Pandharpur - Solapur
Pandharpur (पंढरपूर) is a most popular pilgrimage city on the banks of Bhima river in Solapur district, Maharashtra, India. Pandharpur is situated on the 1711 north axis and the 7511 east longitude in Solapur District. The Vithoba temple attracts about a million Hindu pilgrims during the major yatra (pilgrimage) in the month of Ashadh (June–July).
Pandharpur is located in a place, which is 65 km away from Sholapur on the banks of river Bhimarathi. This place is one of the most revered pilgrimage sites in Maharashtra.Pandharpur preserves Lord Vithoba’s image in a grand temple. Vithoba is a form of Krishna. The name Vithoba means Father Vitthala. Vitthala is said to have been derived from the word Vishnu in Kannada.
The worship of Vishnu – Vitthala at Pandharpur is derived mainly from the puranas and has been augmented by the contribution of the great Vaishnava saints of Maharashtra from the 13th to 17th centuries (Namdev, Jnaneshwar, Eknath, Tukaram).
The temple with its vast area has a total of six gates. The eastern entrance to this temple is known as the Namdev gate. The sanctum enshrines a standing image of Vithoba also known as Panduranga, Pandhari or Vitthala.
The image dates back to the 5th century. There are inscriptions in this temple dating back to the 13th century. Namdev, the 13th century saint was closely associated with this temple. Copper plate inscriptions of the Rashtrakootas place this shrine in the 6th century. There is also a shrine to Pundalik at Pandharpur.
Ashadi Ekadashi: The Pandharpur Yatra is one of the famous festivals in Pandharpur, which are held on Aashadi Ekadashi in the month June or July. It is one of the famous pilgrimages in the whole of Maharashtra. Pandharpur Ashadhi Ekadashi Wari is one of the religious padyatra which comprises more than one million pilgrims who travel for 21 days to the Vithoba temple by foot. At Pandharpur on Ashadi Ekadasi the yatra ends at the Vithoba temple.
Mere words cannot suffice to describe the intense spirituality that Pandharpur is associated with. Revered for its temple dedicated to Lord Vitthal, it is one of the most sacred towns in Maharashtra and is also the seat of the Warkari sect which has given the state a unique cultural and social dimension.
Shirdi To Pandharpur Route
5 h 20 min (273 km) via Solapur – Dhule National Hwy 4 h 42 min without traffic.This route has tolls.
- Shirdi, Maharashtra
- Head west on Shirdi-Puntamba Rd/Shrirampur-Shirdi towards Pimpalwadi Rd Pass by Tirth Prasad Lodge (on the right) 19 s (210 m)
- Follow NH160, Solapur – Dhule National Hwy and Tembhurni – Pandharpur Rd to Police Line in June Pat, Pandharpur 5 h 15 min (272 km) Turn left onto Police Line 2 min (700 m)
- Pandharpur, Maharashtra