Rewalsar Lake

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About 25 km from Mandi, 14 km from Ner Chowk is the Rewalsar lake, famous for its floating islands of reed. The place became is to Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs. According to tradition the great teacher and "tantric", Padmasambhava used his enormous powers to take flight to Tibet from Rewalsar. It was under Padmasambhava''s influence that Mahayana Buddhism took root in Tibet and at Rewalsar waters, his spirit is said to reside in the tiny island of floating reed that drift over the waters. Guru Gobind Singhji spent a month here as well. Top of picture u see a icon of Padmasambhava, in front is lake.

Rewalsar has three Hindu temple which are dedicated to Lord Krishna, Lord Shiva and sage Lomas. The Lake of Kunt Bhayo (1750 m above sea level) lies above Rewalsar which is also visitable and there are also six other lakes of tradition. These are associated with the escape of the Pandava''s from the burning palace of waxan episode from the Mahabharata. You see an overview of the lake with Padmasambhava icon on the right.

There are three Buddhist monasteries at Rewalsar. You see entrance to one of them. Padmasambhava is also known as Guru Rimpoche, the precious Master.

Inside the Gompa. And at a couple of hike-hours from the lake are the caves where the Pandava brother are believed to have emerged through the escape tunnel when the palace of wax was burnt around them in an episode from the epic Mahabharata.

You see Ardhnarishwara Mandir. Lord Shiva in the composite form of half man and half woman is the principal deity of this unique temple. Such temples are very rare in India and the deity here signifies the beautiful ideology of Ardhnareshwar. Apart from the feeling it generates, this temple exhibits the richness of traditional architecture with elaborate carvings.

You see Kunti Lake (1,750 metres). The gurudwara at Rewalsar was built in 1930 under the patronage of Raja Joginder Sen of Mandi and with the humble efforts of Dewan Nath, Chief Minister of Mandi State and Dr Tehl Singh. Guruji stayed here for a month and held meeting with the hill Rulers - ''the Bai-Dhar Rajas'' - to evolve a program in his ongoing fight with Aurangzeb. Unfortunately did not click picture of Gurudwara.

You see Parasar Lake 2730 metres. If in Kullu drive backwards from Bajaura or from Mandi, drive to KANDI, kacha road or trek. People also trek from Pandoh to Parasar lake. In the centre is the temple. Annual Fair held in mid June when village deities of this vast mountainous area are carried to this heavenly spot to pay obeisance to sage Parashara.

Bansen the king of Mandi got this temple built in the 13th century and the temple is in Pagoda style. It has 3 tiers with the lower two roofs in pent form covered with thin slats. The conical roof is covered with tin roof. The best feature of the temple is the intricate wood carving designs that captivate the onlookers. The carving features presentations of gods and goddesses, floral ornamentations, heraldic beasts is breathtaking. The knotted serpents look magnificent. The door of the sanctuary, composed of seven door jambs, is elaborately designed.

You see image of Sage Parashara. Parashar Lake narrations credit to Saroj Thakur.

These images were worshipped in ancient times and are in a secret shrine. We were fortunate to get darshan.

You see a floating island of reed.

You see Baijnath Shiv Temple. It is half way between Mandi and Kangra.