We give below a brief description on some of the most visited places by Hindus in India.
Please click on the link to visit the official website of the temple for more details.
Jagadguru Sri Adi Shankara Bhagavatpada established the first of the four Amnaya Peethams at Sringeri over twelve centuries ago to foster the sacred tradition of Sanatana Dharma.
Standing on the western bank of India's holiest river Ganges, Varanasi is the oldest surviving city of the world and is the cultural capital of India. In the heart of this city stands the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in which is enshrined the Jyotirlinga of Shiva, Vishweshwara or Vishwanatha.
Chardham tour signifies the journey to moksha and a divine life after that. Chardham can be split into Char that means four and Dham meaning destinations. These four destinations are Gangotri, the source of ancient river Ganga, Yamunotri, Kedarnathji and Sri Badrinathji, are considered to be the door to the spirituality and eternity.
Lord Jagannath, the symbol of universal love and brotherhood is worshipped in the temple along with Balabhadra, Subhadra, Sudarshan, Madhaba, Sridevi and Bhudevi on the Ratnabedi or the bejewelled platform.
Mantralaya is a town in Kurnool district in the state of Andhra Pradesh. It lies on the banks of the Tungabhadra River on the border of Karnataka state. This town is noted for the holy presence of the Brindavana of Guru Raghavendra Swami, a Madhwa saint and follower of Sri Madhwacharya. Lakhs of devotees come here to have a glimpse of the Brindavana every year.
To those that come for worship, Dharmasthala represents religious tolerance wherein caste, creed and faith of pilgrims are no bar. Dharmasthala is the perfect embodiment of the word "Dharma" for it displays every shade of meaning with which the word is imbued.
The ancient and sacred temple of Sri Venkateshwara is located on the seventh peak, Venkatachala of the Tirupati Hill, and lies on the southern banks of Sri Swami Pushkarini. He is also called the Lord of the Seven Hills. The benefits acquired by a pilgrimage to Venkatachala are mentioned in the Rig Veda and Asthadasa Puranas. In these epics, Sri Venkateshwara is described as the great bestower of boons. There are several legends associated with the manifestation of the Lord at Tirumala.
Brajbhoomi - the land where Shri Krishna was born and spent his youth has today little towns and hamlets that are still alive with the Krishna legend and still redolent with the music of his flute. Mathura, a little town on the banks of River Yamuna was transformed into a place of faith after Lord Krishna was born here. Vrindavan, a village once noted for its fragrant groves, is where he spent an eventful youth. There are numerous other little spots in the area that still reverberate with the enchantment of Shri Krishna.
It is the abode of Lord Sree Guruvayurappan. It is located 29 kms north west to the cultural capital of 'God's own country', Kerala. According to legends, the Deity worshipped here is more than 5000 years old. Guruvayur is also known as Bhooloka Vaikuntham.
Subramanya is located in Sullia Taluk in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka with a sanctity which very few places can boast of. Subramanya used to be called as Kukke Pattana in the past. In the 'Shankara Vijaya', Anandagiri observes that Sri Shankaracharya camped here for a few days during his religious expedition (Digvijaya). Shankaracharya referred to this place as 'Bhaje Kukke Lingam' in his 'Subramanya Bhujangaprayata Stotram'.
The Arulmigu Ramanatha Swami Temple and the island have acquired the name Rameshwaram because Lord Rama worshipped Lord Shiva here on return from Sri Lanka. Rameshwaram is an island in the state of Tamilnadu. According to legend, after killing Ravana, Lord Rama returned with his consort Goddess Seetha to India, first stepping on the shores of Rameshwaram. To atone for the "dosha" of killing a brahmin, Lord Rama wanted to offer worship to Lord Shiva. Since there was no shrine in the island he sent Sri Hanuman to Kailash to bring an idol of Lord Shiva. This temple is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines, where Shiva is worshipped in the form of a Jyotirlinga meaning "pillar of light". The temple has the longest corridor among all Hindu temples in India.
The Somnath temple is located in Prabhas Patan near Veraval in Saurashtra on the western coast of Gujarat. It is believed to be the first among the twelve jyotirlinga shrines of Lord Shiva. It is an important pilgrimage and tourist spot of Gujarat.
The Dwarkadhish temple, also known as the Jagat Mandir is dedicated to Lord Krishna, who is worshiped here by the name Dwarkadhish, or 'King of Dwarka'. Dwarka has a special importance as it was the capital of Lord Krishna's Kingdom. Dwarka is one of the four dhams - most important pilgrim places. The main shrine of the five storied building, supported by 72 pillars, is known as Jagat Mandir or Nija Mandir. Archaeological findings suggest it to be 2,000 - 2,200 years old. The temple is located at Dwarka, Gujarat.
Shirdi is a small town in the Rahata taluka of Ahmednagar district in the state of Maharashtra. Shirdi is a secular place where all religions are treated as one & a belief in the power of Faith & Patience is foremost. The footprints of Saibaba have made this town a holy place. Shri Sai Baba is revered as one of the greatest saints ever seen in India, endowed with unprecedented powers, and is worshipped as a God incarnate. (SAI meaning Sakshaat Ishwar) - God the Absolute. Millions of devotees continuously flock here from all over India and abroad. It is situated on the Ahmednagar-Manmad highway.
Sringeri Sharada Peetham is one of the four Advaita Vedanta mathas established by Adi Shankara around 800 AD in Sringeri, Karnataka. The others being Dwarka (Gujarat), Govardhana (Odisha) and Jyotirmath (Uttarakhand). The Sringeri matha is on the banks of the Tunga River in Chikkamagalur district located in the Western Ghats. The Sringeri Sharada Peetham site includes two major temples, one dedicated to Shiva (Vidyashankara Linga, tenth Shankara memorial) and the other to Saraswati (Sharada Amba).
A pilgrimage to the holy shrine of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Ji is considered to be one of the holiest pilgrimages. Popular the world over as Moonh Maangi Muradein Poori Karne Wali Mata, which means, the Mother who fulfills whatever her children wish for. Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Ji resides in a holy cave located in the folds of the three peaked mountain named Trikuta. The Vaishno Devi temple is in Katra, which is 50 kms from Jammu.
The Golden Temple Amritsar India (Sri Harimandir Sahib) is not only a central religious place of the Sikhs, but also a symbol of human brotherhood and equality. Everybody, irrespective of caste, creed or race can seek spiritual solace and religious fulfilment without any hindrance. It has a unique Sikh architecture. Built at a level lower than the surrounding land level, the Gurudwara teaches the lesson of egalitarianism and humility.
Ahobilam is located in Allagadda mandal, Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh in the hills of the Eastern Ghats. The temple consists of nine shrines to Lord Narasimha located around a 5 kms circle. In addition to the nine shrines, there is a temple for Prahaladavarada Varadhan in the foothills of the mountain. Ahobilam is the place where the Lord killed Hiranyakashipu and saved Prahalada.
Srirangam is the foremost of the eight self-manifested shrines (Swayam Vyakta Kshetras) of Lord Vishnu. It is also considered the most important of the 108 main Vishnu temples (Divyadesams). This temple is also known as Thiruvaranga Tirupati, Periyakoil, Bhoologa Vaikundam and Bhogamandabam. The temple complex is 156 acres and has seven prakaras or enclosures.
Udupi 60 kms north of Mangaluru is the seat of Lord Krishna, considered to be one of the holiest places for pilgrimage in southern India. Here there is a holy temple of Sri Krishna and this is the birthplace of Sri Madhwacharya, founder of Dwaita Philosophy and one of the three great Acharyas.
Chardham means "Four Dhams" i.e. "Four religious places". The Chardham in Uttarakhand which is also known as the Chhota Chardham is considered as the most sacred religious place which is a must visit destination for the Hinduism followers to get rid of their sins and pave the path to the ultimate goal of human life - the Moksha, redemption from the cycle of birth and death. The journey to these religious destinations in Uttarakhand is considered as the must-visit sacred place on earth at least once in a lifetime for every Hindu follower.
Like Mount Kailash, Lake Mansarovar is a place of pilgrimage, attracting religious people from India, Nepal, Tibet and neighboring countries. Bathing in Mansarovar and drinking its water is believed by Hindus to cleanse all sins. Pilgrimage tours are organized regularly, especially from India, the most famous of which is the yearly "Kailash Mansarovar Yatra". Pilgrims come to take ceremonial baths in the waters of the lake.
Sri Lakshminarasimha Swamy Temple or Yadagirigutta is a popular temple of Narasimha Swamy, an incarnation Lord Vishnu. It is situated on a hillock in Nalgonda district, Telangana. It is 60 kms from the city of Hyderabad.
Jawala Ji or Jwala devi temple is one of the 51 Shaktipeeths of India and Jwala Ji temple is one of the highly venerated Shakti temples in India. It is situated in the lap of Shivalik range of Kangra valley called “Kalidhar”. This is believed to be the first ever temple built by the Pandavas. Jwala Ji is a Devi temple dedicated to the “Goddess of Light”, located in Jwala Mukhi district in Kangra of Himachal Pradesh.
Maa Kamakhya or Kameshwari is the renowned Goddess of Desire whose famous shrine is located in the heart of Nilachala Hill situated in the western part of Guwahati, the capital city of the state of Assam in North East India. Maa Kamakhya Devalaya is considered most sacred and oldest of the 51 Shakti Peethas on earth. It is the centerpiece of widely practiced, powerful Tantric Shaktism cult in India.
The Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha temple, is situated on the Simhachalam hill, which is 300 metres above the sea level in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. It is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, who is worshipped here as Varaha Narasimha. Simhachalam temple is embellished with extremely detailed stone carvings and design and can be spotted from a distance. This is the only temple in the country where Shri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha Swami- who is a combination of the third and fourth incarnation of Lord Vishnu- appears. Lord Narasimha appears here in the tribhanga posture and has two hands with the head of a lion on a human torso.
The famous Sun God Temple is situated in Arasavalli Village, Srikakulam, Andhra Pradesh. It is one of the ancient Sun God temples in India. According to the Padmapuranam , Sage Kashyapa installed the Deity of Surya at Arasavalli for the welfare of mankind . Therefore, the Surya is of Kashyapasa Gotra. According to the Sthalapuranam of the temple, Lord Devendra found this temple and installed the existing Deity of the Sun God commonly known as Lord Suryanarayana Swamy Varu.
Thiruchendur Murugan temple is known as the second Arupadai Veedu of Lord Muruga. It is also called Arulmigu Subramanya Swamy temple. Lord Muruga won the battle with the asura, Surapadma and worshipped Lord Shiva in this sacred place. It is believed that the demigods of Muruga wanted to worship him in a place where there was a mountainous tract, sea and river and hence Thiruchendur was chosen. The inner sanctum of the temple is in a cave and the main deity, or moolavar, is Murugan as a saintly child, portrayed in a granite carving.
Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sastha Temple, dedicated to Lord Ayyappa, is the most prominent among all the Sastha temples in Kerala. The temple is situated on a hilltop (about 3000 feet above sea level) named Sabarimala in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala which is unique. The temple is open to people belonging to all religions. It is open for worship only during the days of Mandalapooja, Makaravilakku and Vishu.
Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple is in the city of Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala. The origin of the temple is lost in antiquity. The temple has references in epics and puranas. Srimad Bhagavatham says that Balarama visited this temple, bathed in Padmatheertham and made several offerings. Nammalwar, 9th century poet and one among the 12 Vaishnava saints of the Alvar tradition, has composed ten hymns in praise of Lord Padmanabha.
Sri Kalahasthi has been known as the ‘Kailas of the South’ for over two thousand years and the small river on whose banks it sits, is the ‘Ganges of the South.’ This temple is located in Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh. Sri Kalahasthi temple is situated 36kms away from Tirupathi and it is the only shrine for the God of Vayu. This temple was constructed by the Chola King, Rajendra Chola. Vayu is incarnated as Lord Shiva and worshipped as Kalahasteeswara. Goddess Parvathi devi is worshiped here as Gnanaprasunambika. The Cholas and the Vijayanagara kings have made several endowments to this temple. Adi Shankara is said to have visited this temple and offered worship here. There are Chola inscriptions in this temple which date back to the 10th century.