Palitana is a city in Bhavnagar district, Gujarat, India. It is located 50 km southwest of Bhavnagar city and is a major pilgrimage centre for Jains.
Palitana is the world’s only mountain that has more than 900 temples. The Palitana temples and whole mountain are considered the most sacred pilgrimage place (tirtha) by the Jain community, and is the world’s largest Temple Complex. There are more than 3000 temples located on the Shatrunjaya hills, exquisitely carved in marble. The main temple on top of the hill is dedicated to 1st Tirthankar Lord Adinath (Rishabdeva). On the top of the Shatrunjai Hill is a cluster of Jain temples, built by generations of Jains over a period of 900 years, from the 11th century onwards. The Temples are managed by the Anandji Kalyanji Trust associated with the Kasturbhai Lalbhai group. From the foot of the hill to the top there are 3,800 and odd stone steps cut to facilitate climbing.
The temples are exquisitely carved in marble, veritable prayers in stone. To an observer, these appear to be ivory miniatures when seen from a distance. Created by master artisans, the most important temple is that of the first Teerthankara, Shri Adishwar. It has ornate architectural motifs, though in its overall plan it is simpler than the Choumukh. Other notable temples are those of Kumarpal, Vimalshah and Sampriti Raja. Kumarpal Solanki, a great Jain patron, probably built the earliest temple. The temple has a fabulous collection of jewels, and these can be seen with special permission. The temples date from 11th to the 20th century.
What To See And Do
The main tourist attraction in Palitana is the Shatrunjaya Hill.
Where To Stay
Many hotels and Guest Houses are available in Palitana
How To Get Around
The nearest airport is located at Bhavnagar, about 56 kms from Palitana and has daily flights with Mumbai.
Palitana is on the metre gauge of the Western Railway and has a connection only with Bhavnagar. The nearest railway station connected with all parts of India is Ahmedabad.
Palitana is connected by good motorable roads with Bhavnagar, Junagadh, Ahmedabad, Porbandar, Dwaraka, Gandhidham, Mumbai and Delhi.
DISTANCE BY ROAD:
RAJKOT – 161 KM
BHAVNAGAR- 55 KM
AHMEDABAD- 203 KM