This famous temple city in
Rajasthan is known as a peaceful haven for followers of Jainism. In
fact, it is one of the five most important Jain pilgrimage sites in
the country. Ranakpur is named after Rana Kumbha, who had leased a
huge amount of land to a Jain businessman for building of temples, way
back in the 15th century.
Ranakpur is renowned for its carved Jain temples in amber stone. The
main temple - covering an area of about 48,000 sq. ft., with 29 halls
and more than 1,400 distinctly-carved pillars - is a marvel of
construction. The four images of Adinath are enshrined in the main
temple called 'Chamukh', that is open on all four sides. Images of
tirthankaras are carved on the mandaps with a shikhar on top of all 24
of them. Supported by 420 columns, the three-storeyed temple has four
small shrines with 80 spires. The temple's assembly hall has two huge
bells weighing 108 kg each. When rung, the sounds of these bells
engulf the whole complex.
Parsvanath and Neminath temples face the main temple. The cravings in
the temple bear a resemblance to Khajuraho.
The complex also includes temples of Sun God and Amba Mata. The Sun
temple houses opulent cravings of solar deities and warriors on
Ranakpur Temples: The main tourist attractions of
Ranakpur are its famous temples. Situated approximately 90km from
Udaipur, the Ranakpur temple complex is a must see. The main Chaumukha
temple (Four-Faced Temple) is dedicated to Adinath, the first
tirthankar. The two other Jain temples in the complex are dedicated to
Neminath and Parasnath. There is also the Sun temple and the Amba Mata
temple near the main complex.
Sadri: Situated approximately 8 km from Ranakpur is
Sadri. The main draws of Sadri include a few magnificent temples, the
oldest of them being the Varahavtar Temple and the Chintamani
Parasvanath Temple. There is also an old dargah, Dargah of Khudabaksh
Desuri: The town of Desuri is approximately 16 km
from Ranakpur. It is famous for a number of temples. The most
remarkable ones are those dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Hanuman and
Navi Mata. There is also an old mosque here that is worth a visit.
Nearby Desuri, situated in the hills, is a temple dedicated to
Ghanerao: Ghanerao is well known for a number of
Hindu temples. The most impressive temple is that of Gajanand. The
temple houses a life-size statue of the goddesses Ridhi and Siddhi. On
the either of the statue are the images of Lord Hanuman and Bhairon
Baba. Then there is a temple of Lord Mahavira, dating back to the 10th
century. The town also has a castle, now converted into a hotel.
Narlai: Lying approximately 6 km from Ranakpur,
Narlai is situated at the base of a hill. Narlai is known for a number
of Hindu and Jain temples. One of the temples is that of Adinath, the
Jain first tirthankar. An ancient temple, it has beautiful frescoes on
the ceilings of the outer mandap. A perfect place for serene walks,
Narlai also houses a good baori (step-well).
Muchhal Mahaveer: Muchhal Mahaveer is a temple
situated in the Kumbhalgarh Sanctuary, and is approximately 5 km from
Ghanerao. The temple houses the statue of Lord Mahavira with a
moustache. Two elephant statues, superb examples of architecture,
stand as guards on the gateways of the temple. You can also take a
peek at the tribal life of Rajasthan by visiting Garasia tribal
villages situated nearby.
Ranakpur weather is that of a tropical type. The summers are quite hot
with the average temperature falling in the range of 42.0° C (max) to
22.0° C (min). The climatic conditions of Ranakpur, Rajasthan in
winters are only a little bit colder. The average temperature is
somewhere between 20.0° C (max) to 10.6° C (min). The monsoon season
does not receive much rainfall. The climate of Ranakpur experiences
annual total rainfall of around 55 cm only. The best time to visit
Ranakpur is during the period of September to March.
How to Reach Ranakpur
By Air: Udaipur is the nearest airport, about 90 Km
away. Regular flights connect Udaipur to cities like Delhi and Mumbai.
You can take buses or taxis from Udaipur.
By Road: An excellent network of roads links Udaipur
to other cities in Rajasthan and neighboring states.
By Rail: Udaipur is the nearest Railway station,
which is connected to other major cities such as Jaipur, Ajmer and