From Beyt Dwarka you return to the mainland of Dwarka and proceed to the exquisite Rukmini Devi Temple located on the banks of the Bhagirathi River. This is barely 1.5 kms from the Dwarka temple. The temple is an architectural masterpiece with the walls decorated with paintings depicting Rukmini’s life with Lord Krishna. There is supposed to be an ancient idol of Rukmini, made of marble, in the cellar of the temple. Legend has it that Durvasa Muni, a sage easily angered, cursed Rukmini to live apart from Lord Krishna for 12 years for drinking water before he, the guest, had been fed. He also cursed that no vegetation would grow as the soil would be too unwholesome for agriculture and the water too salty for a radius of 12 kms . If you look around, you will notice that there is hardly any vegetation in the vicinity. If you taste the water in any of the hotels, you will agree it is rather salty. Also, you will notice that the Dwarka temple and the Rukmini Devi temple are quite far apart.
From Nageshwar Mahadev Temple, Beyt Dwarka island is 20 kms away. You get on to a steamer and 15 minutes later, you are led through a labyrinth of lanes into the residential portion of Lord Krishna’s life in Dwarka. Plenty of small shops entice you with their trinkets. You are led from one room to another as the priest intones what each idol or room means. Beyt Dwarka is also the site of the slaying of the demon Shankhasura by Vishnu.
About 10 kms away from the Dwarka temple is the Nageshwar Mahadev Temple. This is the site of one of the 12 Jyotirlingas (columns of light) which are manifestations of Lord Shiva, as mentioned in the Puranas. It is another temple, richly carved with a ‘linga’ in the sanctum sanctorum. By its side is a huge statue of Lord Shiva, built recently by Gulshankumar Charitable Trust. (TIP. In case you wish to pray in the sanctum sanctorum with the help of a ‘pujari’, you will have to wear a ‘dhoti’. You can buy this ‘dhoti’ along with the ‘puja’ offerings or you can borrow one from inside the locker room. You may retain your shirt).
After traversing through the Dwarka Temple, you head west towards the setting sun till you come to the Samudra Narayan temple, a short distance away. This temple is perched on the Arabian Sea. The sky turns dull red as the fiery orb sinks into the Arabian Sea. This is the Sunset Point. A lighthouse, measuring 156 feet high, can be seen in the distance. This was inaugurated in January 1963. Every afternoon, it is opened for visitors for one hour.
The Dwarka temple (Jagat mandir) is on a raised platform at the confluence of the Gomati (descended Ganges) river and the Arabian Sea. It is a five-storeyed high structure with two doors facing you. The roof of the main hall is supported by 60 stone columns which are all very intricately carved. The temple spire is 78 m (255 ft.) tall. A flag with the emblems of the sun and of the moon, flutters atop the spire. The present temple was founded by King Jagat Singh Rathore in the 11th century and is also known as Jagat Mandir. Only Hindus are permitted into the temple. You enter through the ‘swarga dwar’ (heaven gate) and afterwards, exit from the ‘moksha dwark’ (salvation gate). Once you enter the temple, you go past the various idols of the gods and goddesses till you exit the temple. Right in front of you are the 56 steps that lead down to the sliver of water that enters the temple complex at the bottom of the steps, the meeting point of the Gomati River and the Arabian Sea.