12 Jyotirlingas In India To Visit In 2023
India is a diverse country and is a hub for Hindu pilgrimages, from Chardham Yatra to Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, to 12 Jyotirlingas, the country has pilgrimage sites in abundance.
These sites are of great significance to the Hindus, and every site has a historical story that goes back to the time of the Mahabharata.
The story of the 12 Jyotirlingas is quite an interesting one which has been written in the Siva Purana. Once, Lord Vishnu and Lord Brahma were discussing who is the supreme God between the two. Lord Vishnu was the God of Preservation, and Lord Brahma was the creator of the universe and still couldn’t decide who is the divine God.
Soon the discussion between the two Gods became an argument, and Lord Shiva appeared to settle the matter. He created an infinite pillar of light that appear there, which pierced the three worlds and asked both Lord Vishnu and Lord Brahma to find the end of the pillar. He said whoever finds the end of the light will be considered the most powerful and supreme God.
They both started searching for it, and after some time, Lord Vishnu confessed to Lord Shiva that he couldn’t find the end of the light, whereas Lord Brahma lied that he had found it. This infuriated Lord Shiva, making him curse Lord Brahma that nobody would worship him, even though he created the world.
On the other hand, this infinite light appeared on Earth in 64 places, out of which 12 places are considered the most sacred, thus the 12 Jyotirlingas were formed.
These 12 Jyotirlingas will definitely make your heart peaceful and it will be a moment of a lifetime. These sites are not only religiously significant but also very beautiful.
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Check out the list of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India, and choose which one will you visit next
1. Somnath in Gujarat
Somnath in Gujarat is one of the most famous among the 12 Jyotirlingas and is considered first among the 12 Adi Jyotirlingas. It is also one of the most worshipped religious sites in the country. The architectural style of the temple resembles that of the Chalukya.
Lord Shiva has also resided in this temple in the form of light. According to Shiva Puranas, Moon married 27 daughters of Dakshin Prajapati, and he cursed the Moon for neglecting all his wives except Rohini. To get rid of the curse, Moon worshipped Lord Shiva, who then granted his wish and came to reside in Somnath eternally.
Undoubtedly, this Jyotirlinga is the most popular and is a top attraction for people traveling to Gujarat.
Opening Hours: 6 am to 9 pm
Aarti Time: 12 noon to 7 pm
Light and Sound Show: 8 pm to 9 pm
2. Nageshwar Daarukavanam In Gujarat
Nageshwar Daarukavanam in Gujarat is one of the popular Jyotirlinga temples, located on the coast of Saurashtra in Gujarat, between Gomti Dwarka, and Bait Dwarka. The temple witnesses thousands of devotees every year, to seek blessings from Nageshwar Mahadev, in an underground sanctum.
You can find the 25m tall statue of Lord Shiva, a large garden with unobstructed views of the Arabian Sea, which is quite fascinating.
Nageshwar Daarukavanam in Gujarat is said to be the strongest among the 12 Jyotirlingas of India, which protects against all kinds of poison.
Opening Hours: 5 am to 9 pm
Darshan Timing: 6 am to 12: 30 pm during the day and 5 pm to 9 pm.
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3. Bhimashankar in Pune, Maharashtra
Made with Nagara architectural style of art made with a black marvellous rock, Bhimashankar temple in Pune is situated on the River Bhima.
The temple is surrounded by a wildlife sanctuary which apparently has the same name, and the temple is said to be built by Bheema, who was the son of Kumbhkaran.
It is one of the popular Jyotirlingas in India and witnesses thousands of tourists round the year to take blessings from Lord Shiva, especially during the time of Mahashivratri.
Devotees who visit the Bheemashankar temple also visit the Kamalaja Temple, which is an incarnation of Parvati.
Opening Hours: 4:30 am 12 pm and 4 pm to 9:30 pm
Darshan Timing: 5 am to 9:30 pm
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4. Trimbakeshwar In Nashik, Maharashtra
Trimbakeshwar Jyotirlinga is located near the mountain of Brahmagiri, which is said to be the originating point of the Godavari River, which also goes by the name Gautami Ganga.
According to the Shiva Purana, the River Godavari and Gautami River pleaded to Lord Shiva to reside here, so he came here as Trimbakeshwar.
The most interesting part of the temple is its unique shape, which is a void between three pillars instead of a shrine. The three pillars, however, represent the three most powerful Gods: Brahma, Vishnu, and Mahabaleshwar.
Opening Hours: 5:30 am to 9 pm
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5. Grishneshwar In Aurangabad, Maharashtra
Grineshwar Temple is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of India, located near the caves of the Ajanta Ellora.
The temple has an impressive five-storied structure in the style of Shikhara, with carvings of Goddesses and Gods, and also the carving of a huge Nandi Bull in the court Hall.
The temple was built by Ahilyabai Holkar and is also known as Gru Someswara and Kusum Eswarar. The sculpture of Vishnu’s Dashavatar, which has been carved on the red rock is quite impressive, and every visitor looks at it with admiration and awe.
Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga is also said to be one of the best places to visit in Aurangabad.
Opening Hours: 5:30 am to 9:30 pm
Darshan Timing: 3 pm to 11 pm
6. Baidyanath in Deoghar, Jharkhand
Vaidyanath or Baidyanath, or Vaijyanath, is one of the highly revered Jyotirlingas in India and has a great religious significance for Hindus around the world.
It is also one of the famous Shakti Peeth of Sati.
According to the mythological stories, Ravana worshipped Shiva for years and then invited him to Lanka. Lord Shiva appeared in the form of a Shivalinga and ordered Raavana not to put the Sivlinga down unless they reached Lanka.
Lord Vishnu interrupted Raavana and asked him to keep it down for rest, and that is how Raavana disobeyed Lord Shiva, and from that time onwards, he resides here in Vaidyanath. The month of Shravana witnesses a maximum number of pilgrims, for people believe that worshipping this shrine will help them get rid of their sins and attain moksha or salvation.
Opening Hours: 4 am to 3:30 pm, and 6 pm to 9 pm.
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7. Mahakaleshwar in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh
Another one of the popular Jyotirlingas in India include Mahakaleshwar Temple, located in Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh, and is surrounded by the Mahakaleshwar forest, which is very dense.
Being one of the popular Jyotirlingas of Central India, the temple has great religious significance and is believed to be set up by a little boy who was just 5 years old and inspired by the King Chandrasena of Ujjain.
It is located on the banks of the Kshipra River and is also one of the mukti-sthal, which means that it is one of the places in India that can liberate a human being.
Opening Hours: 4 am to 11 pm
Darshan Hours: 8 am to 10 am, 10:30 am to 5 pm, 6 pm to 7 pm, 8 pm to 11 pm.
8. Omkareshwar In Khandwa In Madhya Pradesh
Omkareshwar, which literally means ‘Lord of the OM Sound’, is said to be the most sacred place in the country. The temple is located on Shivpuri Island on the Narmada River and has an immense mythological significance.
People believe that there was once a war between the Devas and the Danavas, and all the Devas turned towards Lord Shiva for victory. Pleased by the prayers of the Devas, Lord Shiva appeared as the Omkareshwar and helped them to win the war, making it one of the most popular Jyotirlingas in India.
Opening Hours: 5 am to 10 pm
Darshan Timing: 5:30 am to 12:20 pm
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9. Kashi Vishwanath in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh
Popularly known as the Golden Temple of Varanasi, Kashi Vishwanath in Varanasi is one of the most popular Jyotirlingas in India in the Jyotirlingas temples list.
Kashi Vishwanath is a significant religious site for Hindus around the country. The temple was built in the year 1780 by a Maratha Monarch, Maharani Ahilyabai Holkar. It is considered the first Jyotirlinga in the country because of the story behind it. It is believed that Lord Shiva has resided here, liberated people, and spread happiness to everyone around him. Besides, it is also believed that it is the first Jyotirlinga of the country which has shown its power over other Gods by breaking through the surface of the Earth and moved towards heaven.
Opening Hours: 2:30 am to 11 pm
Mangala Aarti Timing: 3 am to 4 pm
Sarva Darshan: 4 am to 11 am
Bhog Aarti: 11:15 am to 12:20 pm
Sandhya Aarti: 7 pm to 8:15 pm
Shringara Aarti: 9 pm to 10:15 pm
Shayana Aarti: 10:30 pm to 11 pm
10. Kedarnath in Kedarnath, Uttarakhand
We all know about Kedarnath, for it is also one of the Chota Chardham among others, including Badrinath, Yamunotri, and Gangotri.
Kedarnath is one of the most popular Jyotirlingas in India and a famous religious site. Even a movie has been made on it, which I am sure everyone has seen. The place is an absolute beauty, covered with mountains, and there lies the temple of Kedarnath.
You have to trek at least 17 km one way to reach the temple. Other options that you have is that you hire a pony or take a helicopter ride to Kedarnath.
Located at an elevation of approximately 12000 ft above sea level, the temple is only open for a few months between May to June and remains closed during other months.
People visit the Kedarnath temple to cleanse themselves of any sins, ill luck or any misfortune that may befall them.
Opening Hours: 4 am to 12 pm and 3 pm to 9 pm
11. Rameshwaram in Rameswaram Island, Tamil Nadu
Rameshwaram temple is one of the Jyotirlingas in India, which was worshipped by Lord Rama himself after he defeated Ravana.
The entire temple is surrounded by the sea and has beautiful architecture, decorated corridors, and 36 Theerthams, making it an absolutely beautiful piece of architecture.
It is believed to be the Southernmost Jyotirlingas in India and is also known as the Varanasi of the South, attracting several pilgrims.
Devotees who visit the temple, also visit the Dhanushkodi beach, which again has a religious significance. It is believed that Dhanushkodi beach is the spot from where Lord Rama had built Ram Setu in Lanka, in order to save his wife. It is also one of the Bada Chardham of India.
Opening Hours: 5 am to 1 pm and 3 pm to 9 pm
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12. Mallikarjuna in Srisailam in Andhra Pradesh
Situated on the banks of the Krishna River, Mallikarjuna temple is known as the Kailash of the South region, among the other 12 Jyotirlingas in India.
The temple is located atop Shri Saila Mountain and has beautiful sculptures, architecture, and decorated pillars. The temple also has deities, including Shiva and Parvati. It is also among the 52 Shakti Peethas of Sati.
It is one of the greatest shrines of Lord Shiva in the country.
Opening Hours: 4:30 am to 10 pm
Darshan Timing: 6:30 am to 1 pm, and 6:30 pm to 9 pm.
Frequently Asked Questions About The Jyotirlingas In India
1. What are the 12 Jyotirlingas?
The 12 Jyotirlingas in India are spread in different parts of the country, and the list of the 12 Jyotirlingas include Somnath, Nageshwar, Bhimashankar, Trimbakeshwar, Grishneshwar, Vaidyanath, Mahakaleshwar, Omkareshwar, Kashi Vishwanath, Kedarnath, Rameshwaram, and Mallikarjuna.
2. What is the history of the 12 Jyotirlingas?
The story of the 12 Jyotirlinga has been written in the Siva Purana, where Lord Vishnu and Lord Brahma couldn’t decide who was the most powerful among them. Lord Shiva creates an infinite pillar of light, and asked both of them to find the end of the pillar, whoever finds it will be declared the most powerful. Lord Vishnu told Lord Shiva that he failed to find the light, however, Lord Brahma lied and said that he found the end of the light. Enraged by Lord Brahma’s lie, he cursed him that no one should worship him. On the other hand, the light of the pillar fell on almost 64 places, out of which 12 became the major religious site and came to be known as the 12 Jyotirlingas in India.
3. What is the significance of the 12 Jyotirlingas?
The 12 Jyotirlinga have been named according to their presiding deities. These Jyotirlingas have a lot of religious significance for the Hindus and witness several pilgrims. At these religious sites, the primary image that you will notice will be that of a lingam, which represents the endless, and beginningless stambha pillar, just like the infinite nature of Lord Shiva.
4. What are the names of the 12 Jyotirlingas?
The names of the Jyotirlingas are Somnath, Nageshwar, Bhimashankar, Trimbakeshwar, Grishneshwar, Vaidyanath, Mahakaleshwar, Omkareshwar, Kashi Vishwanath, Kedarnath, Rameshwaram, and Mallikarjuna.