Mount Abu Sightseeing
|Dilwara Temples||Situated just 2½ km from the heart of the town Mount Abu|
|Nakki Lake||Situated very close to the main market of the city|
|Toad Rock||Situated over Nakki Lake|
|Sunset Point||Situated south west to the Nakki Lake|
|Honeymoon Point||Situated very close to the sunset point and located North West of the Nakki Lake|
|Guru Shikhar||Stationed 15 km from the centre of the city|
|Achalgarh||Situated about 5 miles from the heart of the city|
|Adhar Devi Temple||Approximately 3 km away from the city|
|Shri Raghunathji Temple||Situated near Nakki Lake|
|Shankar Math||Located very near to the main market of Mount Abu./td>|
|Gaumukh||About 8 km away from the heart of the city and about 5 km from the renowned Hanuman temple|
|Brahma Kumari's Universal Peace Hall and University||Located on Mt. Abu four kilometres from Madhuban|
|Trevor’s Tank||Situated 5 km away from the main market of the city|
|Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary||Located in the Aravalli Mountain Ranges|
|Government Museum and Art Gallery||Situated at Raj Bhavan in Mount Abu|
Dilwara Temples, the celebrated Jain temples of Rajasthan, were constructed by Chalukyas between 11th century and 13th century AD. Situated just 2½ km from the heart of the town Mount Abu, these temples are considered to be unparalleled and incomparable amongst all the Jain temples built in India till date.
The Jain temples of Dilwara are widely recognized and appreciated for its graceful use of choicest marble, exquisiteness of its aesthetic carvings and its master craftsmanship. The ceilings, pillars, panels and doorways and all other portions of the temples are minutely carved and present the paragon of architectural perfection. Dedicated to the 24 Tirthankaras of Jain religion, Dilwara Temple is one of the most prominent and leading Jain pilgrim places.
A complex of five temples together makes the well known Dilwara Temples. They are:
(1) ‘Vimal Vasahi Temple’, also known as, ‘Shri Adi Nathji temple’ (Dedicated to the first Jain Tirthankar - Rishabh Swami.)
(2) ‘Luna Vasahi Temple’ also known as, ‘Shri Neminathji temple’ (Dedicated to the 22nd Jain Tirthankar - Neminatha Swami.)
(3) ‘Pithalhar Temple’ also known as, ‘Shri Rishabha Devji temple’ (Dedicated to the first Jain Tirthankar - Rishabh Swami.)
(4) ‘Khartar Vasahi Temple’ also known as, ‘Shri Parshva Nathji temple’ (Dedicated to the 23rd Jain Tirthankar - Parshvanathji.)
(5) Shri Mahavir Swamiji temple (Dedicated to the 24th Jain Tirthankar - Mahavir Swami)
Vimal Shah, the minister of King Bhimdev of Chalukya dynasty constructed the ‘Vimal Vasahi Temple’ in 1021 AD. Ranga Manda, Gudh Mandap and Navchowki are striking features of this temple. Lotus-buds, flowers, petals, 16 Vidhyadevis, female musicians playing musical instruments, scenes from Jain and Hindu mythology are amongst the remarkable carvings of this temple.
Vastupal and Tejpal, the two great brothers of Porwad community raised the ‘Luna Vashi Temple’ in 1230 AD. The Luna Vashi Temple is designed after the ‘Vimal Vasahi Temple’, and it is extraordinary for its Rang Mandap which showcases 72 idols of Jain Tirthankaras and 360 figures of Jain monks. In the Gudh Mandapa is seated a black idol of Lord Neminath. The Kirthi Stambha situated at the entrance of this temple was built by Rana Kumbha, the renowned king of Mewar.
Bhima Shah, a minister of Mohamed Begada constructed the ‘Pithalhar Temple’. An enormous idol of Lord Rishabha made of Panchdhatu is the major attraction of Pithalhar Temple. Lord Rishabha is also worshipped as Lord Adinath. The tallest Jain temple of Dilwara is ‘Shri Parshva Nathji temple’. This is a three storied structure and was set up by Mandlik in 1458-59 AD. The sculptures of Vidhyadevis, Dikpals, Yakshinis and Shalabhanjikas are similar to those found in famous temples like Khajuraho and Konarak.
Shri Mahavir Swamiji temple is the latest built temple and it is the smallest temple amongst all five Dilwara temples. Put up in 1582 AD, this temple was decorated in 1764 by the artists of the Sirohi district.
The India Gate was originally A very much celebrated and outstanding tourist destination in Mount Abu is Nakki Lake; the name that has almost become equivalent to the name of the city. Being the only Indian artificial lake parked at such heights of 1200 meters, Nakki Lake is widely acknowledged as a must visit place of Mount Abu.
Situated very close to the main market of the city, Nakki Lake is noteworthy for the bizarre rocks that surround it. Toad Rock, Nun Rock and Nandi Rock are the three famous rocks named after their shapes. The Toad Rock creates a semblance of a toad that is about to dive into the lake.
The beauteous Nakki Lake perched in the lap of the surrounding hills involves two anchanting myths about its name. As per one myth, this lake was dug by several Hindu Gods using their nails – ‘Nakh’ to make them a hideout. Thus it is named Nakki. The natives of Mount Abu worship this lake as being very sacred. As the other myth goes, a sculpture- Rasiya Balam had dug the lake overnight in order to win the hand of a princess in marriage.
The lovely Nakki Lake is very calm and serene and it is a pleasure to enjoy boating in the lake. Numerous shops are established around the lake and tourists can by the Abu special items, mementos and souvenirs from these shops.
Taking a stroll around the Nakki Lake with your near and dear ones and spending the evenings watching sun set is really a delectable experience. A snack bar built in boat shape is another adorable place. In the year 2006 -07, Nakki Lake was gifted a huge financial aid which will be used in developing the Lake even further for tourism purposes.
The Toad rock, a favorite picnic spot, provides an excellent climb and is frequently visited by adventure lovers. Apart from this, the other rocks like the Nun Rock, the Camel Rock, the Whale Rock, the Eagle Rock, the Cobra Rack, the Monkey Rock, the Owl Rock, the Incredible Hulk Rock, the Sentinel Rock, Balancing Rock and the Bear Rock are some other major masterpieces of natural architecture.
This acclaimed picnic spot, situated south west to the celebrated Nakki Lake offers a spectacular and picaresque view of the setting sun in the lap of the hills. The surrounding hills blanketed with shimmering golden light look so magnificent that we don’t want to take our eyes off them. The brilliant and beaming mountain ranges, colorful and marvelous sky and the dazzling water of Nakki Lake look extremely gorgeous and lustrous at this evening hour. Myriads of tourists can be discerned here every evening and they create a gala atmosphere. Food courts and souvenir outlets parked here make a good business every day. Sandalwood items, marble statues, wooden toys, and other handicrafts and artifacts are sold in these shops. Pony ride is another popular entertainment that tourists dote on.
Situated very close to the sunset point and located North West of the Nakki Lake, honeymoon point makes another picnic spot in Mount Abu. Also known as Anadara Point, named after the nearby Anadara Village, Honeymoon point is perched at the elevation of 4000 feet, above the sea level. Alluring views of the landscapes down, stimulating panorama of the valley around and dazzling splendor of the vanishing sun can be cherished from here.
The distinguished feature of Honeymoon point is ‘The Lover’s Rock’. Chiseled by the natural artists; wind, water and sun, this rock duplicates a man and a lady standing together. The newly married couples like this very romantic and charming place a lot. Myriads of couples alight at Mount Abu every year to celebrate honeymoon. Soon a new ropeway is about to start from here. This ropeway will connect the honeymoon point to Bhairu Tarak. The ropeway will pass at the elevation of 3500 feet above the Anadara village and it will grant a 4 kilometers ride.
Guru Shikhar, the summit of the Aravalli Mountain Ranges is situated at the altitude of 1722 meters. Admired and esteemed by the trekkers and adventure lovers, Guru Shikhar offers a very gallant and exciting trek. Stationed 15 km from the centre of the city, the Guru Shikhar peak also presents an astonishing and stunning spectacle of the blooming flowery terrain around. The exhilarating fresh breeze and the tranquility of the ambiance make Guru Shikhar a priceless tourist paradise of Mount Abu.
A very pious altar of Lord Dattatraya (an incarnation of the Hindu Trinity – Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh) is placed at the top of Guru Shikhar. The foot imprints of Lord Dattatraya are put up for the Darshana here. The white colored temple has a small fragment of pink. A noteworthy feature of this temple is the huge brass bell on which the inscriptions are seen noting the year 1488 of Vikram Samvat i.e. 1411 AD. A temple of the mother of Lord Dattatraya – Goddess Ansuya is also situated nearby.
‘Brahmakhadd’ is a Shiva temple which is remarkable for the absence of traditional Shiva Lingam. Instead, there is an abyss which, as the devotees believe, was created by Lord Shiva by putting his foot there. It is also said that this chasm is so deep that it goes straightaway into the orb and touches water. An idol of Goddess Parvati and a huge sculpture of Nandi can be witnessed outside the temple.
Achal Garh, a fort built by a Parmar King of Mewar named ‘Rana Kumbha’ in 14th century is situated about 5 miles from the heart of the city. Rana Kumbha defeated the ‘Then Ruler’ of Mount Abu, a Chauhan King and established this Achalgarh. Basically, this fort was constructed to survey the enemy activities and also to keep an eye on the surrounding domain. The fort also houses a well known temple of Achaleswar Mahadev, Kantinath Temple and some Jain temples.
The foot impressions of Lord Shiva embedded in a rock is placed in ‘The Achaleswar Mahadev temple’. The Nandi set at the entrance weights about 4 tones and is made of Panchadhatu. Situated nearby is a holy Mandakini Lake where an image of a Parmar king ‘Adi Pal’ can be seen. Along with his image, there are images of three buffalos pierced by an arrow each. They were shot by the king. According to a legend famous amongst natives of Mount Abu, once upon a time the Mandakini Lake used to be filled with Ghee. Three fiends in the form of buffalos used to come and drink it all. Adi Pal, the savior king killed the demons and thus the Ghee was preserved for the use of citizens.
Hanumanpol and Champapol are the two major gates to The Achalgarh fort. The Achalgarh fort is not in a very good condition at present.
Adhar Devi Temple
Approximately 3 km away from the city, the Adhar Devi temple is a leading pilgrim destination of Mount Abu. The exclusive characteristic of this temple is that it is chiseled out of a one gigantic rock. The way up to the temple is not very smooth and to take the ‘Darshana’ of the Goddess Adhar Devi, we have to climb about 360 stairs. As the temple is a cave like composition, the visitors must duck at the entrance to get inside.
The Adhar Devi temple is dedicated to Goddess Durga and there is a myth behind its name. It is said that formerly the idol in the temple was not placed on the ground but it was hanging in the air. The idol of the Goddess was ‘Adhar’ i.e. away from the ground, so she is known as Adhar Devi. As per the other myth, that when Lord Shiva was fetching the half ignited body of Goddess Parvati, from her father’s place after the famous Daksha Yagna, the ‘Adhar’ (lips) of the Goddess fell down at this place.
Many statues and sculptures beautifully carved in different patterns and shapes are placed in the Adhar Devi temple. The walkway up to the temple provides very striking glimpses of encompassing mountains and the fringing valley. The Adhar Devi temple is seen overcrowded by the devotees during the Navaratri festival as it is very auspicious to take the Darshana of Goddess Durga during these nine days of Navaratri.
Shri Raghunathji Temple
Shri Raghunathji temple is situated near Nakki Lake. Shri Raghunathji is regarded to be the incarnation of Lord Vishnu who had taken birth on this earth to save his devotees from the calamities. Shri Raghunathji temple was set up by a reverend Hindu sage, Shri Ramanand, in 14th century. Today this temple is a very important pilgrim place especially for the Vaishnavaites.
The majestic Shiva Linga elevated at the top of the Shankar Math draws the tourists from all corners of Mount Abu. The transcendental and enthralling Shiva Linga is fabricated out of a unique pink stone. When the Shankar Math was directed by Swami Maheshanandji Giri this marvelous Shiva Linga was framed and set atop the Math. The Shankar Math, a must visit spiritual place is located very near to the main market of Mount Abu.
Gaumukh Temple, another chief religious venue in Mount Abu, is said to be constituted at the place where mythological ‘Sage Vashishtha’ used to lodge once. Sage Vashishtha had performed a Yagna and created four races of ‘Rajputas’, known as Agnikula. The place where the Yagna was performed is today known as ‘The Agni kund’. The Agni Kund is situated next to the Gaumukh Temple and is a famous tourists spot.
The temple has received its name from a spring oozing from a rock formed in the shape of a cow’s head. The cow is regarded as a very pious animal in Hindu religion. Today a large marble statue of a cow is placed here and water can be seen gushing out of its mouth. Other statues of Nandi, Sage Vashishtha, Lord Krishna and Lord Ram are also placed hitherto. A marvelous temple of Arbuda – the celestial serpent is also situated adjacent the Gaumukh Temple.
The Temple is located in a gorge about 8 km away from the heart of the city and about 5 km from the renowned Hanuman temple. Tourists will have to climb down about 700 stairs to reach this temple. The entire area enveloping the temple is covered with dense forest and climbing down the steps implicates much adventure. Visiting this spot in monsoon and even any day after it is dark is not recommended.
Brahma Kumari's Universal Peace Hall and University
‘Brahma Kumari's Universal Peace Hall and University’ situated at Mount Abu is the head quarters and the central station of the Brahma Kumari’s congregation spread world wide. This comprises a very serene and tranquil place where we can learn the best method of meditation – Rajyog. The main campus of Brahma Kumari’s is divided into three divisions being, Madhuban (Om Shanti Bhawan and Pandav Bhawan), Gyan Sarovar and Shantivan. Apart from these three, other centers set up in the campus are; Peace Park, World Renewal Spiritual Museum and Global Hospital & Research Centre.
A popular picnic spot and a very delectable place for the lovers of nature in Mount Abu is ‘The Trevor’s Tank’. Situated 5 km away from the main market of the city, Trevor’s Tank is named after a renowned British Engineer – Trevor. He was the one who had framed this distinguished tank. Presently, the major business that is being undertaken here is breeding and nurturing of crocodiles.
From the viewing station constructed at Trevor’s Tank, visitors can observe abundant wildlife dwelling in their natural habitat happily. The best time to watch the wild animals roaming about freely is Night. Trevor’s Tank is also notable for its rich variety of bird species sighted here.
Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary
‘Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary’, located in the Aravalli Mountain Ranges was officially declared as a Wildlife Sanctuary in 1960. Celebrated for the wide range of flora and fauna found here, this sanctuary provides a natural habitat to innumerable wild animals and birds. Some of the animals sheltered in this sanctuary are: Foxes, Bears, Wild Boar, Sloth bear, Deer, Sambars, Panthers, Leopards, Langur, Chinkara, etc. Popular for the site seeing opportunities offered here and its eco tourism, Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over the total area of 290 sq km. It is approximately 7 km long and 300 meters wide.
As this protected area is perched in the Mountain Ranges of Aravalli, various parts of the sanctuary are situated at different altitudes and they differ in their width too. At times the sanctuary lies just at the elevation of 300 meters and at times it is as heightened as 1722 meters. The evergreen forest of the sanctuary meets the grand valley of Aravalli at certain junctures. More than 112 families of plants with 820 species and 449 genera are found here. There are 157 species of monocots and 663 species of dicots. Many orchids, roses and bamboo trees are seen in this sanctuary.
Government Museum and Art Gallery
Government Museum and Art Gallery exhibits archeological excavations recovered from 8th century to 12th century AD. This museum is situated at Raj Bhavan in Mount Abu. Apart from the excavation relics, brass work monuments and bronze carvings displaying Jain style are also put up here.