The historic Somnath Temple is an epitome of religious devotion of Lord Shiva in Veraval, Saurashtra. The temple is worshipped widely as it is considered as one of the first of the Shiva Jyotirlingas as mentioned in the Puranas. The Shiva temple here is considered very pious due to its rich religious history. Somnath refers to the name given to Lord Shiva or the Almighty of the Soma. The temple has been built and renovated many times from the time of its inception due to wars between Hindu and Muslim kings. The temple is known as the Shrine of the Eternal for the Shiva Jyotirlingas. Every day, three pujas are done in the temple which attracts major tourist in huge numbers. The temple is built in proper Hindu architecture with pillars and a flag on the roof of the highest point.
The legends about the temple revolve around the Moon God Soma who was believed to have taken a bath at this point of the river confluence. The Mood God was losing his shine owning to a curse and redeemed it back after the dip according to the Hindu mythology. The pilgrim spot of the Somnath Temple is at the mouth of the three mythological rivers of Saraswati, Hiran and Kapilla. The first stone of the temple is said to be built centuries ago. The Seuna kings that time had built another establishment of it at the same spot during the period of 649CE. The temple has been attacked many times by the Arabs in the past but was erected every time by the following Hindu dynasties. The Somnath Temple is also believed to be first built from wooden structures but was raided soon after by foreign invaders. Solanki king Mularaja is said to have built the first temple at this changing the old outlook of it.
Where is it located?
Somnath can be accessed by road or rail from Junagadh district which is 79 kilometers away. Veraval is the nearest railway station 6 kilometers from the spot.
Ideal Visiting Time
The Somanth Temple can be visited anytime of the year. Daily pujas and aartis are done at intervals to please the Lords. Devotees take active parts in the pujas to pay their devotion. The time of Maha Shiv Ratri is the best time to visit the pilgrimage spot as the whole area lights up in festive fashion. Fairs and special religious ceremonies are held during this time.