Dwarka Tourism – A Complete Guide
Located on the western tip of the Indian peninsula in Gujarat, Dwarka is one of important spiritual places in India. It is believed that the city was once the capital of Lord Krishna’s kingdom. As interesting as the city’s mythological association is, its name has an interesting annotation. Dwar literally translates to ‘door’ and ka is ‘moksha or salvation,’so, Dwarka means ‘door to moksha.’
Today, many people, especially the locals, call it Devbhoomi Dwarka as it is the only city in India that is part of both Char Dham (four holy places) and Sapta Puri (seven sacred cities) mentioned in Hindu religion. The city is also home to Nageshwar Jyotirlinga Temple, one of the 12 Jyotirlingas. Apart from the temples, the city also boasts many beaches, which are also a popular tourist attraction.
The culture of Dwarka is deeply rooted in the religious significance of the place. The locals celebrate the Hindu festival with great fervour and fanfare, especially Janmashstami, i.e., the birth of Lord Krishna. Gujarati is the most widely spoken language in the city, however, most people also speak Hindi and is an inherent part of the local dialect.
Another cultural highlight of Dwarka is its cuisine. The restaurants, and other eateries in the city mostly serve vegetarian food, where the intrinsic flavours of Gujarat are presented using the local indigenous ingredients.
Undoubtedly, one of the most important and popular tourist places in Dwarka is the Dwarkadhish Temple. Dedicated to Lord Krishna, the temple attracts thousands of worshippers from all over India throughout the year.
The temple, which is also known as Jagat Mandir is one of the best places to visit in Gujarat to know about its rich history. The five-storied shrine boasts Chalukya style architecture and is made from limestone and sand.
It is believed that the temple is more than 2000 years old, and was built by Vajranabha on the land that was submerged under the sea and reclaimed by Lord Krishna. Within the temple premises, there are other shrines dedicated to Goddess Subhadra, Lord Balarama, and many others.
One of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India, Nageshwar Temple is located between Bet Dwarka and Gomati Dwarka, and the temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is also known as Nagnath Temple. According to the Shiva Purana, those who offer their prayers at the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga, they are freed from all kinds of poisons in their life.
The major highlight of this temple is the 80-feet tall statue of the Lord, which faces the south direction. The importance of this temple for the Hindu pilgrims stems from the fact that it is the first of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. During Maha Shivratri festival, the temple witnesses grand celebration and draws devotees from all over the world.
Located about 30 kms from the main town of Dwarka, Bet Dwarka is a small island, which was once a part of the main port in the region. Located on the banks of the Gulf of Kutch, the island is surrounded by white sand beaches, coral reefs and a few temples.
It is a major tourist attraction in Gujarat, and most people who come to the Dwarka temple come here to relax on the beach and indulge in some water activities like a boat ride to spot dolphins. Apart from being an important tourist place, the island holds an important place in Hindu mythology. It is believed that when Lord Krishna was the king of Dwarka, Bet Dwarka was his home.
Dwarka Lighthouse is a popular tourist attraction in Dwarka city. It is a 43-meters long structure that is located on the Dwarka beach. While the structure itself is super impressive and a cynosure to the eye, many tourists visit the lighthouse to catch a glimpse of the stunning sunset.
Built in 1866, initially the lighthouse had an oil lamp, and the modern light-bulb lighthouse was installed in 1962, and it was opened by the then Transport Minister of India, Mr. Raj Bahadur.
If you are a Club Mahindra member, you can book your stay at the Club Mahindra Dwarka resort. It is one of the best resorts in Dwarka that offer a premium living experience and warm services that will make your stay enjoyable every minute. The resort would be the perfect base for all your Dwarka adventures, all the major attractions in the city like Dwarkadish temple, and Dwarka beach are located nearby.
After a stressful day exploring the tourist spots, you can come back and relax at the resort or unwind with a dip in the sprawling pool. You can also go for a relaxing massage at the in-resort spa and rejuvenate yourself for the next day. On days when you don’t want to venture, you can indulge in various resort activities with your family.
There are a myriad of activities from fun to educational. You can learn the art of Towel Origami, or enjoy a Bollywood theme night where you get to dress up as a Bollywood character, dance to the Bollywood tunes and enjoy in the true Hindi cinema spirit. If you are travelling with your kids, you can let them enjoy stone painting, and watch them bring out their creative skills while making their masterpieces of art.