One of the most visited pilgrim centres in Darjeeling, the Dhirdham Temple is a beautiful temple located about 1 km below the Railway Station. It was built in the year 1939 when India was still under the British rule. Since then it has been one of the important places of worship for the Hindus residing in the hills.
Dhir dham Temple is an impressive design by the Gorkhali architect Beg Raj Sakya. He designed this attractive structure in the Tibetan style of architecture. It has a multi-layered Pagoda façade that is typical of the Buddhist and Tibetan style of architectures. Another interesting feature of the temple is that it is a fine replica of the Pashupathinath Temple in Kathmandu. In fact the designer of the Dhirdham temple was very much influenced by the structure of Pashupathinath Temple that he created exactly the same type of temple in Darjeeling.
Painted in red, yellow and white colour, this temple is one of the holy abodes of Lord Shiva. As you enter the premises of this holy site, you can see a beautiful white statue of the Lord which depicts his five facial expressions or moods known as the Pancha Bakram Tri Netram. The temple is surrounded by trees and shrubs all around which add more charm and serenity to this holy tourist site. One can also enjoy lovely views of the hills
and valleys from behind the temple. Every day at 8:00 am 6:00 pm ‘aarti’ (worship) is done at the temple by the local priest. People from all castes and creeds are welcomed at the temple to gain blessings from Lord Shiva. In the month of February one of the much awaited festivals, Shiva Ratri is heartily organized here by the temple staff and devotees. During this time entire temple is decorated with colourful flowers and beautiful decorations.
Dhirdham temple lies south of the Darjeeling market centre and can be easily reached by walking down from the Railway Station. Photography is strictly prohibited inside the temple premises.
- Special feature: One of the most sacred Lord Shiva temples in the town which is modelled in the Tibetan style of architecture. It is also the replica of the Pashupati Nath Temple in Nepal, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Connectivity: Can be reached by walking.
- Dressing restrictions: As it is a holy site dress properly. Avoid wearing revealing clothes.
- Nuisance: Calm and free of disturbances.
- Best time to visit: April to June and September to December.
- Visit timings: 8:00 to 6:00 pm.
- Entry fees: Free.
- Enjoyed by: Families and tourists on pilgrimage.
- Facilities: It is centrally located so easily accessible.
- Things not allowed: Nothing as such but smoking and alcohol is strictly prohibited inside the temple premises.
- Suggestion: Maintain silence inside the temple. ‘Aartis’ are held at 8:00 am and 6:00 pm so reach the site on time if you want to partake.