Dwarka is a pioneer manufacturer of metal craft. The city of Dwarka is very sacred for the Hindus and finds mention in the Mahabharata, Harivansha, Bhagavata Purana, Skanda Purana and the Vishnu Purana.
History of Dwarka
It is believed that Sri Krishna after renouncing war in Mathura founded the city of Dwarka and settled down there. For the safety of the people, Krishna and Yadavas decided to move the capital from Mathura to Dwarka. It is said that the land was reclaimed from the sea near the western shores of Saurashtra and Dwarka was built on the banks of the Gomti River. This city was known by several names like Dvaramati, Dvaravati and Kushsthali. Earlier it was known as Kushasthali or Dwaravati.
Geography of Dwarka
The city of Dwarka is located in the Jamnagar District of Gujarat. The city lies in the westernmost part of India. It is located 22.23 degree north to 68.97 degree east. The city is built on the right bank of the Gamut creek.
Tourism in Dwarka
Considered to be a holy city, Dwarka is well known for its temples and as a pilgrimage centre for Hindus. Listed below are some of the important places of Dwarka which facilitates tourism.
Dwarkadhisa Temple: Also known as the Jagat Mandir, the Dwarkadhisa Temple is a Vaishanava temple built by Raja Jagat Singh Rathore. This temple is one of the most famous pilgrimage sites for the Hindus and attracts pilgrims from all over the world. The temple is magnificently built on the traditional lines and has five floors supported by 60 columns and is profusely carved from the base to the pinnacle. It is built of sandstone and the interior is simple while the exterior is covered with elaborate carvings. Some of the major festivals of Janmashtami and Navaratri are celebrated with great enthusiasm and rejoice in the city of Dwarka.
Rukmini Devi Temple: Known for some popular legends, the Rukmini Devi Temple is dedicated to one of the important wives of Lord Krishna. The temple walls are decorated with beautiful paintings depicting Rani Rukmini with her husband. It is believed to have been built in the 12th century. Located at the outskirts of Gujarat this is one of the most attractive temples of India.
Beyt Dwarka: A pilgrimage to Dwarka is not complete until a visit has been made to the Beyt Dwarka. It is a Hindu temple on the island off the coast. The temple dates back to the 19th century and contains a series of shrines and images of Krishna and his 56 consorts. The archaeological excavations have revealed Harappan artefacts dating from the 2nd millennium BC.
Nageshwar Jyotirlinga Temple: The presiding deity of the Nageshwar Jyotirlinga Temple is Lord Shiva and this temple is situated on the outskirts of Dwarka. It is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas and according to the Shiva Puranas, Lord Shiva killed the demon named Daruka here and spent few years in this place.
Other than these there are Gomati Ghat temples, the Gita Mandir, the Cuttack Chandi temple, while the Dwarka Pitha is one of the four cardinal mathas established by Adi Shankaracharya. In Dwarka, there is a lake or tank called Gopi Talav on the western part of the city. A similar lake known as Gopi Chandan meaning sandal paste from Gopi is situated in Bet Dwarka; this mud is found in the bed of the lake. This fragrant mud is applied as a sanctity symbol by devout Hindus on their forehead.
The main festival celebrated here is Janmashtami, which is held between the months of August and September. The festival is marked by several night long celebrations to mark the birth of Krishna. Bhajans and sermons are part of the festivities.
Visiting Information on Dwarka
The Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad is the nearest at a distance of 216 km from Dwarka. The city is connected by direct trains with Ahmedabad on the western railway.