The Shamlaji Temple of Gujarat is a famous and highly worshiped temple standing on the bank of the river Meshwo, in veneration of Lord Vishnu. A number of devotees gather during the month of November to be a part of this great cultural spectacle called Shamlaji Fair that lasts for about three weeks.

Devotees are seen coming on foot, on camel and other means singing and dancing to participate in this fair. Many people are seen carrying flags, banners with their sacred symbols on them. During the Fair one of the main attractions of the devotees lies in taking sacred bathe in the river Meshwo, on the banks of which Shamlaji Temple is situated. They also offer prayers to the deity.

Around 2 lakh tourists attend the fair, especially from Gujarat and Rajasthan. The Fair is extremely significant for the Bhils community among the Adiwasis, as they are faithfully dedicated to Lord Shamlaji who they lovingly refer to as Kaliyo Dev (Dark Divinity).

The Shamlaji Fair also becomes an extremely important destination for the trading community as people engage in buying silver ornaments, metal ware, cloth and garments, along with many other annual household items.


There are three legends behind the creation of this temple.

    1. Lord Brahma once went on a journey to find out the best tirtha (sacred site) on the earth. After seeing and visiting a number of places, he came to Shamlaji, which he liked the most and performed penance there for a thousand years. Lord Shiva, pleased with him, asked him to perform a yajna (ritual). At the beginning of the yajna, Lord Vishnu manifested himself in the form of Shamlaji, and was enshrined at this place.

    1. According to the Second story Vishwakarma, the architect of the Gods, constructed this temple in one night, but as it was morning by the time he completed it, he could not take it with him and had to return leaving it here.

    1. Another legend has it, that an Adivasi found the idol of Lord Shamlaji while ploughing his land. He worshiped it by lighting a lamp everyday and was blessed for his faith by having an abundant yield in his farm. Hearing about this, a Vaishnava merchant built the temple and installed the idol therein, which was later beautified by the Idar rulers. Recently, a prominent business family has further renovated this temple.

Shamlaji Temple

The temple of Shamlaji is situated on the bank of river Meshwo and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Sakshi Gopal or Gadadhar is a black representation of Lord Vishnu, worshiped in this shrine. The river Meshwo is seen splashing water and waving through the valley just below the temple. During the fair and otherwise the waters of the river Meshwo is considered very holy as numbers of devotees take a dip whenever they come here.
The shrine of Shamlaji is believed to be about 500 yrs old and is beautifully crafted. The complete temple is a two stories building that has episodes and teachings of Mahabharata engraved on the outer walls.


The Shamlaji Fair is held at Shamlaji in the district of Sabarkantha. The district is located near the border between Rajasthan and Gujarat. The town is located 122 Kms from Ahmedabad.

Time of Celebration

The Shamlaji fair is a very important and widely celebrated fair in the state of Gujarat. It is observed in the month of November and lasts for about three weeks. According to the Hindu calendar, it falls in the month of Kartik. Kartik Purnima (Full moon night) is the most important day for the fair.

Shamlaji Fair Dates

13th November to 17th November 2013 (Wed-Sun)
2014 03rd November to 06th November 2014 (Mon-Thu)
2015 22nd November to 25th November 2015 (Sun-Wed)
11th November to 14th November 2016 (Fri-Mon)
31st October   to 04th November 2017 (Tue-Sat)

Shamlaji Fair Videos

शामलाजी मंदिर और मेले के बारे में हिंदी  में जानने के लिये यहां क्लिक करें
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