Maa Chamunda Devi temple is a Hindu pilgrimage site. It is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas of the Hindu goddess Sati. This temple was built in the 16th century and is a major worship spot till now. It is located at an altitude of 1000 meters on the hilltop of Himachal Pradesh, India.
The Dhauladhar mountain ranges are easily visible from here. The temple also shares the banks of Baan Ganga.
No doubt, Chamunda Devi temple is a pilgrimage site and it seems most of the visitors are worshippers or pilgrims. But the temple is just 10 km from Palampur, 15 KM from Dharamshala, and 25 km from Kangra.
This reason makes it a popular tourist attraction among nature lovers and backpackers as they can easily visit this temple in a short passage of time. Also, the natural beauty of the area makes it a popular picnic spot.
The picturesque views and lush green forests add to the beauty of this sacred place. This temple is dedicated to Maa Chamundeshwari or Chamunda Devi. To know the meaning of this name, stay tuned with this blog.
Read Also: Mata Vaishno Devi Temple, Katra
- 1 Timings of the temple
Chamunda Devi – History and legends
Chamunda Devi temple is not constructed just for tourist attraction. It is a historical religious place. According to Hindu mythology, Chamunda Devi is a form of Goddess Durga. She is one of the seven Matrikas.
The Matrika goddesses are the warriors who protect god from the force of evil. Here is the reason why Chamunda Devi is named so. The goddess was created by God to fight against devils. The goddess killed two monsters named Chanda and Munda at the same hill. So the goddess is popular by the name ‘Chamunda Devi’.
Another history is related to the construction of the temple. Around 400 years back, the king of the area and a priest prayed Chamunda Devi for her permission to shift the temple from highly dense forest to an easily accessible location.
The goddess appeared in the priest’s dream and suggested him to the location where the temple would be found. The king and the priest did the same and recovered the idol at the place where the temple is built today.
Timings of the temple
During summer: 5:00 AM to 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM to 10:00 PM
During winter: 6:00 AM to 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM to 9:00 PM
During Winter : 08.00 AM and 6.00 PM
During Summer : 08.00 AM and 8.00 PM
Best time to visit
Maa Chamunda Devi temple is visitable throughout the year. In the months from May to September thousands of tourists flock here. The reason is that during this time many religious festivals are celebrated here.
October to March is the months of winter so fewer devotees visit due to cold climate. You can visit in these months as per your convenience.
About the temple
The architecture of the temple is molded according to the geography of the place. It is constructed in the Tantric style. Most of the Shakti Peeth temples are made inside it. The idol of Chamunda Devi is inflated by the idols of Lord Hanuman and Lord Bhairav believes to be the guards of Chamunda Devi.
Devi’s idol is covered in red clothes. The idol is so sacred that the eyes of the visitors stick on it. The temple is also dedicated to Lord Shiva. There is a Shivalinga situated inside a scoop-like cave under the main temple. The temple has a collection of images of mythological legends that surround the goddess.
At the bank of river Ban Ganga, this temple shares beautiful surroundings. The mountain ranges, valleys, and picturesque landscapes steal the hearts of many. The temple also has a sweet water lake. Pilgrims take a dip in the lake water.
The holy water of this lake refreshes their mind and body. The peaceful environment here attracts the saints and pilgrims to meditate here.
Read Also: Jwala Devi Temple, Himachal Pradesh
How to take darshan
As the temple is on the hilltop, so cold climate is for sure. Take your warm clothes like woolens, jackets, gloves, and mufflers with yourself. You can also take your camping stuff with you in order to stay and sleep at night under the beautiful sky.
You can reach up to the temple by vehicles but trekking is the best option to reach there. The journey is highly enjoyable and scenic which can be experienced only by trekking. There are facilities for physically disabled people also.
After reaching the temple you take a dip in the sweet water lake which refreshes you. After that take, you can take darshan of holy idol of Maa Chamunda Devi and other images in the temple. You can sit for some for meditation also.
There is an accommodation facility provided by the temple on a first-come serve basis. But during the festival season these accommodations are fully crowded by the devotees. So it is recommended if you are vising in the festive-season, ensure that you have alternate accommodation.
According to us, you should not miss camping in the hills which will be an unforgettable experience for you.
The festival of Navratri is celebrated with great joy at Chamunda Devi temple. Many devotees from across the country come to the temple during this festival. The devotees take darshans according to the local rituals. The authorities manage everything so that each one of them can have a pleasant visit. There is also a handicraft center in the temple where woodcarvings, wooden toys, black pottery, honey, teapots, and paintings are sold in a huge number during Navratri.
While visiting this holy temple, you have the opportunity to visit some popular tourist destinations nearby. The list of nearby attractions includes the names of Kareri Lake, Kangra valley, Dal lake, Baijnath temple, Indrahar pass trek, Brajeshwari temple, Kangra art museum, Kangra Fort, and Palampur tea plantations. So it is to admit that visit to Chamunda Devi temple not only offers spiritual journey but also many adventures to experience in the nearby locations.
Read Also: CHINTPURNI TEMPLE
How to reach
Gaggal airport is nearest to the temple which is 28 km away from it. Taxis are easily available for the further journey.
Moranda railway station in Palampur is the nearest narrow-gauge railway station to the temple. It is 30 km away from the sacred temple. You can hire a bus or taxi from here.
The temple is 10km from Palampur and 15 km from Dharamshala. If you are traveling in Himachal Pradesh then having a bus or cab for the temple is not a big task.
Frequently asked questions
Q1. What does the name ‘Chamunda’ mean?
Ans. Chamunda is a combination of two names Chanda and Munda. These are two devils whom the goddess killed. So the goddess is popular by the name Chamunda Devi.
Q2. How are the accommodation facilities in Chamunda Devi?
Ans. There is an accommodation facility provided by the temple on a first-come serve basis. During festival season this is almost full. So you can book hotels nearby the temple at a short distance of 5 to 6 km.
Q3. How old Chamunda Devi temple is?
Ans. The temple has undergone many renovations and re-building from time to time due to many climatic disasters. The current temple is believed to be approximately 700 years old.
Q4. What is Navratri?
Ans. Navratri is one of the most celebrated Hindu festivals. This festival is dedicated to the nine forms of Goddess Durga. The nine goddesses named as Shailputri, Brahmacharini, Chandraghanta, Kushmanda, Skandamata, Katyayani, Kaalratri, Mahagauri, and Siddhidatri. One day is dedicated to each goddess so this festival spans for nine days and known as Navratri.
Distance from Chamunda Devi temple
|Naina Devi Temple||158 KM|
|Jwala Devi Temple||56 KM|
|Chintpurni Devi Temple||78 KM|
|Anandpur Sahib||161 KM|
I hope you all like this information about the Chamunda Devi Temple. If you ever visited this temple before then share your experience down in the comment box.