Ranakpur is Rajasthan’s best known Jain temple, located about 60km north of Udaipur it’s easily visited as a day excursion from the city. Tripods are not permitted, and please remember to bring a shawl to cover yourself and not to bring any item of leather into the temple.
The main Adinath Temple was commissioned by two brothers who served for the royal family, Ratnasha and Dhanasha, and was completed in 1439. After some time the temple was abandoned, and was later restored in the 19th century.
The temple is constructed out of white marble. Much of the lower levels are relatively plain, but when you look up the full magnificence of Ranakpur becomes apparent.
In fact, looking up is something you’re likely to be doing a lot of – some rigorous neck exercises could be advantageous in the days leading up to your visit 🙂
The temple is a complex multi-storey building, supported by 1,444 finely carved columns with images of musicians, dancers and guardians. The pillars are all differently carved and no two pillars are the same. Around the edge of the temple are many small shrines, but some of the finest stonework is reserved for the domes. Some of these domes are hugely complex, with figurative, floral and geometric designs.
…and keep remembering to look up ! The true splendour of Ranakpur is up above…
After visiting the temple I took a short walk around the grounds. To one side there’s a small hill with some shrines that is worth going up in order to see the wider landscape.
Ranakur is open daily Noon – 5pm
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