Ambaji Travel Guide
Shri Arasuri Ambaji Shaktipeeth Mandir
Nine sq km of sacramental settlement in the Banaskantha district of Gujarat, Ambaji is one of the 51 Shaktipeeths in India. Visited by millions of devotees every year, Ambaji is chosen as one of the six primary pilgrim places of Gujarat that is governed and undertaken by ``Pavitra Yatradham Vikas Board`` by the Gujarat Government.
Ambaji, the seat of Shri Arasuri Ambaji Shaktipeeth, is located on the Rajasthan-Gujarat border in the south-western reaches of Aravalli Range. The temple of Ambaji is located 65 km from Palanpur, 45 km from Mount Abu and 20 km from Abu Road.
Ambaji Legend and Mythology
The mythological story of Shaktipeeth is known to everyone among Hindus. During satyug (Hindu epoch which saw the birth of Lord Rama), Daksha, the father of Parvathy performed an yagya (oblation) with aim of seeking revenge from Shankara, Lord of Universe, by not inviting him to his grand sacrificial ceremony. Daksha wanted to satiate his bruised ego against the Lord as his daughter Parvathy married against the wishes of her father. Daksha`s insult infuriated Sati (Parvathy) and she reached the place where the yagna was being performed, even after being dissuaded repeatedly by the Lord. On Sati’s arrival at the venue of yagna, she was treated with great revilement by her father Daksha. Sati’s couldn’t bear the insult of her husband and gave up her life by jumping into the oblation fire. Shiva, unable to withstand his wife’s loss, broke into ginormous rage while site of the yagna was ruined by his ganas (Shiva’s army). Mad with rage, Shiva was provoked to tandava carrying the deceased body of Parvaty on his shoulders. Shiva’s annihilative Tandava started worrying the Gods, thus, the symposium of Gods and Goddesses started looking a way to save the world from destruction in Shiva’s Tandava. As a strategy, Lord Vishnu cut Parvathy’s body with his divine disc (Sudarshan Chakra) into 51 pieces that fell over 51 places in India, thereby giving rise to Shaktipeeths out of divine body of Sati.
Shri Arasuri Ambaji Shaktipeeth is the place where Parvathy’s heart fell. Mythological narrations state that it was not Sati’s heart rather breast that fell at Ambaji. However, abiding by the belief of local populace, mother goddess`s heart fell on the hilltop in Gabbar - 3 km from Amabaji. Also said and believed is that Ram and Lakshman prayed Gabbar when onlook for Seeta. They sought blessings of the Ambe Mata and were given Ajay Baan to kill Ravana. Nand and Yashoda, Lord Krishna`s parents visited Ambe Mata Temple on the tonsuring ritual (Mundan) of the Lord Krishna.
Amba Ji Temple Architecture and Antiquity
As mentioned in the legend and mythology, Ambaji Shaktipeeth antecedes Mahabharata age and is a pre-Aryan deity incorporated into their goddess and beliefs. Ambaji Temple architecture shares a great alikeness with the temples design and architectures found in Rajasthan and Gujarat border. The architectural splendour promptly attracts attention with carved citadels and a pendant figure of sculpted marble hangs from carved circular ceilings in a huge mandapa, at the heart of it is situated the Ambaji Shrine. On the top of the shrine presides a beautiful Kalash on the Shikhar.
How To Reach Ambaji
|Abu Station Road||20 KMS|
|Mount Abu||45 KMS|
|New Delhi||700 KMS|
How to Reach Ambaji by Airways: Nearest Airport is located in Ahmedabad at a distance of 80 km from Ambaji Shrine and takes 3 ½ hr drives from the place. From the railway station passengers are advised to take a taxi ad the cost would fare between Rs 2,000-2,500.
How to Reach Ambaji by Railways: Abu Road is the nearest railhead connected to Delhi and Ahmedabad. From here the taxi charges Rs 200-250.
How to Reach Ambaji by Road: There are many private as well as state buses that connect Ambaji. There are overnight buses from Mumbai and Surat too.
Ambaji Excursions & Weekend Getaways
The shrine of Ambaji is surrounded by plenitude of sacred shrine and hills that constitute further pilgrimage excursions in an ambit of 8-10 km and beyond. Given below are some of the exciting spots that dot the closest vicinage of Ambaji in consecration. Presented below are the lists of various religious sites lined up near Amba Ji Temple:-
Distance: 8 km from Ambaji Temple
Koteshwar Mahadev Temple can be fetched in the dense regions, 8 km from Ambaji Temple. Constructed on the originating source of Saraswati River, this ancient temple lets you glimpses of sacred ruins with a holy kund. The river Saraswati flows from a Gomukh (the mouth of a cow) at Koteshwar Mahadev Temple. And, there is a great legend that adds credibility to this awesome place of peace. As per the legend there was aashram of Valmiki Rishi at this spot where Valmiki, the author of Ramayana, composed the holy book of Ramayana. Later, Rana Pratap, the King of Mewad renovated this holy temple during his reign.
Distance: 1½ km from Amba Ji on Khedbrahma Highway
A beautiful, quondam Shivalaya, Kailash Tekari is located on a high altitude near Ambaji Temple. The temple is frequented by pilgrims and devotees who visit Ambaji Temple as it is too close to the shrine area. The old sanctum sanctorum of Lord Shiva in Kailash Tekari is pleasant experience after a few steps of trek. Watching the sun setting from this place is a nice see. As a recent architectural addition to Mahadev Temple at Kailash Tekari, there is a whole, new artistic stone gate at the temple entrance.
Someshwar Mahadev & Chamunda Math
Distance: 1 km from Kumbharia Jain Temple, Jetwas Village of Danta Taluka
Just 1 km away from Kumbharia Jain Temple in the village of Jetwas village of Danta Taluka, there is an ancient place of Someshawar Mahadev which is also on the water spring. Just adjacent to this temple is located Chamunda Math.
Richhadia Mahadev & Richhadia Dam
Distance:1 km from Kumbharia Jain Temple
Sprawling on the site of a Dam, Richhadia Mahadeva Temple is an undoubtedly a place of tourist’s attraction. A Shivalaya on the banks of Astakoni Vav dots the place in consecration.
Distance: 3 km from Kumbharia Jain Temple
Kumbheshawar Mahadev Temple built near Kumbharia Jain is sui generis architectural marvel that has been built on Vaastu principles, the ancient Indian Science of Architecture. There are wonderful pieces of architecture with idols Ling of Ashutosh, Jaladhari and Shivalinga.
Distance: 45 km from Ambaji
In the lap of Aravallis, Mount Abu is a serene place, and has served as a site for meditation of great saints and seers of India. Located in the backyard of Ambaji, this mountainous beauty is a treasure trove of natural attractions such as Nakki Lake, Dilwara Temple, head Quarters of Bramhakumari Foundations etc.
There are two significant places in Ambaji for the devotees visiting the shrine. The temple of Ambaji and temple on the Gabbar Hills are the most prominent places at Ambe Mata Shrine Touring Ambaji, including the Drashan, is a days affair and even less than that.
|Location||Right next to the state highway, clearly visible from a distance|
|Timing||7:30am-11:30 am, 12:30-4:30pm, 6:30-9 pm|
|Temple Trust Tel||02749-262136; 262930; 262633; 264536|
|Aarti Timings||7:30 am and 6:30 pm; Special services like Annakoot and Thal are also performed on the visitor’s demand.|
Built in shiny marbles in reverence to Goddess Ambe, the Amabaji Temple holds no image or idol of gods and goddess but a symbolic yantra. The holy yantra, rightly called as Shakti Visa Shree yantra, is a gold plated disc on which is embossed 51 sacred letters of the Hindu language. Ambaji Yantra is considered one of the most sacred Yantras and share commonalities with yantras located at Shaktipeeth Temple at Ujjain and Guhayakesari temple in Nepal. The sanctimonious yantra is kept in a cave-like scared space, which is usually called as gokh (garbha) in Gujarati, and is dressed to resemble the idol of any other Shaktipeeths. Everyday, the yantra is dressed to resemble the nine famous incarnations of Ma Durga, the mother of all Shaktis. There is a beautiful red statuette of lion facing the shrine and women worship with a red colour vermillion.
Outside the temple is a vast compound that devotees may spill into on its benches. The compound comprises of Yagna Shala, offices of temple priest, and behind the temple trust office. Due to its vastness and capacity to hold a big crowd, the area in the front of the temple is also called as Chachar Chowk. This Chowk is so intrinsic part of the temple that Amabaji temple is also called as Chachar Chowk Wali Mata.
|Location||3 km east of Ambaji|
|Timing||All day; break at lunch hour|
|Udayan Khatola Timings||8am-6pm with lunch break from 1-1:30 pm|
|Trolley Tickets||Rs 6|
Gabbar Hills, located in the south western zone of Aravalli Hills, are considered to be the original Shaktipeeth of Mata Ambe. Located on a small hillock of Arasur (Marbles) region, it is mythogically accorded that the original place where Sati’s heart fell was on Gabbar Hills. The Amabaji Temple Trust has started a 3-min trolley service to the shrine. Otherwise, one can climb up 900 steps up to the Gabbar Hills. The tiny open-air shrine here has a continuously lit flame. Additionally, the footprints and prints of her wheel chariot of Ambaji are places of sacred interest here. Next to it is the turn of Paras Pipul Tree where innumerable threads tinge the colour from brown to red, and the vermillion with bangles make it look alive as a woman.
Kumbhariya Jain Temple
|Location||2 km west of Ambaji Temple|
An interesting place to see, Kumbhariya Jain Temple is a complex of five marble temples dating back to 12th century. The village got its name as Kumbhariya after 18th when it was ruled by Rana Kumbha of Mewar. The original Neminath Temple was built by the Vimal Shah, the architect of Adinath Temple of Delwara. After Allaudin’s attack the temples were rebuilt and renovated in 1976. The other four temples are motley of Pinkish White and yellowish white marbles.
Driving Directions Ambaji
The travelers who want to travel to Ambaji can reach this holy place by roadways, railways and airways. The nearest airport to Ambaji is Sardar Vallbahbhai Airport International Airport which 180 Kms away from the airport. Abu road station is the nearest railway station to Ambaji. This railway station is just 20 Kms away from the the Amba ji temple. The state highway of Ambaji connects this holy place to the different cities of India.
Kiomoi Must Do`s
The IHr must do`s for the Ambaji region are as follows:
*The travelers must make a visit to the Ambaji temple.
*A visit to the near by temples must not be missed by any chance.
*Kamakshi Temple, Kailash Hill Sunset, Mansarovar, Koteshwar are the temples situated near the Amba ji.
*Every year during the Purnima days, pilgrims in huge numbers visit this sanctum. Big carnivals are organized in the whole region.
*The travelers must make a visit to the Gabbar Hill which is just 5 Kms away from Ambaji.
*On Saraswati river near to Gabbar hill, the travelers can go for the boat ride.
Udan Khatola, Trolley Service from Ambaji
Maa Ambaji Udankhatolaat to the Gabbr Hills is new trolley service started since September 1998 where it takes 3 mins to reach t Gabbar Hills.
Timings of Udankhatola: 8.30 am to 5.30 pm
|Single||Rs. 75||One time, to and fro ride|
|Students||Rs.525||One time, to and fro ride for students in group of eight and more|
|Concession||Rs. 45||One to and fro journey for people with special need|
|Annual Pass||Rs. 540||Annual charges for once in a year journey.|
|Free Rides for |
Children below 110 cm height
For More information and advance block bookings of tickets, contact
Maa Ambaji ,
Gabbar Hills, Ambaji, Gujarat. Phone: 02749-264520
Ambaji - Festivals & Events
Bhadrapadi Poonam or Bhadrapadi Poornima is celebrated expansively on the full moon day of each month according to the Vikram Samvat year of the Hindu calendar at the Ambaji Temple. A huge affair for the devotees and administrative authorities, alike, Bhadrapadi Poonam is the time of people’s gathering and Mata’s worship in the temple precincts with Lok Mela. Even so the festival is organized every month but the months of Asho, Kartik, Chaitra & Bhadrapad is regarded important months of the Bhadrapadi Poonam where the days are considered as holy days for the worship of Shakti Swaroopini Mata Ambica. The four day festival is considered as very auspicious and is accompanied by pomp of traditional Garbha dances, along with the religious rituals of hawan (oblation), darshans, bhajans (holy versus) and many other local as well as religious functions. On the main festival day Ambaji temple receives a good crowd of 15 lakhs of people, who come to pay their homage to the Goddess by padyatra sangha (pilgrimage on foot).
Other Festivals & Events
Some other festivals celebrated in Ambaji Mata Temple are Poshud Punam (Birthday of Mata Ambaji), Chaitra Navratri (Jai Ambe Ma Akhand Dhoon, Shravan Vad Teras to Amas (Yagna Havan and Annakoot), Bhadarvi Poonam (Big Religious Fair for 4 days), Ashwin Navaratri.
(Garba in Chachar Chowk for all nine days and a Havan Yagna by Royal Family of Danta State, as well as a yagna by SAAMDT on Aatham). Moreover Janmasthami, Dashera and Rathyatra are also celebrated in Ambaji.
Arasuri Ambe Mata temple is surrounded with plenitudes of hotels, guest houses, lodges, dharamshalas and other staying facilities for the pilgrims. In such an initiative to aid the tourists and pilgrims have been taken by the Arasuri Ambaji Mata Devasthan Trust whereby the trust has constructed lodges, guesthouses, dharamsalas, holiday homes and bhojanalayas across the temple town of the Ambaji. All these accommodations are replete with most modern amenities and facilities to help the tourists have a comfortable and religious stay.
The lodging and boarding facilities is efficiently administered by the Mataji Devsthanam Trust and is provided with traditional Gujarati Cuisine and breakfasts.
Besides, the Ambaji Mata Devsthanam lodging facilities, there are many small and big lodging facilities in Amba Ji. Some of these hotels are Ambaji International Hotel, Sunrise Palace Hotel, Hotel Green Park, Akashganga and Holiday Home.
Weather in Ambaji
The weather in Ambaji varies according to the seasons. Summers here are extremely hot. The temperature during the summers is around 42 degree Celsius. The nights gets warmer and the strong heat waves engulfs the whole region. The travelers should avoid going to the Ambaji from May to June.
In the monsoon season the region gets the moderate rain falls. The weather in the months of July to September gets hot and sultry. Ambaji during these months gets misty.
From October to March, the weather gets invigorating. The temperature during these months ranges from 25 degree Celsius and 10 degree Celsius as the minimum temperature. October to March is also the best time when the vacationers can make a visit to Ambaji. Occasional fog can be seen coming in this season.
The tourists offices near to Amabaji are as follows:
Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Ltd
Nigam Bhavan, Sector 16
The useful facts related to Amba Ji are are as follows:
Important Temples: Shri Arasuri Ambaji Shakteepeeth popularly known as Ambaji.
Location: On the Rajasthan-Gujarat board, in the Sotuh western reaches of Aravalli Range.
Distances:180 Km North of Ahemdabad, 47Kms Sout5h South East of Mt Abu
Route from Ahemdabad: NH 8 to Himmatnagar via Prantij; state highway to Ambaji via Ldar, Khed Brahama, Agio and Koteshwar. Route from Abu Road NH14 and SH Junction; State highway to Ambaji.
Holiday Check List
Before going to Ambaji, travelers must keep in consideration few points which are as follows:
*Empty your letter box
Fix up security for your house or ask some one to look after
Water your plants and ask some one to take care of it
Ask your newspaper vendor and milkman to stop supply
Clear out the fridge.
Switch off the electric appliances
Empty out kitchen, waste/dust-bin and kitchen area
Lock doors and windows
Recharge your mobile or carry coupons
Carry traveller’s cheque or ATM cards
Pay all due bills
Turn off gas/water/
Call up the taxi driver/railway station/hotels and other important numbers to confirm and re-confirm
Rail Tickets and travel documents should be checked twice
Packing your luggage
Extra pair of socks
Jumper and track suits
Brochures or holiday book
Banks and ATMs in Ambaji
The Banks and ATMs in Ambaji are as follows:
Address: Axis Bank, Raj complex, Chikhli
UTI Bank Address: VALSAD (Gujarat) : Shop No.1,2 &4 ,Doctor House, Halar