Somnath, the First among twelve Jyotirlinga dedicated to Lord Shiva, is a beautiful destination of Hindu’s beliefs located at western coasts of Gujrat, India. Somnath is epitome of perseverance as it resurrected from destruction and invasion atleast 17 times. During Dec’17, I visited this artistic temple which was reconstructed in 1951 based on Chaulukya architecture. Not just that, the entire Prabhas Patan area is blessed with diverse ancient places of significant historical and religious faiths.
I, with my group started my trail to Somnath after a thrilling Lion Safari at Gir National Park which is just 30 miles from Somnath. We started from Gir at noon towards Somnath, which can be traversed easily in 1-1.5 hour through Shared Transport available such as buses or Autos, we got the latter one as frequency of buses is limited. This road has some rough patches and pass through few villages, but entire route is hushed and can be smoothly covered on personal car or hired taxi as well.
The plan was to start our trail in Somnath with a plunge into the Triveni Sangam where Hiran, Kapil and Saraswati rivers meet with Arabian Sea. But as soon as we looked in water, it didn’t feel like dunking into water as it was mucky probably due to cremation rituals which were being performed nearby. Hence we decided to move directly to our Hotel which we had already booked online. There are plenty of hotels available at pretty reasonable prices, the one we booked was in proximity to Somnath Railway Station.
After freshening up it was time to begin the trail with Bhalka Tirth which was just 3 miles from our hotel. So we hired an auto to guide and take us through all major places of interest. The route was scenic with Arabian sea on one side.
Bhalka Tirth is a prominent place of Hindus since at this place Shri Krishna got fatally wounded when a huntsman Jara pierced an arrow through His feet as he misapprehend him to be a deer. Lord Shri Krishna, however pardoned the poacher and made his sacred journey to Neejdham from Dehotsarg near Triveni Sangam, here footprints of Shri Krishna are also carved.
A temple was later built to mark this holy place which is also known as Mahaprabhuji’s Bethak. Then we moved 2.5 miles towards sea-shore from where huntsman Jara supposedly aimed at Shri Krishna. Another temple dedicated to bhagwan Shashibhushan with Bhidbhanjan Ganpatiji was later established here.