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Narastan Temple – The ancient temple of Jammu & Kashmir

Idol of Lord Vishnu, Narstan
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Praising the beauty of Kashmir many often recite the famous quote “Gar firdaus bar-rue zamin ast, hami asto hamin asto hamin ast” which means, if there is heaven on earth it’s here it’s here.

Kashmir is indeed is heaven on Earth. There is so much for one to explore. Kashmir is rightly an experience of a lifetime and a must visit destination for everybody. It has so much to offer. Form comforting splendor of nature to the beauty of the historical places.

Although some of the historical places here might not be in great shape. But once you visit and witness it you will be able to connect to its beauty because though in ruins it still speaks of the emotions behind it.

One such example is the ancient Temple at NarasthaTral, Called Narastan Temple, here you will find a beautiful Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Though in ruins the temple still is a valuable heritage and a state protected monument.

The Narastan temple is located at Narastan village in district Pulwama, Jammu and Kashmir. Narastan Temple is about 6 miles from Arapl village. One can witness gorgeous view of Brariaangan range from here. 

The temple ‘Narastan’ derives its name from Nayan Sthan which means place of Narayan. This temple is said to be more than 1400 years old. It is built with grey limestone which originally was coated with lime plaster, traces of it still exist. During excavation carried in the past some old sculptures were discovered from the site.

The architecture of Narastan Temple is considerably different from other temples. Narastan Temple is circular in shape and is built in Gandhara architectural style. The Narastan Temple is made of limestone and the inner compound of the temple is about 8.6 sq feet. The temple faces south and houses a Shivlinga. A statute which is believed to be of ‘Garuda’ (vehicle of Lord Vishnu) is situated on the pediment.

One enters the temple through courtyard which is about 70 square feet. The temple does not have a ceiling. The walls of the temple rise perpendicularly achieving the level of the eaves. Here onwards they start contracting. Each course is projected slightly beyond the one beneath it, gradually the space becomes narrower, finally the space becomes so narrow that it is spanned by one square stone and a finial is placed on it. 

Narastan Temple is situated on a single base built of four courses of stones unlike usual practice which incorporates five courses. In front of the temple stairs there is tank which is believed to have been a bathing place.

One of the important features of the temple is the trefoil arches on the edges of the shrine walls. Another feature of the temple is that there is no circumambulatory path on the base. 

Narastan Temple is an ancient monumental temple with distinct architecture in a serene location, does anyone have a reason not to visit this beauty I hardly think so. To me #mustvisit

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