Often referred to simply as the Birla Mandir, the Birla Lakshmi Narayan Temple is a striking white marble Hindu temple in Jaipur. The modern edifice—built in 1988 with an adjacent museum—is dedicated to the god Vishnu (the Preserver) and his consort Lakshmi, and features idols of the two deities carved from a single piece of marble.
Open to visitors of all faiths, this peaceful temple features marble carvings of various gods and historical figures, from Jesus Christ to Socrates. Unusual for a Hindu temple, the Birla Mandir contains stained glass windows depicting scenes from Indian mythology. There is also a small museum containing personal items from the wealthy Birla family, who are behind the temple’s construction.
Most group and private Jaipur tours (including half-day and full-day tours as well as Golden Triangle tours that also visit Delhi and Agra) stop at the Birla Mandir.
Things to Know Before You Go
The Birla Mandir is ideal for those with an interest in architecture and Hindu traditions.
Out of respect, cover your knees and shoulders before entering the temple.
Photography is not allowed inside the temple.
How to Get There
The Birla Mandir is located right below the Moti Dungri Fort, about a 15-minute drive from Jaipur’s City Palace and Pink City, and 10 minutes by car from Albert Hall. There’s plenty of parking here (for a small fee) just outside of the temple. Some visitors combine their visit with a stop at a popular Ganesh temple next door.
When to Get There
This temple is open throughout the year, from 6am in the summer season and 6:30am in the winter. It closes for a few hours each day around lunchtime, then for the night around 8:30pm. A lovely time to visit is first thing in the morning, when crowds are thin and the bright-white temple complex is wonderfully photogenic—it can appear overexposed if shot under the midday sun.
Many of India’s temples, hotels, and even some homes are full of beautiful white marble, much of it sourced from Rajasthan. Makrana produces the best-known white marble, which was used in a number of famous buildings including the Birla Mandir in Jaipur, the Victoria Memorial of Kolkata, and India’s most iconic attraction, the Taj Mahal.