Kolhapur Mahalaxmi Temple : Place of 3.5 Shakti Peeth!

kolhapur mahalaxmi temple images photos
Beautiful buildings of temple!

Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple in Maharashtra is a sacred spot. It has a vital religious and historic importance in the history of Kolhapur. This temple is dedicated to the goddess of fortune, wealth and prosperity – Mahalaxmi.

Best Time To Visit: Devotees can visit the temple in Maharashtra all year round.

Location: Mahadwar Road, Kolhapur, Maharashtra (India) – 416002.

Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple Information

Shri Mahalakshmi temple of Kolhapur is among the most honored religious spots in the Maharashtra. This temple is dedicated to goddess Mahalaxmi (wife of lord Vishnu) who locally known as Amba Bai. According to various Puranas of Hinduism, it is one of the Sade-Tin (3.5) Shakti Peethas in Maharashtra. Shakti peetha is a place related with Shakti (the goddess of power). The temple is a magnificent example of Hemandpanthi architectural style which is an ancient art of India.

[caption id="attachment_837" align="aligncenter" width="400"]mahalaxmi temple kolhapur images photos Sculptures on temple![/caption]

©Omkar Shinde

Various ancient holy books (Puranas) have mentioned about this temple. Legends believe that along with the goddess, the Lord Vishnu also stays in this area. Kolhapur is also known as Dakshin Kashi so Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple has significant religious importance. The temple is situated near the old palace museum in the heart of the city. The contribution of great kings like Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj and Shri Rajaram Maharaj towards the development of this temple and overall Kolhapur was very vital.

History

According to archeologists, this temple was first constructed in Chalukya period i.e.550 AD to 660 AD. In the 8th century, one earthquake destroyed the original temple. One can see the ruins of that original temple around the present temple. The current temple was under the rule of different dynasties since many centuries. Devotees can see various architectural styles from Shilaharas to Marathas within kolhapur mahalaxmi temple complex.

[caption id="attachment_835" align="aligncenter" width="400"]mahalaxmi temple kolhapur photo sharing carvings of temple wall![/caption]

©Ajay Bagul

In the year 1960, Mr. Lohiya did the complete makeover of Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple. Since then temple complex has 5 main temples, 5 Hemadpanthi style tops, 7 Deepastambhas, 35 small-big temples and 20-25 shops. The temple takes its name from goddess Mahalakshmi. The idol of Shri Mahalaxmi was kept hidden till 1722 or 200 years to protect it from the attack of Muslim rulers.

Architecture

The idol of the goddess in Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple is mounted on a stone platform. It is carved in black stone, has four arms and crown made of gemstone. There are 4 different objects in each hand of Goddess representing a symbolic value. The lower right hand, upper right hand, upper left hand and lower left-hand holds a mhalunga (a citrus fruit), a large mace (kaumodaki), a shield (khetaka) and a bowl (panpatra) respectively. The height of idol is 3 feet and weight about 40 kgs.

There is an interesting sculpture of 64 dancing girls outside the Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple. A carved stone lion (the vahana of the goddess) stands behind the idol. This idol is very unique & about 5000 years old. Temple has two storied building and is star-shaped. There are idols of Goddess Mahakali on the north side, Goddess Mahasaraswati on the south side and Lord Ganapati on the 2nd floor. Normally the idols of Hindu temples face north or east direction. But the idol of this temple faces to west (Pashchim) direction which is unusual.

[caption id="attachment_836" align="aligncenter" width="400"]kolhapur mahalaxmi temple images photos Beautiful buildings of temple![/caption]

©Sumit Bhaskar Jagtap

Temple Complex

Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple complex consists of five towers and the main hall. The walls of the temple complex have beautiful carvings and sculptures. Thousands of devotees visit this temple every day. Festivals like Chaitra Pournima and Navratri are celebrated enthusiastically over here. There is a festival of Sun rays known as “Sanj Soorya Kirnotsav”  which is celebrated when the sun rays fall directly on the deity’s Mahalakshmi idol at the time of sunset. One small open window is there on the western wall of the temple from where rays of sun fall on the face of idol for 3 days in POUSH (Marathi month). After these 3 days, sun rays never fall on the idol.

Small small temples of Tulajabhavani, Krishna, Sheshshayi, Vithoba, Harihareshwar, Dattatray, Mukteshwari, Shiva, Kashivishveshwar, Ram, Radhbhavani and many more exhibits excellent art works. Garud Mandap, Ashtdikpal mandap, Jain Tirthankar, Navgrah Mandap  & Sheshshayi are worth seeing.  Navagrah Mandap shows a magnificent ancient Indian artwork. It is one of the must visit places in Kolhapur.

There are 4 entrance gates to the temple and the main gate is on the west side. North side entrance has a big bell whose sound can be heard up to 4 miles radius. It is one of the biggest bells in India. Kashi and Manikarnika  are spiritual spots on the north side of Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple. Fountains and lamps are there in the temple yard area.

How To Reach Kolhapur Mahalaxmi Temple

As Kolhapur is one of the popular cities in Maharashtra, you can easily reach here via road, railway or air. ST and private buses ply regularly to Kolhapur from all across the Maharashtra.

  • Nearest Rail Station: Kolhapur station is the nearest railhead to the temple. The station is just 5 kms away from the temple.
  • Nearest Airport: Kolhapur airport (15 kms away) is the closest airport to reach Mahalaxmi temple Kolhapur.

Timing: Temple remains open to devotees between 04:00 am to 10:00 pm.

Eating Stuff: There are many restaurants in Kolhapur which serve delicious food dishes.

Hotels in Kolhapur: Various hotels are available in Kolhapur for accommodation purpose.

Attractions Nearby Kolhapur Mahalaxmi temple: 

Map To Reach:

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Kolhapur mahalaxmi temple pulls a huge number of devotees every day and a must visit spot in Kolhapur. 

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About Kunal Patil 186 Articles
Hey guys..I am Kunal Patil! A travel blogger, author & founder of this blog from Mumbai. I am trying to show you the popular as well as unexplored leisure spots in the Maharashtra via this blog! Do subscribe!