Gupteshwor Mahadev

Gupteshwor Mahadev (/Gup-tesh-wor: Maha-dev/)

 Location

The Gupteshwor Mahadev Cave is located in Chhorepatan, Pokhara, directly across from Davis Fall, making it a prominent attraction in the area. The cave is unique as it combines the presence of Davis Fall upstream with the cave downstream, allowing the water from Davis Fall to flow through it. 

History

It is believed that some local men discovered this cave in the 16th century while collecting grass. As they ventured deeper, they found a naturally formed statue resembling Shiva Linga. This discovery led to the cave being worshiped as a sacred site dedicated to Lord Shiva. In 1991 A.D., the local people formally installed the statue at the cave's entrance. Inside, numerous shrines and statues honoring Lord Shiva and other Hindu deities such as Parvati, Nageshwor, and Saraswati can be found. The cave culminates in a waterfall from Davis Fall passing through its depths.

Architecture

This cave is known to be the longest cave in Nepal measuring 2950m in length and is regarded as a very religious place for Hindus. At the cave's entrance stands a large brown arch, leading to a bustling area with several souvenir shops and restaurants. Near the main entrance, visitors can see a statue of Lord Vishnu in a sleeping position. Adjacent to the ticket counter, there's a concrete balcony and a spiral staircase leading towards the cave's main entrance adorned with artworks inspired by paintings from the Kathmandu Valley.

Gupteshwor Mahadev Cave is divided into two sections and is dimly lit, so visitors are advised to bring a flashlight. Upon descending the stairs, the first sight is a small entrance to the Kamdhenu cowshed, featuring a statue of a cow standing above a Shiva Linga, symbolizing the cow's protection towards Lord Shiva. Beyond this, there is a Shiva temple where photography is not allowed, followed by several small shrines and statues of Hindu deities. The trail then leads to the second section of the cave, which is 140m long. This section is closed during the monsoon season to prevent accidents caused by the waterfall from Davis Fall. Inside, the sound of rushing water can be heard, and the path is slippery due to water dripping from the walls and ceiling. A metal staircase further descends towards the waterfall where the beauty of the waterfall can be observed.

This cave is open from 7 am to 6 pm everyday except public holidays. 

How to get there?

Gupteshwor Mahadev is accessible by local bus or taxi, with a travel time of approximately 15 minutes from Lakeside and 5 minutes from Damside. The bus fare is Rs. 30 and the round- trip in a taxi will cost around Rs. 700 from Lakeside. Alternatively, if you enjoy walking, it takes around 1-hr from Lakeside and 30 min from Damside. Renting a bicycle or scooter is also an option. The entrance fee for tourists is Rs.100, equivalent to $0.75, providing an economical visit. 

Things to do

Davis Fall, located near Gupteshwor Mahadev Cave, is a remarkable waterfall that forms a 500-foot underground tunnel as it descends. After exploring Davis Fall and Gupteshwor Mahadev, visitors can head to the World Peace Pagoda, which is a 10-minute drive or an hour-long hike away. Another hour-long uphill hike from the Pagoda leads to the Pumdikot Shiva Statue. For a more relaxed day, Lakeside offers a lively atmosphere for strolling and relaxation. The Tal Barahi Temple on an island in the middle of Phewa Lake is a notable attraction. Lakeside is also home to numerous shops and restaurants, offering a variety of shopping and dining experiences. A walk along the Foottrack provides excellent views of the sunrise and sunset from the shores of Phewa Lake.

Conclusion

Caves have long held a fascination for humans, and this cave is no exception. Gupteshwor Mahadev Gufa is not just a natural wonder; it also holds deep religious significance. Words can't fully describe the experience of exploring this cave; it's something that must be felt. As you descend the majestic carved stone staircase, you'll find yourself immersed in a world of limestone walls and the melodious roar of a magnificent waterfall, inviting you to uncover its secrets firsthand. Allow yourself to be surrounded by the mystical atmosphere of Gupteshwor Mahadev Gufa and embark on a journey of discovery unlike any other.