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Taranga Hills, Gujarat Overview

Taranga refers to a three-peaked hill located in the Mehsana district of Gujarat, on the banks of the river Sabarmati. It is located at a distance of 130 km from Ahmedabad. Taranga Hills holds great importance for Jains as they consider it to be one of the five most Mahatirthas. The famed Ajitnath Jain Temple is located here. Though the hills are a major pilgrimage site for the Jains, the temples' architecture are a delight to anyone, not just to a person from the Jain community.

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Taranga Hills

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History of Taranga Jain Temple

The construction of the temple was commissioned by the then Solanki King Kumarpala(1145-72 AD). It is said that the temple was built under the guidance of Hemachandracharya, a famed poet and Jain scholar. After many centuries, the temple was renovated by Mughal emperor Akbar in the 16th century. 

Apart from Ajitnath Jain Temple, the hills are famous for a series of Digambar Jain temples. The 14 temples here are dedicated to different Thirthankaras who attained salvation here.

Taranga Jain Temple

Also known as Ajitnath Temple, the temple, dating back to the 12th century AD, sports stunning architecture. One has to climb nearly 700 steps to get here. Along the path, many smaller temples are scattered, which are dedicated to Buddhist goddesses. 

A view of the Taranga Jain temple atop the hill
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Upon reaching the summit, what welcomes one is an imposing sight of the seven-domed temple. It houses a 5- metre tall sculpture of Shri Ajitnath, the second Jain Tirthankar. 

The sanctorum bathes in red colour, while the exteriors of the temple are made up of white sandstone and bricks. One may also see the footprints of the first Tirthankara, Rishabhanatha, on the right side as also footprints of 20 Thirthankaras on the left side of the temple. The outer walls display an array of idols, mostly of women, in dancing positions. Many munis are believed to have attained enlightenment at the temple.

Buddhist Temples in Taranga Hills

The hills also have a connection with Buddhism as they shelter temples of Taranamata, from whose name the village derives its name. The temple has ancient sculptures, one of which is a carved-out figurine of Dhyani Buddha on a stone plate.

Best Time To Visit Taranga Hills

Barring the extreme summer months from March to May, the temple can be visited anytime. The temperature in summers touches 39 degree celsius. Intermittent rains happen throughout the year. So no matter how hot today is, chances of seeing a pleasant climate the next day are high. People come here especially on full moon days.

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