The holy town of Somnath lies in the Junagadh district in the colourful state of Gujarat. It is renowned worldwide for the famous Somnath Temple which houses one of the 12 revered Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva. The temple is the centre point of all the local and tourists activities of the town.
The meaning of the word ‘Somnath’ is the “Lord of the Moon God”, refers to Lord Shiva as He is known to house the Moon on his head. Junagadh Gate and Panch Pandav Gufa (Cave) are the famous tourist destinations for visitors.
The nearest Airport from Somnath is that of Keshod which is at a distance of around 50 Km from Somnath. There are regular flights from Mumbai and other places to Keshod.
Veraval, 7 Km from Somnath is the nearest railway station. The station is connected by a daily train to Ahmedabad and also other cities like Jabalpur, Pune have frequent train service plying from Veraval.
Summers in Somnath are extremely hot and exhausting. The temperature ranges from 24°C to 41°C in the months of March to June. Somnath experiences monsoons between the months of July to September. Heavy rainfall and winds is the characteristic of the region.
Winters approach Somnath in November and lasts till February. The climate is pleasantly cool and the temperature ranges from 10°C to 32°C. This is the best season to visit Somnath as the temperature remains comfortable and is apt for sightseeing.
Junagadh Gate: The gate is the main entry point to the holy city. This is supposedly built many centuries back by and has a hint of the architectural abundance of the days of yore. It is the same gateway through which the Muslim invader came and looted the city of all its wealth and destroyed the temples.
Somnath Temple: The temple houses one of the revered 12 Jyotirlingas. Legend has it that this temple was built by the Moon God for the Lord Shiva for getting rid of the curse given by Daksha. The Aarti performed here is considered to be spiritually enlightening and is done with much pomp and show. The holy chants amongst the beating of drums, ringing of bells and cymbals is an event that one shall not miss. The Shiv Bhajans from the temple purifies the whole town. The temple is believed to have been renovated by the Ravana, Shri Krishna and then the Bhima.
Other temples to visit are the Suraj Mandir, Parsuram Temple, Lakshminarayana Temple, Gita Mandir etc.
Panch Pandav Gufa (Cave): This castle is believed to be built in the 15th century, under the “Bahamani” rule. It had been frequently visited by Shri Shivaji Maharaj. It is also believed to be the castle of Mohammed Adil Shah who was the ruler of Bijapur.