As a land of temples, India is a country that prides itself on having the most number of temples in the world. With its vast population following various religions, the temples here are made to cater to the spiritual needs of everyone. The beautiful temples with their great architecture and rich history are definitely worth a visit.
Some of the most important temples dedicated to Lord Shiva are also located in India, known as the ‘Jyotirlingas'. There are twelve ‘Jyotirlingas' all over India and they are regarded as some of the most sacred places in the world for the Hindu devotees. The word ‘Jyotirlinga' means the ‘The Radiant Sign of the Almighty'. ‘Jyotirlingas' are renowned as important shrines in India, and it is believed that devotees who visit all the twelve shrines are blessed with salvation.
Read along to know more about the twelve holy Jyotirlinga Shrines in India.
The Somnath Shrine, Gujarat
Situated at Saurashtra in Gujarat, the Somnath temple is said to be the first of the Jyotirlinga Pilgrimage. Many devotees wish to start their Jyotirlinga Tour by visiting the Somnath Shrine first. The temple is known to have been demolished and reconstructed sixteen times.
Mallikarjuna Shrine, Andhra Pradesh
Situated at Srisailam in Andhra Pradesh, the Mallikarjuna Shrine is a place where both the ‘Shakti Peeta' and Jyotirlinga can be worshiped at the same place. In addition, this temple is an architectural beauty with its rich sculptures.
Mahakaleshwar Shrine, Madhya Pradesh
Famous as one of the only Jyotirlingas in India which is ‘Swayambu', which means that the Linga was formed on its own. The shrine also has a ‘Shree Yantra' which lies in an inverted position inside the ‘Garbhagriha'. This temple is located at Ujjain of Madhya Pradesh.
Kedarnath Shrine, Uttarakhand
Situated amidst the Himalayas which is Lord Shiva's eternal abode, the Kedarnath Shrine is also the northernmost Jyotirlinga of India. This shrine has a rich heritage and can be reached only by foot and open to the public for only six months in a year.
Omkareshwar Shrine, Madhya Pradesh
Situated on an island on the banks of River Narmada which is said to be in the shape of the ‘Om' symbol, the Omkareshwar shrine is another important Jyotirlinga of Madhya Pradesh.
Bhimashankar Shrine, Maharashtra
Located near Pune in Maharashtra, the Bhimashankar Shrine is another one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of India. The lush green forest and the scenic surroundings make this a serene pilgrimage spot for the devotees. The Bhima River and the Sahyadri ranges surround this shrine.
Vishwakarmeshwar Shrine, Uttar Pradesh
Located at Varanasi, the Kashi Vishwanath Temple is coveted as the holiest place for Hindu Worship in India. Additionally it is also another Jyotirlinga. This shrine is on the banks of River Ganges, where many Hindus perform the last rites of the departed. The temple is dedicated to Lord Vishwanath, another form of Shiva.
Trimbakeshwar Shrine, Maharashtra
Another important Jyotirlinga is near Nashik district of Maharashtra and it is called the Trimbakeshwar Shrine. Here the main feature is the lingas bears the three deities depicting Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Rudra.
Baidyanath Shrine, Jharkhand
Situated at Deoghar in the state of Jharkhand, the Baidyanath Shrine is also one among the Jyotirlingas of India. This shine is a complex that houses 21 temples, the main one dedicated to Baba Baidyanath. During the Hindu month of Shravan a lot of devotees throng this place.
Nageshwara Shrine, Uttarakhand
This Jyotirlinga shrine has a rich history and can be found near Almora of Uttarakhand. This shrine is a part of 124 temples at Jageshwar. This Jyotirlinga temple celebrates the occasions of ‘Mahashivratri Festival' and the ‘Jageshwar Monsoon Festival' with grandeur.
Rameshwara Shrine, Tamil Nadu
Dedicated to Lord Ramanathaswamy, the Ramalingeshwara Shrine at Tamil Nadu is famous as the southernmost Jyotirlinga of India. It also houses the ‘Pillar of Lord Rama'. This shrine also has other temples around dedicated to various deities.
Ghushmeshwara Shrine, Rajasthan
Said to be the last Jyotirlinga among the twelve, the Ghushmeshwar Shrine is situated near the renowned Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan. This temple is visited by devotees from all over the country and is a revered Jyotirlinga site of India.