Never knew a place called Ranakpur existed until we made our trip to Rajasthan. We would have missed a beautiful experience, if not for the enthusiasm of our driver to take us to this awesome place as we drove from Jodhpur to Udaipur.
It was noon when we stopped at Ranakpur, an unassuming village situated in Pali district of Rajasthan. Lunch as Prasad is served till 2:00 P.M. We bought the coupons for the lunch and had a delicious yet simple Jain lunch.
Ranakpur is situated at the foothill of Madri hills and on the banks of ‘Magai’ river in Pali district surrounded by the picturesque Aravalli hill ranges. Ranakpur is famous for the Jain temple built in white marble and an ancient Sun temple.
The temple is dedicated to the first Jain thirthantkara Lord Adinatha. The temple was built in the 14th century by the architect Deepaka on behalf of Dharanka a Jain devotee during the regin of Rana Kumbha.
The majestic and colossal four faced marble temple is three storied and 102 feet in height. The temple sprawls over 480000 square feet. The construction of the temple took 50 years to complete.
The temple seems to reach the skies with huge domes, towers/shikhara, turrets and cupolas. The carved pillars are exquisite, intricate and beautiful. No two pillars are same. You can imagine how big the temple is when you read the information in the table below.
|Carved Marble Pillars||1444|
|Idols of Gods and Demi Gods||84|
Our guide in the temple pointed and showed an amazing single marble rock carving, where there are 108 heads of snakes and numerous tails. You cannot find the end of the tails.
The subsidiary shrines are dedicated to Lord ‘Parshwanath’,’Neminath’ and ‘Surya Narayan’.
There are attractively carved nymphs playing the flute in various dance postures at a height of 45 feet. Another interesting sight is tge two big bells weighing 108 kgs hanging in the assembly hall.
Jain Sun Temple which is 300 meters to the side of the main marble temple is older than the marble temple. It has many-sided walls with impressive carvings of warriors, horses and chariots.
The other activities that you can indulge in Ranakpur are trekking, wild life spotting at Joba Wolf Point (7km) and Choti Odhi (8 km). Best time to visit is from October to February.
Type of Place: Ancient Jain temple
Situated: Pali District, Rajasthan
Distance: Falna 28km; Udaipur 80km; Jodhpur 150km; Jaipur 370 km
Transport: Well connected by road
Facilities: Resorts, hotels and rest room s are available