In the district of Aravalli, on the banks of river Meshwo stands the temple of Shamlaji, considered by Vaishnavites as one of the hundred and fifty four most important places of pilgrimage in India. This temple of Lord Vishnu has a white flag always at the top of temple, and hence also called Dhouli Dhawaja Wada in Gujrati. The present temple dedicated, is built probably in 11th century during Solanki rule and renovated at least 500 years ago with many of the inscriptions in the shrine pointing to various dates in history. Years ago the Idar State rulers gave the trusteeship of Shamlaji temple to the Modhari Rao Saheb and they still leads the trust of the temple. The tribal community in the area revers the Shamlaji as Kaliyo Dev or the Dark Divine.
According to one legend, Lord Brahma once embarked on a journey to find out the most sacred site)on the earth. He came to Shamlaji, which he liked the most and performed penance there for a thousand years. Lord Shiva, who was pleased with him, asked him to perform a yagna in the area. Before the beginning of the yagna, Lord Vishnu manifested himself in the form of Shamlaji and blessed the place with his presence.Another story describes an A...View more
ivasi finding the idol of Lord Shamlaji while ploughing his land. He worshipped it and was blessed with an abundant yield. A Vaishnava merchant, who came to know of this, built the temple and installed the idol.
The shrine is built of white sandstone and brick it is surrounded by a wall with a gateway. The outer are richly carved and intricately adorned. There are figures of gods and goddesses, of men and innumerable animals, geographical designs and large variety of flowers. There are also images depicting episodes from Mahabharatha and Ramayana. Made in Chalukya style of architecture, it has two storeys supported on pillars. The main shrine is covered ...View more
y beautiful domed ceilings and traditional spire. The temple is divided into three parts: Sabha Mandap, Antaraal and Garbha Griha. The sanctum has a beautiful deity of the Lord in black stone. The various incarnations of Lord Vishnu carved out on the image crown There is also an image of Garuda, his vehicle.Pic Courtesy : commons.wikimedia.org
Devotees are advised to wear clean and conservative attire.
Aravalli is one of the newer district in Gujarat, which came into being in 2013. The district has been named after the Aravalli Hills that run across the states of Gujarat and Rajasthan. The district has several Buddhist relics and spiritual centres.
By rail - Himatnagar Railway Station is located at a distance of 45kms from Shamlaji.
By air - Ahmedabad airport is at a distance of 140kms from the shrine of Shamlaji. Buses and taxis ply on the route.
By road - Shamlaji is well connected to other parts of the stae. The shrine is around 2kms from the bus depot
The priests perform regular rituals like aarti,bhog etc to the deities.