Bijli Mahadev, a holy destination situated at an altitude of 2460 m, is situated 14 km south-east of Kullu and 3 km from Mansari village. A beautiful meadow with an ancient Shiva temple, famous for its stone Shiva Linga, which shatters every time a lightning strikes, only to be revived by the priest. The panoramic view of Bijli Mahadev and the Manikaran Valley of Kullu is mesmerizing. It is a favorite destination for visitors and the local population alike.
One can also visit Palani Falls which is located 6 km north of Bijli Mahadev and is a popular picnic spot. If visiting the waterfalls in March, make a stop at the fair that is held annually during this month.
As the name suggests, it is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is very popular for trekking. It is said that there is a Shiva Linga in the Bijli Mahadev Temple that was broken into pieces by lightning, which was brought back together and tied using butter by the priest of the temple. Word around it is that it repeats itself every year.
The surroundings and scenery during the trek make it breathtakingly beautiful and refreshing instead of tiring. The Bijli Mahadev Temple offers a panoramic view of the surrounding valleys of Kullu, Parvati, Garsa, and Bhuntar, leaving everyone spellbound.
Legend of Bijli Mahadev
The reason why Bijli Mahadev Temple gained prominence in India is the sacred Shiva Linga located inside the temple. According to sources, the Shiva Linga is struck by lightning and thunder as a result of which it breaks into small pieces. Local people and priests apply grain and lentil flour (sattu) along with unsalted butter on the pieces to restore the linga to its original form.
Different sources have different beliefs as to why lightning strikes the Shiva Linga. The locals believe that the lightning strike is sheer divine grace and the deity wants to protect the residents from all kinds of evil. Whereas, others believe that lightning itself is a form of a deity who has supernatural powers. The origin and real story of Bijli Mahadev Temple is still not known, but due to the above beliefs, it is considered one of the most worshiped temples in India.
How to Reach Bijli Mahadev Temple
To reach Bijli Mahadev, one has to take the path of Kullu and from there they can go towards the temple. People living in Kullu usually walk to the temple via Chansari village, about 24 km from Kullu. After reaching the village, one has to climb the stairs at the entrance of the village, which is about 3 km from the temple and has about 1000 steps. It takes 45 minutes to 1 hour to reach there. Since stairs take people straight to the temple, it is easy to go through this route. However, it is equally tiring as one has to climb several steps to reach the main temple complex.
Best Time to Visit Bijli Mahadev Temple
The months from March to September are considered the ideal time to visit the holy Bijli Mahadev Temple due to the pleasant weather. In winters, Kullu is covered with snow and there is continuous rainfall during that time. However, it is always recommended to visit the temple during Mahashivratri, when it is beautifully decorated.
Frequently Asked Questions About Bijli Mahadev Temple
Q. How difficult is the Bijli Mahadev Trek?
A – Bijli Mahadev Trek is a moderately easy trek as you only have to cover a distance of 3 kilometers. The trek starts from Kinja village and from there you will have to travel 3 km till you reach Bijli Mahadev Temple situated at an altitude of 2460 meters above sea level.
Q. How long is the Bijli Mahadev Trek?
A – Another 300 feet climb and lightning enters Mahadev’s meadow. The trek to the top of the hill can be completed in about 2-3 hours. The top of the hill offers a spectacular view of the Kullu valley and the confluence of the Beas and Parvati rivers.
Q. Bijli Mahadev is open in December?
A – The Bijli Mahadev Temple remains closed during the cold winter months due to snow and rain. Ideally, you can plan a trip from March to September.
Q. How can I go from Kullu to Bijli Mahadev?
A – One can first reach Kullu and then take a bus from the bus stand to Bijli Mahadev which goes to the nearby ‘Chansari’ village. Otherwise, one can book a private cab from the Kullu taxi stand near the bus stand and go. One has to climb stairs from ‘Chanceri’, the distance of which is about 3 km.
Q. Why is Bijli Mahadev famous?
A – Bijli Mahadev Temple is a famous temple of Lord Shiva and one of the holiest sites for Hindus. It is one of the most famous Shiva temples in the country. Hence on Mahashivratri- the auspicious night dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple is beautifully decorated.
Q. What is the history of Bijli Mahadev Temple?
A – The history of Bijli Mahadev is as interesting as this place itself. It is believed that the temple was built after killing a demon named Kulant. Legend has it that the demon Kulant wanted to submerge the valley by stopping the flow of the Beas river. He took the form of a dragon to carry out his motifs.