Shankaracharya Temple

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India >> Jammu & Kashmir >> Srinagar >> Attractions >> Shankaracharya Temple

Shankaracharya Temple

History

Overlooking the beautiful town of Srinagar, the ancient shrine, Shankaracharya Temple is located at a height of 1100 feet on the hill known as Takht-I-Sulaiman. The scared site offers splendid views of the valley and the snow covered mountains of the Pir Panjal range. Also known as the Jyesteshwara temple the Shankaracharya temple is known to be built by Raja Gopadatya in 371 BC who named it as Gopadri.

The great philosopher Shankaracharya stayed here during his visit to Kashmir to revive Sanatan Dharma, after which this temple was renamed after his name. The Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is believed to be the oldest shrine in the Kashmir valley.

The shrine has a circular cell that provides a wonderful view of the valley below. The inner chamber of the Shankaracharya temple after being renovated was covered with a modern ceiling. The inner sanctum with the modern ceiling showcases many Persian inscriptions engraved dating back to Emperor Shahjahan's rule. A high octagonal platform supports the temple and there are a hundred steps to reach this temple. The Temple is very well known amongst religious tourists and is known to have great religious and architectural importance.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit the Shankaracharya Temple is between May and September when the weather is pleasant. It snows in the winter months in and around Srinagar and winters are very severe.

Trivia

The sidewalls of the steps to the Temple once bore some very valuable inscriptions that have now vanished with time.

The Shankaracharya Temple has undergone many repairs throughout its life. The first repair work was done under the rule of Lalitaditya, the second was done by Zain-ul-Abideen after the temple got damaged in an earthquake. Then Maharaja Gulab Singh, a Dogra ruler renovated it with stone steps that forms a part of the passage to the shrine today.

Timing

The temple is open from 7:00 am till 8:00 pm.


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