Location: Desai Road, Breach Candy, Mumbai
Built in: 1785
Dedicated to: Goddess Lakshmi
Significance: an ancient temple of Mumbai
Special Attractions: Navarathi celebrations
Best Time to visit: All through the year
About Mahalaxmi Temple
A long flight of steps on the rim of the Arabian Sea takes one to the revered shrine of Mahalakshmi. Sited on the northern side of Malabar hills, at B. Desai Road in Breach Candy, Mahalaxmi is one of the most-visited shrines in Bombay. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Lakshmi, the divine consort of Lord Vishnu and the Goddess of Wealth according to the Hindu Mythology. ‘Navaratri’ is the special festival, when people from far-off places come to observe the gala time at the temple. Located at the seashore on the northern side of Malabar hills, Mahalakshmi temple is one of the most sacred temples in Mumbai. The temple enshrines three dieties namely Lakshmi, Kali and Saraswati. However, the principal diety is goddess lakshmi and hence the name Mahalakshmi temple.The bejeweled images of the Goddesses augment the spiritual aura of the temple. It is believed that the Goddess grants boons and fulfills all the wishes of her ardent devotees. With firm belief, people come to this holy shrine to get blessings from the Goddess. The historical evidences reveal that the temple was constructed as per the instructions of Goddess Lakshmi. Its origin is connected with the creation of Hornby Vellard.
Inside Mahalaxmi Temple
The Temple contains images of Mahalakshmi, Mahakali and Mahasaraswathi. All three images are adorned with nose rings, gold bangles and pearl necklaces. The image of Mahalakshmi is shown riding a tiger and a demon Mahishasur in a tandem. Beyond the ornate gate is the shrine wherein resides the buxom goddess of Lucre — Laxmi. The compound of this temple is abuzz with stalls selling flower garlands and pious paraphernalia.
Festivals Celebrated in Mahalaxmi Temple
During Navarathri celebrations, the temple gets special looks. Devotees from distant places throng to temple to pay their obeisance. They have to stand for hours in long queues holding coconuts, flowers and sweets which they offer to the goddess.Reminiscent of other temples dedicated to the Goddess, ‘Navaratri’ is the special event that is celebrated with full fervor at Mahalakshmi Temple. During the gala time of ‘Navratri’, the temple is decorated from the top to bottom. Devotees from far and near come to pay their homage to the Goddess. Even they don’t mind standing in long queues to have a glimpse of Goddess Mahalakshmi at this time.Navaratri is the festival when Mahalaxmi temple is extravagantly decorated and the devotees from across Maharashtra converge in great numbers, offering coconut, flowers and sweets to the goddesses. On the weekends too the queue to the temple grows exceptionally long.