Akshardham temple, Delhi
Akshardham temple was inaugurated in noida in November of 2005. This massive temple has since become the biggest tourist attraction in Delhi. Made with traditional Hindu architectural designs, it is a spiritual abode for Hindus, even though the temple is recognized as a Hindu shrine, visitors from all religious background visits to see this marvelous creation of human. The temple is said to be the largest temple complex ever built in the last 800 years of the history of India. The temple is open to all regardless of religious preferences or ethnicity. With over 234 magnificent sculpted pillars with gods and goddess that looks elegant as they are carved into the walls and pillars of this architectural phenomenon. The temple has also registered its name in Guinness book of world record for being world’s largest Hindu comprehensive temple. It symbolizes harmony, happiness and promotes spirituality.
Akshardham temple is located in north of India, in the capital city New Delhi, Noida MOR, Akshardham setu, new delhi-110092.
Akshardham temple is open to all from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. the temple is closed on all Mondays.
How to reach-
The temple is easily accessible through various transport facilities. Tourists can reach there by-
By air- The Akshardham temple is just 21km from indira Gandhi international airport. Tourists can easily book a direct cab or taxi from outside the airport to the temple, or can take a ride to the New Delhi metro station as Delhi metro is well connected all over the city and will drop you directly at the temple.
By metro- The nearest metro station to the temple is the Akshardham metro station on blue line, it doesn’t matter where you board the metro from in Delhi, you just have to get off at the Akshardham metro station on blue line and it will take only a few minutes to reach on foot. The distance between the temple and metro station is 350 meters.
By rail- A train journey is also possible through the accessible link to the railway lines in the city. Tourists can reach the temple through the three major railway lines-
Railway station distance
Hazrat Nizzamuddin – 6 km
New Delhi- 11 km
Old Delhi- 10 km
By road- tourists can also travel by road, the roads in Delhi are well built and connected to the temple. Tourist can enjoy the view of green and clean Delhi roads and the historic architecture of Delhi by travelling through road.
Within the complex of the temple there are various things to see, the adventure starts as soon as you step inside the complex.
Swagatam- as soon as the visitors enter the gates of the temple they are greeted with the spiritual ten doorways that symbolizes the ten directions mentioned in the rig ved, the ten directions represent the goodness of the universe which is coming in from all the directions and how one should open all the doorways in our mind and soul to accept the virtuousness existing around us from all the directions, then comes the bhakti dwar, the visitors’ center, mayor dwar and charnarvind (holy footprints). Bhakti dwar represents the bhakti (devotion) towards the gods. Then comes in the visitor’s center where volunteers will be present to assist you through all that is there to do inside the complex and will also help you in planning your time as well. The entire center is decorated with holy bells greeting the visitors as they enter. Then comes the mayur dwar, here visitors will get to see the intricately carved mayurs (peacocks) into the walls and pillars of the dwar. Between the two mayur dwars lies the holy footprints of bhagwan swaminarayan that has 16 holy symbols carved into them.
Mandir- the mandir is the soul of the akshardham complex and an abode to the gods and goddess, the architecture of the mandir is one of a kind and is inspired by the ancient Indian architectural style which was mentioned in the ancient and medieval Indian treatise, according to the architectures there are ‘234 intricately carved pillars, 9 ornate domes, 20 quadrangle spires and 20,000 statues of India’s Hinduism’s spiritual personalities. The mandir reaches 141.3 feet into the sky, spans 316 feet in width, and is 356 feet long’ which makes it worthwhile. Mandir is open for darshan from 9:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and arti timings are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Abhishek mandap- Abhishek mandap is the holy abode of lord neelkantha varni where the ritual of bathing the lord neelkanthas varni’s murti with holy water takes place every day. Visitors can also participate in the ritual. Arti starts at 6:30 p.m.
Exhibitions- The exhibition in the akshardham temple will give you an otherworldly experience. The mix of ancient Hindu values and culture with modern day technology makes the exhibition exciting and indulging. The exhibitions take place in the three large halls of the complex: Sahajanand Darshan – Hall of Values; Neelkanthas Darshan – Large Format Film; Sanskruti Darshan – Cultural Boat Ride. The exhibitions are well informative and explanatory. The visitors will learn not only about the ancient Hindu culture and values but also experience a glimpse into the life of ancient India which is very artistically portrayed with the help of modern technology.
Adults (Age 12+): 220 INR
Seniors (Age 60+): 17 INR
Children (Age 4 – 11): 120 INR
Children (Below Age 4): FREE
TIMINGS: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. (ticket counter closes at 6 p.m.)
Water show- as the sun starts to set; the first water show of the evening begins. The 24 minute water show is breathtaking in the moon lit evening as the color studded water lazers make the show worthwhile and leave the visitors in awe. The show tells the story of kena Upanishads of Hinduism with the help of video projectors and multi-colored lazers that looks enthralling.
Adults (Age 12+): 80 INR
Seniors (Age 60+): 80 INR
Children (Age 4 – 11): 50 INR
Children (Below Age 4): FREE
Best time to visit-
The akshardham temple is open all year long to everyone.
Food eateries- fresh vegetarian food is available inside the complex of the temple at the premvati food court.
Last month I visited akshardham temple after listening to all the hype. The temple is truly mesmerizing and unique in its architecture. The temple is facilitated with well maintained paid parking. The first thing that you’ll notice when you enter the complex is the grandiosity of the gates, in the visitors center you’ll see the bells decorated on the ceiling and volunteers ready to help you with everything including managing your time inside the complex. The visitors centre also had working ATM machines. One thing that I was really amazed by was that you can also get free wheelchair services inside the complex with a refundable deposit of just 100 INR. The entire complex is packed with complex and elaborated designs and motifs that represented the Hindu culture which is thousands of years old as is shown in the architectural designs as well. The mandirs and gardens inside the complex tell the story of ancient India and how it has inspired the modern outlook of Indians. There was a lot to see and explore, every little detail and motif was telling a different story of spirituality and divinity and how one can reach closer to god through submitting ourselves into more powerful energy. The exhibitions were amazing representation of the past and present of Indian society and how far we have come along as a nation. The modern techniques used in the exhibition were commendable and engaging. As the evening sun was setting the waster show began, the show was an exhilarating experience, and the depiction of ancient stories through water and colors was creating a sight for the visitors. The entire experience was enlightening, educational as well as fun and entertaining.