Ballaleshwar Temple is one of the eight temples of Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed god of wisdom and success. It is located in the village of Pali, which is 28 km from Roha in the Raigad district of Maharashtra, India. It is situated between fort Sarasgad and the river Amba. One of the Ashtavinayak Temple.
Location of Ballaleshwar Temple
The temple is easily accessible by road from Mumbai, Pune, and other nearby cities. The nearest railway station is Nagothane on the Konkan Railway line, which is 30 km away from the temple. The nearest airport is Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, which is 120 km away from the temple
Timing/Entry Fees of Ballaleshwar Temple
The temple is open for darshan (worship) from 5:00 am to 10:00 pm every day. There is no entry fee for visiting the temple. However, devotees can make donations or offerings to the temple trust for the maintenance and development of the temple
How to Reach Ballaleshwar Temple
There are several buses and taxis available from Mumbai, Pune, and other nearby cities to reach Pali. Alternatively, one can also drive their own vehicle to reach the temple. The route from Mumbai is as follows:
- Take the Mumbai-Pune Expressway and exit at Khopoli.
- Take the Khopoli-Pali road and cross Pali Phata and Nagothane.
- After Nagothane, take a left turn at Vakan Naka and follow the signboards to reach Pali village.
- The temple is located in the center of the village.
Rituals of Ballaleshwar Temple
The temple performs various rituals and ceremonies throughout the year for the devotees. Some of the main rituals are:
- Abhishek: This is a ritual of bathing the idol of Lord Ganesha with water, milk, honey, curd, coconut water, or other substances. It is done daily at 7:00 am and 12:00 pm.
- Panchamrit Puja: This is a ritual of offering five items – milk, curd, honey, sugar, and ghee – to Lord Ganesha. It is done daily at 8:00 am and 1:00 pm.
- Shodashopachar Puja: This is a ritual of offering sixteen items – sandalwood paste, flowers, incense, lamp, food, fruits, betel leaves, etc. – to Lord Ganesha. It is done daily at 9:00 am and 2:00 pm.
- Aarti: This is a ritual of waving lamps in front of Lord Ganesha while singing hymns and prayers. It is done daily at 7:30 am, 12:30 pm, 7:30 pm, and 10:00 pm.
- Atharvashirsha Pathan: This is a ritual of reciting a sacred text dedicated to Lord Ganesha. It is done daily at 11:00 am and 8:00 pm.
Apart from these daily rituals, there are also special festivals and occasions celebrated at the temple. Some of them are:
- Ganesh Chaturthi: This is the birthday of Lord Ganesha, which falls on the fourth day of the bright fortnight of Bhadrapada month (August-September). On this day, a special puja and procession are held at the temple.
- Magh Chaturthi: This is another auspicious day for Lord Ganesha, which falls on the fourth day of the bright fortnight of Magh month (January-February). On this day, a special puja and fair are held at the temple.
- Bhadrapada Shuddha Pratipada to Panchami: This is a five-day festival celebrated from the first to the fifth day of the bright fortnight of Bhadrapada month (August-September). On these days, various cultural programs and competitions are organized at the temple.
Significance of Ballaleshwar Temple
The significance of Ballaleshwar Temple lies in its unique history and legend. It is said that this temple is dedicated to Lord Ganesha by his devotee Ballal, who was a young boy living in Pali village. Ballal and his friends used to worship a stone as Lord Ganesha in the forest. One day, his father Kalyan, who was a rich businessman, got angry with him for neglecting his studies and business. He beat him up and destroyed the stone idol. Ballal, who was injured and unconscious, prayed to Lord Ganesha for help.
Lord Ganesha was pleased with his devotion and appeared before him. He healed his wounds and gave him a boon. Ballal asked Lord Ganesha to stay in Pali village and bless the people. Lord Ganesha agreed and took the form of a stone idol. He also told Ballal that he would be known as Ballaleshwar, meaning the lord of Ballal, in this place
The idol of Ballaleshwar is made of black stone and faces east. It has a trunk turned to the left and eyes and navel studded with diamonds. It sits on a stone throne with Riddhi and Siddhi, the consorts of Lord Ganesha, on either side. The idol is placed in a silver-plated sanctum, which is designed in the shape of the letter Shri. The temple also has a small idol of a mouse, the vehicle of Lord Ganesha, holding a modak (sweet) in its hands. The temple also has a bell that was brought by Chimaji Appa, the brother of Peshwa Bajirao I, after his victory over the Portuguese in Vasai and Sasti
The temple is also known for its architectural beauty and artistic features. The temple has two sanctums, an inner and an outer one, with different heights. The inner sanctum is 15 feet high and the outer sanctum is 12 feet high. The main hall of the temple is 40 feet long and 20 feet wide and has eight pillars resembling cypress trees. The temple also has two lakes in its premises, which are believed to be created by Lord Ganesha himself
Q: What is the best time to visit Ballaleshwar Temple?
A: The best time to visit Ballaleshwar Temple is during the festivals of Ganesh Chaturthi and Magh Chaturthi, when the temple is decorated and illuminated with lights and flowers.
Q: What are the facilities available at Ballaleshwar Temple?
A: The temple provides facilities such as parking, drinking water, toilets, cloakroom, prasad (offering), bhaktanivas (guest house), canteen, etc.
Q: How can I book online darshan or puja at Ballaleshwar Temple?
A: You can book online darshan or puja at Ballaleshwar Temple through its official website https://www.ballaleshwar.com/ or through its mobile app.
Ballaleshwar Temple is a sacred and beautiful place to visit for all the devotees of Lord Ganesha. It is a place where one can experience the divine grace and blessings of the lord of wisdom and success. It is also a place where one can witness the power of faith and devotion that transformed a simple stone into a living god.