August 20, 2016

If you are visiting Bhimashankar temple or Natural Potholes near Takali Haji or Lenyadri caves at Junnar or Ozar Astivinayak temples or Shivneri fort or Ramling Temple at ShirurYou can also include visiting Yamai Devi Temple at Kanhersar (Kanersar) near Rajgurunagar. 


If you are coming from Aundh, Wakad, Pimpri Chinchwad or Hinjawadi side, you have to reach Rajgurunagar via Chakan first, then take the turn which goes to Shirur. You will see Yamai Devi Temple at road-side only at Kanhersar. [60 KM] 
If you are coming from Wagholi or Lonikand side, take turn at Koregaon Bhima which leads to Chouphula and then Kendur, after few KM you will reach Yamai Devi Temple at Kanhersar. [36 KM] 

The temple is quite clean and you will for sure get peace of mind here. It has Main gate and Mangal office gate which leads inside temple. Compound has a small beautiful garden, Sabhamandap, temple gallery. Inside the temple, There is quite unique old water-well point, where people used to draw water from multi-pulley system. 




Once you are in the temple, I am sure you will love the place. There are many beautiful paintings in the temple. We had taken few photographs at the temple, and stayed there for 25-30 minutes, then we moved towards Bhimashankar




August 7, 2016

Quote of the Post: "Bhimashankar is definitely God's unique creation worth visiting for jungle lovers, trekkers as well as devotees." - Quote about 'Bhimashankar Maharashtra' - Sachin Kumar Gupta 

Bhimashankar is a wildlife sanctuary. In the heart of this is Bhimashankar temple (Bhimashankar Shiv Mandir) which is one of the 12 Jyotirlings of India. This temple is very famous in Pune and people from all around the world come to visit this temple. Many devotees visit this place almost every year. This was my second visit here and the serenity and spirituality remained intact. It is overcrowded on weekends and Mondays of Shravan month. My last visit was during weekend, however couldn't visit the main temple due to long queue. Still with an awesome weather, we enjoyed the place with Meenal, Anmol and Anshul. 


This time, i.e. during my second visit, we visited on Tuesday to get sometime inside the temple and ample time to visit the main Jyotirling place. The condition of the road is good and best time to visit is during monsoon (July - Sep). Though any time of the year is good to visit Bhimashankar. With clouds touching your feet and scenic views all over, it's a delight to visit this place. Bhimashankar Temple, located in the village of Bhorgiri. It is approx 3-4 hours drive from pune (130 KM) and 4-5 hours from Kalyan, Mumbai (180 KM) and 5-6 hours from Nashik (210 KM). 


Don't forget to carry an umbrella and also some good anti-skid footwear. It really gets very slippery while climbing up and down the steps. Ghats are really good for trekking and road-trip. You will also get colorful bodycover polysheets in monsoon (20-30 INR per sheet). One drawback is the temple is overcrowded and a lot of mismanagement happens for parking on weekend and Sravan month Mondays. You may also have to walk 1-2 km on the roads from parking during peak timings. Once you reach main entry point named and tagged as 'Shree Kshetra Jai Bhimashankar', you'll have to step down nearly 300+ steps to reach main temple. But steps are well built so that nobody have any difficulty in walking through the steps. For the old age and sick peoples there are some arrangements of palki with reasonable rates.  



The temple has the Nagara style architecture, however one cant capture it in lens as Photography is strictly prohibited inside the temple. Don't forget to see a giant 17th Century bell inside the temple. We were also happy to see two Nandi closely. You can also have waterproof cam specially if visiting during monsoon. It is also the origin place of river Bhima. At times during monsoon, visibility becomes almost zero with fog all around. It is the beauty of the place, which makes you feel so heavenly. We enjoyed rain and fog the whole time during both our visits.  



Three worship services are offered every day. Mahashivratri is a season of great festivity here. Temple schedule is as follows:
04:30 AM Kakada Aarti
05:00 AM Nijarup Darshan
05:30 AM Regular Pooja,Abhishek starts
12:00 PM Naivedya Pooja (No Abhishek inside)
12:30 PM Regular Pooja,Abhishek starts
03:00 PM Madhyan Aarti (No Darshan for 45min)
04:00 PM to 9.30 PM Shringar darshan (No Abhishek inside)
07:30 PM Aarti
09:30 PM Mandir Closed

Note: Except Monday, Pradosh, Shravan Mass, Mahashivratri - Present Abhisheka (Abhishek inside temple ) till 2.00 PM.
On Monday, Pradosh, Shravan Mass, Mahashivratri - Present Abhisheka (Abhishek inside temple ) till 6.00 PM


Once you are out of the temple after visit the jyotirling, you can also hike towards the hills behind the temple, where we took a short trip during our first visit. We found streams of natural falls that wipe away journey's fatigue. Places that can be visited in are Hanuman Lake, Gupt Bhimashankar, Origin of River Bhima, Nag Phani, Bombay Point, Sakshi Vinayak and a lot more. The picturesque beauty of the place cannot be captured with mix of rain, fog & mist weather, and done justice using a camera for sure. During stair-way, there are many vendors selling yummy crispy hot vada pav, corns, fresh sweets and other snacks. We had lunch at Natraj Restaurant, which had good quality food with decent price. (The place is 10 KM away from Bhimashankar temple)


The other Jyotirlinga shrines in Maharashtra are Vaidyanath near Parli Dist Beed, Trimbakeshwara near Nashik, Grishneshwar near Aurangabad and Aundha Nagnath Temple in Hingoli. One day visit to Bhimashankar clubbing one of the places nearby and during monsoon to explore nature at it's best. 

Recommendation: You can also visit Lenyadri caves at Junnar or Ozar Astivinayak temples or Shivneri fort and come back by Narayangaon Nasik Pune highway.

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