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The temples in India are more than just a place of worship, they have a rich history, and are the finest examples of intricate craftsmanship. There are many temples across the length and breadth of the country and you may spend a lifetime visiting all of them. But there are a few temples that you must definitely visit once to revel in its spiritual aura and glorious history and heritage.  

We have put together a list of the ancient temples in India.

Jageshwar Temple, Uttarakhand 

Hidden quietly like a treasure trove amidst the lush Deodar trees, between Pithoragarh and Almora in Uttarakhand, this temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is a sight to behold. The dark green leaves of the Deodar trees, the grey sky, are in perfect sync with the blue rivulet and the black stones of the temple walls. It is almost like nature is screaming to enjoy the magnificent sight of this natural photo filter.  

The temple is estimated to be built around the 9-13 century AD. Its stunning architecture will entrance you and you would immediately know that the current relics must have once been splendorous back in the time.  

Tungnath Temple, Uttarakhand 

Standing at 3680 metres, it is one of the most ancient temples in India as the exact dates of its origin are unknown. However, according to legends, it is believed to be built by the Indian mythological heroes the Pandava brothers from Mahabharata.  

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the five brothers built the temple to venerate the lord and seek his pardon. The temple complex is quite small, and it can barely accommodate ten people at once. However, what is fascinating about this temple is that it is completely made of black rock and its construction style has a stark resemblance to the Kedarnath temple, one of the most important places of worship for the Hindus. 

Shore Temple, Tamil Nadu 

One of the ancient temples in south India, it was built in the Dravidian style during the 7th Century. The massive temple structure and the huge complex around is a testament to the fine taste of the kings from the Pallava Dynasty. 

The walls, the pillars and the whole structure of the temple, has intricate stone carvings, and it rightfully finds its place in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list. Apart from having rich history, and featuring brilliant architectural and carving works of that era, the temple is also one of the most photographed monuments in India. 

Sanchi Stupa, Madhya Pradesh 

One of the oldest stone structures in India, this ancient temple is located on a hilltop at Sanchi in Raisen district. Built under the careful supervision of the Emperor Ashoka’s wife and his daughter between the 3rdCentury BC and 12th Century AD, it has a colossal hemispherical dome and is surrounded by four gateways, which are known as Toranas. 

This magnificent structure is 16 metres high and 37 metres wide and has four intricately designed gateways in four different directions. Each of the gateway symbolises an important virtue, namely, peace, courage, trust and love.  

The temple preserves the relics of the Buddha and is an important place of worship for the Buddhist community in India. It also has the distinction of being listed as the UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Konark Sun Temple, Odisha 

Dedicated to the Sun God, this temple was built by the Kings of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty in the 13th century. This gigantic structure is an architectural marvel and is built in a way to resemble the Sun God’s chariot with 12 pairs of stone wheels, and seven horses that are all carved on stones.  

Today, the temple stands without its main sanctum, i.e., Vimana, which once stood at 229 feet. One of the finest examples of the marvellous Kalinga architecture, this Indian old temple is classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO 

Kailasha Temple, Maharashtra 

Known as one of the greatest monuments in India due its massive size, stunning architecture and mind-boggling carvings, the Kailasha Temple was built by King Krishna I in 760 AD. It is located in cave 16 of the Ellora Caves in Aurangabad.  

Carved out of a single basalt rock piece from the Charanandri Hills by hands, using only chisel, hammer and pick, this famous ancient temple in India is considered as an engineering marvel by modern day engineers. Apart from being an important place of worship, it is a haven for history and architecture lovers.  

There are many other ancient temples that are a great place for spiritual awakening in India but could not make it to our list. But make sure that you enjoy visiting these temples to seek the blessings of the almighty and get to know about India’s rich history and culture. 

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