Ghorakhal Temple – “The Temple of Holy Bells”
Ghorakhal Temple is situated at a distance of 4km from Bhowali in district Nainital of Uttarakhand state. Ghorakal temple is also known as “Golu devta temple”, where you can see thousands of bells all around the temple. This holy temple witnesses numerous marriages and devotees from all over the world. Ghorakhal is located at an altitude of 2000 meters above the sea level.
One of the most beautiful and charming region of northern India is Uttarakhand. It is blessed with natural beauty and holy ecstasy that this land is also known as Devbhoomi or the “Land of Gods”. Ghorakhal Temple is the beautiful temple that sits in Nainital district (city of lakes). Nainital has many tourist spots one of which is Ghorakhal. The small town of Ghorakhal is located approximately 14km from Nainital. Ghora means “Horse” so Ghorakhal literally means “a pond for water to horse”.
One of the tourist attraction of Ghorakhal is the Golu Devta Temple. Which always remains in news for the the unique rituals performed here. Avatar of “Lord Shiva” – Golu Devta is considered as the presiding god of the temple. Golu Devta is local god of the Kumaon region also known as the “God Of Justice”. Golu Devta is one of the gods most worshipped god in Kumaon region.
There are many tales about the deity. One of the legend says that he was the brave son of Jhal ( king of Katyuri) and Kalindra(queen). The favourite queen of king once gave birth to a male child, seeing that other seven queen were jealous.
Those jealous queens gave false information about the birth and said she gave birth to a “Stone child”. Few years later king came across the child who told the same story of “stone child”. Later, king punished the guilty queens and crowned the child as the king of Katyuri.
Another legend says that Golu Devta was a general in the army of a king and died bravely in the war.
One of the folklores says that King Binsar killed Golu Devta and was beheaded. His head fell in Kaprkhan Binsar and this body fell in Dana Golu which is the ancient and primal temple of Golu Devta.
One of the rituals performed here is that devotees make a written request to the temple using stamp papers to make there wish come true. The petition is hanged on the tree.
Other rituals include that the devotees ties a knot on the “Chunris” hanging on the tree, while making a wish. After accomplishment the devotee unties the same knot.
Later on the fulfilment of their wish, devotees offer animal sacrifice or hang bells to the premises of temple.
Even curd, ghee, milk, poori, white shawl (stole), white pagari (turban), white clothes, head of sacrificed goat are offered as the thanksgiving. The sacrificed goat is received as “Prasad of Pooja”.
Ghorakhal Temple – “Temple of Bells”
Ghorakhal temple is also popular as the “Temple of Bells”. The temple is identified by the large number of bells of all shapes and sizes, hanging on the premises. These bells are offered by the devotees to the Golu Devta as thanksgiving on the accomplishment of their wishes. Practised since decade – it still continues.
The famous Golu Devta Temple is located up in the hill overlooking the “Ghorakhal Sainik School”. The stairs to the temple is decorated with bells and you can enjoy “Ring The Bells” moment while climbing up.
Peoples from different places visit Ghorakhal Temple hoping that Golu Devta will solve their problems.
How to reach Ghorakhal Temple
Travelling to small town of Ghorakhal is an easy task as the town is well connected through roads. Ghorakhal is just 3.1 km from Bhowali it hardly takes 10 minutes to reach. Nearest railway station is Kathgodam and the airprot is Pantnagar. One can easily take a bus or shared taxi from Kathgodam to Bhowali. From there you can take a jeep which takes only 20 bucks to drop you to Ghorakhal.
Ghorakhal situated near Bhowali of Nainital District and is famous for two things i.e. Golu Devta Temple and Sainik School Ghorakhal. Temperature here remains cool and healthy throughout the year. So if you are thinking to give a visit there is no best time. Summers also remains pleasant as the winters.
Kathgodam to Ghorakhal – 31 km
Pantnagar to Ghorakhal – 65 km
Nainital to Ghorakhal – 35km
Bhimtal to Ghorakhal – 29 km
Sattal to Ghorakhal – 57 km
Haldwani to Ghorakhal – 39 km
Kainchi Dham to Ghorakhal – 11 km
Almora to Ghorakhal – 56 km
Pangot to Ghorakhal – 32 km
Rudrapur to Ghorakhal – 75 km
Bageshwar to Ghorakhal – 128 km
Kausani to Ghorakhal – 108 km
Binsar to Ghorakhal – 79 km