Located in Gujarat, Somnath derives its name from its famous Somnath Temple. Somnath means "The Protector of Moon God". According to a legend, the conceited Moon, otherwise called Chandra, became so arrogant that her father-in-law cursed her to fade away. She prayed to Lord Shiva, who gave partial respite from the curse, so she disappears periodically even to this day.
Somnath, a small town, has many tourist attractions, attracting pilgrims and tourists from across the country. Some are famous for their religious significance, and others are because of their historical importance. If you are in Somnath, we have curated a list of top attractions to visit in Somnath for a memorable sightseeing tour.
Here are the top tourist attractions in Somnath.
One of the most well-known attractions for pilgrims and tourists in Somnath is Somnath Temple. It is dedicated to the Moon Goddess. People say Moon Goddess first constructed the temple with gold, then with silver and rock, respectively, by Ravana and Bhima.
The second Somnath Temple is said to have been demolished by the Afghans several times. It was revamped by Pratihara king Nagabhata II who also built the third temple in 815 AD, which was essentially constructed with red sandstone. It is one of the greatest tourist attractions at Somnath.
Another unmissable attraction in Somnath is the famous Somnath Beach. Located near Veraval city, this beach is ideal for unwinding and spending quality time with loved ones. Known for its pristine beauty, Somnath Beach has long stretches of gray sands, perfect for rejuvenating here after a long day of sightseeing in Somnath.
There are vendors selling fresh coconut water and corn at the beach. For a memorable and fun time at Somnath Beach, indulge in camel riding. The sunsets here are also mesmerizing.
Prabhas Patan Museum
Only a few people know about this museum in Somnath, and that's why it is among the lesser-visited tourist places in Somnath. Managed by the Somnath trust, the museum is under the control of the Gujarat Government. It houses innumerable remains and evidence of the former Somnath Temple in the form of scattered stones.
You will be able to see the 11th-century statue of Lord of Fire, the holy water of rivers like St. Lawrence and the Nile in the bottle, preserved by the management. Other highlights of Prabhas Patan Museum include stones with beautiful idol carvings of Lord Vishnu, Parvati, Uma Shankar, Parvati, and Nat Bhairav; Torans (hung above the doorway as a sign of welcoming) belonging to the 12th century; and unique inscriptions.
You must have heard of the famous confluences of riveres in Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh and the Panch Prayag in Uttarakhand. Similarly, Gujarat has a confluence of three sacred rivers - Saraswati, Kapila, and Hiran, called Triveni Sangam. It is believed that if anyone bathes at this spot, they will be purified from all their sins and attain salvation.
Pilgrims who visit Somnath Jyotirlinga for darshan often visit Triveni Sangam to bathe. After the bath, pay respects to the Gita and Laxmi Narayan Temples, located close to the confluence.
It is a known Hindu pilgrimage place in Somnath, which is said to be the same place the hunter's arrow shot Lord Krishna. As per the sacred scriptures, Dwapara Yuga ended when Lord Krishna died (or left earth), and the Kali Yuga began.
Bhalka Tirth has a temple devoted to Lord Krishna and is known as Mahaprabhuji's Bethak.
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