updated on 20th OCt 2020
Omkareshwar, Madhya Pradesh is famous for the Hindu deity Lord Shiva. Omkareshwar Temple is one of the 12 jyotirlinga temple considered as the revered shrine of Lord Shiva. I have already visited other Jyorrtiling Shrine Kedarnath and Mallikarjuna near Hyderabad. The main temple is located on the other side of Omkareshwar island. Omkareshwar is a small town, hence reaching here via Public transport is a bit tricky, read about the Omkareshwar sightseeing guide for a day in this post.
Before reaching Ujjain,I was not well aware of the public transportation to Omkareshwar, so after having Darshan at Mahakaleshwar temple in Ujjain; I reached to few of the counters who were selling tickets for a day trip to Omkareshwar from Ujjain. I wanted to stay at omkareshwar for my onward journey towards Maheshwar; I asked one of them for a one-way ticket and; to my surprise, he was agreed to give it one for the next day morning bus. If anyone wants to make a day trip from Ujjain to Omkareshwar, there are 2-3 travel agencies near to Mahakaleshwar temple who sells the tickets from Ujjain to Omkareshwar by bus.
The next day we boarded the bus to Omkareshwar from near to the Mahakaleshwar temple compound. The private tour operator’s jam-packed the bus by overloading the passengers but we were lucky enough to get allotted seats as we booked the tickets early. I was the only younger person on the Bus may be and all others were senior Citizens; as I started conversations with them, to my surprise it came to know that few of them visit the place every year!!!! I thought maybe I am the only ones who doesn’t visit temples often.
Also Read: Stone Carved Temples of Mahabalipuram
After a bumpy and crazy ride of almost 3 hours with a pit stop for lunch, we reached to Omkareshwar. It looked small town filled with so many pilgrims and not travelers like me. After reaching to the Bus stand, we took a shared auto to Gajanan Nivasthan for a night stay. It is a very clean and comfortable place for staying at Omkareshwar. The place is just on the opposite side of Omkareshwar temple and walkable distance from the Ghats and market.
After check in to the Ashram, we advanced towards the Omkareshwar Temple for Darshan. It is vehicle-free area and so it was easy to navigate towards the temple just parallel to few shops which we find in any holy city in India. They were selling Pooja saman, sindoor, bead jewelry, and CD, etc to devotees. The whole atmosphere was filled with spirituality and I was enjoying every bit of it.
Omkareshwar is one of the 12 revered jyotirlinga shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is very famous for Pilgrims from all over India. It is on an island called Mandhata or Shivapuri in the Narmada river. The south bank has other temple named Amaleshwar which is major Omkareshwar sightseeing Places. As per the beliefs, it is said that unless one doesn’t visit both the temples; the darshan is incomplete.
As Narmada divides the Omkareshwar into two parts, one has to cross the river via bridge to reach for Darshan. One of them is ‘Hanging Bridge as it literally swings when you walk through it. Other one is just like Normal bridge in main town. After crossing few shops, we walked through hanging bridge which we found interesting. You can also reach to the temple by crossing the river by boat.
After crossing the bridge, we reached the temple area and stood in the queue for Darshan. As I am in favor of the ecosystem I didn’t purchase any flowers, Prasad for offering to God which later they either return or throw away in the dustbin.I am not here to hurt anyone’s feelings but this is about what I personally feel.
There were not so many people in the area and we slowly started towards the entrance of the main temple. The temple was ancient looking with stone carved walls and ceilings. I must say, every temple fascinates me with intriguing art wherever I go. There were good arrangements for devotees for standing in the queue.
Within half an hour we had Darshan of Lord Shiva and we just came out from the Main Shrine area. There were sellers for cucumber and photographers who give instant hard copies of your photo and so many other people were gossiping themselves. The atmosphere was filled with good spiritual vibes.
After descending the steps of the temple through narrow lanes surrounded by shops, we reached to the Bank. There were so many boats at the Ghat which were ready to take you to the other side of the river. We joined a few other devotes and set for a few minute’s ride to reach another side of the River. Boating in Narmada is a major tourist attraction in Omkareshwar. I highly recommend taking a boat ride; it gives you a scenic view of the surrounding area and the temple.
After reaching the shore, we reached ‘Gomukh’ ghat where so many other people were taking holy dive in the river Narmada. It is another major place to visit in Omkareshwar, located midway between two bridges. We just sprinkled the water over our heads rather than taking a dive. There were so many small colorfully painted boats and boatmen were ready to take you for a ride through the river. From the Ghat you can have a complete view of Omkareshwar temple which seems very photogenic.
Further, we preceded towards Mamleshwar temple. Omkareshwar sightseeing is incomplete without visiting the Mamaleshwar temple, your Omkareshwar Pilgrim will be incomplete. Mamleshwar temple is a small ancient temple with historical importance. It is also dedicated to Lord Shiva.
After Omkareshwar Jyortilinga Temple Darshan we rested for few hours and then again started walking towards narrow lanes and this time we visited crossed the bridge of the main town, some temples, and admired the view of Omkareshwar island. It was a good place for people watching and enjoying how the slow life in the town goes on.
Other Omkareshwar sightseeing Places include Satmatrika temples, Ranmukteshwar temple, Gauri Somnath temple, Kedareshwar temple if you are traveling here for 2-3 days. You can also visit the sculpted Siddhanatha Temple in Omkareshwar which has elephant carvings around its base.
There aren’t many Places to Visit in Omkareshwar, but a day is enough to cover the Omkareshwar.
How to Reach Omkareshwar:
By Road: Omkareshwar is well linked by road to other places in India. It has direct road connectivity to destinations like Indore, Maheshwar, etc. Most of the road conditions are good to travel. It has a good bus & taxi connectivity with Indore and Maheshwar. Town has its own two Bus-stand in the city center. You can easily get bus service in day time but rarely find any bus service in night hours.
By Train: For reaching Omkareshwar by train, the nearest railway station is in Indore. From Indore, you can easily reach by bus to Omkareshwar.
By Flight: The Nearest airport is Rani Ahilyabai Airport at Indore city [78 Km]. It has direct flight connectivity from major cities in India.
As it is a small town, you cannot find any luxury hotels here, but MPSTDC run Narmada Resort is also a good option for stay. If you are on a tight budget like me, can stay at Bhakta Niwas by Shri Gajanan Maharaj Sansthan which is the best place for a night stay. It is a very clean and comfortable place with so many room options. Also, there are so many budget Dharamshalas available for devotees, one can go around and book according to their choice.
If you don’t get any accommodation, get back to Indore city and do a day trip. You can also visit the Maheshwar [3 hr journey] from Omkareshwar.