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Gujarat - Dwarka - Lord Krishna's Kingdom
Dwar means gateway and ka means peace. The peaceful Dwarka can be a sought after destination for you in this summer. A holy Hindu pilgrimage, Dwarka, is said to be one of holiest spots for the devotees among seven (Ayodhya, Mathura, Varanasi, Kachipuram, Ujjain, Puri) well known pilgrimages in India.
Ancient substances excavated from Dwarka draw attention of tourists even today. One of such item is an anchor (250 kg), which was excavated in 1960. This particular anchor of 14th century reveals the cultural elegance of a traditional civilization. The porcelain vessels of 1300 (B.C) later on were excavated during 1979. Archeologists had confirmed that these archeological vessels were of Mahabharata (Hindu mythological era) era.
One of the oldest Indian royal enticements, erected way back in bygone era, the Dwarka fort, was reshaped on the mouth of the Gomati River by Jadu dynasty. It is believed that once upon a time on the prolonged River banks the capital was built by Sri Krishna in Dwarka. Entirely delimited by lingering ocean, the well fortified fort was secured by installing a dam from destructive floods. It was known to be the second populated Indian city during the ruling period of the emperor Sri Krishna. During his tenure of 36 years, the royal leader, Sri Krishna, had changed the city exclusively. Later on, a destructive flood had swallowed the city fort. There is not even a single visible brick of the primeval temple of dwarka. Everything had been washed off.
The historical city and the attached golden memories are to be cherished forever. To recall the ancient glory, presently an initiative to safeguard the city from the atrocious waves of the ocean has been taken by installing a dam. Clouds of confusion, however, still hover around the main place where actually the city of Dwarka used to exist.
Recently during 19th century, the modern city of Dwarka was reconstructed by the royal emperor of Gaikwad. The undeniable religious values associated with Dwarka are noteworthy. Nevertheless, the city is getting modernized, both with its structural constructions and innovative thinking. It’s true that no one puts a question mark on the religious values, established in the minds of the inhabitants but the city is now trying to hold its head high by setting up modern industries as well.
Ashes of Mahatma Gandhi after his death were scattered into the water of the ocean in Dwarka. The Gandhighat on the banks of the ocean, hence, was built in memory of the great Indian patriot, Mahatma Gandhi.
About 2 km away from the railway station of Dwarka, the Ranchhodji temple, is the prime allurement of Dwarka. The deity, Ranchhodji or Sri Krishna, was named like this as he came all the way from Ran to Dwarka. An idol of the king Sri Krishna, adorned with shimmering pearls and valuables, was erected on the silver throne. The idol has Panchajanya Sankha (conch), Sudarshan wheel and Kaumodaki club in his hands. The chief idol is an evidence of elegant Dakor architecture.
The temple (7 storied), built by the emperor Jagat Singh, erected on 72 contiguous pillars, has a height of 170 feet and was made up using both sandstones and granites. City dwellers know this temple as Jagat temple. It was named after the builder of the temple. Opinions about the construction of the temple vary though. Some believe that this grand temple was constructed entirely during a span of a night in 16th century. The graceful and distinguished temple is extended on three of its sloped. Garbha Mandir, Biman Mandap and Natya Mandap along with a golden pitcher on its crest deserve praise.
A number of Hindu mythological deities share the same space in the holy temple. The main temple is gleaming due to the presence of Devki right in front of the divine temple. The Hindu God, Ganesh, welcomes all the devotees to the temple. Take a walk inside to watch the bright face of the Kusheshwar Shiva, placed at the right hand side of the entrance of the temple. Numerous other deities, such as, Satya Narayan, Ambaji, Puroshottam, Aniruddha Ji, Saint Durbasha, Jambavati, Sriradhika, Lakshmi-Narayan, Gopal, Baldev Ji, Satyabhama and Lakshmi are residing in their own respective hallowed temples. The city is spread around the temple. Get into the temple through Swarg-Dwar and come out of it through Moksha-Dwar. Only Hindu pilgrims, however, are permitted to get into the sanctified temple. The doorway is open to the pilgrims during 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. The day starts with a devotional prayer to the almighty. The adornment of the deity changes often. This is an enthralling sight. Janmashtami, Vasant Panchami and Dol are the well known festivities, held in Dwarka. You should take prasadam with the blessings of the deity in the afternoon and evening. Buy a coupon for this well in advance.
A consecrated Krishna temple, situated on an Island, is nestled in water of the Gomati River. Go down stepping out of the temple through its southern gateway crossing 56 stairways to the divine temple of Gomati. River Gomati marks its way through the lower valley. Devotees who are tainted with sins take a bath in the river to shed sins. The mouth of Gomati River is not very far away from this holy spot.
Quadrilateral-shaped deity namely Sangam Narayan is residing in the righteous temple at the right hand side of the Gomati temple. A sprawling 32 miles of area, spread across both the banks of the River at the mouth is famously known as Chakratirtha. Stones with the impressions of wheels are still found on the river banks of Chakratirtha. A 156 feet tall light house on the holy land of Chakratirth was built on 7th January, 1963 and it offers an agreeable panoramic view. It is open to the general people in the afternoon for an hour.
The astonishing sunset point is located at the northern corridor of the light house. Go beyond the river to access the Panchanad Teertha which has derived its name significantly from five pandavas. Hindu pilgrims consider all of these 5 adjoining wells, positioned on the Panchanad Teertha divine. The taste of water of each of these wells is different. A pious Lakshmi- Narayan temple, at the southern side of the Panchanad Teertha, pulls countless numbers of devotees as well. Watch the Chakra- Narayan stone which has a wheel symbol engraved on it, going beyond the River on the banks of the ocean.
The virtuous Rukmini temple, built in 12 century, lies 2 km off Ranchhodji or Dwarkadhish temple. The Goddess Rukmini, the beloved person of Sri Krishna, is getting honor from her followers here. The idol of the divine power, Rukmini, looks lovely as it is made up of white marbles. The temple is a classical example of primeval architecture and is bejeweled with the portraits of the mythological tales. Don’t miss the lifetime opportunity to witness the charm of the sunset from the temple premise.
Temple lovers should travel to the sanctified Bhadrakali temple, amidst the city, on the way back from the Rukmini temple. Devi Mahakali with four of her arms is blessing her followers from her own throne in the temple. It is said to be one of the 51 Sati Pithas of Hindu devotees.
Nearby Sidheshwar temple is another coveted tourists’ spot. It is believed that the Shiva Lingam of Sidheshwar temple was established by Brahma with his own hand.
Brahmakumari Ishwariya Vishwa Vidyalaya, Kabir Ashram and Vedic Bhawan are the other neighboring attractions. The Vedin Bhawan which is very rich in collections, houses 1250 priceless inscriptions, 9 of which are known to be written by Vishwakarma.
For enjoying a class-apart vista of the bordering coast, you have to travel to Bhadkeshwar on the sea shore.
Built by Acharya Shankaracharya during 788- 820, Sarada Math, is one of the holiest places in all 4 maths, erected by Shankaracharya. Chandra Mouleshwar Shiva is residing on the holy throne of Sarada Math. The idol of Chandra Mouleshwar was discovered by Acharya on the mouth of Arabian ocean and Gomati Ganga. Later on, he founded eight more idols. 1200 Shalgram Stones, 1300 Shiva Lingams and 75 metal idols are kept in the Math. The Shankaracharya idol, made up of stones, should also be seen.
Watching the place of gemstones, Positra, about 30 km away from Dwarka, would be a fascinating experience for all the holiday makers. Bushes of cactus, dotted at the roadside, are lovely to look at. Gaze at various gemstones and aquatic ites at Lucku point, Bharubete.
Interested devotees can hire a car from Dwarka to Nageshwar, about 17 km away from Dwarka to watch one of the 12 Jyotir Lingams. Cross the Nageshwar taking a walk for some time to access the temple, founded by Gulshan Kumar Charitable trust. The lavishly built elegant temple is huge and is entertaining all the tourists.
Hit the Gopi Talav on the way to Okha from Nageshwar. Devotees collect soil of this holy spot. The nearby Mirabai temple is another charming attraction. Neighboring Mithapur is now famous for the salt manufacturing factory of TATA group. A model township in Mithapur provides a safe shelter to the employees and their families. Sweet water is supplied to Okha from Mithapur.
How to reach: Dwarka can be accessed by train from Mumbai, Ahmadabad, Rajkot, Jamnagar, Delhi, Jaipur, Vishakhapatnam, Dehradun, Agra, Ernakulum, Varanasi and many more Indian cities. Buses also regularly ply to Dwarka from Somnath, Ahmadabad, Junagadh, Porbandar and Okha.
Where to stay: Hotel Meera, Hotel Radhika, Hotel Guruprerana, Gokul Guest House, Hotel Darghan, Brishma Guest House, Vrindavan Guest House, Muralidhar Guest House, Hotel Sundar Palace and Hotel Pujan.
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