The tranquil pilgrimage town of the Jains renowned for some marvellously carved Jain temples in amber stone, Ranakpur is one of the five holy places of the Jain community. 60-km from Udaipur; these temples were built in the 15th century AD during the reign of Rana Kumbha and are enclosed within a wall. The central ‘Chaumukha’ or four-faced temple is dedicated to the venerated Tirthankara Rishabhji. Open on all four sides, it enshrines the four-faced image of Adinath. The temple is an astounding creation with 29 halls and 1,444 pillars – all distinctly carved.
Images of 24 tirthankaras are carved on the ‘mandaps’ or porticos in a corridor around the shrine with each ‘mandap’ having a spire adorned with little bells on the top. The gentle breeze wafting through the corridors move the bells creating celestial music all around the complex. Rising in three storeys, the temple has four small shrines with 80 spires supported by 420 columns.
Two temples, dedicated to the Jain saints – Parsvanath and Neminath, face the main temple. The temples have beautiful carvings similar to that of Khajuraho. Another temple worth visiting the nearby Sun Temple, an 8th century AD temple dedicated to the Sun god. The temple has polygonal walls, richly embellished with carvings of warriors, horses and solar deities riding splendid chariots.
Prime Attractions of Ranakpur
Ghanerao abounds in Jain and Hindu temples. Most notable is the temple of Gajanand with a life-size statue of the goddesses Ridhi and Sidhi. The statue is guarded by Hanuman and Bhairon on either side.
These beautiful Jain temples are fine examples of temple architecture. Kankroli Rajsamand, located nearby are known for their scenic beauty.
Excursions from Ranakpur
Kumbhalgarh Fort (16Km.)
Kumbhalgarh Fort was built by Maharana Kumbha in the 15th century. Perched on the Aravallis, this is the second most important fort in Rajasthan after the Chittaurgarh Fort. Nearby is the Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary.
Three Jain temples, dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Hanuman and Navi Mata are among some noteworthy temples at Desuri. A temple dedicated to Parsurama Mahadeo, nestled in the hills, is also closeby. It is situated in the Kumbhalgarh tehsil of Rajsamand.
The railhead for Ranakpur Falna has some beautiful temples too.
How To Get There – Ranakpur
Udaipur 80-kms away is the nearest airport.
Falna 35-kms is the nearest railhead on the Delhi-Ahmedabad sector.
A network of bus services joins Ranakpur with many nearby places.
Places To Stay – Ranakpur
RTDC Hotel Shilpi and Dharamshalas at Ranakpur provide comfortable accommodations for tourists.