Isn't it a surprise to see a hill station in the state, which
is popularly considered, as the desert region? Situated at an
altitude of 1,220 metres above sea level, Mount Abu is the
only hill station that you can hope to see in Rajasthan. Mount
Abu is located around 264 km away from Jodhpur, the second
biggest city of Rajasthan, and 509 km away from Jaipur, the
state capital. Mount Abu is one of the most famous pilgrimage
sites of the Jains and known for its grand Dilwara Jain
Temples. Besides the temples and sites of historical
importance, Mount Abu is also rich in natural scenic beauties.
In the medieval times, Mount Abu was a part of the Chauhan
kingdom. Later it was later leased to the British by then
Maharaja of Sirohi for use as the headquarters of the resident
to Rajputana (another name for Rajasthan). Mount Abu was one
of the favorite summer destinations of the British who drove
to this hilly retreat to escape the dusty, dry heat of the
According to the folklores, Mount Abu was also the home of
many saints and sages in ancient times. According to the
legends, all the three hundred and thirty million gods and
goddesses of the Hindu pantheon used to visit this holy
mountain. This place is held in reverence by Jains since Lord
Mahavira, the 24th Jain Tirthankara (spiritual leader),
visited Mount Abu and blessed the city.
Climate: Situated 1,220 m above sea level, it
has a very comfortable climate throughout the year. And
because of this fact, Mount Abu can be visited all through the
year, though the months from February to June and September to
December are the most pleasant here. Light woollens for
winters and light cotton for summers are the recommended
clothing for Mount Abu.
Location : Mount Abu
is located around 190 km away from Udaipur in the Southern
Rajasthan. The town is well connected to most of the places in
Rajasthan and neighboring Gujarat by roads and trains. Abu
Road, the nearest railway station is located at a distance of
around 27 km from Mount Abu and connected to cities across
Best time to visit: An extensive green cover ensures a
pleasant season during spring and early winter. The best
season to visit the city though remains between October and
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Places of interest
of Mount Abu is most famous for the stunning Dilwara Jain
temples, built between the 11th and 13th century. These
intricately carved marble temples are amazing to behold-not an
inch of space has been left uncarved; almost, as if, in a
frenzy of inspiration, the artists carved and carved till they
could carve no more! Mount Abu also has a pretty lake studded
with little islets…
Of the five temples - Vimal Vasahi, Lun Vasahi, Shri Risha
Lhdeo, Shri Parshvanath and Shri Mahavir Swami, the first two
are the most famous. One estimate states that a sum of Rs. 1.2
billion was spent on Lun Vasahi itself. Two brothers -
Vastupal and Tejpal, ministers in the court of Raja
Varadnawarkar, a ruler of Gujarat, built this temple. They
belonged to Neminath Bhagwan, the 22nd Tirthankara.
Outside the main doors of this temple, there are two statues
called Devrani's and Jethani's goklas respectively, and are
backed by stories of competitive jealousy of the two wives of
these brothers. Another striking feature of the temple is the
marble dome in the porch, which is made up of a cluster of
half open lotuses, which appear to be almost transparent.
The Vimal Vasahi temple is older and is also known to be the
first Jain temple and is dedicated to the first Jain
Tirthankara. Built in 1031, by Bhim Deva, the first Solanki
ruler of Gujarat, the temple is constructed in pure marble,
with plain exteriors. However, its interiors are richly
sculpted and house some fine examples of the accomplishment of
artist in those times.
Residents of the area will tell you that a visit to Abu cannot
be complete without obtaining the blessings of Arbuda Devi,
the goddess after whom Abu is said to have been named. Arbuda
Devi is stationed some 200 steps above the road, in a series
of caves on top of a mountain. Along with Arbuda Devi are the
statues of her three attendants.
Adhar Devi Temple
The Adhar Devi temple is situated at a distance of 3 km to the
north of the city. The temple is built on a rock cleave and
one has to crouch under the rock to enter the temple. There
are 365 steps that take one to the rock on which the temple is
built. This temple dedicated to Goddess Durga is regarded as
one of the important pilgrimage sites of Mount Abu. This is
also a good site to get a panoramic view of the valley.
Gaumukh Temple is located around 8 km southwest of Mount Abu.
It is said that the temple was built on the spot where saint
Vashishth performed a yagna to create four major Rajput clans.
Next to it is the spring that is said to have emerged from the
mouth of a rock shaped like a cow's head. This site now has a
marble bull from whose mouth a stream of water flows. Nearby
are statues of Nandi, saint Vashishth, Lord Ram, and Lord
Festival in Mount Abu
Summer Festival, Mount Abu
The Summer Festival is held every year in the month of Aashadh
(June). The steep rocks, tranquil lakes, picturesque locations
and the pleasant climate of Mount Abu make it an ideal
location for the festival.
The three-day festival is a feast of folk and classical music
and a window to the tribal life and culture of Rajasthan The
festival begins with the singing of a ballad, which is
followed by Gair, Ghoomar and Daph folk dances, which enthrall
Sporting events such as the boat race on the Nakki Lake add
variety to the festival. The Sham-e-Qawwali is a much-awaited
musical extravaganza, as renowned qawwals regale the audience.
The grand finale of the festival is a display of dazzling
fireworks, which adds to the tourist's delight.