The tale of 3 Dwarkas
Overview: A place shrouded into deep history, Dwarka has been the target of several invasions, right from the Vedic periods to the Ghaznavids and the British. This land of Sri Krishna was established in the Dwaparayuga, after Mathura was being attacked repeatedly by Magadh king Jarasandha. The message given by Sri Krishna was to avoid suffering of the local public even if it means fleeing the capital city. The exact location of Sri Krishna's palace is still debatable, with Bet Dwarka being agreed by most historians as the original one. Several artifacts have been found off the island of Bet Dwarka. The temple of Bet Dwarka can be reached by taking a ferry from Okha port. Its crowded for most part of the day and the temple remains closed between 12pm and 4pm. The ferry takes around 30-40 mins to reach Bet Dwarka, and again a 10 min walk to reach the temple. One needs to dedicate 2-3 hours for the complete experience. Not far from Bet Dwarka is the Nageshwar temple, which is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas in the country.
|Ferry from Okha to Bet Dwarka
Around 30 km from Bet Dwarka is the city of modern Dwarka, which is known for the great temple of Dwarkadhish, dedicated to Sri Krishna as the protector of Dwarka. This temple has been demolished and rebuilt several times in history, and the current structure is from the 16th century. Across the Sudhama bridge across the Dwarkadhish temple are the 5 wells believed to date back to the Pandavas period.
Further 300km south of Dwarka is the small place of Mul Dwarka, which is believed to be the place where Sri Krishna and Balarama stayed for a while before going to Dwarka. This is also an ancient trading port and an old lighthouse can be seen near the Krishna temple. This place is between Somnath and Diu.