History of Maheshwar
Maheshwar was a glorious city at the dawn of Indian civilization when it was Mahishmati, capital of king Kartivarjun. This temple town on the banks of the river Narmada finds mention in the epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata. Revived to its ancient position of importance by the Holkar queen Rani Ahilyabai of Indore. Maheshwar’s temples and mighty fort-complex stand in quiet beauty, mirrored in the river below.
Maheshwar - The Time less Elegance
The name Maheshwar comes from Mahesh, a name for Lord Shiva. The word Maheshwar in Hindi means abode of Lord Mahesh. The history of Maheshwar dates back to more than 4000 years back. Akbar built the fort after he came into power in the year 1601.
Maheshwar is located on the banks of river narmada.It is a town in Khargone district of Madhya Pradesh state, in central India. It is located 13 km east of National Highway 3 (Agra -Mumbai highway) and 91 km from Indore.
How to reach
Nearest airport is at Indore which is around 91 km away from here. It takes around 3 hrs to cover this distance.
By Train, Barwaha is the closest railhead.
By Road, Buses from all major cities of Madhya Pradesh frequent Maheshwar.
Attraction in Maheshwar
The main attraction of Maheshwar is the Maheshwar fort which situated on the banks of the holi river Narmada, on top of a small hill. The fort maintains its traditional beauty in terms its, architecture, designs, sculptures, materials used in reconstructions and furniture’s. From a top the fort tourists can also enjoy a panoramic view of the River Narmada and its beautiful surroundings.
Maheshwar is considered the cosmopolitan capital of Madhya Pradesh. It has one of India’s best handloom industries. The pallav is particularly distinctive with 5 stripes, 3 coloured and 2 white alternating, running along its width. Maheshwari has a reversible border, known as bugdi.
Narmada River and Ghat
The Ghats of the city, named after the dynasties like Peshwa Ghat, Fanase Ghat, Ahilya Ghat are another feature that give Maheshwar a distinctive look
Temple of Maheshwar
Temples of Maheshwar are famous for the unique overhanging balconies. Like temples of olden times in many parts of India, temples here also have intricately crafted walls. Kaleshwara Temple, Rajarajeshwara Temple, Akhileshwara Temple and Vithaleshwara Temple and pandarinath temple (situated in middle of the Narmada river) are the most known temples of the area.
The Sahastradhara is a waterfall near Maheshwar where Narmada river turns into thousands of streams after hitting rocks raising from the river bed. The name Sahastradhara is a combination of two Hindi words Sahastra meaning thousand and Dhara meaning stream.
Attraction around Maheshwar
Kasrawad is famous for its colourful cotton saris, which are fabricated with designs like borders, stripes and checks. Popular attractions of this town include Bhavani Mata Temple, ancient Kailask Kund and Baba ki Mazar on Gangleshwar Parvat. In the winter season, Gangaleshver Fair is organised in the town that allures numerous tourists and devotees. Another nearby attraction of this town is Bhilgaon Village, which is 4 km from Kasrawad and was also known as Bhileshwar. Having an average elevation of 169 mabove sea level, it is a town and a Nagar Panchayat in Khargone district. Located 5 km away from the southern banks of River Narmada, this town was the capital of Lord Ram’s son, ‘Kush’.
Mandleshwar is located around 8.4 km away from Maheshwar and contains various attractions like Hathani, Ganga-Zira Chhappan-Dev, Dhawal-kunda, Shstradhra and Ramkund. It also houses a dam, which is constructed across the River Narmada.
Khargone is the administrative headquarter of Khargone District and is located around 20 km from Maheshwar. Located on the shores of Kunda River, the town is famous for cotton and chilly production. Tourists can also visit the famous Navagraha Temple in the town, which is dedicated to the Navagrahas. Another major attraction of this town is Navagraha Mela, which is held in January and February near the bank of Kunda River. Besides, tourists can also enjoy the festivity of the Nimar Utsav, which is celebrated in the holy town of Maheshwar.
Omkareshwar Temple, which means Om-maker-lord, is counted among the 12 Jyotirlinga Temples of Lord Maheshwar, another name for Lord Shiva. This holy shrine of Lord Shiva is situated on the confluence of River Narmada and River Kaveri. It is located in the Mandhata Island, also called Shivapuri Island, which is in the shape of Om symbol. As per legend, various stories are related with this holy shrine of Omkareshwar. One of these legends states that in the fight between Devas and Danavas, the Danavas won. As a result, all the gods or Devas prayed to Lord Shiva in order to impress him. It is believed that honoured with their prayers, Lord Shiva took the form of Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga and defeated all the Danavas. Moreover, this temple is situated in the proximity of Mamaleshwar Temple, located on the south bank of River Narmada. Both these temples are dedicated to the forms of Lord Shiva and are often counted as a single temple.
Considered the biggest fort in India, the Mandu fort has a perimeter of 82 km and was once the monsoon retreat of the Mughal emperors.It contains the ruins of palaces, ornamented canals, baths, pavilions, etc. Founded as a fortress retreat by Raja Bhoj in the 10th century, Mandu was conquered by the Muslim rulers of Delhi in 1304. The Afghan Dilawar Khan, governor of Malwa, set up his own little kingdom in Mandu. Hoshang Shah, son of Dilawar Khan, transferred his capital from Dhar to Mandu and raised it to its greatest splendor. Hoshang’s son Mohammed ruled for just one year before being poisoned by the military general Muhammad Khilji, who then ruled for 33 years.