(Last Updated on : 20-01-2009)
The Godavari River rises near the Trimbak in the district of Nasik in the Indian state of Maharashtra. The river runs almost for a length of 1,465 km and has a total catchment area of 31mha. The river flows in the eastward direction through the states of Maharashtra and joins the Bay of Bengal in Andhra Pradesh. The main tributaries of the River Godavari are Penganga, Pranahita, Indravati, Manjeera, Sabari and Manair. It is the second largest river in India.
Trimbakeshwar is actually the temple of Lord Shiva, in the village Trimbak. Trimbakeshwar temple is a famous pilgrim spot in India. Trimbakeshwar is the origin of river Godavari. Trimbakeshwar is one of the 12 jyotirlingas and the eighth one in the series of Lord Shiva. Particularly this one is considered to be the main Jyotirlinga. Monday is a scared day here and Shivratri is the holy day of Shiva Puja of the year, which is celebrated here with pomp and show. The Goddess in this temple is called Trimbakeshwari. Raju Balaji Baji Rao who ruled Maharashtra constructed this temple. Later, many Maratha kings contributed in several ways to improve the condition of the temple. Very close to the temple, Papaharini Theertham is situated. People take holy bath here before visiting the temple, which is known for its holy bath. This place is created by river Godavari after descending from Brahmagiri.
The temple is situated in a hilly region called Sahyagiri. The Temple premises are called Brahmagiri, as is best known as the most sacred place of river Godavari or Brahma Sthalam. The Sun, Moon and Agni form the three eyes are located at diverse directions on this Jyotirlinga. Inside the main linga, there are three more lingas noticeable. These are the three deities, Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwara. There is a belief that, anybody who performs puja for this Jyotirlinga is considered as actually worshipping all these three Gods together.
After descending further, the river comes across many better-known places, located very close to its origin place. Gangadwar or Gangadwaram are the places where the river flows beneath the branches of trees in a narrow place, very close to paapa Haarini Theertham, Mahadeva and Ganga Matha temples are located. On the way to Brahmagiri, Vithal Mandir and Ganga Dwar is visible. Caves of 108 Shiva Lingas are one of the most visited places where Maharshi Gowthama worshipped lord Shiva. Kushavartham is the origin of river Godavari, Parashuram temple and Ambika alayam are some more places, which can be visited.
The origin of Godavari River or the Trimbakeshwar temple can be reached by road from Nashik by covering only 35 KM. Nasik is well connected by train also. The journey from Nashik to Trimbakeshwar is across the forest. People can stay here for one whole day and have to reach back Nashik for staying. The nearest airport is Oghur, which is 16 Kms from Nashik. The nearest railway station is Nasik Road.