Literally translating to the 'City of Wealth and Abundance’ from Sanskrit, Srinagar lacks in neither nature nor rich history. It is the capital of Jammu and Kashmir, located in the heart of Kashmir Valley, on the banks of River Jhelum. Bestowed with names such as the ‘Venice of the East’ or ‘Kashmiri Venice,' many visit temples in Srinagar for a calming atmosphere to clear one’s mind.
When someone thinks of Srinagar, they think of the state of Jammu and Kashmir that is capped with violence and instability. However, one forgets the several temples in Srinagar that locals and tourists visit alike to keep inner peace alive. Temples are not just the apparent homes to Gods and Goddesses but also symbolise how powerful religion is and its major role in uniting as well as creating barriers. Though India gained independence in 1947, Kashmir never really tasted freedom and what's a better way to find solace than connecting with the Almighty at temples in Srinagar.
Read ahead to find a quick list of the temples in Srinagar.
Following temples in Srinagar are known for their unique architecture which is significantly influenced by the Mughal period:-
Built in the 200 BC, by Jaluka, the son of Emperor Ashoka, the Shankaracharya Temple is considered sacred by not just Hindus but also Buddhists. This temple in Srinagar is one of the most famous holy sites in Srinagar and is situated at an elevation of 1100 feet. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, it stands atop the Shankaracharya Hill. No cell phones or cameras are allowed inside the temple. The panoramic view from here is stunning, and one can see the entire valley. There are 243 steps leading up to the temple area and another 8-10 steps from there to the temple hall. Entrance to the hill is guarded by military officers and cars are not permitted post 5.00PM. However, the temple remains open from 6:00 AM to 8:00PM. Buses, rails and airways are all easily available and you can read more about the Shankaracharaya Temple here.
Timing to visit the Shankaracharya Temple: 6:00AM to 8:00PM.
This picturesque temple is dedicated to Goddess Jagadamba Sharika Bhagwati, an incarnation of Mata Durga or Shakti, and the idol has eighteen arms. Sharika Devi Temple is regarded as one of the most sacred sites and is laced with deep mythology with respect to its location. The birth day of Sharika Bhagawati (celebrated on Ashad Navami as Har Navum) sees worshippers in large number and the temple is open from 6AM to 10PM. All modes of tansport such as roadways, railways and airways make the journey hassle-free and a memorable one to this temple in Srinagar.
Timing to visit the Sharika Devi Temple: 6:00AM to 10:00PM.
Offer prayers to Goddess Durga, experience the havans along with other rituals and enjoy the picturesque view that Jwala Mukhi Temple has to offer you. However, there is no statue fixated in this temple. Instead, the Goddess is present in the form of flames coming out of a rock. Legend says that Sati's tongue fell here and the goddess is distinguished as small blue flames that burn through fissures in the old rock. Visiting hours of this temple in Srinagar are from 5.00AM to 8.00PM and tourists can reach there through private taxis or any ordinary means of transport.
Timing to visit the Jwala Mukhi Temple: 5:00AM to 8:00PM.
Situated in the Loduv village, this temple is unique for it's minimalistic design and simple structure. Although the interior of the temple is circular in placement, the external part is shaped as a four-cornered square. The architecture is elegant and uncomplicated, giving a classic look to the temple. Dating back to the 8th century, It is about 5 kilometers away from Barus in Srinagar. The Loduv Temple strongly resembles the Shankaracharya Temple. Are you an admirer of architecture of temples and wish to enhance your knowledge about the world around? Well, in that case, this is just where you need to be.
Timing to visit the Loduv Temple: Early morning to evening.
This magnificent temple is located in Jawahar Nagar in Srinagar in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Devoted to Lord Shiva, this is one of the oldest temples in Srinagar. However, the temple had closed down to various reasons but opened again in 1990. One of the most interesting facts about the Rameshwaram Shiva Temple is that it shares a wall with the Gurudwara and there are also other mosques nearby. The festival of Shivaratri is celebrated here.
Timing to visit the Rameshwaram Shiva Temple: Early morning to evening.
One of the queerest and beautiful temples is Manasbal Temple, which was recently discovered near the Manasbal Lake a few years ago. A Shiva Linga is present inside the temple, and some tourists have even dived into the water to touch the ancient stone. It is most definitely one of the unique temples in Srinagar that a tourist or local alike can visit. The Shakful Canal and the ruins of a terraced Mughal Garden are nearby attractions that make it a complete tour.
Timing to visit the Manasbal Temple: Early morning to evening.
One of the most amazing temples in the locality of Naran Nag, Bhuteshwara Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Commonly known as Nandikshetra or Nandisakshetra, the temple is a 12th-century one built by King Jayasimha. The architecture of the temple is old and historic while the construction used mainly a single chunk of gray granite. The temple also has a dome-shaped ceiling. However, due to time and neglect, the Bhuteshwara shrine is currently in an almost ruined state. This temple in Srinagar is reachable from Srinagar city, with Jammu Tawi Railway Station being the nearest railhead.
Timing to visit the Bhuteshwara Temple: Early morning to evening.
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