Gujarat is deemed a sacred destination by travellers of various communities. Not only that, but it is also rapidly becoming a centre for spiritual tourism with an inflow of nearly one crore pilgrims every year stepping foot within its borders to offer their prayers at some of the holiest, most popular pilgrim tour destinations in the state. Listed below are some of the well-known and not-so-well-known pilgrim sites and temples in Gujarat.
Institute of Indology, Ahmedabad
The Institute of Indology was designed to house ancient manuscripts, a research centre and eventually, a museum.
Tadhavaj Hill, Bhavnagar & Talaja
The hills are carved out into Buddhist caves or monasteries and were built thousands of years ago.
Uparkot caves, also Uperkot caves, are ancient man-made caverns. The caves are a part of the Junagadh Buddhist Cave Groups situated in the eastern part of Junagadh.
Ashoka’s Edicts, Junagadh
A major part of Junagadh’s Buddhist heritage are the stone edicts of Emperor Ashoka. These inscriptions are considered as the most important among the many edicts of Ashoka and among the must-visit historical places in Junagadh.
Khambalida is where Buddhism made a deep impact around the 4th century. Intricate sculptures of Boddhisatvas, Avalokiteshvara and Vajrapani flank the entrance of these limestone caves.
Devni Mori, near Shamlaji
Devni Mori is a Buddhist archaeological site that has yielded Buddhist artefacts dated prior to the 8th-century, mixed Buddhist and Hindu artwork from the Gurjara-Pratihara period.
Taranga Caves, Mehsana
Taranga Hills, 20 km from Vadnagar, on the Aravali range, harbours profound connections with Buddhism. The main idols enshrined in the Taranmata and Dharanmata temples are of Buddhist goddess Tara. It also has Buddhist sculptures carved in stone.
Takhteshwar Temple, Bhavnagar
Dedicated to Lord Shiva and constructed in the year 1893 by Maharaja Takhatsihnji, Takhteshwar Temple is a well-known temple located on a hillock in Bhavnagar.
Kirti Mandir, Porbandar
Kirti Mandir is a memorial temple built in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi and his wife and it is located in the city of Porbandar.
Narayan Sarovar, Northwest Kutch
Narayan Sarovar or Narayansar is a village and place of pilgrimage for Hindus on the Kori Creek. The ancient Koteshwar temple lies only 4 km away.
Surya Mandir, Somnath
One of the oldest sun temples in India and believed to be the first among the twelve Jyotirlinga shrines of Shiva, it is an important pilgrimage and tourist spot of Gujarat.
IKSCON Gate and Temple, Dwarka
ISKCON Temple in Dwarka offers spiritual and cultural preaching to enhance the social living of the followers of ISKCON.
Shrine of Meerabai, Dwarka
Dedicated to Meerabai, a staunch devotee of Lord Shree Krishna, this little temple is where Meerabai concluded her pilgrimage after journeying to almost all parts of North India.
Dwarkadhish Temple, Dwarka
The Dwarkadhish temple, also known as the Jagat Mandir, is a Hindu temple dedicated to the Lord Shree Krishna, who is worshipped here by the name Dwarkadhish, or ‘King of Dwarka’.
Ranchhodrai Dakor Temple, Dakor
Dakor was once famous for the Danknath temple, a place of Shiva worship. It later developed into a Vaishnavite centre with the growing fame of Ranchhodraiji temple, which was built in 1772 CE. Today this place is known not only as a pilgrimage centre but also a trading centre where one can get articles related to puja, and other rituals.
The Gop temple is a Sun temple located at Zinavari village in Jamjodhpur Taluka of Jamnagar district. The Hindu temple is dated to the 6th century and is one of the earliest surviving stone temples in Gujarat.
Bhalka Tirtha & Dehotsarg near Somnath
Bhalka Tirtha is the place where Krishna was killed by an arrow shot by a hunter named Jara, after which he worshipped Shiva, an act referred to in the Puranas as Shri Krishna Nijdham Prasthan Leela. Dehtosarg Tirth is where the footprint of Lord Shree Krishna is carved to mark his divine memory.
Hatkeshwar Temple, Vadnagar
Hatkeshwar Mahadev is an ancient and historical temple said to be around 1800 years old.
Nageshwar Mahadev, Saputara
Nageshwar Mahadev is a Lord Shiva temple in Saputara and it is visited by tourists and believers over an evening stroll.
Gomati Ghat Temples, Dwarka
At Dwarka city, there is the holy Gomati Ghat where there are many temples including the Gomati Mataji temple.
Swaminarayan Temple, Ahmedabad
Shree Swaminarayan Mandir is the first temple of the Swaminarayan Sampraday, a Hindu sect, built on the instructions of the sect’s founder, Swaminarayan.
Angar Pir, Palitana
This dargah is dedicated to a Sufi saint, Angar Pir, who is known to have saved the temple complex from the clutches of the ruler Alauddin Khilji.
Mosques of Champaner, Champaner-Pavagadh
Bohra Hajira, Jamnagar
Also known as Mazar E Badri, it is one of the holiest of its kinds in entire Gujarat and among the important religious places to visit in Jamnagar.
Marjan Shami Roza, Surat
The burial chamber of the former Governor of Surat, Khwaja Safar Sulemanim. This tomb was built by his son in 1540 and its construction was influenced by Persian architecture.
Hasan Pir Saheb Dargah
Muslims consider this a holy and sacred place where their wishes come true.
Hutheesing Jain Temple, Ahmedabad
A sacred Jain place of worship and an architectural gem of the city, Hutheesing Jain Temple draws a huge crowd owing to its divinity and serenity.
Temples at Taranga Hills
Shri Panchasara Derasar, Patan
Shri Panchasara Jain Derasar is one of the largest and oldest Jain temples of Patan, built in the 7th century by King Vanrajsinh Chavda. This Jain derasar is one of most visited and significant in Jain community where Hemchandracharya Jain Gyan Mandir contains valuable Jain manuscripts and some of which written in gold ink.
PARSI AGIYARI & TEMPLES
Parsi Agiyari, Surat
Surat has a few numbers of Parsi Fire Temples. Amongst those, the Parsi Agiyari is the main temple. The sacred flame is always burning in this temple and no non-Parsi is allowed inside this temple.
Bhidbhanjan Temple and Parsi Agiyari, Jamnagar
This is the old fire temple and place of worship for the Parsi/Irani Zoroastrian community with a prayer hall built in 1931 and spread across 48000 square feet of land.
Lakhpat, Northwest Kutch
Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism, is said to have camped here on his journey to Mecca and the site later became a Gurudwara.
Gurudwara at Beyt Dwarka
(source and credit: Gujarattourism, Google, Wikipedia, Native Planet)