Swimming with the Little Fish

The Georgia Aquarium, located in Atlanta, is the largest aquarium in the western part of the world. Outside of Asia, this aquarium is the only institution housing whale sharks. The Aquarium’s other notable specimens include beluga whales, bottle-nose dolphins, and manta rays.

Swimming with the Little Fish

Staircase to the Temple

The stone for the BAPS Temple in Atlanta, Georgia was shipped piece by piece from India, where craftsmen had sculptured it into more than 500 designs including rosettes, leaves, feathers and lacy geometric patterns. The thousands of sections, ranging from five ounces to five tons, each with its own bar code, have been assembled like a giant jigsaw puzzle based on instructions for religious buildings written into scripture thousands of years old.

Staircase to the Temple

Row of Elephants at the Temple

The water feature at BAPS Temple in Atlanta, Georgia is decorated with a row of elephant sculptures.

In India the elephant is a symbol for power, dignity, intelligence and peace. Elephants in Hinduism and the Indian Culture are a symbol of intellectual strength, and sturdy earthy mental strength. Elephants, in general, symbolize the qualities of wisdom, strength, courage, longevity, patience, honor, and stature.

Row of Elephants at the Temple

BAPS Temple Atlanta Panorama

Open to one and all, the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, in Atlanta, Georgia) was inaugurated in August of 2007 after only 17 months of construction time utilizing 1.3 million volunteer hours. The Mandir is comprised of three types of stone (Turkish Limestone, Italian marble, and Indian pink sandstone). More than 34,000 individual pieces were carved by hand in India, shipped to the USA and assembled like a giant 3-D puzzle.

BAPS Temple Atlanta Panorama

Bench View – BAPS Temple Atlanta

The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Atlanta, Georgia is a traditional Hindu mandir, or place of worship. The mandir was constructed in accordance with ancient Hindu architectural scriptures, and is the largest mandir of its kind outside of India. The mandir is made of 34,450 pieces of hand-carved Italian marble, Turkish limestone and Indian pink sandstone, situated on landscaped grounds spread over 30 acres. The mandir complex also includes a large assembly hall, family activity center, classrooms, and an exhibition on the key tenets of Hinduism. The mandir is open daily for worship and to visitors of any faith.

Two bench views of the mandir form different perspectives.

BAPS Mandir Atlanta

BAPS Temple Atlanta

Stone Mountain

Stone Mountain is a quartz monzonite dome monadnock (an isolated rock hill, knob, ridge, or small mountain that rises abruptly from a gently sloping or virtually level surrounding plain) and the site of Stone Mountain Park in Stone Mountain, Georgia.

At its summit, the elevation is 1,686 feet (514 m) and 825 feet (251 m) above the surrounding area. Stone Mountain is well-known not only for its geology, but also for the enormous rock relief on its north face, the largest bas-relief in the world.

Stone Mountain