Sudama Mandir in Porbunder: The Only Temple in Dedication to Sudama (2021)
The Sudama Mandir Temple is in Porbandar. It is very popular with devotees who flock to it all through the year. If you plan to visit this temple, make sure that you read this article to know what to expect. The exact address of the Sudama Mandir is Sudama Puri, Bhatia Bazar Old, Porbandar, Gujarat 360575.
Porbandar plays an important part in the history and Indian culture because experts claim that it is the birthplace of Sudama, the childhood friend of Lord Krishna. The Sudama temple in Porbunder is popular as it is the only temple dedicated to Sudama, Lord Krishna’s friend. Sudama is such a fascinating character because he is not a divine entity but a friend. Therefore, this temple is one of the very few that are in dedication to a human being. He is also one of the very few characters in mythology who are not the incarnation of any spiritual deity and yet, has an integral part to play in Indian mythology.
The Sudama Mandir Experience
In the 1900s, the Bhavsinghji Madhavisinghji of Porbandar built a Sudama Temple on the remains of another from the 12th Century. It is one of the smaller temples in the Gujarat area, and it’s a single structure with an outside area with pillars and a sanctum sanctorum. The entire temple is of white marble. According to locals, it is a revered location and a favorite of many married royals in the area.
One popular place here is the maze. According to the locals, the devotees can atone for their sins by walking through the maze.
The sanctum sanctorum has three idols of silver, one of Sudama, one of Lord Krishna, and another of Susheela Rani, Sudama’s wife.
Unlike the other temples that we see in Maharashtra and Gujarat, the carvings on the walls and pillars have colorful icons, like those of guards and other people. On the veranda, there’s a statue of Lord Krishna hugging Sudama. Also, you will see pictures and images depicting Sudama’s visit to Lord Krishna and the aftermath.
The Sudama Mandir is a unique temple in India because it is one of the few ones that aren’t in dedication to someone who had celestial powers. Therefore, it makes sense to visit the temple and take experience. You can spend around an hour looking at the various activities in the temple and taking in the calmness and serenity that it offers to its devotees. The Sudama temple surrounds itself with lush greenery, and there’s a water body nearby, so the entire experience becomes very serene.
The temple also gives you a glimpse of the Gujarati art and architecture with the lifesize idols portraying the meet between Lord Krishna and Sudama and the photographs depicting their time together.
Places to Visit Near Sudama Mandir
Sudama Temple is in Porbandar, which is also the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi. So, the place has a rich history and connects to the Indian freedom struggle. There are several places in and around Porbandar that you can visit. You can visit the Sabarmati Ashram, and the exact place where the Mahatma was born.
If you plan to drive for about two hours, you can visit the Sudama bridge, which is over the Gomti river and connects the Jagat temple to mainland Dwarka.
Porbandar is a tourist hub, so several hotels offer accommodation, but the prices might be a bit higher, making your entire Porbandar a higher budget outing. You will find hotels in Porbandar that offer you accommodation for anything between 1500 INR to 7000 INR.
If you plan to book the rooms online, make sure that you read the rules and regulations and fine print of the hotels. Some hotels might have rather specific rules. In some cases, hotels don’t allow pets inside the room. Therefore, you should check with the hotel before booking. Also, the kind of cuisine that you wish for might be a problem with some hotels. It makes sense to contact the hotel and clear all doubts before you make that online transaction.
You have the Barda Wildlife Sanctuary and the Kirti Mandir that you can visit. You can also visit the Porbandar Bird Sanctuary. The Kirti Mandir is an important part of Indian history because it’s the exact place where Mahatma Gandhi was born. The visit is a great experience because it also gives you an idea of how a Gujarati house looked back in the day. When you visit the place, you can see the exact spot of Gandhi’s mother’s bed.
Looking to chill for a while, head over to the Porbandar beach or the Miyani beach. There are other temples as well, the Bharat Mandir and the Shri Hari Mandir. You also have the Bhutnath Mahadevi Temple. Frankly, Porbandar has something for everyone who’s looking to travel, from beaches to museums to temples.
With so many places to visit, you might need to spend a whole weekend in Porbandar. You can travel easily within the city in autorickshaws and the city bus. However, if you wish to travel throughout without the hassle of waiting for a bus or flagging down an autorickshaw, you can book a private vehicle for your entire itinerary.
How to Reach Sudama Mandir?
Porbandar connects well with the other cities in India, like Mumbai, Delhi, etc. You can take a flight to Rajkot and then take a bus from Rajkot to Porbandar. The bus ride is for four hours. There’s a direct train to Porbandar as well, and it connects Mumbai with a 20-hour journey. Porbandar is a six-hour bus journey from Ahmedabad, so you can also travel to Ahmedabad either via bus, train or flight and then move to Porbandar, which takes you about seven hours.