Visit the most renowned temples in Manali, like Hadimba Temple, Manu Temple, Gauri Shankar Temple, and many more.
While Manali in India’s northern Himachal Pradesh state is much talked about for its pristine beauty, only a few know its religious and spiritual significance. As per legend and folklore, Manali finds a mention in India’s most well-known mythological epics, The Ramayana and Mahabharata. These rich references whisper secrets of its antiquity past, making Manali even more special. Manali has several ancient temples with a rich history and exquisite architecture. If you seek peace in religion or spirituality, then a stop at these temples is a must.
Top 5 temples in Manali
- Hadimba Temple
If you are in Manali, you can leave the town with a visit to the Hadimba temple. Why is this cave temple so significant? That’s because Hadimba Devi, the wife of Bhima who finds a mention in the Mahabharata, is the central deity here. The ancient structure was built in 1553 CE by Maharaja Bahadur Singh at a spot where Hadimba and her brother lived and meditated.
The pagoda-style temple made from wood is ensconced by cedar forests called Dhungiru Van Vihar in the Himalayas. The temple commands your attention because of its architecture, history, and mythology. Devotees come here from all parts of India since the goddess is believed to fulfil prayers.
- Gauri Shankar Temple
Just a few kilometres from Manali in the quaint village of Naggar is the Gauri Shankar temple, which is once again considered by the devout as a pious spot where prayers are always answered. The ancient temple was built in the 12th century and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Legend goes that this temple was the last remnant of the Gurjara-Pratihara dynasty. Constructed in a shikhara style, the Gauri Shankar temple has a distinctive dome visible even from a distance. The shikhara towers over and has nine storeys—it is also adorned with ardharatna motifs. Many say that the temple’s energy is such that it makes you sense the presence of divine entities.
- Jamula Temple
A little away from Manali is the Jamula temple set in Malana village in Himachal Pradesh’s Parvati valley. The ancient religious structure is named after sage Jamila, whom the locals revered. Some say that the guidelines he had laid down for the village are still followed today by the local Gaddi tribe. Such is the firm belief that the locals must appreciate any visitor touching the walls or the houses’ exterior to avoid impurity. Lastly, this temple is also a space where the locals gather to resolve quarrels or significant disputes.
To reach the Jamula temple, travel to Kullu for about 40 kilometres and then trek for three to four kilometres to reach this place.
- Siyali Mahadev temple
Another temple in Manali that must be noticed is the Siyali temple, spoken about for its intricate sculptures in wood and stone, characteristic of the design vocabulary in the Himalayan region. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, this temple has several legends associated with it. One of the most popular ones says that locals saw Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati on a tree trunk at a smaller temple at the site. While its architecture deserves appreciation, many come here for its location, which is set amidst mountain peaks and pine trees.
- Manu Temple
Last but not the least on this list is the Manu temple. As the name suggests, this temple is dedicated to Manu Rishi, a revered sage known for humankind’s creation and is also the author of the religious text Manusmriti. Constructed from natural materials like stone and wood, this temple is the stop for most religious and spiritual tourists. After all, the sage protected the region’s locals from The Great Flood.
But before you step out for a spiritual vacation, reach Manali and check yourself in at Bookmark Resort Manali, the best luxury resort in Manali. The luxurious property affords stunning views of the Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal mountain ranges and the Hampta Pass. Each room has a sprawling balcony that will fill your lungs with crisp air and offer you peace and tranquillity.