While temples are holy places of worship that are thronged by hundreds of devotees every day in a country like India, these temples are more than just that. They contain in them a rich heritage, the traces of timeless culture and thought, as well as a statement of history. Let us take you on an enchanting ride through some of the most magnificent temples in and around the royal city of Jaipur.
- Birla Mandir: Perhaps the most popular temple in Jaipur, Birla Mandir is a marvelous edifice of white marble that stands out in spite its location in the very center of the city. Also known as Laxmi Narayan Mandir, it is situated on the highly prestigious location of JLN Marg right under Moti Doongri Mahal. The entire view here is one that exudes an epic scale. With the age old hill castle in the background, this monument’s majesty and impeccable architecture is a sight for sore eyes. Especially in the extreme weathers of Jaipur, this white beauty helps relax the senses, and its religious atmosphere brings tranquility and peace to people who visit here.
- Govind Dev Ji Temple: Located in the old city of Jaipur, this temple is one of the highly religious spots of worship. According to legend, in the time of Aurangzeb’s reign, the idol of Shri Krishna was taken from Vrindavan and brought to Jaipur. This idol was then consecrated at the Suraj Mahal of City Palace in the year 1753. Since the then reigning Rajput King Sawai Pratap Singh 2 was a staunch devote of Krishna, had this spacious temple built around the Krishna idol. Since then, a tradition of singing joyful songs in the name of Sri Krishna in the sanctum of this temple is continuing till today. It is a must visit if you want to witness the magic of worship first hand.
- Moti Dungri Temple: Famous throughout the country as the abode of the pot-bellied orange-colored Shri Ganesh, this temple is a favourite among the people of Jaipur. Set at the foothill of the Moti Dungri hill, this Ganesh temple is flooded by devotees who strongly believe in the benevolent nature of the deity. As one enters this sacred place the holy saffron color greets you along with an overwhelming aura of worship. Built back in 1761 A.D., the jewelry magnate Mr. Jai Ram Paliwal had the temple renovated on the suggestion of the priest. The temple witnesses a huge crowd of jam packed devotees every Wednesday – the day prescribed as the day of Lord Ganesha in the Hindu tradition.
- Kalki Temple: Perhaps the most mysterious and unconventional of the list, this temple dedicated to the Kalki Avatar of Lord Vishnu is the only temple of its kind in all of India. Situated near Jaipur, it is designed in beautiful Northern architecture complimented with an appealing façade. This temple holds special significance not only because it is the only well-known temple of Kalki, but also because of the legend associated with it. Kalki is the only unborn ‘avatar’ or reincarnation of Lord Vishnu among the ten listed incarnations. It is said that Kalki shall arrive on a white horse holding a sword in the coming future to liberate human kind from the sins of this age. ‘Kalki’ literally means ‘born out of time’, and suggests a large scale transformation of human kind. With a story as mystical as this attached to the figure of this temple, it is certainly worth a visit during your voyages in and around Jaipur.