Himachal Pradesh is a state located in North India, bordered by Jammu and Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Punjab from different sides. Shimla – the state capital – is one of the most popular tourist destinations of the country. People from all across the world come to enjoy the scenic beauty of this place comprising cold mountain peaks and green vegetation. Apart from Shimla, Kangra, Mandi, Dharamshala, Kullu, Manali, Hamirpur, Chamba and Dalhousie are some of the destinations visited by millions of tourists every year. Most of the state revenue is generated from tourism, and this is the reason that travellers find all type of facilities in these regions. Be it accommodation, transportation or souvenir shops, each and every thing, is managed for the convenience of tourists.
For nature and history lovers to adventure and spirituality seekers, this place has something for everyone. There are numerous places where people can find peace and solitude. It is often referred as the Dev Bhumi, which means the abode of gods. As per reports, over 2000 temples are located in Himachal Pradesh, which flaunt magnificent carvings and architecture. Most of them are associated with legends of the ancient times and some of them have an interesting story behind their construction. Here is a list of some of the most revered places in Himachal Pradesh.
Naina Devi Temple
India is known for its cultural diversity; hence, people can find popular temples, monasteries, churches and mosques in almost all parts of the nation. Naina Devi is one of the popular temples of the country, located in the district of Bilaspur. As per tell a tales, to avenge the insult of her spouse – Lord Shiva, Goddess Sati burnt herself. This made Lord Shiva furious, who started Tandava (a destructive dance form) after picking up the body of Sati. This could have led to destruction the earth, and to save the world, Lord Vishnu decided to stop this horrifying dance. He used his Chakra, which slashed the body of Sati into 51 pieces. As per Hindu Mythology, a peeth (known as Shakti Peeth) was established everywhere the body part fell on the earth. It is believed that eyes of the goddess fell at this place, and hence, it is called the Naina Devi Temple. It is one of the most visited temples in the region, popular among the followers of the Hindu religion.
This is one of the 51 peeths, and it is believed that the tongue of Goddess Sati fell here. It is dedicated to goddess Jwala, and the name means mouth of flames. Travellers can reach this place by booking a cab or taking the help of transportation from Kangra Valley. It is situated at distance of around an hour drive from the Kangra Valley – known for its picturesque beauty. It is believed that there are nine flames that never stop burning. Travellers from all across the country come to see the aarti session, held five times a day. However, the Shaiyan Aarti – performed in the evening – is the most important one, and attracts the maximum number of devotees. At this time, the idol of goddess is decorated with valuable ornaments and fine clothes.
Mata Chintpurni and Chamunda Devi Temple
These ancient religious places are located in the Una district of Himachal Pradesh dedicated to Goddess Chintpurni and Chhinnamastika. The temple received its name from the idol of Goddess Durga without head. It is believed that after Lord Vishnu cut the corpse of Sati into 51 pieces, the feet of Sati fell down at this place. This is how this temple adapted its name Chinamastika, which literally means without head or behead. Followers believe that any wish can be fulfilled if asked from the Sati with a pure heart at this temple. The Chintpurni temple near this place is visited during festive seasons, especially Navaratri.
Tourists can also head towards the Chamunda Devi temple situated at around 8 km from Dharamshala. The mythology says that the trunk of the goddess fell at this place. However, there are contradictions regarding this belief, and may say that Goddess Durga killed Chand and Munda (demons) at this place. Apart from paying reverence to the goddess, travellers can also enjoy the festivity at these places.