Top 3 Temples to Visit in and Around Gir While on a Family Vacation

by - 1/01/2019

Fringed by high ridges on one side and vast open grasslands on the other, Gir is famous for being the home of the Asiatic Lion. The Gir National Park is the only place outside Africa where you can see lions in their natural habitat. The local Maldhari community has demonstrated that humans can coexist peacefully with animals, even ferocious lions.
Gir was a favourite hunting ground for the royalty and the British up until 1901, when the Nawab of Junagadh undertook one of the first wildlife conservation programmes in the world to save the lions from extinction in Asia.
While the Asiatic Lion could be a major attraction, there are several other things you can do while on a family vacation in Gir. To truly explore the place, you need to experience its culture. Visiting heritage sites is a good way to begin. Heading to the temples in and around Gir is also highly recommended.

Here are the top three temples near Gir that should definitely be considered while shortlisting places to visit in Gujarat.

Girnar Temple Complex

Mount Girnar is home to 866 temples spread across five points. To reach the summit, you have to climb 10,000 steps, a true test of your devotion. The temples start to appear at the end of 4000 steps and continue until the top of the hill. The first five temples are part of a Jain temple complex. Other famous shrines include Amba Mata Temple (popular among newlyweds) and the Kalika Temple (famous for the Aghora ascetics who perform post-mortem rituals).

Timings: Start your climb early in the morning to take advantage of the pleasant weather. It takes 5-8 hours to reach the summit, but this will of course vary from person to person.

How to Reach: Girnar is about 50 km from Junagadh and is easily accessible by road or rail. Gujarat Tourism recommends travelling by bus as the best way to reach there. It takes one and a half hours to reach Junagadh from Gir. The nearest airport is Rajkot, 140 km away, and this is well-connected to major cities across India.

Kirti Mandir
Built in the memory of the father of the nation, Kirti Mandir is more of a historical spot than a religious one. A haveli until 1944, the mandir was constructed at the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi. Kirti Mandir represents six religions to commemorate Gandhiji’s ideology of treating all religions with respect. There is a small museum along with a temple where items used by him and his family have been displayed for the general public.

Timings: 9 am to 12 noon and 3 pm to 6 pm (all days)

How to Reach: The nearest railway station is Porbandar, which is well connected with Rajkot, Ahmedabad, and Mumbai. State transport and private buses ply frequently from Junagadh, Rajkot, and Ahmedabad. It takes around three and a half hours by road from Gir. The nearest airport is Porbandar.

Shri Swaminarayan Mandir
Part of a worldwide network of temples under the Bochasanwasi Akshar Purushottam Sanstha (BAPS), Shri Swaminarayan Temple in Junagadh is a must-visit for the spiritual soul. There are five aartis held through the day, with the first one starting at 6 am and the last one at 8:15 pm. The temple complex also serves delicious food.

Timings: 6 am to 9 pm (Closed 10:15 am to 11:15 am, 12 pm to 4 pm, and 6 pm to 7 pm)

How to Reach: Junagadh lies on the Ahmedabad-Veraval and Rajkot-Veraval railway lines. It is two hours away from Veraval, two and a half hours away from Rajkot, and seven and a half hours away from Ahmedabad. Bus or private car is recommended. Junagadh is one and a half hours away from Gir by road. The nearest airport is Rajkot.

Make your trip more enjoyable by booking a stay at the Club Mahindra Gir Resort in Gujarat. Equipped with all modern amenities along with comfortable and spacious rooms, it is sure to make your vacation memorable. Foodies will be thrilled by the local dishes served in the in-house restaurant.
A Club Mahindra membership allows you to enjoy all this and more. Get one at the earliest if you haven’t already. Check out the Club Mahindra reviews online for more details and personal accounts, and make reservations at Club Mahindra Gir Resort. You can be assured of a once-in-a-lifetime experience!

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  1. Have heard about lot about Gir but your article was very deep. It gave a lot of offbeat details about the place. very well written

  2. I would love to check out Girnar Temple Complex. And the place Gir seems very beautiful. Gir is in my travel list now :)

  3. I have never visited this place but ya heard a lot...reading your blog have been quite insightful ..shall plan something soon!

  4. This place is new for me would definitely share with my family as they prefer temple walk.

  5. I dint know that Gir Temple complex is so beautiful and your article is very deep, and very informative now its totally on my travel list