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Ranakpur- The marvel in marble [#GuestPost by Shalini #MyMojo]

December 14, 2017
Ranakpur Temple

Today I have Shaini Baisiwala from Shalzmojo sharing her travel experience to Ranakpur Temple.

Over to her.


I wouldn’t call myself religious and am not the one to go visiting temples in the lord’s praise.However tell me about the architecture details, historical aspects and I am hooked to it. I first heard about the Ranakpur Temple while planning a trip to Udaipur. It seems these trump the famous Dilwara temples of Mt Abu.

To say I was intrigued is an understatement. A little research later, I knew I just have to visit these Jain temples which are about 500 years old and were built by a local business merchant who dedicated them to Adinath – the first Tirthankar in the Jainism ideology.

Ranakpur is situated about 90 odd kms from Udaipur and it took us just a little over 2 hours to reach them. We had hired a private taxi though one can board one of the many buses plying to and fro here too.

Ranakpur temple

Ranakpur temple complex is built in about one acre of land which lies abutting the Western end of the Aravalis. In fact the road from Udaipur was long and winding punctuated with dense foliage on either sides. We were lucky to spot the beautiful flame orange blooms of the Palash trees.

The Ranakpur temple is built in soft white marble stone and has stunning intricate patterns which speak of bespoke workmanship. Can you believe that there are over 1400 pillars, and no two pillars are the same? Talk about imagination!

Ranakpur temple

There are 24 pillared halls, 80 domes and numerous archways within the temple complex.

Ranakpur temple

Look at this detail on the base of one of the columns – I was pretty mesmerized with it.

Ranakpur temple

Complete temple complex is a series of combination of open courtyards, arches, corridors – all of which strive to present exquisite craftsmanship. There is a sculpture here of a snake chasing its tail but it’s too difficult to spot the end of its tale.

Another sculpture depicts the Kalpavriksha or the tree of life which has been carved on the domes of one of the ceilings – I couldn’t stop admiring it, despite the growing crick in my neck.

Ranakpur temple

In fact each and every one of the domes has stunning artistry carved out in stone with hand, making me marvel at the deftness of the craftsmen. Another unique fact which were told of is that the soft stone changes colour from pale yellow to pale blue as the sunlight changes in the temple. I am not sure if you can make that out in the pictures I am sharing here.

Ranakpur temple

Everywhere I looked, the mastery of the architectural details blew my mind away. I couldn’t stop clicking pictures of the place and wanted so much to visit it once again on the trip but couldn’t due to time paucity. The ceilings are a happy fest of intricate scrollwork, deity sculptures and patterns.

Ranakpur temple

There is a deity in the inner sanctum of the main temple which is worshipped in accordance to the Jain religion. In fact while entering the complex, we had to deposit all our leather items and shoes before entering the temple.

Cameras were allowed and we could see people lounging around in the temple corridors to sit in quiet reflection. I was amazed by both these facts as priests are a bit anal about such activities inside a live temple, in my opinion, in India.

Ranakpur temple

Though we skipped it, I believe the food canteen at the temple complex serves an enviably delicious thali, priced modestly at 90/- and is one of the cleanest food kitchens there is to see in India.

If you ever plan a trip to Udaipur, I would highly recommend a visit to Ranakpur which incidentally is named after the Rajput ruler Rana Kumbha who supported the construction of this temple during his rule.

The other place you must not miss while in Udaipur is Kumbhalgarh fort which is as unique if not more as the Great Wall of China.

Speaking of the wonders of the world, Ranakpur temple was also on the list of the Seven Wonders of the World.


About Shalzmojo

ShalzMojo

An interior designer by profession, writing is a passion which coupled with travel love blossomed into this blog where I love to just “do my thing”! Be it recipes, food events, travel jaunts, fiction dreaming or even meditative musings; all of it’s taken up quite passionately on my blog. I am a serious wine guzzler and love to chase butterflies in my free time.

This post is written for the December bloghop #mymojo with Shalzmojo.

Linking up for #wordsante with Namysaysso for every post deserves some love.

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14 Comments

  • Reply akshata December 18, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    The pics are marvellous and the unique thing about the pillars is indeed something intriguing.

    • Reply Shalini December 19, 2017 at 10:15 am

      Thanks Akshara, I have to go here one more time to try out the thali and hope to properly catch the changing colours.

  • Reply mocktail mommies December 17, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    Wow!!! Lovely architecture pics…..

  • Reply Prasanna December 15, 2017 at 7:42 pm

    There is so much to see in our wonderful country….each of your posts tells us a tale!! love your travel series!!

    • Reply SHALINI BAISIWALA December 21, 2017 at 11:08 am

      Thanks so much Prasanna; I am glad people are not bored by now 😉

  • Reply Namratha December 15, 2017 at 2:06 pm

    Wow! Lovely architecture captured by lovely clicks! What a marvel

    • Reply SHALINI BAISIWALA December 21, 2017 at 11:09 am

      Thanks Namratha – this temple is unbelievably beautiful and clean! I have to go there once more !!

  • Reply Zainab December 15, 2017 at 8:43 am

    I have always loved your pics. You make these clicks come alive and now I want to visit Udaipur soon! Maybe next year around Eid 🙂
    A thali worth 90₹? I’m a foodie so def will try that!

    • Reply SHALINI BAISIWALA December 21, 2017 at 11:10 am

      Oh yeah Z you must must do that; check out my other blogs on Udaipur too for more tips on things to do! And thanks for the lovely compliment!! 🙂

  • Reply Aditi Kaushiva December 15, 2017 at 2:58 am

    Omg! The architecture is stunning! The details on the pillars. I love visiting such jems for the every same reason, not that I’m mighty religious but temples do offer a calming vibe and the architecture is impeccable.

    • Reply SHALINI BAISIWALA December 21, 2017 at 11:14 am

      Thanks Aditi. I had visited Dilwara too (no photography allowed there) and wasnt this impressed as I was with Ranakpur and the Jain temples in Jaisalmer (which is another post in this blog hop) – the architecture detailing is stunning in them and leaves you spell bound, wondering how on earth did they carve it let alone design it!

  • Reply Keerthi Vydyula December 14, 2017 at 9:39 pm

    Loved the post and the way you took me through the important details of this temple architecture Shalz.
    I usually go to temples which vast history for the same reason. Just to witness that beauty with my eyes and also absorb some positive energy 😀

    • Reply SHALINI BAISIWALA December 21, 2017 at 11:16 am

      Thanks Keerthi – yup thats the reason I go too! India sure has some of the most stunning ones in the world I think! I am so glad to be born in India to be able to travel to these places at a fraction of a cost!!

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