Rudra Mahalaya Temple

Introduction
The Rudra Mahalaya Temple is one of the most ancient temples in the historic town of Sidhpur. The temple is spread across a vast area built during the time of the 12th century by the Solanki king Jayasimha Siddharaja. The temple is in ruins now but is open to visitors who have a penchant for religious and historic cultures. The temple was built to pay homage to Rudra another form of Lord Shiva. The temple was built in great extensions with measurements of 91 meter by 70 meter with the main building being 150 feet in height. The temple also has a central mandap with doorways on the east, south and north sides. There are a total of 1600 pillars spread over 3 stories with 12 entrances. The Rudra Mahalaya Temple has a total of 11 shrines where Rudra Mahadev was worshipped.

History

It has a rich history that dates back to hundreds of years ago. Sidhpur was a famous town under the rulers of the Solanki Dynasty and the temple has been part of many wars and calamities. The invasion of the Muslim rulers in Gujarat in the 1410 era saw the temple being destroyed by then ruler Ahmad Shah I. He not only dented the temple but also made parts of it into a mosque. This blend of Hindu-Muslim architecture can still be visualized by the tourists. The Rudra temple used to be the main center of religious devotees in that era in Sidhpur. It is believed that Rudra is a form of Lord Shiva from the chapters of the Chalukyas. Jaisinh was the 7th ruler under the Chalukyas. There are also many carvings and wall etchings on the temple pillars that depict many hidden facts from the past.

Where is it located?

The Rudra Mahalaya Temple is situated in the Patan District of Gujarat. Ahmedabad is 103 kilometers away from it with buses connecting to it.

Ideal Visiting Time

The Rudra Mahalaya temple can be visited anytime of the year. It is best to visit the temple during the Sidhpur Camel Festival that takes place every year during the Karthik month according to the Hindu calendar. One can experience the enormous history of the temple along with the celebratory features of the traditional fair of the locals. Thousands of tourists are seen flocking Sidhpur during this time.

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