3 Must Visit Shiva Temples in Rudraprayag
1. Kedarnath Temple: Rudraprayag
Giriraj is situated on top of the Himalayas called Kedar, the highest Kedareshwar Jyotirlinga in the twelve Jyotirlingas of the country. Kedarnath Dham temple is surrounded by mountains on three sides. On one side it is about 22 thousand feet high and on the other hand, 21 thousand 600 feet high cost of Kutch ,and on the third side is 22 thousand 700 feet high Bharatkund.There are not only three mountains but also the convergence of five rivers – Mandakini, Madhiganga, Kshirganga, Saraswati and Swarna Gauri. Some of these rivers no longer exist today but the Alaknanda’s assistant Mandakini is still present today. On the other side of this is situated Kedareshwar Dham. It receives heavy snow in the winter and incremental pouring water in the rain.
It is the largest Shiva temple in Uttarakhand, which was built by adding huge bundles of cutlestones. These boulders are brown in color. Its shrine is relatively ancient, which is considered to be around the 80th century.
The doors of the Kedarnath temple remain closed in the winter season on the second day (Padwa) of Deepawali Mahaparv. The lamp keeps burning for 6 months. No one stays in and around the temple for 6 months, however for 6 months the lamp keeps burning and worship continues. Also it is a matter of surprise that after the opening of the kapat the temple remains clean as it being the first day of opening after half a year
2. Tungnath Temple: Rudraprayag
Tungnath Temple is located in Chamoli district of Garhwal of Uttarakhand. This temple is devoted to Lord Shiva and is situated on the Tungnath Mountains. This temple is built around the beautiful peaks of the Himalayas, and it is a center of attraction for pilgrims and tourists. This temple holds special importance for the pilgrims who mainly come for the Yatra of Chardham.
A popular belief associated with this temple is that Shiva’s heart and his arms are worshiped in this temple. In addition to that ,only a local person is designated for the worship. The temple is situated at a very high alltitude, as a result the mountains in front of this temple always remain in the snow. Compared to other four Dhams, this temple has shortage of devotees, but still, the number of those who come here with the intention of fulfilling their vows is nothing less.
Tungnath Temple is situated between Kedarnath and Badrinath Temple. This area is one of the most beautiful naturalistic creation of Garhwal Himalaya’s. In the months of January and February, the beauty of this place is mesmerizing as the area is mostly covered in snow sheet, which upturns even more in the months of July-August.
3. Koteshwar Mahadev Temple: Rudraprayag
Koteshwar Mahadev Temple is situated around three kilometers from Rudraprayag. The temple is placed at the ancient scenic spot on the banks of the Alaknanda. It is said that Lord Shiva was hiding in this cave to escape from Bhasmasur (Devil). This cave temple is surrounded by a peaceful and hypnotic atmosphere. It is believed by the historians that after the death of the Kaurawas, when Pandavas were searching Lord Shiva for seeking the blessing of salvation, Shiva was resting in meditation in this cave. Furthermore,According to another mythological belief, a monster named Bhasmasur had asked for a boon to consume anyone by just putting his hand on the head of any person from Shiva by performing austerity, After receiving the boon, the monster thought to consume Lord Shiva,so lord shiva hide in this cave. The beauty of the Alaknanda river is spiritual as well as soothing for the eyes. The beautiful rocks cutting Alaknanda in between makes the place divine. The most interesting part of this cave temple is establishment of naturally made sculptures and 108 ‘’Shivling’’ since ancient times.