Lord Shiva, is the most worshiped God among all and is believed all over the world. We find his disciples not only in India which is a country where he is worshiped, but there are people around the Globe and since many previous centuries there are beautiful temples built in the name of lord Shiva. Lord Shiva is believed to be the destroyer and is the destroyer of ego of mankind. He is a reason for a new creation and a new individual and hence Lord Shiva is considered the reason, for the new creation by Brahma who is a creator and Vishnu the preserver. There are so many temples all over the world which are very important with its power, history, architectural heritage and in truth the peace the temples offer. India alone have many Lord Shiva temples. Considering Lord Shiva is worshiped all over the world, the top 10 Lord Shiva places are,
10. Baphuon Shiva Temple in Angkor- Cambodia
Cambodia is a place of many temples and each one is as famous for its rich heritage and for ancient architectural built. The temple was rebuilt from its ruins and it was constructed by Udayadityavarman II. It was poorly constructed in comparison to all the other temples in Angkor and the French were trying to rebuild it. They were forced to leave before they could complete the process. The famous thing of this temple is the bas-reliefs which are the ancient scenes of daily life carved in small squares of rocks, although only few could be seen and remaining are destroyed. These temples are under the process of rebuilding, though there are lot of ruins which is beyond any correction.
9. Katasraj temple in Pakistan
Before the partition, India and Pakistan had been one nation, and there were certain temples located around the areas of Pakistan. Some of these temples are still there, even after the partition and people visit these temples on occasion of the festivals. Katasraj temple is located in the Katas village of Chakwal district of Punjab in Pakistan. This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is one of the oldest one which has existed since the times of Mahabharatha. It is believed that Pandava brothers spent their time here at the time of their deport. The Pakistan government wants to take measures of restoration as it is one of the world heritage site.
8. Thiru Koneshwaram temple of Trincomalee-Sri Lanka
Sri-Lanka is also one of those place which has a rich heritage of temples and Hindu deities. Thiru Koneswaram of Triconmalee is a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and the entire continent is proud with many Lord Shiva temples. The temple is built on top of the Swami Rock. This temple is known with multiple names and is also known as the “sacred hill of three temples”. The temple is been mentioned in many epics and it goes back for many centuries. It is considered that the architecture of the temple has a great influence of the Pallava dynasty who have also built many prominent temples. The temple has been destroyed by the Portuguese invasion and its under renovations.
7. Pashupatinath Temple in Nepal
Nepal is another place of many Shiva temples and lot many devotees of Lord Shiva. Pashupathinath temple is the most sacred and famous among all the other temples situated on the river banks of Bagmathi. Pashupathi is one of the names of many different names to Lord Shiva. There are many different stories about how the temple came into existence and it is believed that Lord Shiva, when he tried to escape from Varnasi took concert here in this place in the form of a gazelle . When he was found he tried to escape along the banks of the river and in the meanwhile his horns broke into four pieces. Since then he is worshiped here as Pashupathi. The temple is 26.3 meters above the ground. This temple is open only for Hindu disciples.
6. Puru Ulun Danu Bratan- Indonesia
Puru Ulun Danu temple is one of the most beautiful and spectacular temples of Lord Shiva and it is build on the lake Bratan. There are four different gods worshiped here and the Lingga Petak Temple is the Shiva temple. The temple is built by the king of Mengwi in 1633. This temple is situated in Bedugal islands 1239 m above sea level and is one of the famous temples of Bali.
5. Ramnathaswamy temple
A temple built in the 12th century is another of the famous Jyothirlingam temple of India and the most sacred of all. The temple is a pilgrimage place for most disciples of Lord Shiva and is also known as the longest corridor temple. According to the epic stories, Rama built this temple in the name of Lord Shiva after the battle of Lanka. A grand festival of worshiping Lord Shiva is held from June 15th to July 15th every year. The temple measured about 15-20 acres with a large compound wall. The famous thing of this temple is its longest corridor in the world about 6.9 m height, 400 feet in both east and west. Total length is about 3850 feet.
4. Somnath Temple
Somnath temple is one of the Dwadasa Jyothirlinga temples in India and most sacred place for the Hindu Lord Shiva disciples located in Gujarat. The temple was destroyed by Mohamed Ghazni in 1025 A.D and it is rebuilt. Lord Shiva was worshiped by moon here and hence known as the Somnatha. The moon God was cursed by his father-in-law for neglecting his 26 wives and showed more interest in Rohini. Lord Brahma advised him to build a temple in the name of Lord Shiva. The temple is constructed in the Solanki style. The details of the pinnacle height with 155 feet, Kalash atop weighs 10 tonnes, the flag is 37 feet long and all these details attracted Ghazini to look for himself and destroyed it. Later Sultans Allauddin and Muhammad Begda also were reason for more destruction of the temple. Later, when the Maratha’s took over Gujarat, a small temple was built next to the destroyed one and God is worshiped here ever since.
3. Kedarnath temple
Kedarnath of the Himalayas is one of the highest and most sacred of the Shiva temples worshiped in India and is one of the Jyothirlingam temples. This temple can be visited only six months in a year and the remaining period of the year it is too cold to visit as it is located in the Himalayas and during that period it is covered by snow. The Lord’s idol is brought down to the other temple and is worshiped until the the temple on top reopens after the winter and snowfall. The pilgrims have to visit all the other famous temples on the way to visit Lord Shiva temple such as the Rishikesh, Devprayag, Sonprayag etc. The famous story of Lord Shiva cutting the neck of Lord Ganesha and replacing it with elephant head, has a statue of headless Ganesha here in Gaurikund. The route to this temple is a difficult one and heavy vehicles cannot pass through. Some walk through it and for some aged people there are carriages. Although how much ever difficult it is, people consider its worth it to visit the Lord here.
2. Lingaraj Temple
Some places are known for its temples and Bhubaneshwar is a city of Orissa with many famous temples, which are world famous and is a tourist attraction as well. Among all those, the largest is the Lingaraj temple. The temple is said to have built in the 7th century by the ruler Yayati Kesari. Inscriptions from the king Kalinga king Anangabhima III period of 13th century are seen here. Based on the structure, the Parasurameshawara temple dates back the oldest among all the temples and Lingaraj temple is dated to the 10th century. According to the stories, the Bindu Saras lake is built by Lord Shiva for Goddess Parvathi to quench her thirst when she kills the two demons Kritti and Vasa who desires to marry her. It is believed that this place is one of the favorites of Lord Shiva, which prompts for the Goddess to visit and look for herself about its uniqueness. The temple tower rises up to 180 feet and is completely carved.
1. Kailash Manasarovar in Tibet
The most sacred place for Shiva and the most visited of all is the Kailash Manasarovar where it is believed of Lord Shiva existence. The Manasa Sarovara is the most holiest lake in the entire world and the water is considered as the blessed water and used for healing purposes. Mount Kailas is a 6,714 meter high peak in Tibet. There are two lakes to the south of this mount and they are Manasarovar and Rakas Tal It is one of the major religious beliefs of people all over the world who try to visit Mount Kailash at least once in their lifetime. The Lake Manasarovar is the most sacred of all and it is believed to be the heavenly place, while the Rakas Tal is an evil lake. Although there are scientists arguments as both the lakes have been one lake many years ago and the changes now can be a reason of evolution. According to the scripture of Pali that Lord Buddha took bath here in Rakas Tal, which was called as the Lake Anotatta.