Along the Narmada there are innumerable Shiva temples; many are well-known, such as Nareshwar, and Shuklatirth. There are more than one named Surpaneshwar Shiva temple, so don't get confused. In addition to the more accessible one near the dam site, there are others that have more atmosphere precisely because of their seclusion.
On the banks of the Narmada, where this river meets the river Dev, is one Surpaneshwar Shiva temple. It is only 5 km from the city of Bharuch, but is surrounded by the lush forests of South Gujarat. Instead of the buses, trains, and other vehicles that will take you to many other sites on your itinerary, a two hour journey on a small boat from Bharuch will get you there, giving you time to prepare yourself for the sanctity of the natural world, represented by a Shiva temple deep in a forest.
How to get there
By road: The Narmada river runs through Narmada district, along the border of Vadodara district, and through Bharuch district, emptying near the city of Bharuch into the sea. There are various sites along the way, and therefore various ways to visit the river. By road: Bharuch, Rajpipla, Chanod, and Dabhoi are accessible by buses. The Sardar Sarovar dam site can be reached by private vehicle.
By rail: Bharuch is the nearest railway station.
By air: The closest airport is at Vadodara.