History of Shree Somnath Temple
The story of the sacred seaside temple of Somnath goes way back. Offering a blissful vibe to devotees as the ocean waves soothe you under the holy sanctum, the Somnath temple holds a divine legacy. It finds mentions in the Mahabharata, the Bhagavata Purana, as well as the Vedas. These sacred scriptures suggest the present-day Somnath as Prabhasa, a spiritual site where Lord Krishna spent his final days and where Arjuna and Balarama went on tirtha.
Historically, the site of Prabhas Patan was occupied even during the Indus Valley Civilisation. And the very first temple of Somnath is believed to have been built more than 2,000 years back. According to recorded history, in 649 AD, the temple underwent its first renovation by King Maitre. But soon, the glorious shrine caught the eye of emperors across the country and amidst foreigners. In 725, the emperor of Sindh attacked and destroyed the temple, followed by multiple attacks of loot and destruction by rulers such as Mahmud Ghazni, the Delhi Sultanate, and king Aurangzeb.
Despite a jarring history, the temple has been rebuilt seven times through centuries, each time more glorious than before. This way, the temple is a magnificent symbol of victory over destruction.
Today, the temple is visited by lakhs of devotees annually because it is worshipped as one of the 12 jyotirlingas of the world. Pilgrims pray at the holy temple and watch the sunset from its sacred grounds before making the journey back. At the temple, you can experience the light and sound show, which gives a deeper glance into the history of Somnath and the holy temple.
How to reach Somnath: The closest railway station to Somnath in Gujarat is in Veraval, 7 km away. At the same time, the nearest airport to Somnath is in Diu, 63 km away. A more convenient airport is the Rajkot Airport, 160 km away.