Temples & Mosques of Rajasthan
Adhai din ka Jhopra, Ajmer
Adhai din ka Jhopra is actually a Masjid built by Qutub-ud-Din-Aibak, first Sultan of Delhi, in AD 1199. Sultan Iltutmish had subsequently beautified it in AD 1213 with a screen pierced by corbelled engrailed arches which appears in this country for the first time. However, a large number of architectural members and sculptures of temples are lying inside the verandah of the complex for safety and security purposes by the department which shows the existence of a Hindu temple in its vicinity during circa 11th-12th Century AD. This mosque, built from the dismantled remains of temples, is known as Adhai-din-ka-Jhopra possibly from the fact that a fair used to be held here for two and a half days.
The Ajmer Sharif Dargah
Ajmer Sharif, situated at the foot of the Taragarh hill, is the shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti. It contains the domed tomb of the saint and several white marble buildings arranged around two courtyards, including a massive gate donated by the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Akbari Mosque, built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan.
Akbar used to come here by foot on pilgrimage from Agra every year in observance of a vow when he prayed for a son. The large pillars called “Kose (‘Mile’) Minar”, erected at intervals of two miles (3 km) along the entire way between Agra and Ajmer mark the places where the royal pilgrims halted every day.
Soni ji ki Nasiyan, Ajmer
Soniji ki Nasiyan is a Jain Temple located in Ajmer and is a wonderful example of ornate architecture, dedicated to Rishabhadev or Adinath. Its entrance is made of red stone and the marble staircase inside is engraved with images of the holy Tirthankars – omniscient teachers of Jain faith who taught righteousness. The temple was constructed in the late 19th century. Its main chamber, Swarna Nagari (City of Gold), is aptly named so because of the several gold-plated wooden figures it houses within its walls. This famous architectural marvel is also mentioned in Kurt Titze’s book, ‘Jainism: A Pictorial Guide to the Religion of Non-Violence.’
Tijara Jain Temple, Alwar
About 60 kilometres from the Alwar-Delhi route lies this important centre of Jain pilgrimage. The exquisitely decorated ancient temple was built to commemorate the eighth Tirthankar, Shri Chandra Prabha Bhagwan. The son of King Mahasen and Queen Sulakshana, he ruled his kingdom for several years before receiving Diksha and being initiated. After serving mankind for several years, he meditated for a month and attained Nirvana.
Bhand Devara, Baran
Ramgarh-Bhand Devra temples are situated about 40 km. from Baran. The Shiv Mandir of Ramgarh was built in 10th century on the Khajuraho style. Due to the Maithun Statues, the place is named as Bhand Devra. This temple is situated on the bank of pond and is now under the Archaeological department. This temple is known as Rajasthan’s mini Khajuraho.
Kiradu Temple, Barmer
Kiradu Temple might have been constructed before the 6th century at the time of “Parmar” Dynasty. There are five temples in all and most remarkable of them is
Someshvara Temple .These temples feature impressive sculpture and a Solanki style of architecture. There are 4-5 Big Temple structure of Golden colour and a Sun Temple. The temple is well entitled as “Khajuraho of Rajasthan”. The design of the temple is identical to the Khajurao Temple and Sun Temple at Orrisa. The temple is ruin and with lack of images of God and Goddess. The Kiradu was earlier Headquarter of Barmer and it was attacked by Mohammad Gauri in 1140AD who had destroyed the temple structure and its images.
Vankal Mata Temple, Barmer
Vankal Mata Temple is situated at the west end of the city on a 675 feet high hill, the ancient citadel of the 16th century ( fortress ), which was called Barmer citadel , whose remains still exist.
Shri Parshwanath Jain Temple, Barmer
Shri Parshwanath Jain temple was originally a temple of Mahavira. This temple was renovated in the fifteenth century. 120 idols were brought here from Kalidrah and this beautiful and miraculous idol was installed here as Mulnayaka (main idol of the temple) in the year 1429 of the Vikram era (1373 AD). It is among the hills in the distant forest at a distance of 13 kilometers from Balotra.
Jain Temple Bhandasar, Bikaner
Jain Temple was commissioned by Bhandasa Oswal in the year 1468 and completed in the year 1514. The structure is influenced by Rajputana architecture and includes unique and intricately sculpted pillars, frescos and the gold leaf work, with a blend of red sandstone and white marble used in the construction. The mirror work in the temple is unique as well.
Meera bai Temple, Chittorgarh
Meera bai, an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna’s, worshipped him at this temple. The structure is designed in the classic North Indian style of temples. It rises from a raised plinth and its conical roof can be seen from far. The temple houses a beautiful shrine surrounded by an open porch with four small pavilions in four corners.
Deo Somnath, Dungarpur
On the banks of Som River, there is an old and beautiful Shiva temple called Deo Somnath built in the 12th century. Built of white stone, the temple has imposing turrets. One can see the sky from within the temple. Though there is a perfect adaptation of parts in the masonry, yet it gives the impression that individual stones are crumbling. The temple has 3 exits, one each in the east, the north and the south. The entrance gates are two storied The Garbha Grah has a high dome. In front of it is the Sabha Mandap – built on 8 majestic pillars. There are Twenty Toranas of which four still exist. Others were destroyed by the flood waters of the Som. The idol of the deity is in a chamber, eight steps below and the entrance is from the Sabha Mandap. There are several inscriptions by pilgrims and the oldest belongs to 1493 A.D. Several warriors were cremated near the temple and memorials have been raised in their honour.
Nagfanji is renowned for its Jain shrines and not only does it attract devotees from Dungarpur but also tourists who travel from far to see the temple. The temple houses statues of Devi Padmawati, Nagfanji Parshwanath and Dharnendra. The Nagfanji Shivalaya, which is located close to this temple, is also a tourist attraction.
Shrinathji Temple, Dungarpur
Maharawal Punjraj built this temple in the year 1623. The idols of Shri Radhika ji and Govardhan Nathji are the main attractions. The complex also houses several shrines dedicated to Shri BankeBihariji and Shri Ramchandraji.
Surpur Temple, Dungarpur
This ancient shrine is located on the banks of the Gangdi River about 3 kilometres from Dungarpur. The area around the temple also houses other attractions such as Bhulbhulaiya, Madhavrai Temple, Hathiyon Ki Agad and several inscriptions.
Towards the north of Jodhpur is the ancient capital of Marwar, Mandore. This area is of major historical importance and you will find the dewals or cenotaphs of Jodhpur’s former rulers. Unlike the original Chhatri-shaped cenotaphs that are typical patterns of Rajasthan architecture, these are built along the lines of Hindu temples.
65 Kms from Jodhpur,
lies ruins of an ancient city called Ossian. This city is famous for
Brahmanical and Jain temples, which belong to 8th and 11th century. The shikhar
of Sachiya temple is clustered by two rows of turrets, an ambulatory and a
large assembly hall with an elaborate ceiling. This town which was once a great
trading centre is an oasis and houses an abundance of peacocks. The largest of
the 16 Jain and Brahmanical temples is dedicated to Mahavira.
Bhanwar Mata Temple, Pratapgarh
Bhanwar Mata temple was built by King Gori of “Manvaiyani genus” in year 491 AD. Temple is also known as “Bhanwar Mata Shakti Peeth”. It is located in Chhoti Sadri Teshsil of Pratapgarh district.
Ghumeshwar Temple, Sawai Madhopur
Enshrined in the Puranas, the Ghushmeshwar Temple is believed to be 12th or the last of the Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva. Situated at the Siwar village in Sawai Madhopur, this temple has many mythological stories weaved around it.
Alanpur Jain Temple, Sawai Madhopur
The early medieval Jaina temple, known as Chamatkarji, is situated outside the city and dedicated to lord Adinatha. The temple compound is enclosed by a modern high parapet wall with small cells all round and is entered from the west. The main shrine is situated in the centre of the courtyard and is enclosed by high wall with entrance in the north. The garbhagriha facing east, is pancharatha on plan with circumambulatory passage around. The sikhara is curvilinear.
Harshnath Temple, Sikar
The 10th century, Harshnath temple, belonging is located on the Aravalli Hills near Sikar. It is an ancient site containing remnants of old Shiva Temple of 10th Century. Another Shiva temple, constructed in the 18th century by Shiv Singh of Sikar, is situated near the Harshnath temple.
Jagdish Temple, Udaipur
An example of the Indo-Aryan style of architecture, Jagdish Temple was built in 1651 and continues to be one of the most famous temples in Udaipur. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the structure is an architectural marvel with carved pillars, graceful ceilings and painted walls. This three-storied temple was built by Maharana Jagat Singh.
Cenotaph & Tombs in Rajasthan
Maqbara Shaikh Husain, Ajmer
It houses the tomb of Khwaja Husain Chishty Rehamatullah Alaih (Shaikh Husain Ajmeri) who was the Peer of Ajmer Sharif Dargah in Emperor Akbar’s Time, He was the great grandson of Khwaja Moinuddin Hasan Chishty Rehmatullah Alaih, his tomb was built in 1637–1638 by Khwaja Alauddin Chishty and Sajjadanashin Hazrat Khwaja Moinuddin.
Moosi Maharani ki Chhatri, Alwar
This cenotaph, built in the memory of Maharaja Bakhtawar Singh and his queen, Rani Moosi, reflects the Indo-Islamic style of architecture. The upper portion comprising columned pavilions and domed arches is made of marble while the lower section consists of pillars in red sandstone. The memorial is rated as one of the finest of its type.
Fateh Jung Gombad, Alwar
This spectacular tomb, which is a combination of domes and minarets is an artistic marvel. Constructed from high quality sandstone, its massive dome can be seen from afar and is a blend of Hindu and Muslim architecture. It is dedicated to Fateh Jung who was a kind-hearted minister of the Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan.
Battis Khambon ki Chhatri, Bhilwara
This place is situated in Mandal 16 km from Bhilwara city. It has Chhatri made of sandstone with 32 pillars.
84 Pillared Cenotaphs, Bundi
As the name suggests, the 84 Pillared Cenotaph is a structure supported by 84 columns. Commissioned by Rao Anirudh, the Maharaja of Bundi, this cenotaph is a tribute to his beloved wet nurse, Deva, who he loved dearly. A popular tourist attraction, this impressive structure is decorated with carvings of deer, elephants and apsaras.
At a distance of 58 kilometres from Dungarpur, located on the banks of River Mahi, is a hamlet called Galiyakote. The place is known for Syed Fakhruddin shrine. He was a renowned saint who was buried in the hamlet after his death. The shrine is made from white marble and has his teachings engraved on it walls. The inner portion of the dome is decorated by beautiful foliage while teachings of the Quran are engraved in golden letters on the tomb.
Literally the meaning is Big Garden. This garden complex houses chhatris or royal cenotaphs of the Maharajas of Jaisalmer state, including that of Jai Singh II.
Dargah Huzoor Najam Sirkar, Sikar
The holy shrine of Hazrat Khwajah Haji Muhammad Najmuddin Sulaimani Chishti, famous as Huzoor Najam Sirkar, is is located at Fatehpur Shekhawati District Sikar 165 km away from Jaipur and 55 km from Sikar on N.H. 12.
He belongs to the great silsilah-e-Chishtiah and in the 13th century Hijri he played a prominent role in spreading the Silsilah in the all parts of the country.
Laila Majnu Tomb, Sri Ganganagar
The tomb (mazar) of Laila-Majnu at Binjaur village is situated near Anupgarh city 11 km away from Anupgarh on the western side. Many people associate this Mazar (mausoleum) with fictional and legendary lovers Laila and Majnu. According to the traditional belief Laila-Majnun were from Sindh and came to this place escaping from the clutches of Laila’s parents and her brother who were against the love of Laila-Majnun. Laila and Majnu died here and were buried together at this place. Thus this place became a symbol of love and people come here to seek blessings from Laila and Majnu. A fair is held here in June which is attended by hundreds of newlyweds and lovers.