Posted 06 December 2022
Madhya Pradesh, the heartland state of India, has a superabundance of celestial ancient temples that every tourist must pay a visit to. From the artworks to the sculpting, they are an utmost visual treat whereas the spirituality of these temples will definitely soothe your heart.
Ditching all the workloads and unnecessary tensions, if you are planning a simple yet fulfilling trip somewhere within India, then Madhya Pradesh can be one of the finest destinations for you. More than 25 famous temples are situated in Madhya Pradesh that attract many tourists and devotees every year from all over India. Whether it is a Shaktipeeth or UNESCO famed world heritage site, the only thing these temples would offer you is amazement.
Belonging to some of the oldest dynasties of India, the temples often reflect the cultural beliefs of the then society, apart from the spiritual aspects. The whole construction of the temples, including the architectural details, must drive you crazy. Temples of Madhya Pradesh confer a great chance to the visitors to encounter the history of India while getting closer to God.
These temples are primarily scattered in different parts of Ujjain, Khajuraho, Omkareshwar, Chitrakut and Indore. However, more than 10 of them are in Khajuraho and Ujjain.
Here are some of the famous temples to visit in Madhya Pradesh:
Enlightened by an incredible mythological tale, Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga is one of the most visited temples in Madhya Pradesh. The tranquillity of this place is beyond words, and the divine atmosphere fills the hearts of the devotees with ecstasy and positivity. As stated by the tourists, the season of monsoon adds more beauty to the temple as Shravan is the birth month of Lord Shiva. On the occasion of Maha Shivratri, a huge fair is organised for the devotees, and the temple remains open all night long.
Having been constructed between 1025 and 1050 AD, Kandariya Mahadeo Temple has enlisted its name amongst the oldest temples in the nation. It is located in Khajuraho, which used to be the capital of the Chandela dynasty. This temple is decorated with amusing erotic sculptures and devoted to Lord Shiva. UNESCO has declared it as a world heritage site in 2015.
Adinath Temple is one of the Khajuraho Group of Monuments included as a world heritage site by UNESCO. Jain deity Tirthankara Adinatha is even worshipped there; so the temple sculptures feature Hindu deities alongside Jain Yakshinis and others. It was built in the 11th century CE. It has been reckoned by the Archaeological Survey of India as a Monument of National Importance.
Dedicated to Kal Bhairav, the guardian deity of Ujjain, this is one of the most famous temples to visit in Madhya Pradesh. More than thousands of devotees come to the temple every week. According to Panchamakara, a tantric ritual, the deity is given liquor as an offering.
Situated upon Mandhata Island in the Narmada River, this temple is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas where the Hindu deity Omkareshwar (another name of Lord Shiva) is worshipped. Shivratri and Shravan Utsav are the two most celebrated festivals here.
Amreshwar Temple, popularly known as Mamleshwar Jyotirlinga Temple, is a protected monument with a beautiful architectural design. The temple is on the bank of the Narmada River where Lord Shiva, known as the lord of the immortals, is worshipped.
As the temple's name refers, a humongous idol of Lord Ganesha is worshipped inside the temple. The overall view, including the idol, fills the souls of the visitors with charm and calming vibes. It is situated in the city of Ujjain near Mahakaleshwar Temple.
Devoted to Lord Shiva, the Matangeshwar Temple in Khajuraho is one of the oldest temples built in the 11th century CE. Among all the temples of the Chandela dynasty in Khajuraho, it has the plainest and simplest architectural styles. The temple is categorised as a Monument of National Importance by the Archaeological Survey of India and is actively used by the devotees in present days for worship.
Harsiddhi Temple is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas of Maa Sati where Mata Annapurna, an incarnation of Maa Parvati, is worshipped. The architecture of the temple has Maratha touches. Navratri festival is celebrated in the temple in a colossal manner, dressing the temple with an enormous amount of lights. These make a spot for the temple among the most famous temples to visit in Madhya Pradesh.
It is a 10th-century monument in Khajuraho devoted to the Jain deity Parshvanath. The temple's architecture is undoubtedly a visual treat. It is also a part of the Khajuraho Group of Monuments classified as a world heritage site by UNESCO.
Gauri Somnath Temple, which exhibits the Bhumji style of architecture, was built in the 11th century in Omkareshwar. The temple has a huge Shivalinga and statue of Nandi that have been the key attraction for the visitors. No pair can touch their hands from opposite ends while embracing Lingam unless they are an uncle and nephew.
Chaturbhuj Temple is a Ram mandir (an avatar of Lord Vishnu), constructed in Orchha by the Bundela Rajputs in the 16th century. Lord Ram is believed to have four (chatur) arms (Bhuj), and that is why the temple is called Chaturbhuj. Having the combination of Maru-Gurjara architecture, the temple has become a place of great interest among visitors.
Yashovarman, a sovereign king of the Chandela dynasty, built the Lakshmana Temple in the 10th century to worship Lord Vaikuntha Vishnu. Statues of three-headed and four-armed Lord Vaikuntha Vishnu are sculpted in the temple alongside Narashima, Varaha, Ganesha, etc. The structure of this temple is quite different from other Khajuraho temples as it depicts a Panchayatana shape in the outer part and a Pancharatha layout inside.
Pashupatinath, a form of Lord Shiva, is revered by the devotees in Shri Pashupatinath Mandir, constructed in the 5th or 6th century in Mandsaur. The main attraction of this Shiva temple is an Ashtamukhi (eight-faced) Shivalinga which was discovered on the bank of the Shiva River.
As a part of Khajuraho Groups of Monuments, Javari Temple is also a world heritage site announced by UNESCO. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and was built by Rulers of the Chandela dynasty between 975 and 1100 AD. The architecture of this temple will remind you of the Chaturbhuj Temple located in Khajuraho.
Saas Bahu Temple is a twin temple built in the Kachchhapaghata dynasty by Raja Mahipal in the 11th century in Gwalior. Padmanabha, a form of Lord Vishnu, is the main deity of this temple. The temple is also known as Sahasrabahu or Harisadanam Temple.
Devotees often visit Bharat Milap Mandir to find peace of mind, where Shree Rama met his brother Bharat after returning to Ayodhya, serving a 14-year Vanvaas. As described by the pilgrims, the footprints of Lord Rama and Bharat can be seen at their meeting spot. Bharat Milap festival is celebrated there on the day after Dussehra, which is joined by thousands of people. This place's mythological and spiritual value makes it one of the extremely famous temples to visit in Madhya Pradesh.
Situated in Mitauli village, Madhya Pradesh, the Chausath Yogini Temple is classified as an ancient and historical monument by the Archaeological Survey of India. Devpala, a ruler from the Kachchhapaghata dynasty, built this temple in the 11th century in a circular shape. The 65 chambers in the circular part are for Chausath (64) Yogini and Devi, while the centre is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Hindu deity Annapurna, a form of Maa Durga who is believed to provide food on everyone’s plate, is worshipped in Annapurna Mandir in Indore. The architecture signifies the South Indian structure of temples and is similar to the Meenakshi Mandir in Madurai. The sculptural beauty and blissful atmosphere of the temple draw a great number of devotees and tourists every day.
As per a belief, this temple was founded by Maa Sita in Rama Yuga. Popular among the visitors, the temple worships Ganesha, the Lord of beginning in Hinduism.
Almost every second temple in Madhya Pradesh worships Lord Shiva. Hence, the best time to visit those temples would be the time of Maha Shivratri. A time span between October and March, during the winter season, is considered the golden season for the visitors to come and stay in Madhya Pradesh. Maha Shivratri also takes place in March.
Madhya Pradesh is one of the tropical states in India, and it has three evident seasons, which are summer (March to May), monsoon (June to October) and winter (December to February). In summer, the temperature sometimes exceeds 40°C, creating heavy heat for the locals and tourists. Though the average temperature in summer fluctuates between 27 - 35 °C, the average rainfall in the rainy season is 1160 mm. The winter season is soft and comfortable in Madhya Pradesh as the temperature goes down significantly, and that is why most tourists come to visit the renowned temples during this season.
A time comes when everyone feels to reconnect their souls with God to wash away all their worries. So, whether you are thinking of a solo trip or going with your partner or family, the temples of Madhya Pradesh can be a perfect escape route for you. Those great temples will leave you amazed, from the mythological stories to the sculptural wonders.