Temples and Mosques of Rajasthan

Adhai din ka Jhopra, Ajmer

Adhai din ka Jhopra is actually a Masjid built by Qutub-ud-Din-Aibak, first Sultan of Delhi, in AD 1199 . Sultan Iltutmish had subsequently beautified it in AD 1213 with a screen pierced by corbelled engrailed arches which appears in this country for the first time.  However, a large number of architectural members and sculptures of temples are lying inside the verandah of the complex for safety and security purposes by the department which shows the existence of a Hindu temple in its vicinity during circa 11th-12th Century AD. This mosque, built from the dismantled remains of temples, is known as Adhai-din-ka-Jhonpra possibly from the fact that a fair used to be held here for two and a half days.

The Ajmer Sharif Dargah:

Ajmer Sharif, situated at the foot of the Taragarh hill, is the shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti. It contains the domed tomb of the saint and several white marble buildings arranged around two courtyards, including a massive gate donated by the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Akbari Mosque, built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan.

Akbar used to come here by foot on pilgrimage from Agra every year in observance of a vow when he prayed for a son. The large pillars called “Kose (‘Mile’) Minar”, erected at intervals of two miles (3 km) along the entire way between Agra and Ajmer mark the places where the royal pilgrims halted every day.

Soni ji ki Nasiyan, Ajmer

Soniji ki Nasiyan is a Jain Temple located in Ajmer and is a wonderful example of ornate architecture, dedicated to Risabhadev or Adinath. Its entrance is made of red stone and the marble staircase inside is engraved with images of the holy Tirthankars – omniscient teachers of Jain faith who taught righteousness.  The temple was constructed in the late 19th century. Its main chamber, Swarna Nagari (City of Gold), is aptly named so because of the several gold-plated wooden figures it houses within its walls. This famous architectural marvel is also mentioned in Kurt Titze’s book, ‘Jainism: A Pictorial Guide to the Religion of Non-Violence.’

 

Tijara Jain Temple, Alwar

About 60 kilometres from the Alwar-Delhi route lies this important centre of Jain pilgrimage. The exquisitely decorated ancient temple was built to commemorate the eighth Tirthankar, Shri Chandra Prabha Bhagwan. The son of King Mahasen and Queen Sulakshana, he ruled his kingdom for several years before receiving Diksha and being initiated. After serving mankind for several years, he meditated for a month and attained Nirvana.

Bhand Devara, Baran

Ramgarh-Bhand Devra temples are situated about 40 km. from Baran. The Shiv Mandir of Ramgarh was built in 10th century on the Khajuraho style. Due to the Maithun Statues, the place is named as Bhand Devra. This temple is situated on the bank of pond and is now under the Archaeological department. This temple is known as Rajasthan’s mini Khajuraho.

Kiradu Temple , Barmer

Keradu Temple might have been constructed before the 6th century at the time of “Parmar” Dynasty. There are five temples in all and most remarkable of them is Someshvara Temple .These temples feature impressive sculpture and a Solanki style of architecture. There are 4-5 Big Temple structure of Golden colour and a Sun Temple. The temple is well entitled as “Khajuraoh of Rajasthan”. The design of the temple are identicle to the Khajuraoh Temple and Sun Temple at Orrisa. The temple is ruin and with lack of images of God and Goddess. The Keradu was earlier Headquarter of Barmer and it was attacked by Mohammad Gauri in 1140AD who had destroyed the temple structure and its images.

Vankal Mata Temple, Barmer

Vankal Mata Temple is situated at the west end of the city on a 675 feet high hill, the ancient citadel of the 16th century ( fortress ), which was called Barmer citadel , whose remains still exist.

Shri Parshwanath Jain Temple, Barmer

Shri Parshwanath Jain temple was originally a temple of Mahavira. This temple was renovated in the fifteenth century. 120 idols were brought here from Kalidrah and this beautiful and miraculous idol was installed here as Mulnayak (main idol of the temple) in the year 1429 of the Vikram era (1373 AD). It is among the hills in the distant forest at a distance of 13 kilometers from Balotra.

Jain Temple Bhandasar , Bikaner

Jain Temple was commissioned by Bhandasa Oswal in the year 1468 and completed in the year 1514. The structure is influenced by Rajputana architecture and includes unique and intricately sculpted pillars, frescos and the gold leaf work, with a blend of red sandstone and white marble used in the construction. The mirror work in the temple is unique as well.

 

Meerabai Temple, Chittorgarh

Meerabai, an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna’s, worshipped him at this temple. The structure is designed in the classic North Indian style of temples. It rises from a raised plinth and its conical roof can be seen from far. The temple houses a beautiful shrine surrounded by an open porch with four small pavilions in four corners.

Deo Somnath, Dungarpur

On the banks of Som river, there is an old and beautiful Shiva temple called Deo Somnath built in the 12th century. Built of white stone, the temple has imposing turrets. One can see the sky from within the temple. Though there is a perfect adaptation of parts in the masonry, yet it gives the impression that individual stones are crumbling. The temple has 3 exits, one each in the east, the north and the south. The entrance gates are two storied The Garbha Garah has a high dome. In front of it is the Sabha Mandap – built on 8 majestic pillars. There are Twenty Torans of which four still exist. Others were destroyed by the flood waters of the Som. The idol of the deity is in a chamber, eight steps below and the entrance is from the Sabha Mandap. There are several inscription by pilgrims and the oldest belongs to 1493 A.D. Several warriors were cremated near the temple and memorials have been raised in their honour.

Nagfanji, Dungarpur

Nagfanji is renowned for its Jain shrines and not only does it attract devotees from Dungarpur but also tourists who travel from far to see the temple. The temple houses statues of Devi Padmawati, NagfanjiParshwanatha and Dharnendra.The Nagfanji Shivalaya,which is located close to this temple, is also a tourist attraction.

Shrinathji Temple, Dungarpur

MaharawalPunjraj built this temple in the year 1623. The idols of Shri Radhikaji and GoverdhanNathji are the main attractions. The complex also houses several shrines dedicated to Shri BankeBihariji and Shri Ramchandraji.

Surpur Temple, Dungarpur

This ancient shrine is located on the banks of the Gangdi River about 3 kilometres from Dungarpur. The area around the temple also houses other attractions such as Bhulbhulaiya, Madhavrai Temple, Hathiyon Ki Agad and several inscriptions.

Mandore, Jodhpur

Towards the north of Jodhpur is the ancient capital of Marwar, Mandore. This area is of major historical importance and you will find the dewals or cenotaphs of Jodhpur’s former rulers. Unlike the original chhatri-shaped cenotaphs that are typical patterns of Rajasthan architecture, these are built along the lines of Hindu temples.

Osian, Jodhpur:

65 Kms from Jodhpur, lies ruins of an ancient city called Ossian. This city is famous for Brahmanical and Jain temples, which belong to 8th and 11th century. The shikhar of Sachiya temple is clustered by two rows of turrets, an ambulatory and a large assembly hall with an elaborate ceiling. This town which was once a great trading centre is an oasis and houses an abundance of peacocks. The largest of the 16 Jain and Brahmanical temples is dedicated to Mahavira.

Nathdwara Temple, Rajsamand

Nathdwara Temple is 17th century temple ,  located in the Aravalli hills on the banks of the Banas River,   which houses the idol of Shrinathji, considered an incarnation of Krishna. The idol was originally worshipped at  Jatipura, Mathura and was shifted in the 1672, during reign of Aurangzeb, from Govardhan hill, nearMathura along holy river Yamuna after being retained at Agra for almost six months.

Ranakpur Jain Temple, Pali

Ranakpur Jain temple is a Jain temple at Ranakpur is dedicated to Tirthankara Rishabhanatha. Dharna Shah, a local Jain businessperson, started construction of the temple in the 15th century following a divine vision. The temple honors Adinath, the first Tirthankar of the present half-cycle (avasarpiṇī) according to Jain cosmology. Rana Kumbha also supported the construction of the temple.

Om Banna Temple, Pali

The Sacred temple or than of Om Banna is 20 km away from the city on jodhpur-pali highway.  The Motor bike of Om Banna is kept there for the devotees for worshiping.

Bhanwar Mata Temple, Pratapgarh

Bhanwar Mata temple was built by King Gori of “Manvaiyani genus” in year 491 AD. Temple is also known as “Bhanwar Mata Shakti Peeth”. It is located in Chhoti Sadri Teshsil of Pratapgarh district.

 

Ghumeshwar Temple, Sawai Madhopur

Enshrined in the Puranas, the Ghushmeshwar Temple is believed to be 12th or the last of the Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva. Situated at the Siwar village in Sawai Madhopur, this temple has many mythological stories weaved around it.

Alanpur Jain Temple, Sawai Madhopur

The early medieval Jaina temple, known as Chamatkarji, is situated outside the city and dedicated to lord Adinatha. The temple compound is enclosed by a modern high parapet wall with small cells all round and is entered from the west. The main shrine is situated in the centre of the courtyard and is enclosed by high wall with entrance in the north. The garbhagriha facing east, is pancharatha on plan with circumambulatory passage around. The sikhara is curvilinear.

 

Harshnath Temple, Sikar

The 10th century, Harshnath temple, belonging is located on the Aravalli Hills near Sikar. It is an ancient site containing remnants of old Shiva Temple of 10th Century . Another Shiva temple, constructed in the 18th century by Shiv Singh of Sikar, is situated near the Harshnath temple.

 

Dilwara Jain Temple, Mount Abu

The Dilwara Temples are located in Mount Abu, Rajasthan. These Jain temples were built between the 11th and 13th centuries AD by Vimal Shah and designed by Vastupala-Tejpal, Jain ministers of Dholka. The temple structure are famous for their use of marble and intricate marble carvings.

There are five temples in all, each with its own unique identity. Each is named after the small village in which it is located. These are:

  • Vimal Vasahi, dedicated to the first Jain Tirthankara, Shri Rishabhadev.
  • Luna Vasahi, dedicated to the 22nd Jain Tirthankara, Shri Neminatha.
  • Pittalhar, dedicated to the first Jain Tirthankar, Shri Rishabhadev.
  • Parshvanath, dedicated to the 23rd Jain Tirthankara, Shri Parshvanatha.
  • Mahavir Swami, dedicated to the last Jain Tirthankara, Shri Mahaviraswami.

Among all the five legendary marble temples of Dilwara, the most famous of those are the Vimal Vasahi and the Luna Vasahi temples.

Jagdish Temple, Udaipur

An example of the Indo-Aryan style of architecture, Jagdish Temple was built in 1651 and continues to be one of the most famous temples in Udaipur. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the structure is an architectural marvel with carved pillars, graceful ceilings and painted walls. This three-storied temple was built by Maharana Jagat Singh.