Madhya Pradesh trip - 7: Visit to OMkareshwar
Overview: We reached Indore on the 19th of November, 2022 and relaxed there for the evening. We enquired about the transportation to Omkareshwar and got to know that there are regular buses from Sarvate Bus stand. So we were just going out of the Railway station where we were staying at around 5:45am and saw a bus standing just at the entrance of the Railway station which was going towards Omkareshwar.
The bus started at around 5:55am and the total cost was Rs 140 per ticket. The route to Omkareshwar takes one through the hills and the initial 30kms are not too good with lot of potholes. We reached Omkareshwar Bus stand at around 7:30am and there are local shared autorickshaws which take you to the temple gates for Rs 20 per head. The entrance to the road leading to the Jyotirlinga is lined up with many stalls for buying Prasad, souvenirs and food. We first went to Mamaleshwar Jyotirling which is normally less crowded and can be visited in peace. As expected, we didn't find any queue at the Mamaleshwar Jyotirlinga and had our darshan in around 10 mins.
We then proceeded towards Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga on the other side of the Narmada river by crossing a bridge. The bridge itself is a masterpiece with a view of the dam on one side and a far side view of the Sangam on the other. Another interesting bit is the Omkareshwar is named so because the island is in the shape of 'Om' when seen from the top.
We reached Omkareshwar Jyotirlinga at around 8:30am and the queue was just building up. However, we had the darshan in around 45 mins. We completed all darshan by 9:30am and were wondering what to do next. We saw a Narmada Parikrama path leading to the Sangam and we decided to take that path for experience. We didn't have an idea about the distance, but kept on walking after crossing a few ancient temples and reached the Narmada-Kaveri Sangama at around 2.5kms. Yes you read it right, a small river here in MP is also named Kaveri, though not as big as the one back home in Karnataka.
Near the Sangam, there is an old Narmada mata temple and a Shiva temple, called as Rin mukthi Mahadev temple. There is another path to complete the Parikrama, and I took a chance to explore that path. Not knowing the actual distance, I ended up walking around 6-7kms and on the way visited some old temples and witnessed a lot of monkeys playing around with people carrying food items.
I didn't feel any exhaustion even after walking a large distance, perhaps due to the blessings of Mahadeva and Narmada Mata. We then had our lunch in one of the stalls near the temple and headed towards the bus stand. We took the bus at around 1pm and reached Indore at around 3pm. We relaxed a bit after reaching our Retiring room, and then visited Mr. Mohan in the evening. Mr. Mohan has been the person who has helped us in our trip across MP by providing transportation and assistance in Gwalior and Indore.
How to reach Omkareshwar:
There are regular buses from Sarvate Bus stand in Indore to Omkareshwar. From the bus stand at Omkareshwar, autorickshaws are available for Rs 20 per head to cover around 2km to the temple entrance.
There is a metre guage train too from Mhow to Omkareshwar, but the service is very irregular due to the track conversion. Please check the timings at Mhow (DADN) before considering. However, there is a heritage train which runs between Mhow and Kalkund via Patalpani waterfalls. This train has a Vistadome coach too providing stunning views.