The Tapkeshwar Temple, also known as the Tapkeshwar Mahadev Temple, is located at a distance of 6.5 kilometres from the city centre of Dehradun. A humble cave shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva, this revered temple is situated along the banks of a river which imparts it a unique sanctity. This cave was once the abode of the famous guru Dronacharya and hence is also known as Drona cave.
A Shiva Linga is enshrined in the main complex which is believed to grant the wishes of all those who seek the Lord’s blessings. Water trickles from the ceiling continuously on the Shivalinga, making it an interesting spectacle to watch. Cool sulphur water springs here are available for pilgrims to take a bath in before they enter the main temple.
Architecture of the temple :
The Tapkeshwar Temple is a gentle amalgam of manmade and natural design. It is situated between two gentle hills, while the main sanctum is contained within the bounds of a naturally occurring cave. The architecture itself pertains to typical Hindu style and is a humble edifice with a simple and small facade.
The most amazing sight of this temple can be seen inside the cave, where the Shiva Linga is continuously drenched by water droplets that fall inside the cave. Interestingly, the water droplets vanish from sight and can be seen a few yards away from the temple premises. This and many other supernatural occurrences makes Tapkeshwar Temple the land of many miracles.
Legend of the temple :
A widespread legend is popular about the emergence of the Tapkeshwar Temple. It is said that Ashwathama, the son of Dhronacharya, was born inside the cave. However, his mother did not have enough milk to be able to feed her newborn. Ashwathama was wise beyond his years, and he prayed to Lord Shiva to grant him some milk to satiate his hunger. Being the generous God he is, Lord Shiva granted the wish of the newborn for milk to suffice his hunger. Since then, a Shiva Linga has been established there which is said to grant the wishes of all those who visit this temple seeking the Lord’s blessings.
Best time to visit :
One of the best times to visit the Tapkeshwar Temple is during Shivratri, which is an earthly celebration of Lord Shiva’s wedding to Goddess Parvati. A large-scale festival is organised to mark the occasion when pilgrims participate in large numbers to attend the celestial union of the two deities. Elaborate prayer services are held in the midst of holy invocations of ‘Har Har Mahadev’, and pilgrims offer Lord Shiva’s favourite eatables to him on the day.
Things to do :
In addition to being an important place of worship, there are a number of other activities that you can pursue at the site of the Tapkeshwar Temple. The temple is located beside a forest and the nearby river adds up to the captivating aura of the temple. Trekking is one of the must do her, with the natural beauty of their destination playing the perfect host as well. If hunger pangs strike you at odd times, you can snack on some delicious local street food at the nearby food stalls as well.
How to reach there :
The Tapkeshwar temple is located only 6.5 kilometres away from the city centre, and you can reach the temple by hopping aboard the local bus or hiring the local autos called Vikram.