hill station of Rajasthan, Mount Abu was once a part of the Chauhan
kingdom, providing the Rajput kings of the region with a summer
resort. In the later years, it was leased by Maharaja of Sirohi to the
British. It was used as the headquarters of the resident to Rajputana
(Rajasthan). Mount Abu also served as the relaxation place for the
British, the royalties and semi royalties.
Consisting of British style bungalows and the holiday lodges of the
royals, the city blends in the tribal communities living in the
forests on the hills surrounding it. Rich in flora and fauna, these
forests serve as further attractions of the city. The highest peak of
the hills is Gurushikhar, housing a sanctuary with a rich wildlife.
This splendid environment served as the abode of many saints and sages
in the old times.
There are numerous legends associated with the city of Mount Abu in
Rajasthan, India. It is believed that the mountains of Mt. Abu used to
be visited by all the 330 million Hindu gods and goddesses. The great
saint Vashishtha is also said to have lived here and performed a yagna
to create four clans of fire to protect the earth from demons. The
venue of yagna was near a natural spring, streaming from a cow head
shaped rock. Another legend is that Saraswati, the divine stream,
flooded a gorge in which the cow of Vashishtha fell, to help her float
up. Afterwards, sage Vashishtha asked the youngest son of Himalaya to
fill the gorge permanently to avoid any further mishap. Arbud, the
mighty snake helped in the task and since then, the spot became famous
as Mount Arbud. Afterwards, the name was changed to Mount Abu.
Mt. Abu travel and tourism is mainly famous for the Dilwara Jain
temples. An architectural excellence, these temples are constructed of
exquisitely carved marble stone. It is also believed that Mount Abu
was paid a visit by Lord Mahavira, the 24th Jain Tirthankar. There are
also a number of Hindu temples in the city reliving the historical
past of the city. Another popular destination of Mt. Abu is the
Brahmkumari Ashram, a religious community center. Apart from the
structural beauty, it is the natural magnificence consisting of
weirdly shaped gigantic rocks, lovely lakes and cool climate that
makes Mount Abu a unique place amidst the dry land of the Rajasthan.
Mount Abu Sanctuary: The sanctuary located in Mount
Abu was declared as a protected area in the year 1960 and ever since
then this sanctuary which is spread over the gorgeous Aravalli range
of mountains has been attracting not only domestic tourists but also
tourists from overseas. Mount Abu is Rajasthan's only hill station and
in the days of yore it used to be the summer retreat of Rajasthan's
Gaumukh Temple: Gaumukh temple served as the venue
for Sage Vashishtha's yagna. The temple has got its name from a nearby
natural spring that surges through a carved cow's head. Forming the
background of the temple is a sculpted hill temple of Arbuada (the
mighty serpent). Close to it is a splendid marble image of Nandi, a
celestial bull that Arbuada rescued.
Dilwara Jain Temple: Mt. Abu, Rajasthan sightseeing
tour is incomplete without a visit to the famous Dilwara Jain temples.
Built between 11th and 13th century AD, these temples are made up of
carved marble. The temples are dedicated to the Jain Tirthankaras.
There are five Dilwara temples in Mt. Abu. Out of these, the oldest
one is Vimal Vasahi, dedicated to the first Tirthankara. All the
Dilwara temples are a marvelous example of temple architecture.
Adhar Devi Temple: Adhar Devi temple is situated
approximately 3 km to the north of Mount Abu. Reached by a flight of
360 stairs, the temple was carved out of a huge rock and is dedicated
to Goddess Durga.
Shri Raghunathji Temple: Shri Raghunathji temple is
located near Nakki Lake. Dedicated to Shri Raghunathji, it houses a
gorgeous image of the deity placed by Shri Ramanand in 14th century
Sunset Point: Mount Abu also has a sunset point
providing a magnificent view of the setting sun.
Honeymoon Point: You will get captivated by the sight
of the lush plains and valleys from the Honeymoon Point, also known as
Gardens and Parks: There are a number of parks and
gardens in Mt Abu providing you with natural beauty. Some of them are
Shaitan Singh Park, Municipal Park, Terrace Garden, Ashok Vatika,
Gandhi Park, etc.
Museum and Art Gallery: The museum and art gallery
are located at the Raj Bhawan. A rich collection of archaeological
excavations dating back to 8th-12th century A.D. is on display.
Nakki Talab: There is a legend associated with the
Nakki Talab. It is believed that gods dug up this artificial lake
using their fingernails ('nakh' means nail). There is also a Raghunath
temple near the lake, dating back to the 14th century.