India is a country with over 3 crore Gods and Goddesses. The Shiva temples of India embody this spirituality and faith that runs across the country. Shiva temples are known to be especially powerful and sacred, thereby attracting a very devoted crowd.
Here is the list of 21 Shiva Temples in India For The Ultimate Devotional Experience
Kashi Vishwanath Temple is regarded as one of the most sacred Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva in India. Located in the heart of Varanasi, the temple is a core of faith for millions of Hindus. Being one of the most famous temples of Varanasi, the temple witnesses around 3,000 devotees on daily basis and the footfall increases to 1,00,000 on special occasions. The importance of the Kashi Vishwanath Temple also stems from the fact that it finds mentions in several holy scriptures of the Hindus.
Kedarnath is the highest among the 12 Jyotirlingas. This temple, over a thousand years old, is built of enormous stone slabs over a large rectangular dais. The present temple is believed to be re-built by Adi Shankaracharya, originally built by the Pandavas. It is believed that after the war of Kurukshetra, the Pandavas sought redemption from Lord Shiva here who hid in a bull-form. The halls of the temple today tell this story on its walls. Devotees believe that a visit to this temple can free them from the cycle of life and birth. The inner walls of this Shiva temple in India are carved with figures of various deities and scenes from mythology.
Mahakaleshwar temple is the temple dedicated to Shiva as Mahakala. it is built on a spacious courtyard and is surrounded by massive walls. It has five levels, one of which is underground. It is said to be one of the twelve sacred Jyotirlingas dedicated to Lord Shiva. The abode of Lord Shiva, the temple is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, which are considered to be the sacred dwelling place of the Lord.
Bhimashankar Temple is a Jyotirlinga shrine located 50 km northwest of Khed, near Pune, in India. It is one of the well-known Jyotirlinga among the twelve Jyotirlingas situated all over India. This makes it a very sacred Shiva temple in India for devotees. In recent times, it has gained immense significance and has been declared as a Wildlife Sanctuary.
Located in Karnataka, this magnificent shrine is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This Shiva temple in India boasts of the second highest statue of Lord Shiva in the world and the sheer magnanimity of the statue will fill you with a sense of awe. This temple is built on the Kanduka Hill which is surrounded by the Arabian Sea on three sides. The main temple's entrance, also called the 'gopura' stands at 123 feet and you can witness the breathtaking view of the Shiva statue from the top of the gopura.
One of the world's highest temples perched at an altitude of 3680m; Tungnath temple has many myths and legend in its bag. It is believed that this temple was established by Arjuna of Mahabharata after Adi Shankaracharya founded a Shiva Linga at the same site. It is an ancient holy town about more than 1000 years old and is popular among the pilgrims and devotees.
A Shiva Linga known as the Atmalinga is worshipped in this Mahabaleshwar temple. Built using white granite, it is a classic example of the beauty of Dravidian architecture. A 1500 years old carved stone Lord Shiva idol in the standing position represents the main deity.
This is a historic Hindu temple located on the southern bank of the Vaigai River, Madurai, Tamil Nadu. It is primarily dedicated to Parvati, known as Meenakshi, and her spouse, Shiva. What makes this Shiva temple in India different from others is the fact that both God and Goddess are worshipped together.
The biggest attraction of Thanjavur - The Brahadeshwara Temple, also known as the Big Temple. Built during the reign of the Great Chola emperor, Raja Raja Chola, this Shiva temple in India is an architectural marvel. Protected by deep trenches on either side and the Grand Anaicut River running through another, this temple is a favourite among the pilgrims.
The Lingaraj Temple is an ancient temple with great religious importance. Dedicated to Lord Shiva as the name suggests, it is visited by a huge number of devotees throughout the year. It is highly revered because of the fact that the Linga here, which is the phallic form of Lord Shiva, is believed to have appeared naturally.
Nestled on the banks of River Cauvery, Talakadu is a town known for its sand dunes. With a rich past and heritage, the town is also quite famous among the devotees who come here for special worship at the Shiva temple. Steeped with rich past and heritage, it is famous for its Vaidyanatheshwara Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.
The Madhyamaheshwar Omkareshwar Temple is an integral part of the great Panch Kedar and is dedicated to Lord Shiva in India. It is simply known as Ukhimath Omkareshwar Temple. During the winters, the idols from Kedarnath temple and Madhyamaheshwar are brought to Ukhimath and worshipped here for six months. Ukhimath is a small pilgrimage town in the Rudraprayag District of Uttarakhand.
Lepakshi Temple is an ancient temple displaying the relics of Vijayanagara style of architecture with its roots going back to 16th century India. The temple complex comprises of three shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Veerbhadra and Lord Vishnu.
Situated at a distance of 6km from the main city of Mahabaleshwar, the Mahabali or Mahabaleshwar temple is an ancient shrine and an example of the Maratha heritage. The temple is guarded by a five feet wall and is divided into two sections. The inner part has Shiva as the presiding deity. The site has two more temples nearby - the Atibaleshwar temple and Panchganga temple. Mahabaleshwar is one of the most sacred Shiva temples in India.
Located on the eastern bank of Godavari, Draksharama is one of the five most powerful and prominent Shiva temples in India. 40kms away from Rajahmundry, the temple is said to be dating back to the 11th century. Draksharama is perfect for a religious getaway, the scenery around the temple is pleasant and the road journey to the temple is nothing short of beautiful.
The Temple of Shri Naina Devi Ji is situated on a hill top in Bilaspur Distt. Of Himachal Pradesh. Situated at a height of 1219 m above sea level, it was built by Raja Bir Chand in the 8th century. The temple is dedicated to Devi Sati's eyes. According to Hindu mythology, the temple is built on the exact spot where Goddess Sati's eyes fell on the Earth after Lord Shiva carried her charred body after taking it out from the fire of the yagna that was performed by Sati's father- Daksha.
Yaganti, in Kurnool District of Andhra Pradesh, is the famous Sri Yagantiswamy Temple (also known as the Uma Maheshwara Temple) dedicated to Lord Shiva. Constructed by the first Vijayanagara Sangama King Harihara Bukka Rayalu in the 15th century, this Shiva temple in India ebbs deeply of culture and traditions even today. Yaganti houses the idol of Shiva & Parvathi, called Ardhanareeswara carved out of a single stone. This is probably the only place where Lord Shiva is worshipped in the form of an idol instead of Shiva Linga.
Marundeeswarar Temple, in Tiruvanmiyur, near Chennai has the temple deity Shiva in the form of Marundeeswar or Aushadeeswarar, the God of Medicines. Given the name, Marundeeswarar Temple has been a place of worship especially for people with diseases and those facing various problems with their health. A fine specimen of Dravidian architecture, this temple is a must visit for anyone visiting Chennai or nearby cities.
Umananda Temple is a Shiva temple located on Peacock Island, in the middle of river Brahmaputra. Peacock Island, which houses the Umanada Temple, is known as the smallest inhabited riverine island in the world. Country boats are available all the time during the day, on the banks of Brahmaputra, to take the visitors to the island. The mountain on which the temple has been built is known as Bhasmacala.
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Which of these Shiva temples in India caught your attention?