Somnath Temple: History, Timing, Best Time to Visit

Located in the state of Gujarat, India, the Somnath Temple is a revered pilgrimage site that holds immense historical and religious significance. It stands as a testament to the enduring power of faith and spirituality. This article delves into the rich heritage of the Somnath Temple, exploring its history, architecture, festivals, and its impact on tourism.

Historical Background of Somnath Temple

The roots of the Somnath Temple can be traced back to ancient times. It has witnessed the rise and fall of empires, the plundering by invaders, and the resilience of its devotees. The temple has been reconstructed multiple times, each restoration symbolizing the indomitable spirit of the people.

Significance and Importance of Somnath Temple

The Somnath Temple holds great significance for devotees of Lord Shiva. It is believed to be one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, which are considered the holiest abodes of Lord Shiva. Devotees visit the temple to seek blessings, find spiritual solace, and experience a deep connection with the divine.

Architecture and Design of the Temple

The architecture of the Somnath Temple is a marvel to behold. It showcases a fusion of various architectural styles, including Chalukya, Rajput, and Solanki. The temple complex comprises multiple awe-inspiring structures, such as the main shrine, the Nandi mandapa, and the Sabha mandapa, each displaying intricate carvings and exquisite craftsmanship.

Somnath Temple Timing

Somnath Temple Timing
Monday to Sunday:
Morning: 6:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Legends and Myths Associated with Somnath Temple

The history of the Somnath Temple is steeped in legends and myths. From the mythological tale of Lord Krishna’s divine connection to the temple to the stories of its destruction and subsequent resurrection, these narratives add a mystical aura to the sanctum.

Festivals and Celebrations at Somnath Temple

The Somnath Temple comes alive with vibrant festivities and celebrations throughout the year. The Maha Shivaratri festival, Navratri, and Kartik Purnima are some of the prominent occasions when devotees flock to the temple, immersing themselves in devotional fervor and revelry.

How to Reach Somnath Temple

Reaching the Somnath Temple is convenient, and visitors have multiple options to choose from. Here are some ways to reach the temple:

By Air: The nearest airport to Somnath Temple is the Diu Airport, located approximately 90 kilometers away. From the airport, one can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach the temple.

By Train: Veraval Railway Station is the closest railway station to Somnath Temple, situated just 7 kilometers away. Trains from major cities like Ahmedabad, Mumbai, and Delhi connect to Veraval. From the railway station, one can hire a taxi or take an auto-rickshaw to reach the temple.

By Road: Somnath Temple is well-connected by roads, and there are regular bus services from various cities in Gujarat. Visitors can also hire a taxi or opt for self-drive options to reach the temple. National Highway 8D connects Somnath to other major cities in the region.

By Ferry: For a unique experience, visitors can also reach Somnath Temple via the sea route. Ferry services are available from Mumbai and other coastal cities to the nearby port of Veraval. From Veraval, one can easily reach the temple by road.

Accommodation and Facilities for Visitors

To cater to the needs of the multitude of pilgrims and tourists, a range of accommodation options is available in the vicinity of the Somnath Temple. From budget guesthouses to luxury hotels, visitors can find suitable lodging to make their stay comfortable. The temple authorities have also developed facilities such as food stalls, restrooms, and prayer halls for the convenience of visitors.

Preservation and Restoration Efforts

Over the centuries, the Somnath Temple has faced numerous challenges, including destruction by foreign invaders. However, it has risen like a phoenix from the ashes, thanks to the continuous efforts of devotees, philanthropists, and the Government of India. Various restoration projects have been undertaken to preserve the temple’s grandeur and heritage.

Somnath Temple Photos

Somnath Temple
Somnath Temple

Impact of Somnath Temple on Tourism

The Somnath Temple has emerged as a major tourist attraction, drawing both domestic and international visitors. Its historical significance, architectural brilliance, and spiritual ambiance make it a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a deeper understanding of India’s cultural and religious heritage.

Spiritual and Cultural Experiences at Somnath Temple

A visit to the Somnath Temple offers a transformative experience for devotees and tourists alike. The soul-stirring chants, the aroma of incense, and the sight of devotees immersed in prayer create an atmosphere of devotion and tranquility. Visitors can also explore the surrounding area, which is home to other notable landmarks and scenic spots.

Famous Personalities Associated with Somnath Temple

The Somnath Temple has attracted the attention of numerous famous personalities throughout history. From ancient rulers and spiritual leaders to modern-day politicians and celebrities, many have been captivated by the temple’s allure. Their visits and contributions have further enhanced the temple’s reputation and legacy.

The Future of Somnath Temple

As time progresses, the Somnath Temple continues to inspire and captivate generations. Efforts are being made to enhance visitor experiences, promote sustainable tourism, and ensure the temple’s preservation for future generations. The future of the Somnath Temple looks promising, with plans to further showcase its cultural heritage and promote spiritual tourism.

Nearest Places to Visit

There are several nearby attractions that visitors can explore while visiting the Somnath Temple. Here are some of the nearest places to visit:

Triveni Sangam: Located just a few kilometers away from the Somnath Temple, Triveni Sangam is the confluence of three holy rivers: Hiran, Kapila, and Saraswati. It is considered a sacred spot for taking a holy dip and offering prayers.

Bhalka Tirth: Situated around 4 kilometers from the Somnath Temple, Bhalka Tirth is believed to be the place where Lord Krishna was accidentally wounded by an arrow. It has a temple dedicated to Lord Krishna and is a significant pilgrimage site for devotees.

Gita Mandir: Located within the premises of the Somnath Temple complex, Gita Mandir is a temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. It houses a marble statue of Lord Krishna delivering the Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna, attracting devotees and tourists alike.

Junagadh: Around 80 kilometers from Somnath, Junagadh is a historic city with several attractions. The Uparkot Fort, Mahabat Maqbara, and Girnar Hill are popular places to visit in Junagadh. The Girnar Hill also offers a challenging trek for adventure enthusiasts.

Diu: Situated approximately 90 kilometers from Somnath, Diu is a serene coastal town known for its beautiful beaches and colonial charm. Visitors can explore attractions such as Diu Fort, Naida Caves, and Ghoghla Beach, and enjoy water sports activities.

Porbandar: Located around 120 kilometers from Somnath, Porbandar is the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi. The Kirti Mandir, the ancestral home of Mahatma Gandhi, and Sudama Mandir, dedicated to Lord Krishna’s childhood friend Sudama, are popular tourist spots in Porbandar.

Gir National Park: Situated approximately 50 kilometers from Somnath, Gir National Park is renowned for being the last abode of the Asiatic lions. Visitors can embark on a thrilling safari to spot these majestic creatures in their natural habitat.


The Somnath Temple stands as a symbol of unwavering faith and cultural heritage. Its historical significance, architectural splendor, and spiritual ambiance make it a cherished destination for millions of devotees and tourists. A visit to this ancient marvel provides an opportunity to immerse oneself in the rich tapestry of Indian spirituality and experience a profound sense of peace and divinity.


Is photography allowed inside the Somnath Temple?

Yes, photography is allowed inside the temple complex. However, it is advisable to be respectful and refrain from using flash or disturbing other visitors.

Are there any specific dress code requirements to enter the temple?

While there is no strict dress code, it is recommended to dress modestly and respectfully, covering shoulders and legs.

Can non-Hindus visit the Somnath Temple?

Yes, the temple is open to people of all religions. Visitors from any faith can visit the temple and experience its serene ambiance.

Are there any accommodation options available within the temple complex?

No, there are no accommodation options within the temple complex. However, there are several hotels and guesthouses available nearby for visitors to stay.

Is there an entry fee to visit the Somnath Temple?

No, there is no entry fee to visit the Somnath Temple. However, donations are accepted for the maintenance and upkeep of the temple.

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