The temple complex was destroyed by Sultan Shas-ud-din Iltutmish during his raid of Ujjain.
The present structure was built by the General of Srimant Peshwa Baji Rao and Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj of the Hindu Pad Padshahi---Srimant Raanojirao Shinde Maharaj in 1736 AD. Further developments and management were done by Shreenath Mahadji Shinde Maharaj also known as Madhavrao Shinde the First and Srimant Maharani Bayzabai Raje Shinde .
In the regime of Maharaja Shrimant Jayaajirao Saheb Shinde Alijah Bahadur until 1886, major programs of the then Gwalior Riyasat used to be held at this mandir.
After Independence, the Dev Sthan Trust was replaced by the municipal corporation of Ujjain. Nowadays it is under the collectorate office of Ujjain district.
According to an episode narrated in Puranas, a five-year-old boy named Shrikar was enthralled seeing the devotion of King Chandrasena of Ujjain towards Lord Shiva. Shrikar took a stone and by considering it a linga started worshipping it regularly. Others thought that his worship as merely a game and tried to dissuade him in all ways. But all the efforts went in vain. On the contrary, the devotion of Shrikar increased by every passing day. Pleased by the boy’s devotion Lord Shiva assumed Jyotirlinga form and resided in the Mahakal forest.
Bhagwan Mahakaleshwar Temple is located near a lake and has a spacious courtyard surrounded by massive walls. The temple has five levels, one of that is underground. Brass lamps light the way to the underground sanctum or Garbha Griha where the Jyotirlinga is situated. The Linga is quite big in size and is encircled by a snake of silver. On one side of the Linga there is the idol of Lord Ganesha while on the other side, idols of Goddess Parvati and Kartikeya are installed.
The shikhara of the temple is adorned with sculptural finery. The temple of Lord Mahakaleshwar is very big, beautiful and grand. This Jyotirlinga is big in size and is encircled by a silver snake. On one side of the Shiv Linga there's the idol of Lord Ganesha and on the other side the idol of Parvati and Kartikeya.
Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga Ujjain
Buses: Ujjain is well connected by road. Regular bus services are available from Indore (55 km), Gwalior (450 km), Ahmedabad (400 km) and Bhopal (183 km) to Ujjain. Air-conditioned buses are also available on these routes. Ujjain has two bus stands; one is near railway station for Agar, Kota and Nagda routes and at Nanakheda area to Indore and Maxi routes. You can book bus tickets from online travel portals and online and offline travel agents.
Ujjain railway station is a major junction of Western railway zone. It has much long distance and direct trains to almost all parts of India. You can board direct trains to Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Jammu, Jodhpur, Jaipur Udaipur, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Ratlam, Rajkot, Ahmedabad, Baroda, Pune, Gwalior, Bilaspur, Patna, Nagpur, Cochin, Hyderabad, Bangalore. Dehradun etc.
During the period of Simhasth Kumbh Mahaparv, trains coming to Ujjain will be halted at flag stations that are of the little distance of 10-12 kilometres. The railway will provide buses to reach Ujjain and Mela area. Necessary arrangements will be made for the comfort of passengers at the flag stations. You can book rail ticket through website
Via Indore – Devi Ahilyabai Holkar Airport (IDR) at Indore is the nearest airport to Ujjain, 55 km away. Indore is connected to major cities in India by air. It has direct air connectivity with New Delhi, Mumbai, Bhopal, Pune, Hyderabad, Nagpur, Raipur and Ahmedabad. Taxi services are available to reach Ujjain from Indore airport.
Via Bhopal – Raja Bhoj Airport (BHO) at Bhopal is 172 km away from Ujjain. Bhopal has daily flights to and from New Delhi and Mumbai.
There are arrangements for pilgrims to have darshan standing in a queue, which begins at 3 am for the morning aarti. The ambience in and around the temple is quite clean and orderly even when crowded.
Shree Mahakaleshwar Temple is best visited around noon when the crowds have thinned.