Ganoderma lucidum (Ling Zhi) is a basidiomycete white rot macrofungus which has been used extensively as "the mushroom of immortality" in China, Japan, Korea and other Asian countries for 2000 years. A great deal of work has been carried out on therapeutic potential of Ganoderma lucidum. The basidiocarp, mycelia and spores of Ganoderma lucidum contain approximately 400 different bioactive compounds, which mainly include triterpenoids, polysaccharides, nucleotides, sterols, steroids, fatty acids, proteins/peptides and trace elements which has been reported to have a number of pharmacological effects including immunomodulation, anti-atherosclerotic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, chemo-preventive, antitumor, chemo and radio protective, sleep promoting, antibacterial, antiviral (including anti-HIV), hypolipidemic, anti-fibrotic, hepatoprotective, anti-diabetic, anti-androgenic, anti-angiogenic, anti-herpetic, antioxidative and radical-scavenging, anti-aging, hypoglycemic, estrogenic activity and anti-ulcer properties. Ganoderma lucidum has now become recognized as an alternative adjuvant in the treatment of leukemia, carcinoma, hepatitis and diabetes. The macrofungus is very rare in nature rather not sufficient for commercial exploitation for vital therapeutic emergencies, therefore, the cultivation on solid substrates, stationary liquid medium or by submerged cultivation has become an essential aspect to meet the driving force towards the increasing demands in the international market. Present review focuses on the pharmacological aspects, cultivation methods and bioactive metabolites playing a significant role in various therapeutic applications.