Situated in a village called Kunkeshwar in Maharashtra is a Lord Shiva dedicated temple known as Kunkeshwar Mandir. This temple is situated in the Sindhudurg district in close proximity to a beautiful beach. In addition, this “Shiva” shrine is also renowned for its beautiful architecture, and was supposed to have been constructed during the “Yadav” dynasty in the year 1100 AD. Furthermore, the great Maratha Emperor Shivaji is said to have reconstructed this beautiful temple on a number of occasions, and was also said to be a regular visitor.
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a. Best time to visit Kunkeshwar Mandir
The ideal time to visit this “Lord Shiva” temple is during the pleasant winter season which begins in November and ends in February with the temperature ranging from a maximum of 28 degree Celsius to a minimum of 16 degree Celsius.
b. How to reach Kunkeshwar Mandir
Kunkeshwar Mandir Map
1. By train:
The nearest station is located in Nandgaon at a distance of 45 km. The Nandgaon Railway Station is well connected to major cities in the country.
2. By road:
If you intend to drive to this temple then the ideal starting points would be Mumbai, Pune, Solapur, and Kolhapur.
- Via Mumbai:
There are three routes from Mumbai to this temple, and they are via NH66, via NH48, and via Bangalore-Mumbai Highway/Mumbai Highway/Mumbai-Pune Highway.
- Via Pune:
There are three routes from Pune to this temple, and they are via NH48 and Chauk-Karjat-Murbad Road, via NH66, and via Tamhini Ghat Road and NH66.
- Via Solapur:
There are three routes from Solapur to this temple, and they are via NH204, via Devgad-Nipani Highway, and via Chauk-Karjat-Murbad Road.
- Via Kolhapur:
There are three routes from Kolhapur to this temple, and they are via Chauk-Karjat-Murbad Road, via Chauk-Karjat-Murbad Road and Kunkeshwar-Talewadi Road, and via MH SH 116.
3. By air:
The closest major airport to this temple is located in Mumbai at a distance of 510 km. The Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is well connected to major cities in the country as well as international destinations.
c. Religious significance of the Kunkeshwar Mandir
According to a popular myth, a ship was passing through the Kunkeshwar beach. It so happened that the ship as soon as it neared the beach encountered extremely rough sea conditions. Furthermore, the sea conditions became so bad that it looked like that the ship would most probably sink. It was under such dire circumstances that a Muslim sailor on this ship offered a little pray to a lamp that he saw on the beach. It was in the prayer that he promised (himself) to build a temple at that spot if the sea condition gets back to normal. It so happened then that the sea condition suddenly became better and the ship sailed safely ashore alongside the beach. It was then that this sailor built a temple at this beach at the spot where a shiva lingam already existed. Unfortunately, though the sailor committed suicide as soon as the temple was constructed, as he felt that since he was a Muslim his community would not accept him back on the grounds that he had constructed a shrine for the Hindus.