Shirdi town is situated in Rahata Tahasil in Ahmednagar District of Maharashtra State (India). It is located at 19o45' North Latitude and 74o25' East Longitude.Shirdi is located approximately 296 Kilometers from Mumbai (Bombay) City in India. The nearest railway station is Kopargaon 15 kilometers on Manmad-Daund section of Central Railways.The Shirdi Saibaba Temple, located at Shirdi, Maharashtra, India attracts millions of devotees of all religions, castes and creed who come to pay homage to Shri Sai Baba. The temple is a beautiful shrine that was built over the Samadhi of Shri Sai Baba.Shirdi is a small village in Kopargam taluk, in Ahmadnagar District of the Maharastra State. When Baba was physically present at the age of 20 in Shirdi, it was a small village of 80 thatched houses with mud walls. Today it is a big town with palatial modern buildings and shops.Thursday is the day Saibaba is specially worshipped. On this day devotees from all over India visit Shirdi for Darshan of Saibaba. For devotees across the globe, there are arrangements to get Pujas conducted on their behalf and the prasad sent to them.Shirdi is well connected by road. There are also a few religious places of tourist interest in and around Shirdi.Shirdi Saibaba Temple is managed by Shri Sai Baba Sansthan since 1922. The trust ensures that a strict code of conduct is maintained in the temple premises.
Location: 120-km Away From Pune, At The Feet Of The Sahyadri Ranges, Maharahstra
Main Attractions: Ajinkyatara Fort, Pratapgad Fort, Yavteshwar, Natraj Mandir
Best Time To Visit: October And March
About Shree Saibaba
Chandbhai, the headman of a village called Dhoopkhede (in Aurangabad, India), once lost his horse and was looking for it. Suddenly he heard a voice say "You look tired. come here and rest a while". He turned around and saw a young Fakir . The fakir smiled at him and said "What are you looking for in this jungle, Chandbhai". Chandbhai was surprised and he wondered how the fakir knew his name. Slowly, he said "I have lost my horse. I have looked for it everywhere, but cannot seem to find it". The fakir told him to look behind a clump of trees. Chandbhai was pleasantly surprised to find his horse grazing peacefully behind those trees. He thanked the fakir and asked his name. The fakir said "some people call me Sai Baba." Sai Baba then invited Chandbhai to have a smoke with him. He got the pipe ready, but there was no fire to light it with. Sai Baba thrust a pair of tongs into the ground and brought out a burning coal. Chandbhai was wonderstruck. He thought "this is no ordinary person" and invited Baba to come to his house and be his guest for a few days.Next day Baba went to Chandbhai's house and found everybody in a very joyful mood and festivities going on all around. He found that Chandbhai's wife's nephew was getting married. The bride was from Shirdi and the marriage party was going to Shirdi. Chandbhai invited Baba to accompany the marriage party to Shirdi. At Shirdi they camped in a field next to Khandoba's temple.After the wedding, Saibaba stayed on at Shirdi. At first he lived under a neem tree and begged for food whenever he needed it. He then went to Khandoba's temple, intending to stay there, but the temple priest met him at the entrance and told him to go to the mosque. That is how Baba, started staying at the Mosque which was later called Dwarkamayi.Baba preached at Shirdi all his life and performed numerous miracles to convince people that God exists. He healed people's diseases, provided moral and material comfort to his devotees. Baba helped bring Unity and Harmony between all communities. He said that God is one, but called by different names. He said follow your own religion and seek the truth.One day a rich millionaire named Booty came to Sai Baba and said he was going to construct a stone building for Shri Krishna. Baba helped him plan the building. Before the building was completed Baba fell very ill. On the 15th of October 1918, he breathed his last. His last wish was to be buried in Booty's building.
Important Places in Shirdi
Samadhi Mandir of Shri Sai Baba was actually owned by a millionaire from Nagpur, a famous Sai devotee Shreemant Gopalrao. Gopalrao wanted to keep an idol of Murlidhar here. However, Baba himself became Murlidhar and the Mandir became the Samadhi Mandir of Baba. The Mandir is built with stones and Baba's Samadhi is built with white marble stones. A railing is built in marble around the Samadhi and is full of ornamental decorations. In front of the Samadhi are two silver pillars full of decorative designs. Just behind the Samadhi is Sai Baba's marvelous statue made of Italian marble which shows him seated on a throne. This idol was made by late Balaji Vasant. This statue was installed on 7th October 1954. Above the statue is an open, silver umbrella. The front of the Mandir has an assembly hall where about 600 devotees can be accomadated. Here is the show-case where various things handled by Baba are kept. On the first floor of the Mandir are pictures depicting the life of Baba. The routine of the temple starts at 5 o'clock in the morning with Bhoopali, a morning song, and closes at 10 o'clock in the night after Shejarati is sung. Only on three occasions the temple is kept open overnight .ie. on Gurupoornima, Dassera, and Ramnavami. Every Thursday and on each fesitival, a Palakhi with Baba's photo is taken out from the temple.
Shri Sai Baba came to Shridhi with a marriage procession. He stayed at Dwarkamai till the very end of his life. Dwarkamai is situated on the right side of the entrance of Samadhi Mandir. Here he solved problems of the people, cured their sickness and worries. Before Baba's arrival in Shridhi, Dwarkamai was an old mosque in a dilapidated condition. Baba turned it into Dwarkamai and proved that God is one. The first level of Dwarkamai has a portrait of Baba and a big stone on which Baba used to sit. This level has two rooms. One contains the chariot and the second a palkhi. Just in front of the room where the chariot is kept is a small temple. A saffron flag flies over it. The second level of Dwarkamai has a square stool made of stone, which Baba used for taking a bath. The main attraction of this place is the oil painting of Shri Sai Baba sitting in a carved wooden shrine. This level also has the grinding stone and the wooden vessel called Kolamba in which Baba used to keep the Bhiksha brought from the village.
Sai Baba first came to Shridhi in the form of Bal Yogi - a child ascetic. He was first spotted seated under a Neem tree. This place came to be known as Gurusthan. The renovation of Gurusthan was made on 30th September, 1941. The present temple was built after this period. There is a small shrine in Gurusthan. On a elevated platform of this shrine a big portrait of Baba is placed. On the side is a marble statue of Baba. In front of the portrait is a Shivling and the Nandi. Photos of twelve Jyotirlingas are kept in the temple. The branches of the Neem tree have come out through the roof of the temple. At a short distance lies Baba's CHAVADI. Baba used to sleep here every alternate day. The Chavadi is divided into two parts. One part of the Chavadi has a large portrait of Baba along with a wooden bed and a white chair belonging to him. There is a cottage of Abdul Baba, an ardent devotee of Shri Sai Baba, in front of the Chavadi. The Lendi Baug was looked after by Abdul Baba. There are photos and various things which were handled by Sai Baba and Abdul Baba in the cottage. There is a Maruti Mandir located at some distance from the cottage of Abdul Baba. This mandir was visited by Baba for the sat-sang with Devidas, a Balyogi, who lived at the Mandir ten to twelve years before Baba arrived. There are also temples of village deities named Shani, Ganapati, and Shankar to be visited.
At some distance from Gurusthan there is the Lendi Baug. This Baug was made and watered daily by Baba himself. It got its name from a Nalla (a drain) which used to previously flow there. Baba used to come here every morning and afternoon and take rest under a Neem tree. Baba dug a pit, 2 feet deep, under the Neem tree and kept a Deep lit in that pit. One octangular Deepgriha called Nanda Deep has been built in marble stone in memory of this place. It constantly burns in a glass box. On one side of the Deepgriha is a Peepal tree and on the other side is a Neem tree. Some distance away is a Datta Mandir below an Audumbar tree. In the Mandir there is a statue of Datta built in marble stone. The statue of Datta was installed on 6th December, 1976. Just behind the Datta Mandir is a Samadhi of the horse, Shyamsundar which belonged to Baba and which used to bow to him.