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Updated by Urvi Shah on Feb 14, 2018
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Oldest & Famous Lord Shiva Temples in India

Maha Shivaratri is a Hindu festival celebrated annually in reveenthusiasme god Shiva. It is the day Shiva was married to the goddess Parvati. The Maha Shivaratri festival, also popularly known as 'Shivaratri' or 'Great Night of Shiva', marks the convergence of Shiva and Shakti. . Here is a list of some old and well known Lord Shiva temples in India. Om Namah Shivay.
1

Kailashnath Temple

Kailashnath Temple
One of the most oldest Architectural examples of Monolithic Architecture in India. The Kailasa temple is a famous rock cut monument, one of the 34 monasteries and temples known collectively as the Ellora Caves, extending over more than 2 km, that were dug side by side in the wall of a high basalt cliff in the complex located at Ellora, Maharashtra, India. Of these, the Kailasa is a remarkable example of Dravidian architecture on account of its striking proportion, elaborate workmanship, architectural content, and sculptural ornamentation of rock-cut architecture. The temple was commissioned and completed between dated 757-783 CE, when Krishna I ruled the Rashtrakuta dynasty. It is designed to recall Mount Kailash, the home of Lord Shiva.
4

Kashi Vishwanath Temple

Kashi Vishwanath Temple
Kashi Vishwanath Temple is one of the most famous Hindu temples and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is located in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India, the holiest existing place of Hindus. The temple stands on the western bank of the holy river Ganges, and is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, the holiest of Shiva temples. The main deity is known by the name Vishwanatha or Vishweshwara meaning Ruler of the universe. The temple town, which claims to be the oldest living city in the world, with 3500 years of documented history, is also called Kashi and hence the temple is popularly called Kashi Vishwanath Temple.
16

Arunachaleshwar Temple

Arunachaleshwar Temple
Arunachaleshwar or Annamalaiyar Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to the deity Shiva, located at the base of Annamalai hills in the town of Thiruvannamalai in Tamil Nadu, India. It is significant to the Hindu sect of Saivism as one of the temples associated with the five elements, the Pancha Bhoota Stalas, and specifically the element of fire, or Agni. Shiva is worshiped as Annamalaiyar or Arunachaleswarar, and is represented by the lingam, with his idol referred to as Agni lingam. His consort Parvati is depicted as Unnamulai Amman.
2

Kedarnath Temple

Kedarnath Temple
Kedarnath Temple is one of the holiest Hindu temples dedicated to the god Shiva. It is on the Garhwal Himalayan range near the Mandakini river in Kedarnath, Uttarakhand in India. Due to extreme weather conditions, the temple is open only between the end of April from Akshaya Tritriya to Kartik Purnima ,the autumn full moon, usually November. During the winters, the vigrahas (deities) from Kedarnath temple are brought to Ukhimath and worshiped there for six months. Lord Shiva is worshiped as Kedarnath, the 'Lord of Kedar Khand', the historical name of the region.
3

Amarnath Temple

Amarnath Temple
Amarnath temple is a Hindu shrine located in Jammu and Kashmir, India. It is dedicated to Shiva. The cave is situated at an altitude of 3,888 m (12,756 ft), about 141 km (88 mi) from Srinagar, the capital of Jammu and Kashmir and reached through Pahalgam town. The shrine forms an important part of Hinduism, and is considered to be one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. The cave is surrounded by snowy mountains. The cave itself is covered with snow most of the year except for a short period of time in summer when it is open for pilgrims. Thousands of Hindu devotees make an annual pilgrimage to the Amarnath cave on challenging mountainous terrain to see an ice stalagmite formed inside the cave.
5

Somnath Temple

Somnath Temple
The Somnath Temple located in the Prabhas Kshetra near Veraval in Saurashtra on the western coast of Gujarat, India, is the first among the twelve Jyotirlinga shrines of the god Shiva. It has currently become a tourist spot for pilgrims. The temple is considered sacred due to the various legends connected to it. Somnath means "Lord of the Soma", an epithet of Shiva.
7

Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple

Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple
Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva situated at Srisailam in Andhra Pradesh state, India.It is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams (The Paadal Petra Sthalams are 275 temples that are revered in the verses of Saiva Nayanars in the 6th-9th century CE and are amongst the greatest Shiva temples of the continent).The jyotirlinga is the supreme partless reality, out of which Shiva partly appears. The jyotirlinga shrines, thus are places where Shiva appeared as a fiery column of light. Originally there were believed to be 64 jyotirlingas while 12 of them are considered to be very auspicious and holy. Each of the twelve jyotirlinga sites take the name of the presiding deity - each considered different manifestation of Shiva, one of which is the jyotirlinga at Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple.
14

Grishneshwara Temple

Grishneshwara Temple
Grishneshwar/ Grushneshwar Jyotirlinga is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines mentioned in the Shiva Purana. Grishneshwar is believed as the Last or 12th (twelfth) Jyotirlinga on the earth. This pilgrimage site is located at a village called Verul which lies at a distance of 11 km from Daulatabad (Devagiri) and 30 km from Aurangabad. It lies at a close proximity to the Ellora caves.
18

Ekambareshwara Temple

Ekambareshwara Temple
Ekambaranathar Temple or Ekambareswarar Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva, located in Kanchipuram in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The temple is the largest temple in the town of Kanchipuram and is located in the northern part of the town. The temple gopuram (gateway tower) is 59m tall, which is one of the tallest gopurams in India. It is one of the five major Shiva temples or Pancha Bootha Sthalams (each representing a natural element) representing the element - Earth.
19

Natraja Temple

Natraja Temple
Thillai Nataraja Temple, Chidambaram or Chidambaram temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located in the town of Chidambaram, East-Central Tamil Nadu, South India. The temple is known as the foremost of all temples (Kovil) to Saivites and has influenced worship, architecture, sculpture and performance art for over two millennium.Chidambaram or Natraja Temple is one of the five Pancha Bootha Sthalams, the holiest Shiva temples each representing one of the five classical elements; Chidambaram represents akasha (aether).
6

Mahakaleshwar Temple

Mahakaleshwar Temple
Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga is one of the most famous Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva and is one of the twelve Jyotirlingams, which are supposed to be the most sacred abodes of Shiva. It is located in the ancient city of Ujjain in the state of Madhya Pradesh, India. The temple is situated on the side of the Rudra Sagar lake. The presiding deity, Shiva in the lingam form is believed to be Swayambhu, deriving currents of power (Shakti) from within itself as against the other images and lingams that are ritually established and invested with mantra-shakti.
8

Omkareshwar Temple

Omkareshwar Temple
Omkareshwar is a Hindu temple dedicated to God Shiva. It is one of the 12 revered Jyotirlinga shrines of Shiva. It is on an island called Mandhata or Shivapuri in the Narmada river; the shape of the island is said to be like the Hindu ॐ symbol. There are two temples here, one to Omkareshwar (whose name means "Lord of Omkaara or the Lord of the Om Sound") and one to Amareshwar (whose name means "Immortal lord" or "lord of the Immortals or Devas").
9

Bhimashankar Temple

Bhimashankar Temple
Bhimashankar Temple is a Jyotirlinga shrine located 50 km northwest of Khed, near Pune, in India. It is located 127 km from Shivaji Nagar (Pune) in the Ghat region of the Sahyadri hills. Bhimashankar is also the source of the river Bhima, which flows southeast and merges with the Krishna river near Raichur. The other Jyotirlinga shrines in Maharashtra are Vaidyanath near Parli Dist Beed, Trimbakeshwara near Nashik and Grishneshwar near Ellora around Aurangabad,Nagnaath in Aundh built by Pandav brothers in one night during their exile.
10

Trimbakeshwara Temple

Trimbakeshwara Temple
Trimbakeshwar or Tryambakeshwar is an ancient Hindu temple in the town of Trimbak, in the Trimbakeshwar tehsil in the Nashik District of Maharashtra, India, 28 km from the city of Nashik. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas. It is located at the source of the Godavari River, the longest river in peninsular India. The Godavari River, which is considered sacred within Hinduism, originates from Bramhagiri mountains and meets the sea near Rajahmudry. Kusavarta, a kund is considered the symbolic origin of the river Godavari, and revered by Hindus as a sacred bathing place. The current temple was built by Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao (a.k.a Nanasaheb).
11

Vaidyanath Temple

Vaidyanath Temple
Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga temple, also known as Baba dham and Baidyanath dham is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas, the most sacred abodes of Shiva. The location of Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga is disputed.The claimed locations are: Vaidyanath Jyotirlinga, Deogarh, Jharkhand, Vaijnath temple, Parli, Maharashtra and Baijnath temple, Baijnath, Himachal Pradesh.
12

Nageshwara Temple

Nageshwara Temple
Nageshvara Jyotirlinga is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines mentioned in the Shiva Purana. Nageshvara is believed to be the first Jyotirlinga on the earth.At present there is debate on the actual location of the legendary forest of Darukavana, so identifying the Jyotirlinga of Nageswaram remains difficult. Since there are no other important clues in the text as to the location of the Jyotirlinga , 'Darukavana' remains the vital, and only, clue. Darukavana, the name being derived from 'daruvana' [meaning forest of deodar trees], is widely thought to exist in Almora. It could be taken to mean that it is located in the south at the town of 'Sadanga', which was the ancient name of Aundh in Maharashtra, south of the Jageswara shrine in Uttarkhand, and west of Dwaraka Nageshvara.
13

Ramanathaswamy Temple

Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located on Rameswaram island in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. It is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams, where the three of the most revered Nayanars (Saivite saints), Appar, Sundarar and Tirugnana Sambandar, have glorified the temple with their songs. The temple was expanded during the 12th century by Pandya Dynasty, and its principle shrines were renovated by Jeyaveera Cinkaiariyan and his successor Gunaveera Cinkaiariyan of the Jaffna kingdom. The temple has the longest corridor among all Hindu temples in India.The temple is located in Rameswaram, an island town in South India, considered a holy pilgrimage site for Shaivites, Vaishnavites and Smarthas. The temple is also one of the twelve Jyothirlinga temples, where Shiva is worshipped in the form of a Jyotirlingam.
15

Jambukeshwar Temple

Jambukeshwar Temple
Thiruvanaikaval (also Thiruvanaikal, Jambekeswaram) is a famous Shiva temple in Tiruchirapalli (Trichy), in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The temple was built by Kocengannan (Kochenga Chola), one of the Early Cholas, around 1,800 years ago. It is located in the Srirangam island, which has the famous Ranganathaswamy temple.Thiruvanaikal is one of the five major Shiva Temples of Tamil Nadu (Panchabhoota Sthalams) representing the Mahābhūta or five great elements; this temple represents the element of water, or neer in Tamil. The sanctum of Jambukeswara has an underground water stream and in spite of pumping water out, it is always filled with water.
17

Kalahastheeswara Temple

Kalahastheeswara Temple
Srikalahasti Temple is located in the town of Srikalahasti, in the state of Andhra Pradesh, India. It is one of the most famous Shiva temples in South India, and is said to be the site where Kannappa was ready to offer both his eyes to cover blood flowing from the Siva linga before the Lord Siva stopped him and granted him mukti. Sri Kalahasti temple, situated 36 km away from Tirupati is famous for its Vayu linga, one of the Panchabhoota Sthalams, representing wind. The inner temple was constructed around 5th century and the outer temple was constructed in the 12th century by the Chola kings and the Vijayanagara kings. Vayu is incarnated as Lord Shiva and worshiped as Kalahasteeswara.
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    Urvi Shah

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    24, NIDian, Toy Designer by profession and artist by passion. I love reading, writing, cooking and travelling. Life is about using the whole box of crayons!

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