Jain temple, 90 km from Udaipur
Opening hours: 12:00pm-5:00pm
Address: Desuri, Ranakpur Rd, Sadri, Rajasthan
Ticket price: Indian/foreigner free/₹200, camera ₹100
Visit duration: People typically spend 1 to 1.5 hours here
Ranakpur Jain Temple, also known as Chaturmukha Dharana Vihara, is one of the highlights of Rajasthan, situated between Udaipur and Jodhpur. This four-faced temple is a Svetambara Jain temple dedicated to Tirthankara Rishabhanatha. It was named after the then king of the province, Rana Kumbha.
The Ranakpur temple bears testimony to the cultural heritage of Indian architecture. The temple is one of the largest and among the top five holiest temples in Jain culture in India.
Ranakpur Jain Temple celebrates Adinath, the first Tirthankar of the Avasarpiṇi according to Jain cosmology. A 15th-century Jain businessman, Darna Shah, a Porwal from Ghanerao began the construction of the temple after being enlightened by a celestial vision. The patronage of the temple was Rana Kumbha, then monarch of Mewar.
The construction of the temple is chronicled in a 1436 copper-plate record. An inscription on one of the pillars near the main shrine states that the chief architect of the temple was Deepa from 1439. The ceremony known as the Soma-Saubhagya Kavya was commenced by Acharya Soma Sundar Suri of Tapa Gaccha.
The architectural edifice illustrates the quintessence of austerity and non-violence. The temple is assembled following the Maru-Gurjara architecture. The Dilwara temples are renowned for their sculptural work but this temple is unique for its intricate carvings and sculptural pieces portray the unique skills of the artisans.
The structure of the edifice mirrors the divine vehicle Dharna Shah saw in his visions which is in the form of Nalini-Gulma Vimana. The temple is known as Chaumukha because it faces four directions. The architectural carvings of the temple imitate the Ancient Mirpur Jain Temple in Rajasthan
Chaturmukha temple was built employing white marble amid a forest symbolising the Tirthankaras conquest of the four cardinal directions and the cosmos.
The milk-white marble temple stretches over 48,000 square feet and comprises 5 Shikharas, 2 pillar halls and 400 columns supporting 80 domes, thus the pavilion has a total of 1444 individually intrinsic engraved pillars. Temple consists of 84 bhonyra or underground chambers built to protect Jain idols from the Mughals. It has distinctive domes, cupolas, turrets, and shikhara. The Garbhagriha or sanctum sanctorum of the temple seated the principal Chaumukha Adinatha idol facing in four directions.
The temple is renowned for its unique sculpture of Parshvanatha which is carved from a single marble slab. It illustrates 108 heads of snakes and numerous tails where there is no end to the sculpture of the tail. Alongside are standing Yaksha and Yakshi, half-human and half-snake and two elephants are cleansing Parshvanatha. The carvings also portray Ashtapad, guiding eight Tirthankaras in a row, Girnar and Nandishwar Dvipa.
The temple has four entrances that usher to Rangamandapa, a pillared gallery, or the dancing hall which is linked to a two-storeyed mandapa. The mandapa is further connected to another two-storeyed mandapa called Balana and
The sculpture of the temple incorporates elephants, people and floral and geometric patterns. The Shikhara in the temple symbolises Mount Meru, the mountain which is the pillar of Jambudvipa with a preaching hall as the Samavasarana. all the sculptures face each other. The pillars illustrate sculptures of Devakulikas and minor deities. The pillars also have 45 feet-tall engraved nymphs playing the flute in various dancing stances.
The construction employed 2785 workers and took more than 50 years to complete. There are other shrines on the campus.
Suparshvanatha temple is dedicated to Suparshvanatha and is recognised for erotic arts on the wall.
Neminatha temple is dedicated to Neminatha with stunning carvings.
Mahavir temple is dedicated to Mahavira, a 17th-century Jain temple. The temple features a huge dome with admiringly ornamented pillars and a ceiling.
Sun temple dates back to the 13th century and was rebuilt in the 15th century and is maintained by the Udaipur royal family trust.
Ranakpur Jain Temple is open throughout the week from 6:30 am to 8:15 pm. The time for the tour is 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm. The temple stays open before noon but only for prayers. No entry fee is required for Indians.
Ranakpur is located between Udaipur (2-hour drive) and Jodhpur (3-hour drive).
Shoes, all leather articles, cigarettes and food are not allowed inside the premises of the temple, so they offer the facility of a locker at the cost of ₹10 to keep your belongings.
Yes, you can click pictures of the temple. Although there is a charge for the professional camera.
Yes, you can eat at the temple but for that, you have to purchase a coupon for ₹50 from the dining hall and the time is between 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm.