Unakoti – The mystical huge rock reliefs in Kailashahar

The hill, hosts an ancient Shaivite place of worship. Is a pilgrimage site dedicated to Lord Shiva, and is believed to be 7th – 9th centuries old.

Among the rock-carved figures and stone images, the central Shiva head and gigantic Ganesha figures deserve special mention. The central Shiva head known as Unakotiswara Kal Bhairava is about 9 meters high including an embroidered head-dress which itself is about 3 meters high.

Sculpture of Durga, one of the principal Hindu deities, described to the goddess of war, strength and protection / Image source

On each side of the head-dress of the central Shiva, there are two female figures and three enormous images of Nandi Bull are found half-buried in the ground. One of the female figures is believed to be that of the goddess Durga seated on a lion while the other one is believed to be that of Ganga astride a capricorn.

A number of legends and myths are associated with the site and people in the region revere it as a holy place.

Shiva with the waters of Ganga flowing from his locks / Image source

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