Mount Abu, nestled amidst lush forested hills of Aravalli’s is the only hill station of Rajasthan and is equally important for pleasure seekers and devoted pilgrims. It is said to be named after serpent Arbuda (Abu in short), the son of the Himalayas, who came here to rescue Nandi, the wahan Dilwara Temple (Mount) of Lord Shiva.

Dilwara Jain Temple (3 km.): Delightful Dilwara (Devalwara) or the ‘Place of Temples’ is the major attraction of Mount Abu. The world-renowned temples are noted for excellent architecture and exquisite carvings. The main group consists of five temples, which were built between the 11th and 12th centuries. The pure white marble temple of Vimal Sah or Vimal Vasahi was built in 1031 and is the oldest of the temple group. It is dedicated to Adinath or Rishabdeo, the first Jain Tirthankara and is noted for its impressive 48 pillared mandapa (portico) in front of the main sanctum. The eight central pillars of the mandapa form an octagon, which holds up a dome with circular rims and ornately carved pendant like roor. Along the intricately carved corridor are s niches studded with statues of the Jain Tirthankaras. The 13th-century shrines of Vastupala and Tejapala are dedicated to Neminatha. the 22nd-second Jain Tirthankara. The pattern of arrangement of the sanctum and statues is almost similar to the temple of Vimal Sah. The Chaumukha temple, dedicated to Parasavnath and the Adinath temple lies across the road.

Nakki Lake: This shinning ‘jewel’ of the Abu hills is believed to be dug out by the gods with their nails (nakh) and thus the name Nakki. It is perhaps the only artificial lake in the country, at an altitude of 1200 mts. above sea level. Boating facilities are available and one may choose motorboats, ordinary boats, shikaras, and paddle boats to explore the serene waters of Nakki. The embankments of the lake are dotted with magnificent summer villas of various erstwhile princely states of the country. Most of them have been converted into guest houses or hotels.

Toad Rock: The magnificent rocky outcrop resembling a “Toad’ overlooks the placid waters of the Nakki lake.

Temple of Raghunathji: The sacred shrine near the Nakki lake is associated with the great preacher Ramanandji. He installed an image of Shri Raghunathji (Lord Rama), at the temple in the 14th century.

Gau Mukh Temple (4 km): This ancient site near the Nakki lake is of immense religious importance. There is an old tank that is filled by a natural spring, flowing through a spout, shaped like a cow’s head, hence the name Gau (cow) Mukh (mouth). According to a legend, the famous yagna (sacrifice) of legendary sage Vashishtha was performed here, which created the four Agnikula’ or Fireborn Rajput clans to protect the earth from the demons. A splendidly sculpted hill temple of Arbuda, the mighty serpent is located nearby, amid scenic surroundings. There is also a marble statue of Nandi, who was rescued by Arbuda from a chasm.

Sunset Point (2 kms.): The splendid sunset point lies to the south-west of Nikki lake

Honeymoon Point (Anadra Point) (2.5 km): It affords great views of the verdant valley and superb plains, especially during the sunset time.

Om Shanti Bhawan or Universal Peace Hall: This impressive building houses the famous Brahma Kumari’s World Spiritual University. It has a big hall devoid of any pillars and can a big accommodate a gathering of 3,500 people.

Adhar Devi or Arbuda Devi Temple (2 kms.): The temple beautifully carved out of a huge rock can be reached by a flight of 360 steps. It is also a popular tourist spot.

Government Museum & Art Gallery: It was set up in 1962, within the premises of Raj Bhawan. A rich collection of archaeological finds dating back to the 8th – 12th century, weapons, musical instruments, ornaments and garments, miniature paintings, sculptures and specimens of wood carving, etc. are exhibited here.

Mount Abu Sanctuary: It sprawls over a lush area of 288 sq. km., comprising of subtropical evergreen forests. The cool breeze laden with the fragrance of wild roses and jasmine sweeps through the sanctuary making it a paradise for nature lovers. It is home to animal species like leopard, sloth bear, wild boar, sambar, chinkara and langur. There are also more than 250 species of exotic birds.

Trevor’s Tank (3 kms.): The tank amidst densely wooded hills teems with a rich variety of beautiful birds. The most commonly seen birds are pheasants, peacocks, and partridges.

Around Mount Abu:

Achalgarh (10 kms.)

The 14th-century fort built by Rana Kumbha of Mewar is famous for the temples ofAchaleswar Mahadev and the Kantinath Jain.

Guru Shikar (15 kms.)

Guru Shikhar or the saint’s pinnacle rises to a height of 1772 meters., and is the highest peak of the Aravalli’s. It has a small Shaivite shrine and temple of Dattatreya. A bird’s eye view of the sylvan surroundings can be enjoyed from here.

Abu Road (28 km

The medieval town is set at the foot of Mount Abu. One can buy pure vermilion (sindoor or kumkum), incense, oil lamps, beautiful marble images and fragrant flowers here. Polished stones of jasper, agate, cornelian, amethyst and necklaces or bracelets of semi-precious stones are available at a reasonable price. Exquisitely carved ivory or bone statues, bowls and ornaments, scarves and skirts, printed or embroidered with mirror work are other worth purchasing articles.

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