shankar viman mandapam - temple entrance in daraganj


Entrance of the Shankar Viman Mandapam Temple, also known as Sankar Mandap.­

This large Temple houses the idols of Kumari Bhatt, Jagat Guru Shankaracharya, Kamakshi Devi (with 51 Shakthipeetas around), Tirupati Balaji (with 108 idols of Lord Vishnu), and Yogshastra Sahasrayoga Linga (108 idols of Lord Shiva).­ Shankar Viman Mandapam is located in Daraganj, near Triveni Sangam.­

Photo taken in Daraganj during the Kumbh Mela 2013 festival near Allahabad (India).­

Kumbh Mela is the largest festival on Earth, taking place once every 12 years, with more than 50 million Hindu pilgrims gathering to pray and bathe in the holy Ganges river.­

black elephant daraganj elephant sculpture flower offerings hindu temple hinduism kumbha mela maha kumbh mela man marigold flowers sitting steps

Photos taken at the Maha Kumbh Mela 2013 festival near Allahabad (India).­

Kumbh Mela is the largest human gathering on Earth, taking place during 3 months once every 12 years, with more than 50 million Hindu pilgrims coming to pray and bath in the Ganges river at the Sangam, confluence of the Holy Ganga (Ganges) and the Holy Yamuna rivers.­

Maha Kumbh Mela is a larger Kumbh Mela that happens only once every 144 years.­ 2013 was the year of the Maha Kumbh Mela, a once in a lifetime event.­

Kumbh Mela occupies about 56 Square Kilometers (22 Square Miles) of sandy ground in the Ganges floodplain.­ The "permanent" population is 5 to 10 Million Hindu devotees housed in thousands of temporary Ashrams and tent camps, with an estimated at least 50 Million more pilgrims coming for the ritual baths during the 3 months period of the event.­ By some estimate, more than 100 Million pilgrims attended the 2013 Maha Kumbh Mela.­

The Kumbh Mela infrastructure is provided by the Indian government, and includes taps of drinking water, pit toilets, street lighting, streets paved with metal plates, and very helpful Police and emergency services.­

For more info about Kumbh Mela, read en.­wikipedia.­org/­wiki/­Kumbh_­Mela.

Photos of Asian Elephants (Thailand, Vietnam , Laos, Nepal and India)

This series includes live elephants and artistic representations like paintings and sculptures, and Ganesha the Hindu Elephant Deity, or Erawan the mythological three-headed white elephant.­

Photos taken in India in 2013

The highlight if this trip was the Maha Kumba Mela Hindu Festival, the largest human gathering on earth, which happens once every 12 years.­

Other regions visited include the springs of the Ganges river, Varanasi, the Konark sun temple.­

See also my photos of Nepal that I took the same year.­