Gujarat

Modhera Sun Temple In Gujarat – Beyond Majestic Architecture

A proud symbol of the glorious Chaulukya dynasty, situated on the bank of Pushpavati river, Modhera Sun Temple woke up to instant stardom, owing to its exquisite Hindu Sun Temple. Dating back to 1026-27 CE, this granite temple features an architectural design like no other. Gujarat is full of surprises and this ruin draws connoisseurs and suckers of history and fine art from every corner of the world. We too were captivated by the bounteous beauty of Modhera Sun Temple. Modhera Sun Temple is beyond majestic architecture but a marvelous witness of ancient India and culture.

When you realize this jaw-dropping structure and the years of hard work were plundered with one stroke of destruction it would leave you anguished.

So, whenever you travel to Gujarat, do not forget to add this beauty to your list. Reason?

Let’s give you a glimpse of it…

 

An Ode to Beauty – Modhera Sun Temple

Modhera flourished in its time under the rule of the Chalukyas Dynasty. The temple was built by King Bhimdev I of the Solanki dynasty during 1026-27 AD in Maru- Gurjara style or Chalukyas style. This temple was plundered with one stroke of destruction by Mohammed Ghazni and the deity Sun idol was removed by him. However, King Bhima successfully impeded Ghazni’s invasion and returned to power, he ordered the reconstruction of the temple.

The whole temple is created under one cut without using any lime to fill the gap. Every wall of the temple is carved with detailed descriptions of our culture, from Ramayana to Mahabharata, from human lifecycle to erotic sculpture. The entire temple is divided into three segments.

The Surya Kunda

The Surya Kund, which is a deep, 100 sq meter tank right in the front of the temple, was earlier used to store pure water used for worship. Also known as Rama Kund, this is stepwell-styled water that covered an area of 21,000 sq. feet.

The Sabha Mandapa 

The assembly halls or sabha mandapa used to be the place for religious gatherings, worships, religious functions, and performances in the Solanki dynasty. The roof is brilliantly backed by 52 carved pillars which represent 52 weeks of the year. This magnificent carved ceiling represents our past glorious Indian creation and cultural values. The hall has an octagonal shape which is open on all sides. The pillars of the hall depicted Krishna Leela, Lord Krishna with Gobardhan Parvat on his fingertips, Draupadi’s Swayamvar and so many intriguing epics.

The Guda Mandapa

The Guda Mandapa or the Sanctum Sanctorum used to bear the idol of the Sun before being evacuated by Ghazni. The sanctum is designed in such a way the idol of the Sun got the first glimpse of the Sun at equinoxes. One can easily observe twelve different facets of the sun for each month on the wall. It is believed that the walk from Kunda to Guda Mandapa is observed as the exceeding journey from human life to death to Moksha.

Modhera sun temple

Surprisingly, the Archaeological Survey of India has done a great job maintaining the place, offering a Light and Sound Show and events sometimes.

 

Interesting Facts about Modhera Sun Temple

  • Modhera Sun Temple was built on tropic of cancer and its entrance facing east way. The first ray of the sun always falls directly on the idol (no idol now) on the equinox day.
  • In the Skanda Purana and Brahma Purana, you can find Modhera mentioned as a Dharmaranya or the forest of righteousness.
  • At the time of the building no plaster or limestone was used to join the gap, the pillars are structurally balanced to keep the temple up.
  • In 2014, Modhera Sun Temple entered the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • The Sabha Mandap stands on 52 pillars, signifying the 52 weeks in a year. There are carvings of the sun on the walls of Mahabharata, Ramayana, and Purana also it shows its unity with air, water, earth, and space.
  • It is said that after killing Ravana, Sri Ram Chandra came here to escape from Brahmhattya and took a bath in the Kunda. From then it is called Rama Kunda too.

Modhera sun temple

 

Timing & Entry Fees

The timings to visit Modhera Sun Temple is from 6 AM in the morning to 6 PM in the evening. The best time to visit is from October to March as the weather is great at that time.

The entry fees are 25 INR per person for (Indian, SAARC, and BIMSTEC) nationals, 300 INR for Foreign nationals, and Children below 15 years are no entry fees.

If you buy online then the fees are 20 INR per person for (Indian, SAARC, and BIMSTEC) nationals, 250 INR for Foreign nationals.

 

How to Reach Modhera Sun Temple

By Road

The distance from Ahmedabad to Modhera is 101 km and it takes around 6 to 7 hours by road. From Mehsana it is 26 km, and it takes 1 hour.

By Train

The nearest station is Mehsana from where it takes 30 minutes to reach the temple.

By Air

The nearest Airport is Ahmedabad, from there it takes 6 to 7 hours by road.

 

Royal Safari Camp – For a Heritage Stay

No holiday is complete without that perfect stay to call home! For us, it is the Royal Safari Camp. The enchanting heritage property has everything you need to have a great time. Amazing Gujarati decorating rooms, super delicious food, great location, beautiful outdoor areas to lose in the detox zone, reclining chair, and peace. One would need two uninterrupted days to fully enjoy every single facility of this pleasing property, handled by a staff that is both prompt and courteous.  They can arrange a nearby safari too.

Take a Virtual Tour of Modhera Sun Temple

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37 thoughts on “Modhera Sun Temple In Gujarat – Beyond Majestic Architecture

  1. As I love visiting UNESCO World Heritage sites I have read about the Modhera Sun Temple. But I have not seen such beautiful pictures as in your blog post. If I go to Gujarat the Modhera Sun Temple is very high on my list of places to visit.

  2. What an amazing temple. And seemingly so quiet… how come there are so few people about?

    Will they be planning some major celebration in 2026 to commemorate 1,000 years since its construction?

    1. I am sure they will, though I do not have much information about it. The place is located a little away from the main city, so this part is unexplored by a major population.

  3. A very nice post on Modhera Sun temple in Gujarat. The photographs of the temple architecture with lights is amazing. Also thank you for sharing that it’s also a UNESCO world heritage site and it’s mythological significance as Dharmaranya.
    And also how it’s built on Tropic of Cancer helping us calculate the equinox.It reminds me of the Konark sun temple in Orissa.

  4. The Mother Sun Temple has three very different and interesting sections. And amazing to hear that the 52 pillars are matched to the 52 weeks. This temple looks beautiful and worth visiting when the weather is great.

  5. It really looks jaw dropping in the picture. It is so lit up. I would love to see the 52 pillars. The morninga would make the ambience different as the location is also rustic.

  6. Wow! Modhera Sun Temple is gorgeous!! I love all the details put into the design of the temple, the 52 pillars symbolizing the weeks of the year and especially the first rays of light shining on the idol. Thank you for introducing me to this

  7. Seeing the structures even just from photos is enough to garner my respect and admiration. Salute to the people who have protected this treasure. I can just imagine going there in the morning when the sunlight gleams off the gold of the temple. Must be a beautiful sight!

  8. Wow, the Modhera Temple is so incredibly intricate! It’s even more impressive knowing that there was no plaster or limestone used and instead the structure itself is so well built to hold itself in place. And even after being plundered, it’s simply admirable that the local people saw the value to protect this monument.

  9. There are not too many Sun Temples in India. Ancient architecture is my poison. Was thrilled to read your post and look at the photos. Sheer grandeur!

  10. I used to live in Sanand and it was close from there but when ever I planned to visit it something or other had happened. But yes indresh it is beautiful and I heard so many stories about that place.

  11. Modhera Sun Temple is a spectacular temple. It looks amazing and your post is very informative. Unfortunately, when I traveled in Gujarat I did not visit this as I was not aware of it.

    1. From the time I have seen your post about this temple. I have been wanting to go and have been planning my trip to Gujarat. Hopefully I can plan something around December.

  12. I heard so much about this Sun temple, hence planning to visit it during my next visit to Gujarat. So saved your post for the further reference in future

  13. Looks serene and awe-inspiring! When I see such beautiful places tucked in all the corners of our country, I wonder why people hype foreign trips. Enjoyed reading about the mythological significance, too.

    1. Lovely post as usual Pamela. Looks like my list of places to visit in Gujarat is just growing. As of now this looks like fortnight trip to br planned if i have to cover all the places 😀. And the photos are breathtaking! Incredible India, truly.

  14. The photos look so pretty. I have had a chance to visit the temple when my husband was posted in Gujarat. It is really lovely. I would love to visit it again. This time, I will surely keep your recommendations in mind.

  15. What a great temple it is! The building is built with scientific accuracy and important historical incidents are linked to it. Ram Kunda makes it a religious gem. Thanks for introducing Modhera Sun Temple to us:)

  16. The Concept of Royal Safari is so good , away from daily routine , in the lap of nature , there are so many things to discover and enjoy.

  17. The pictures are breath taking. I have heard of Modhera Sun Temple but since it is away from Ahmedabad it has always been dropped from the iterinary. Next time I will make plans to directly go there. Thanks for sharing such stunning pics.

  18. Lovely pics, Pamela. They look so breathtaking. India has so many hidden gems waiting to be explored. Thank you for bringing them to us. I didn’t get a chance to visit the temple when my father was posted in Gujarat. But hope to visit someday.

  19. It’s posts like these that make you question the cynic inside you. So much culture, history, mythology packed up in one place. I really liked the fact of how it’s located on Tropic of cancer and how first ray of sun was supposed to fall on the idol. Makes me think about the thoughtfulness that would’ve gone into building such structures.

  20. Modhera Sun Temple seems to be holding the culture so well in past years, sad to know that no idol is placed in the temple. The science and art is truly appreciable by witnessing the temple.

  21. Modhera Sun Temple looks so beautiful, and it looks more so during the evening time. I really like your picture in front of the water tank. Can’t wait to visit the place.

  22. Such a beautiful and serene place, and so well.dpcumented and explained.
    After reading your post, this is definitely a noiss place fore during my next trip to that area.

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