The sleepy town of Somnath lying on the shores of the Arabian Sea is one of the most important Hindu pilgrim centers. This ancient town was raided by Mahmud of Gazni who plundered the rich temples and took the treasures to his homeland. The town was razed to the ground and destructed many a times and each time the Hindus rebuilt it. Travelers and pilgrims visiting Somnath prefer to stay at Veraval which lies at a distance of 6 kilometers from Somnath as it has a wide choice of accommodation. The town finds mention in some of the early Hindu religious documents. Amongst the Holy Places in Somnath the Bhalka Tirth and Somnath Temple are of the greatest prominence.
History of Bhalka Tirth, Somnath:
Bhalka Tirth is at a distance of 5 kilometers from the Veraval highway. Shri Krishna was fatally wounded by the arrow of a huntsman named Jara here while resting on a deerskin. The poacher mistook the foot of the Lord for that of a deer and shot straight through it. However Shri Krishna forgave the poacher and in reverence to the God this temple was constructed and a pippal tree planted to mark the spot. Off late the temple and the area is under renovation which has been taken over by the Central Government. After being hit by the poacher Lord Shri Krishna made his journey at the holy confluence of the three rivers namely Hiran, Kapila and Saraswati.
Description of Bhalka Tirth, Somnath:
Bhalka Tirth is a small but compact temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. The temple portrays the many feats of the Lord and his preaching's in the Gita.
The best time to visit Somnath is from October to March. Somnath is well accessible from Junagad and Veraval. There are daily buses plying from one place to the other. To avoid last minute hassles make your hotel bookings early. You can also visit many other places in and around Somnath like Gir National forest which is the only place in India where you would find Asiatic Lions. It lies at a distance of 43 kilometers from Somnath. You can also visit the sea side resort of Chorwad.