnath Temple
Pint It

The place where the temple is located is believed to be most sacred even from ancient times on account of being a Triveni Sangam. The Kapila river, Hiran river, and the mysthical Sarasvathi join at this site and hence called the Triveni Sangam. The story of this holy place is believed to be that, Soma or the Moon god lost his lustre due to a curse. He bathed in the Saraswati river at this site to regain it. So, the waxing and waning of the moon is somehow related to the waxing and waning of the tides at this sea shore location. This place got its name, Prabhas which means lustre by this tradition. The alternative names, Someshwar or Somnath means the Lord of the Moon or the Moon god.

History - This temple was built first in ancient unknown times, but the second time, it is said to have been built by the Yadav kings of Vallabhai around 649CE. In 725CE, the Arab governer of Sindh destroyed the temple when he invaded Gujarat. Nagabhatta II, the Gujara-Pratihara reconstructed it in 815CE. It was a beautiful large structure of red sand stone. In 1024, during the reign of Bhima I, the prominent Turik ruler Mahumad of Ghazni raided Gujarat, plundering the Somnath temple and breaking its jyotirlinga. After this, Kumarapala rebuilt it with excellent stones, studded it with jewel in 1169. A series of destruction and reconstruction followed this and now it finally stands reflecting the amazing skills of the Sompura Salats, one of Gujarat’s master masons. Its unique quality is that this structure is situated at such a place that there is no land in a straight line between its sea shore until Antartica.

Jyotirlinas is believed to be in all the places where Lord Shiva had appeared as a fiery column of light. And the one located in Somnath was the first among the twelve. At all the sites of jyotirlinga, ‘Lingam’ is the primary image representing the beginning-less and endless stambha, symbolizing the infinite nature of Shiva.

This temple is one of the places that attracts thousands of devotees and tourists every year. A must visit temples in Gujarat and a very sacred place is this Somnath temple of Prabhas. Further the vibrant State of Gujarat with the sea side climate also provides for some catchy tourist destinations. The best time to visit the temple is during winters from September to January.

Related Links: best time to visit Somnath temple, Hindu temple architecture, Somnath Temple, temple in Prabhas Patan
get the quote for your happy trip
destination search

Related Articles

Honeymoon Destinations in India

Famous Temples in India

Hotels in India