India is famous for its old cities and unchanged culture which continues back centuries. One such city which we will talk about in the blog is Ujjain. Ujjain is another old city in India like Varanasi which is famous as a religious place for Hindus. Situated on the banks of river Shipra, this city was once ruled by the great king known for his judgmental decisions Samrat Vikram Aditya. Though, there is another thing for which this city is famous. This is the great and ancient Mahakaleshwar Temple situated near the river Shipra. The Mahakaleshwar temple is the temple of Lord Shiva and is part of the famous 12 Jyotirlingas in India.
People mainly visit Ujjain to worship their Lord in this ancient temple. In this guide, we will talk about every minute detail you need to know before planning your trip to Ujjain. This blog includes everything from budget, places, lodging, food, temples, and much more. So if you are planning a trip to Ujjain, this is your one-stop destination to get the best knowledge of the city.
How to reach Ujjain?
Situated at the center of India, Ujjain is a part of the state of Madhya Pradesh. The city is well known throughout India and thus has availability of trains from almost every part of India. The nearest city from Ujjain is Indore, so you can also reach Indore by train or flight and then take a bus from Indore to Ujjain which is just 50 km away.
The cost of an AC bus from Indore to Ujjain is Rs 100.
Ujjain is famous for religious places only which can be covered in a single day. So the basic itinerary which you can follow when coming to Ujjain can be as below.
Kaal Bhairav Temple
Har Siddhi Mata Temple
Hotels, Lodging, and Food
The most famous spot of the city is the Mahakaleshwar temple which is just a distance of 2 km from the railway station. If you are coming to Ujjain, this will be the prime spot you will be visiting in this city. Also, all the other famous spots are near the temple only.
If you are coming to Ujjain by train then you can reach the Mahakaleshwar temple by auto which will only cost Rs 30.
Thus, it is best to take a hotel near the Mahakaleshwar temple.
The cost of hotel rooms near the Mahakaleshwar temple can range from Rs 700/night to Rs 1500/night for 2-3 adults.
Talking about the food in Ujjain. For breakfast, Poha is a pretty famous meal that is easily available anywhere in Ujjain. The cost of the post is just Rs 15 and you can have it along with a cup of tea. Talking about the main course for lunch or dinner, there are many restaurants available near the Mahakaleshwar temple from where you can enjoy a meal for Rs 200 to Rs 250 per person. There are also much cheaper Dhabas available where you can get a Thali for just Rs 60 but the food might not be of good quality.
Timings of Mahakaleshwar Temple
The Mahakaleshwar temple is generally less crowded as compared to temples like Shri Mata Vaishno Devi or Tirumala Tirupati. Thus, the temple opens and closes at fixed times.
The timings for darshan at the temple are from 4:00 am to 11:00 pm.
In addition to this there is aarti which happens four times a day at the times mentioned below:
Bhasma Aarti -> 4:00 am to 6:00 am
Naivedya Aarti -> 7:30 am to 8:15 am (In summer -> 7:00 am to 7:45 am)
Sandhya Aarti -> 6:30 pm to 7:00 pm (In summer -> 7::00 pm to 7:30 pm)
Shayan Aarti -> 10:30 pm
So, if you want to witness the aarti at the temple make sure to reach at these times to be a part of it.
How to visit Mahakaleshwar Temple, Ujjain
One of the first places to visit in Ujjain is the Mahakaleshwar Shiv Temple. A famous spot for Hindu devotees, this temple is often crowded. You can reach the temple in the morning as soon as possible.
There are three categories of darshan at the Mahakaleshwar temple. One is the free darshan and the rest two are paid.
The cost of these paid darshans is Rs 250 and Rs 750.
If you are going via free darshan then you need to stand in queue for 10 to 15 minutes before you can get the darshan of Lord Mahakaleshwar. Also, there are fixed timings for free darshan. The timings are from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. The free darshan queue is generally crowded a lot and it can be even more crowded at the time of Shravan. In the free darshan category, you can get the darshan of Lord Mahakal from a distance whereas the paid category is a bit different.
The next category to get the darshan of Lord Mahakaleshwar is the Rs 250 paid category. Although this is a paid category, it is not much different from the free one. The reason is that in this category as well, you will not get to go near the Shivling of Lord Mahakaleshwar. Thus, it is not recommended to pay for Rs 250 category, you can get the free darshan instead in the same manner.
The last one is the Rs 750/person category. This is the category in which you can do the darshan of Lord Mahakaleshwar by going near the Shivling inside the “Garbh Grah”. If you are going through this category then you need to wear a pair of Dhoti for men and Saree for women, after which you can go near the Jyotirling.
The Dhoti for men is available at the temple itself completely free of cost. So you will have to change your clothes and then do the darshan.
Cameras and other electronic items are not allowed inside the Garbh Grah. Although you can take your mobile phone with you. When going through the paid category of Rs 750, you can get access to a particular section of the temple which is unreachable if you are doing free darshan. In this section of the temple, there is also a pond or Talab which is a sight to watch.
After you have the paid darshan you can also do the free darshan if the temple is not crowded which could take another 10 to 15 minutes.
Bada Ganesh Temple
Just after you have visited the Mahakaleshwar temple you can now visit the Bada Ganesh Temple. Since Lord Ganesh is the son of Lord Shiv, a temple is built for him just outside the Mahakaleshwar temple.
Just near the temple where the river Shipra flows is a famous ghat called Ram Ghat. Many of you might not know but Ujjain is also among the cities which host Kumbh Mela like Haridwar and Prayagraj. Ram Ghat is the place where the great Kumbh Mela also known as the “Singastha” Kumbh in Ujjain takes place. Thus, this place is another great place to visit where you can also take a bath at the Shipra river if the water level is low and suitable for it.
How to visit the Kaal Bhairav Temple?
After visiting the nearby place from the Mahakaleshwar temple, you can next visit the famous Kaal Bhairav Temple which is at a distance of about 5.5 km from the Mahakaleshwar temple. You can take an auto-rickshaw to reach the Kaal Bhairav temple.
The cost of the auto-rickshaw will be between Rs 200 to Rs 250 to reach the Kaal Bhairav Temple.
The Kaal Bhairav Temple is another famous temple where you can easily do the darshan of Lord Kaal Bhairav. The temple is not much crowded and you can easily get darshan in a few minutes only.
The Managalnath Temple
While going to the Kaal Bhairav Temple from the Mahakaleshwar temple, on the way falls the mangalnath temple. This is one the most ancient temple where people come to do pooja for the welfare of themselves or their loved ones. You can also arrange for a Pooja immediately by coming here.
Ujjain was once ruled by a great king named Raja Vikramaditya. He was known as a king who would never give a wrong judgment ever. There are many other stories related to his life for which Ujjain is famous. There is also a temple built in his name in Ujjain which is another great sight to visit. Along with this, there is also the place where Vikramaditya sat and gave the correct decisions for every case in his court. This place is called the Vikramaditya Singhasan Battisi and can be visited in Ujjain.
Other Famous Places to Visit
All the main places of Ujjain have been mentioned above which are a must-visit when coming to this city. Although there are still many other places which you can visit if you have got some extra time. These places are also a famous part of Ujjain’s heritage but are not so famous. So, you can keep them as an option to visit if you are staying in Ujjain for more than two days. The list of these places is given below:
Har Siddhi Mata Mandir
Chinta Madi Ganesh Mandir
Gad Kalika Temple
Although you can visit Ujjain via auto or other public transport still if you there is another way to save a lot of your money on transport. This could be done if you choose to travel by bus which costs just Rs 100 to take through all the famous places of Ujjain. This bus service is provided by Ujjain Darshan Samiti and can be booked at the Mahakaleshwar Ujjain Dharamshala.
Ujjain is a cheap city and there are only religious spots to visit which wouldn’t cost much. If you are planning to save a lot of money on this trip, it is recommended to take the Bus Service available at the Mahakaleshwar Ujjain Dharamshala which is the cheapest way to explore Ujjain. Although, even if you don’t take the bus service, Ujjain can still fit into your budget quite easily.
The total expenses calculated per person can be as mentioned below:
Hotel: Rs 750 (per Day)
Meals: Rs 1500 ( per Person)
Transport: Rs 500 (Sleeper Class)
Although the prices considered above are the maximum that can be spent on anything. Thus, you can easily visit Ujjain for Rs 1800 per person excluding the cost of a train or flight.
Ending this guide with the hope to have helped you in planning your trip to Ujjain, this guide is a free source of information. At last, Ujjain is not a big city with many famous tourist attractions and thus just one day is enough to visit all the major places in this city if you start your day a bit earlier. Although if by any chance you are planning to stay in Ujjain for more than two days then you can try visiting other places mentioned in the list above.
Though the Mahakaleshwar Temple is open to darshan 12 months a year still monsoon can be the best time to visit Ujjain since the days here are very warm in April to July. Also, try visiting the Mahakaleshwar temple during weekdays to avoid the crowd. If you are coming in the month of Shravan, then you might have to spend quite a long time before getting the darshan of Lord Mahakaleshwar.
We wish you a safe and exciting journey to Ujjain and hope to have helped you in planning this trip to a major extent.