India is a land of many faiths. People of different religions co-exist peacefully in this country. In different parts of India, there are many famous temples, mosques, churches, gurudwaras, and even monasteries. For Hindus, there are 12 Jyotirlingas and almost 56 Shakti Peeths. These spots attract a lot of tourists every year.
Some of the famous religious destinations are:
Somnath is a temple town situated on the shores of Arabian Sea. It is most famous for the Somnath Jyotirlinga Temple, traditionally considered to be the first of the 12 Jyotirlingas. This temple has survived many attacks by foreign invaders throughout Indian history. Since the ancient times, Somnath has been a holy site being close to the Triveni Sangam where the three rivers Hiran, Kapila and Saraswati meet. The town has many mythological legends built around it. There are many small and big temples in and around the city. The Somnath Beach is also a famous attraction for the tourists here.
Located in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand, Haridwar literally means ‘the abode of Lord Vishnu’. Considered as one of the top holy cities in India, this is a land of mythology and spirituality. The Har Ki Pauri Ghat is the most famous location in Haridwar, well known for the Ganga aarti that takes place here every evening. It is said that a visit to Haridwar is incomplete without witnessing the Ganga aarti. The spiritual town has a plethora of temples dedicated to various gods and goddesses. These include the Mansa Devi temple, the Chandi Devi temple, the Bharat Mata temple, and many more. The Kumbh Mela also takes place in Haridwar in every 12 years.
Maihar, Madhya Pradesh
According to Hindu mythology, the necklace of Goddess Sati had fallen at Maihar on the Trikuta Hill. Recognized as a Shakti Peeth, the Sharada Devi Temple in Maihar is said to be built on that exact spot. The temple is built on the top of the hill and devotees need to undergo a steep climb of almost 1000 steps to reach the temple. DAMODAR ROPEWAYS & INFRA LIMITED, one of the oldest ropeway construction companies in India, built a cable car ride at the Sharada Devi temple to help the physically disabled and elderly devotees. By taking this cable car ride, devotees can reach the main gate of the temple complex within a few minutes. Due to a lack of space to build the upper station, the design team came up with an innovative layout where the tension tower which provides the counter weight is built on a very steep slope.
The city of Pushkar is most famous for having the only temple dedicated to Lord Brahma. The Jagatpita Brahma Temple, originally built in the 14th century, attracts a lot of Hindu pilgrims till today. There is also the Savitri Mata Temple in Pushkar which is located atop a hill. Savitri was the first wife of Brahma. There is a DRIL ropeway built here that saves pilgrims a strenuous stiff climb of little more than 1100 steps to reach the Savitri Mata Temple. It covers a distance of 720 meters in less than 6 minutes. The temple offers some great views.
Golden Temple, Amritsar
The original name of Golden Temple is Sri Harmindar Sahib Gurudwara, built by Guru Ram Das, the fourth Sikh guru. Located in Amritsar, Punjab, the Golden Temple is the most important religious shrine for Sikhs all around the world. Symbolizing universal brotherhood, the Gurudwara offers spiritual fulfillment to all visitors.
Naina Devi, Himachal Pradesh
The Naina Devi Temple is situated on a hilltop in the Bilaspur district of Himachal Pradesh. This is a Shakti Peeth where the eyes of Goddess Sati are believed to have fallen down. The temple complex is situated at an altitude of 1177 meters and visitors have to undertake a steep climb of steps to reach the top. A ropeway facility of DRIL is available at the temple for the convenience of the devotees, especially those of old age. It is an exhilarating ropeway ride offering a view of the surrounding hills and the Gobind Sagar Lake.
The pilgrimage city of Deoghar is most famous for Baidyanath Temple, one of the twelve Jyotirlingas. Located 10km away from the city are the Trikut Hills whose three mountain peaks signify the holy trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. Pilgrims visit this holy site all around the year. There also a ropeway ride that takes passengers to the top of the hill offering a great view of the holy town of Deogarh.