Title: Your Travel Guide to 5 Jyotirlingas in Maharashtra

The Story of Jyotirlingas

According to Shiva Purana, Brahma, The God of Creation and Vishnu, The form of God during Preservation had caught in the fight over supremacy of creation. To settle the issue, The Supreme God, Shiva pierced the three world appearing in the form of huge infinite light- the Jyotirlingas, which cooled down to form Holy Mountain Annamalai. Brahma and Vishu both went in the direction of light to find it. Brahma lied that he found the light while Vishnu accepted his defeat. Raged with anger Lord Shiva cursed Brahma that even though he is God of Creation he will not be worshipped because of his lie. The Jyotirlinga is the form of The Supreme God Shiva.Filled with many devotional mythological stories, India has 64 Jyotirlingas created by the Supreme God Shiva himself, out of which 12 Jyotirlingas are of utmost importance. Jyoti which means light or radiance while Linga means the image of Lord Shiva which together makes Jyotirlingas are considered to be the most auspicious and holy. Each Jyotirlinga signifies the different manifestation of Lord Shiva. Many people around the world travel to Jyotirlingas to witness the creation of Lord Shiva and take blessings. 5 out of 12 Jyotirlingas are situated in Maharashtra each, named after the presiding deity. Read below to know which are those 5 Jyotirlingas in Maharashtra to plan your travel soon.

1. Bhimashankar Jyotirlinga

Situated on the hills of Sahyadri, Bhimashankar is an ancient shrine and one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Shiva. Bhimashankar which is also considered to be the source of river Bhima flows southeast and merges with the Krishna River. The temple is situated in the midst of gorgeous location and if you love trekking you will definitely love to experience it here. The temple also holds a significance in history as the great Maratha Ruler, Shivaji is said to have made endowments to the temple for worship and services.The temple gives you a very aesthetic feel with its structure and installations like a unique bell with the idol of Mother Mary and Jesus can be seen. Although it has a very
brave history, the bell was gifted by Chimaji Appa after he won the war against Portuguese. He collected five large bells and offered one at Bhimashankar. Considered as Pilgrim’s Paradise, Bhimashankar Temple is surrounded by Buddha style carvings of Amba- Ambika, Bhootling, and Bhimashankar in the hills of Manmaad near Bhimshankar at the height of 1034 meters.
Here you can also see Hanuman Lake, Gupt Bhimashankar, Origin of River Bhima, NāgPhani, Bombay Point, and Sakshi Vinayak.
Why the name Bhimashankar?

An evil asura named as Bhima with his mother Karkati lived in the dense forest of Sahaydris.Everyone feared Bhima and none dared to withstand him but Bhima had a lot of questions in his mind about his existence. One day he could not sustain his agony and curiosity and he asked his mother Karkati about his father and why have he abandoned them in the forest.After a lot of hesitation, Karkati revealed the truth to Bhima and at his surprise, he discovered that he was the son of the mightly Kumbhkaran and the younger brother of the powerful Lanka King Ravan. She then explained to him that Lord Vishnu incarnation of Lord Rama killed his husband and her father in the great war. Filled with the rage of anger Bhima decide to revenge Lord Vishnu. Bhima starts to please Brahma. Impressed with his sacrifice Brahma
gives him power. Bhima misuses the power and takes over heaven by defeating Lord Indra.He troubled a lot of saints as well. After all the complaints received to Lord Shiva by Gods and Saints, Lord Shiva decides to defeat him. As soon as Bhima raise his sword on Kamarupeshwara, Lord Shiva appears and attack him back. All the gods and saints present there requested Lord Shiva to name the linga on his name and so the linga is known asBhimashankar Jyotirlinga.

2. Trimbakeshwar Jyotirlinga

Considered to be a marvelous example of Vastu Shastra, Trimbakeshwar is a Hindu Temple located in Trimbak town. It is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas. Trimbakeshwar temple was built by Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao. The sacred pond, known as Kusavarta is located inside the premises of the temple which is an origin to Godavari River. It is one of the longest peninsula rivers in India. The temple is situated between three hills which are Brahmagiri, Nilgiri and
Kalagiri. The very unique feature of this Jyotilingas is that it has three lingas or images-Rudra, Vishnu, and Brahma. But it has been noticed that the lingas are eroding due to excessive water. Many believe that the erosion of lingas is a sign of eroding nature of human society. On every Monday a crown is displayed on the linga to honor his creation. This crown is said to be in existence from Pandava age. The crown is made from very precious
elements like gold, diamond, emeralds, and valuable stones. The temple has mages of many other deities as well, some of them are Gangadevi, Jaleswara, Rameswara, Gautameswara,Kedarnath, Rama, Krishna, Parasurama and Lakshmi Narayana. The location of the temple is completely in between green lush which spread its beauty charm during monsoon season.
Here you can visit Sundarnarayan Temple, Anjeri Hills, Ramkund, Ganga Ghat, Kalaram Temple, Sita Gumpha, Jain Mandir, Shubham Water World, Kapileshwara Temple and Saptashrungi.
Story of Trimbakeshwar Temple
There are two different stories that narrate about Trimbakeshwar Temple. One story is considered from Padma Puran which narrates that after churning the ocean, Gods took the immortal nectar from the demon by fooling them. When demons came to know about it they fought with Gods for AmritKhumba. It is believed that while in the process drops of the Amrit fell at four places- Haridwar, Prayag, Ujjain, and Trimbakeshwar. Since then Tribamkeshwar
is considered to be the holiest place and in every 12 years, Kumbha Mela is organized here.The second story narrates that, There was a drought in the area of Brahmagiri Mountain for 24 years. To rescue people, sage Gautam who lived in the area tried to please Lord Varun-God of Rain and the sage got successful. Lord Varun blessed him with heavy rain in the area. After seeing this, other sages got jealous and sent a cow to destroy his granary. When
the cow entered his granary, sage Gautam saw that she was injured and died. All the sages charged him for the sin of killing a cow. Sage Gautam pleased Lord Shiva who in turn asked Ganga to go in his place. Both Ganga and Sage Gautam prayed very hard to Lord Shiva to come here with Parvati and stay with them. Lord Shiva got pleased with the pray and settled there. Ganga appeared here in the form of River Godavari. It is said that anyone who visits
here, his all sins get washed away.

3. Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga

Known as the last in twelve Jyotirlingas, Grishneshwar temple is located in Ellora.Grishneshwar is a Shiva shrine which means Lord of Compassion. The temple is known with several names which include Kusumeswara, Ghushmeswara, Grushmeswara,Dhushmeshwar, etc. The temple holds a historic significance as it was destroyed and construction several times in the past. During Hindu- Muslim wars of the 13th and 14th century the temple was destroyed by Delhi Sultanate, which got constructed and again destructed during Mughal-Maratha conflict. In the 18th century, Rani Ahalyabai of Indore
sponsored money to built the current structure of the temple. The temple’s architecture is more or less similar to the South Indian temples. The temple is made of red rocks and five-tier shikara.
Here you can visit Mughal Silk Bazaar, Ellora Caves, Bhadra Maruti, Daulatabad Fort,Tomb of Mallik Ambar, Tomb of Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb and Chini Mahal.
Why the name Grishneshwar?
According to many mythology beliefs, one day Parvati was mixing vermilion and turmeric (kumkum-haldi) with water to apply on her hair. She kept them in the left palm and added Shivalay water to it. As soon as she started mixing it with her right thumb, Shiv appeared on her hand in the form of light on her palm. The light converted into linga which she named as Grishnehwar. As Grishna, stands for friction.Along with this, there exists one more story which narrates that, in the southern direction, on the mountain named Devagiri lived a Brahmin called Brahmavetta Sudharm along with his wife Sudeha. The only sad part of their lives as they were childless, even after doing so
much of pray, they failed to have a child. In frustration, Sudheha got her sister Ghushma married to her husband. Ghushma was a very devotional lady. She used to make 101 linga,worship them and discharge them in the lake. With the blessing of Lord Shiva, Ghushma got blessed with a child but her sister was jealous of her. So Sudeha killed her child and discharge its body in the same lake. Ghushma was not inches affected by it she continued
making 101 linga, worshipped them and discharge them in the lake. At her surprise, when she discharged the lingas she saw her child coming back. Lord Shiva appeared before her as he was pleased with her devotion. Ghumsha told Lord Shiva to forgive Sudeha. Lord Shiva asked Ghushma for a boon and she told that if he was happy with her devotion, then he should reside here in the form of Jyotirlinga and may the linga be known by her name. So this is how the place came to be known as Ghushmeshwar and the lake was known as
Shivalaya.

4. Parli Vaijanath Jyotirlinga

Located in the ancient village, Parali, Parli Vaijnath has gained a lot of attraction of devotional groups/individuals and tourists as it one of the twelve Jyotirlingas. The temple is built with stones on height. The temple is guarded with four strong walls. In the premises of the temple, it consists of corridors and courtyards. The entrance of the temple is marked with a huge pillar. The main gate which is also known as Mahadwar has a window on it. Everyday
special prayers are conducted for Sun God, based on the sunrays falling through these windows, directly on the lingamurthy. The temple is made up of Shaligram Stone. There are lights always lit up on all the four sides of the temple. The temple holds a lot of devotional and mythological stories. It is believed that the story of Satyavan and Savitri is based from Parli. The temple is not only celebrated by the Shiva devotees but is also the place where
Lord Krishna’s festivals are also celebrated with a lot of zeal and devotion. A very unique practice is seen at Vaijanath. On big occasions of Chaitra Padva, Vijayadashami, Tripuri Pournima, Maha Shivaratri and Vaikunth Chaturdashi, a huge celebration is organized. On this day, Mahadev is offered with Tulsi while Vishnu is offered with Bel leaves.
The famous story of Satyavan and Savitri
Savitri was a very beautiful and rich daughter of a king. Savitri was known for her beauty but she refused many marriage proposals. She wanted to marry the guy of her own choice so she left home in search of husband and king sent the best warrior to protect her. While searching she reached a dense forest where she saw a king who has lost his throne and was in very bad condition. He was blind and old, living with his wife and son. Savitri drew her attention towards his son on how he is taking care of his family fell in love with him. He was
very handsome and chopped wood and sold it to take care of his parents. Savitri knew her search is over as she saw this boy called Satyavan. As soon as Savitri’s father knew about this he refused at first but Savitri stood firm on her decision to marry Satyavan. Once the sage even informed King that Satyavan may die within a year but Savitri did not change her decision. They both got married and lived a happy life for a year. On the last day of the year,
when Satyavan went to cut the wood in forest Savitri requested him to take her along. While cutting woods Satyavan felt very tired and lay his head on Savitri’s lap and suddenly the whole forest turned dark. Yamraj- The God of Death has entered to take Satyavan away.When Yama was about to leave Savitri went behind him and pleased him to not take Satyavan. But Yama refused but he lends her one wish except his life. Savitri asks for
children and Yama agrees to it but Savitri tells him she cannot have children without her husband and Yama had to give Satyan back to her. It is believed that this story is origin from Parli Vaijanath.

5. Aunda Nagnath Jyotirlinga

Situated in Hingoli district of Maharashtra, Aunda Nagnath Jyotirlinga is eight among the twelve Jyotirlingas. The temple is believed to be in existence from the time of Mahabharata and is said to be upgraded by Yudhishthira, eldest in Pandavas. The temple has a very beautiful architecture in Hemadpnati Style. Carving of sculptures is done on the wall of the temple. These carvings on the wall narrate you the mythological stories. Many great saint’s names are also associated with the temple. It is said that Sikh Guru, Guru Nanak has also
visited the temple during his religious tour. The very unique feature of this temple is unlike other temples, Nandi statue is located behind the shrine.
The Story of Poet-Saint Namdev As per the narrators, Namdev visited the temple in search of a Guru. When Navdev goes in search of a Guru in the temple he finds saint Visoba inside the sanctum with his feet on the
Shiva Lingam. Filled with rage, Namdev asks saint Visoba to set off his feet but in reply, saint Visoba asked Namdev to step his feet anywhere else. When Navdev started stepping he could see lingam appearing at the places wherever he steps on. He later discovered that saint Visoba did this to him with his yogic power and made saint Visoba his Guru. By treating this with Namdev, saint Visoba wanted him to understand that God is Omnipresent.
Other than these five Jyotirlingas there are more eight which includes Somnath, Mallikarjuna Swami,Mahakaleshwar, Omkareshwar, Kedarnath, Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Nageshwara, Baidyanath Temple and Rameshwar which are holy and important.Everyone at some point in their life would want to know the existence of these stories.

Many in groups or individuals travel to these places in search of the divine. It is completely from person to person to think about such mythological stories. Many love to travel such places to explore or to try some different experience from regular days. Many may travel to such places for their wishes to come true. The best to experience Jyotirlingas is by traveling to the location. Now when you know most about 5 Jyotirlingas present in Maharashtra you can plan your devotional trip to these places.Hope this article turns out to be a great help for your travel experiences to Jyotirlingas.

Detailed Itinerary

Day-1

Day-1 Pick up From Mumbai Travel to Shirdi via Trimabakeshwar. Evening Darshan at Shirdi Travel to Shirdi via Trimbakeshwar. Trimbakeshwar is one of th the 12 Jyotirlinga Temples of Lord Shiva in India and Shirdi one of the most visited pilgrimages in India visited for the Shirdi Saibaba Temple. Evening Darshan at Shirdi. (Total travel – 300 kms)

Day-2

Day-2 Travel to Nanded via Grieshneshwar and Aundha Nagnath Temple. Evening visit to the Hazur Sahib Gurdwara. Travel to Nanded via Grishneshwar and Aundha Nagnath Temple (Total Travel 400 kms – 7.5 hours). Grishneshwar and Aundha Nagnath Temples are one of the 12 Jyotirlinga Temples of Lord Shiva. Evening visit to the Hazur Sahib Gurdwara.

Day-3

Day-3 Travel to Ahmednagar via Parli Baidyanath Temple and Shani Shinganapur.  Travel to Ahmednagar via Parli Vaijnath Temple (390 kms – 7.5 hours). Enroute visit Parli Baidyanath temple (Also referred to as Parli Vaijnath temple and believed by many as one of the 12 Jyotirlinga temple) and and Shani Shinganapur.

Day-4

Day-4 Travel to Bhimashankar before departure Travel to Bhimashankar (180 kms – 4.5 hours) to visit the Jyotirlinga Temple. Depart to Mumbai (220 kms) / Pune (100 kms).

05 Jyotirlinga –  Mumbai – Shirdi(1) – Nanded(1) – Ahmednagar(1) – Mumbai

Rates Valid Till 30th March 2019 except 5-15 Nov 2018 & 20th Dec – 05th Jan 2019

Below Rates Are Net & Non Commissionable

Per Person Cost:-Travelling + Staying + Breakfast (CP)

Hotel Used

Destinations Standard Deluxe Premium
Shirdi Shraddha Saburi/Sai Empire Shraddha Inn/Daiwik Keys Temple Tree/ Sarovar
Nanded Hotel City Pride Nanded
Ahmednagar Hotel Iris Premier

Per Person Rates

Pax Standard Deluxe Premium
02 Pax 19200 19750 21000
04 Pax 14000 14575 15695
06 Pax 11100 12165 13540
10 Pax 10800 11650 12625
Extra Bed 5100 5650 6645

Package Includes

1 Nights Accommodation in Shirdi

1 Nights Accommodation in Nanded

1 Nights Accommodation in Ahmednagar

Meal on CPAI basis (Breakfast).

All sightseeing as per the tour itinerary as disposal basis.

Pick up & Drop Ex – Mumbai/Pune

All transfers & Sightseeing by A/c Indigo Car / Swift Dezire Car for 4 Pax | Innova for 6 pax |Tempo above 6 Pax

All toll tax, parking charges, driver charges, fuel cost inclusive

All Taxes Include

Package Does NOT Include

Any Kind of Personal Expenses or Optional Tours / Extra Meals Ordered

Lunch & Dinner.

Anything not specifically mentioned under the head “Prices included”.

Tips, Insurance, Laundry, Phone Calls.

Any Kind of Drinks (Alcoholic, Mineral, Aerated)

Entrance fees for any monument.

Distances

Mumbai to Shirdi -240 kms (5 hrs)

Shirdi to Nanded -400 kms (8.5 hrs)

Nanded to Ahmednagar -315 kms (6.5 hrs)

Ahmednagar to Mumbai -253 kms (4.5 hrs)