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Walkeshwar Temple




Mumbai, Maharashtra



A popular place of worship in Mumbai

Best time to visit


October and March

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A popular place of worship in Mumbai is the Walkeshwar Temple alias Lord of the Sand temple, near Malabar Hill neighborhood. Also known as the Baan Ganga Temple, it is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

It is situated in South Mumbai precinct of the city, facing the sacred tank of Banganga near its southwestern corner. The temple draws large crowds of devotees every day especially every month during the full moon and at Amavasya.

The temple is the venue of annual Hindustani Classical Music Festival organized by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation, held in January.

The original Walkeshhwar Temple was built by the Silaharas around 1050 years ago. According to Ramayana, Rama rested here on his way to rescue Sita in Lanka and constructed a lingam Waluk (sand) at the site. The temple thus become known as Waluka Eshwar or Walkeshwar. The original Walkeshwar Temple was destroyed by the Portuguese and the sand lingam is said to have jumped into the sea to avoid desecration.

The temple was rebuilt by Rama Kamath in 1715, though the current temple dates only 1950's. Its curving plastered tower is divided into clustered elements with carved images of sages and musicians beneath. Inside the shrine, infront of the sanctuary, there is a stone tortoise and Nandi. The shrine is the focus of much religious activity during Diwali, which celebrates Rama's homecoming. The Banganga tank, attached to the temple, is one of the oldest structures in Mumbai. This water tank is enriched with fresh water all through the year.