Hello TAigers. My first Travelogue. Will try to keep it short and sweet.! Source : Lonavala
Destination : Bhimashankar Temple
No. of People : 03, My parents and myself
Vehicle : My DYRET.! Tata Safari Dicor 2.2 EX
My parents were in Lonavala few days ago. My mother wanted to visit Bhimashankar Temple of Lord Shiva from quite some time. Bhimashankar Temple is a Jyotirlinga shrine located 50 km northwest of Khed, near Pune, in India. It is located 127 km from Shivaji Nagar (Pune) in the Ghat region of the Sahyadri hills. Bhimashankar is also the source of the river Bhima, which flows southeast and merges with the Krishna river near Raichur. So this was the time as I was not sure of when I would come back to pune or Lonavala. So we planned for the trip on 01 June but due to clashes around pune we dropped the plan. We finally planned on 03 June 2014. Weather was beautiful in the morning as it rained heavily the previous night here in lonavala. We started at 0700, the drive in the morning was simply superb.! I missed pics. I know
Little bit of history about the place is as follows.
As per Shiv Mahapuran, once Brahma
(the Hindu God of creation) and Vishnu
(the Hindu God of saving) had an argument in terms of supremacy of creation. To test them, Shiva
pierced the three worlds as a huge endless pillar of light, the jyotirlinga
. Vishnu and Brahma split their ways to downwards and upwards respectively to find the end of the light in either directions. Brahma lied that he found out the end, while Vishnu conceded his defeat. Shiva appeared as a second pillar of light and cursed Brahma that he would have no place in ceremonies while Vishnu would be worshipped till the end of eternity. The jyotirlinga is the supreme partless reality, out of which Shiva partly appears. The jyothirlinga shrines, thus are places where Shiva appeared as a fiery column of light. Originally there were believed to be 64
jyothirlingas while 12
of them are considered to be very auspicious and holy. Each of the twelve jyothirlinga sites take the name of the presiding deity - each considered different manifestation of Shiva. At all these sites, the primary image is lingam representing the beginningless and endless Stambha pillar, symbolizing the infinite nature of Shiva. The twelve jyothirlinga
in Gujarat, Mallikarjuna
in Andhra Pradesh, Mahakaleswar
at Ujjain in Madhya Pradesh, Omkareshwar
in Madhya Pradesh, Kedarnath
in Himalayas, Bhimashankar
in Maharastra, Viswanath
at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh, Triambakeshwar
in Maharastra, Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga
, Nageshwar Temple, Dwarka|Nageswar at Dwarka in Gujarat, Rameshwar
at Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu and Grishneshwar
The total distance was about 150 km from Lonavala according to Google Maps. So we took the Mumbai-Pune Expressway followed by the Talegaon Exit to get into the Talegaon-Chakan road. This road is good but little crowded at places.
We stopped for breakfast at Vithal Kamat Restaurant on the same link road to Nasik highway. The restaurant had a refreshing atmosphere. The food was also very good. On top of it we could get typical South-Indian dishes for breakfast.! A special Mention (The Plain Rava Dosa was too good to resist
). Please do have a pit stop at this restaurant if anyone is taking this road!
We then joined the Pune-Nasik Highway.! Good road and the traffic was less. Took a diversion for Bhimashakar via Wani and that was a mistake.
Please do not take this road. There is absolutely no traffic but the road is full of potholes so please avoid this road. Stick to the state highway itself till the main diversion for bhimashankar.
It took us about 4 hours including the stop for breakfast to reach the destination.! The temple was very peaceful and there were not many people around. You need to get down about 200 steps to reach the temple. They do have a shed constructed for most of the route down the stairs and is still in progress which is, I am sure, a welcome by all the devotees. There are also people who carry a devotee down and get them on back to the parking area which is on top of a hill on their shoulders. So people who cannot get down so many steps need not worry. I am sorry I could not ask them the price. The place on the whole was very good.
We started back for Lonavala by 1245hrs and took the main highway right from the start. We took a diversion into Chakan-Talegaon road. We again stopped for lunch at the same restaurant.! We had a brief stop and started back to get onto Pune-Mumbai Expressway. We reached Lonavala by 1645. The total distance was 298 km. Overall the trip was good. Moreover this is the first mini-long trip for my DYRET with her new shoes.! :D . My parents had a great time and my father too enjoyed driving.
(I couldn't click more pictures as I never thought I would pen down a travelogue on this trip. Will make sure my next travelogues would be filled with good snaps.)