Manakamana Temple is an important religious and tourist destination of Nepal located in the Gorkha district. It is believed that the name of this temple has been changed to Manakamana as she is the goddess who fulfills the desires of her heart. Due to the same public belief, people remember this Bhagwati temple and take a vow to complete the work they have planned, and every year thousands of visitors come to this temple to take their vows.
The legend about the history of Manakamana temple
According to Manakamana Mai priest Insan Thapa Magar, Queen Lilavati or Punyavati Devi of King Ram Shaha (1614 to 1636 BS) was an incarnation. Lakhan Thapa was a very close devotee of Lilavati. Once King Ram Shah saw his queen and Lakhan Thapa together on his throne in the upper coat of Gorkha. Then the king suddenly fell ill and died. His funeral ceremony was done at Ram Shaha Ghat, Confluence of the Marshyangdi River.
According to the custom of that time, Queen Lilavati also went for sati with King Ram Shaha. When Devotee Lakhan Thapa was mourned on the demise of Lilavati, It is said that the queen said, “I will reappear on one side of your village to fulfill your wish.” Seven months later, when a man was plowing ox in the place where Manakamana is now, his plow stopped by something and from soil milk and blood started shedding. After Lakhan Thapa, who had a good vision, worshiped in a tantric manner, the bleeding stopped and a temple of the goddess was established in the same place. After the incident, the king of Gorkha appointed Lakhan Thapa and his descendants as priests to serve Manakamana Mai and sealed the land to perform daily worship. Manakamana Mai’s current priest is the seventeenth generation of Lakhan Thapa.
There are more than 15 temples of gods and goddesses in this temple complex. One of them is the Vankeshwari temple. This temple is located on the east side of the Manakamana temple.
Regular worship is performed at the temple at 7 am and 6 pm. Pooja for the common people starts only after the priest circumambulates the temple after completing the inner pooja.
How to reach?
you like to travel on foot, you can reach Manakamana Temple after crossing a small bridge over the Aanbukhaireni Marshyangdi River on the Prithvi Highway and walking uphill for about 4 hours. If not, along the Prithvi Highway, at a place called Chares near Kurintar, there is a Cable Car facility called Manakamana Cablecar to reach near the premises of Manakamana temple. Using this facility you can reach the Manakamana temple. How much does it cost to use a cable car? Where to buy tickets? If you are going from Kathmandu, you will reach a place called Chares near Kurintar in Chitwan district after covering about 102 kilometers by bus, car, or motorbike. For the convenience of the visitors, only a cablecar has been arranged to reach near the Manakamana temple premises. This facility called Manakamana cable. With this service, you can reach the temple premises in 10 to 15 minutes. One can also reach the Manakamana temple by Bus or four-wheeler through Gorkha by Manakamana road.
Where is the Manakamana temple located?
This temple is located in the southeastern part of the Gorkha district headquarters. The temple is located 12 km south of Pokharithok Bazaar of the district headquarters, 5 km east of Aanukhaireni and 26 km north of Chitwan Muglin. Located at an altitude of 1303 m above sea level, the temple can be seen from the Mahabharat Lake and Chimkeshwari hills to the south, as well as the peaks of Annapurna, Himchuli and Manaslu mountains to the north. However, from the temple precincts, you can see the beautiful view of sunrise and sunset on both the horizons.
Goddess Bhagwati’s and Chapa tree of Manakamana temple
Thousands of devotees visit Gorkha every year to visit the famous Manakamana temple. They worship. They sacrifice. Pigeons fly. But no one cares or asks about this huge tree in the temple premises. But the locals say that the tree in front of the Manakamana temple is about 400 years old. This yellow flowering tree seems to have lost its bark due to age. According to the locals, there is a strong smell coming from this tree. The lust reaches as far as Lamjung. According to locals, the tree branches were broken many times during the storm but no human or material damage has been caused so far. Therefore, this tree is also believed to be the abode of Goddess Bhagwati.