The Flapper Life
10 ancient temples in India.
India is home to 27 cultural, 7 natural and 1 mixed world heritage sites recognised by UNESCO but these are many other places of importance and heritage temples that just makes India much more holier.
some of the most famous temples in India that have been a large part of national history as well as the world-history for several hundred years. All these marvellous temples in India are a serene place to worship god. It not only depicts the royal culture but also upholds high religious significance. These magical centuries-old temples in India will surely leave you awe-inspired!
Here are the 10 most ancient temples that you must visit:
1)Kailasanatha Temple, Aurangabad.
The Kailasa or Kailasanatha temple is the largest monolithic rock-cut structure in the world located in cave 16 of Ellora Caves in Aurangabad, Maharashtra. Carved out of single basalt rock from Charanandri Hills, it is one of the exceptional temples of India owing to its massive size, amazing architecture and mind-boggling carvings. With its intricate designs on panels, monolithic pillars and statues of animals and deities, Kailasa Temple is an engineering marvel perfect for history and architecture lovers.
Constructed in the 8th century under the direction of Krishna I, the temple is dedicated to Hindu deity, Lord Shiva.
How To Reach Kailasa Temple:
This extremely fascinating location is situated about 30 km away from Aurangabad which is the nearest city to the destination. Aurangabad is well connected to the major cities of the country through rail, road, and air.
2) Adi Kumbeswarar Temple, Kumbakonam.
Believed to have been constructed in the 7th century A.D by the Cholas, Adi Kumbeswarar Temple is one of the grandest and the oldest Shiva temples in the town. The temple has a magnificent architecture with the trademark style of the Cholas. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva and houses a unique Shiva lingam. The rajagopuram over the eastern entrance is nine-tiered and rises to a grand 128 ft. The sculptural wealth of this temple is amazing. There is no mandapam, pillar or ceiling which is not ornamented. Look out for the bas relief sculptures on the ceiling of the hall leading to the main sanctum: they depict scenes from the Puranas as well as representations of the 12 zodiac signs and the 27 asterisms.
You will see that those chain links hanging from the ceiling are not made of iron but stone - a fine example of the masterful stone-cutting evident all over this extraordinary temple. Some years ago, an underground tunnel was discovered in the temple, near the sanctum of Lord Kumbeswarar. Owing to the brittle nature of its composition, the idol is never bathed but only coated with punugu (the oily, scented secretion of the civet cat). As a further protection, it is encased in silver
How to reach: Tiruchirapalli international airport is the closest airport and kumbakonam railways station is the closest Railway Station at 3km distance.
3)Sun Temple, Konark.
Situated on the northeastern corner of Puri, Konark Sun Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the prime tourist attractions of Odisha. Built in the form of a giant ratha or chariot of the Sun God, it depicts the chariot being pulled by a set of seven horses, four on the left side and three on the right. It has three deities dedicated to the Sun God on three different sides of the temple which catch the direct rays of sun in the morning, afternoon and evening. There is also a dedicated archaeological museum inside the temple complex. The temple transforms into a stage during The Konark Dance Festival, which is held every year usually in February and attracts a lot of foreign and Indian tourists — dedicated to devotees of the Sun God.
Konark Sun Temple is one of the last standing structures before the fifteenth century in the country. The sun rays reach the Nata Mandir from the coast and reflect through the diamond at the centre of the idol. The idol is believed to float mid-air due to arrangements of the magnets at the top of the temple but they were later removed due to the disturbance caused to coastal voyages. An engineering and artistic masterpiece, The Sun Temple has been standing stoically for the last two thousand years. Despite much of the temple in ruin, it still reflects the artistic genius of architects and sculptures of the time.
How to reach: The Sun Temple is 35 kilometers away from Puri which is also the nearest railway station. The nearest airport is Bhubaneswar sixty kilometers away which is also the state's capital.
4)Airavatesvara Temple, Tamil Nadu.
Located in the town of Darasuram near Kumbakonam in Tamil Nadu, Airavatesvara Temple is a revered Hindu temple and a UNESCO world heritage site. Part of the popular trio known as the Great Living Chola Temple along with Brihadeeswara Temple at Thanjavur and the Gangaikondacholisvaram Temple at Gangaikonda Cholapuram, Airavatesvara Temple was built by the Chola King Rajaraja Chola II in the 12th century CE. Presided by the Hindu God Lord Shiva, the temple is amongst the eighteen medieval era Hindu temples in the Kumbakonam area. The shrine displays the Vaishnavism and Shaktism legs of Hinduism, and the traditional Nayanars- the Bhakti saints of Shaivism.
Constructed in the chariot structure and built in stone, the temple has smaller shrines dedicated to several Vedic and Puranic deities including Indra, Agni, Varuna, Vayu, Brahma, Surya, Vishnu, Saptamtrikas, Durga, Saraswati, Sri devi (Lakshmi), Ganga, Yamuna, Subrahmanya, Ganesha, Kama, Rati and others. Lord Shiva’s spouse has a smaller shrine towards the northern side of the temple premises known as Periya Nayaki Amman. Lately, some of the temple is in a crumpled state with the gopurams entirely in ruins. However, the main shrine and the associated sanctums still stand sturdy. The temple attracts pilgrims and devotees in thousands annually especially during the month of Magha for several special poojas.