EKLINGA JI TEMPLE
This temple is in the small village of Eklingaji or Kailashapuri, 22km north of Udaipur, 30 km south of Nathdwara. This impressive, white marble temple dates to 1473. Eklingaji, Lord Siva, is the patron deity of the royal family of Udaipur. Eklingaji is known as “Kailashpuri,” the abode of Lord Siva. Inside the temple are silver doors, silver lamps, and a silver bull. There is a black marble, four-faced deity of Lord Siva in the temple.
The story of this temple goes back to the time of Bappa Rawal, one of the kings of Mewar who reigned from 714-767. His capital was the huge fort at Chittor, which remained the capital of Mewar until 1567. When he was a boy, Bappa worked as a cow-herd. One of his cows would always come back from the fields without any milk, and Bappa was accused of stealing the milk. Feeling hurt by this accusation, Bappa watched out for this cow and discovered what was happening. There was a hermit sitting in deep trance amidst the bushes. The cow would go there and milk would spontaneously drain from its udder onto the area where the sage was sitting to nourish the sage. When Bappa saw this, the sage came out of his trance and was friendly toward him. Bappa would bring him milk every day and the sage educated Bappa with spiritual knowledge from the Shaivite school of thought. His teacher was quite pleased with Bappa’s progress and called him the “Regent of Eklinga.” To pay his respects to his teacher, Bappa constructed the Eklingaji Shiva temple where he had first met the sage.
The temple is open 4.30 to 6.30 am, 10.30 am to 1 pm, and 5.30 to 7 pm.
Its 18 km north of Nathdwara, there is temple of Lord Dwarkadisha, managed by the Vallabhacaryasampradaya. The legend is that the deity came from Mathura where He was worshiped thousands of years ago by the great devotee King Ambarisha. The temple is located on the bank of Lake of Raja Samand.
From Kankroli you can go 36 kilometers to the Charbhujaji temple, which has a deity of Krishna in His four-handed form. In this area, the four temples of Nathdwara, Kankroli, Charbuja, and Ekalingji represent the four major holy dhamas of India, namely JagannathaPuri, Dwarka, Badrinatha, and Ramesvaram respectively.