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Puri (Orissa)

Puri is one of the oldest and religious cities of India and is known to be the resting place of Lord Shiva. People also know it as ‘Jagannath Puri’. According to Hindu mythology, it is one of the four major pilgrimages of Hindus, which are also known as ‘Char-Dham’. Puri has a rich religious and cultural heritage from 3rd century BC. Puri is well known as the home of one of the most sacred temples of Hindus, ‘The Jagannath Temple’. Do not miss the ‘Annual Chariot Festival’ or ‘Rath Yatra’, which is the main centre of attraction in Puri.

Puri, Konark and Bhubaneshwar form the ‘Golden Triangle of Orissa’, as the three of them are famous for their cultural heritage and religious significance.

Apart from its religious heritage, Puri is getting famous as an Industrial Hub also, because of many major manufacturing companies that are settling here.

Location: It is located alongside the coast of Bay of Bengal, 60 kms South of Bhubaneshwar

Climate: Summer season is hot and humid. Winter season is cold and cool breezes blow, usually the whole day.

Wear light cotton clothes in summers and warm woolens in winters.

Best time to visit: November-February. You should visit Puri during June and July, if you want to attend the famous ‘Rath Yatra’.

How to reach:

By Air: Nearest Airport is Biju Patnail International Airport in Bhubaneshwar (60kms)

By Train: Nearest Railhead is Puri Railway Station

By Road: Taxis, cabs, Luxury and Volvo coaches are available regularly

Places of Interest

Jagannath Temple 

Location: 3 kms from the city centre

Best month to visit: November to February. If you want to attend the ‘Chariot festival’, then visit Puri in the months of June and July.

Well known as the ‘Honour of Puri and Orissa’, Jagannath temple is the central attraction of Puri. The magnificent and resplendent Temple situated in Puri is dedicated to Lord Vishnu, in the form of Lord Jagannath. The ancient temple was constructed by King Chodaganga, the emperor of Eastern Ganga dynasty, in the 12th century.

Inside the temple, the beauteous idols of Lord Jagannath, Goddess Subhadra and Lord Balbhadra attract thousands of devotees from all over the World every year. The structure of the Temple is designed in pyramid shape, which is marvelous. One of the most fascinating facts about the Temple is that lord Jagannath is offered ‘bhog’ six times in a day.

Rath Yatra

Location: Between Jagannath Temple and Gundicha Temple

Best month to visit: Every year in June-July Month

Annual Temple Chariot festival which is also known as ‘Jagannath Rath Yatra’ is the most prominent festival of Puri. More than one million devotees come to take part in the grand Rath Yatra and is a symbol of integration and equality. Huge beautiful chariots of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Goddess Subhadra are pulled through ropes by thousands of adorers. This festival is used to celebrate in the same manner, as it was celebrated 5000 years ago. The same rituals and spiritual ceremonies are followed by the devotees of Lord Jagannath, as they were performed initially.  

Gundicha temple

Location: It is located at the end of Grand Road, about 3 kms North-East of Jagannath Temple

Best month to visit: June-July, at the time of Chariot Festival

The famous Gundicha temple was constructed during the ruling period of King Indradyumma’s wife, Maharani Gundicha. The temple is situated in the centre of a beautiful garden. People also call it the ‘Garden House of Lord Jagannath’. Gundicha temple is a perfect example of Kalinga architecture style. During the time of Rath Yatra, Lord Jagannath, Lord Baladev and Goddess Subhadra leave Jagannath Temple and stay in the Gundicha Temple for nine days.

Puri Beach

Location: 3.2 kms from the city centre, 65 kms from Bhubaneshwar

Best month to visit: November to February

Along with sacred temples, beaches of Puri are also very popular. Located on the coast of Bay of Bengal, Puri Beach is featured with crystal clear water and beautiful white sand. The most fascinating fact about the beach is its intriguing view of the Sunrise and the Sunset. You can also enjoy horse riding and camel riding at the beach site. You will also admire the large variety of sea shells, which are the main wealth of the beach. One more interesting fact about the beach is that here, the boats are made of solid tree trunks and are very heavy.

Chilika Lake

Location: 37 kms from Puri

Best month to visit: November to February

Chilika Lake is the largest water lagoon in Asia. It is spread in an area of around 1,165 sq kms. It is a mind blowing place to relax in its calm water. This place is a home of an enormous rare species of birds such as sand pipers, golden plovers, sea eagles and pelicans etc. visitors can enjoy boating in the lake. The Lake is also a major attraction for its Irrawady Dolphins, which are usually seen off Satpada Island.

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