Puri, renowned as Sri
Purusottama Dham is located at the Bay of Bengal coast. Puri is
the land of temples and hence a celebrated pilgrimage site for Hindus
residing in different parts of the world. The place is better characterized
for its outstanding Jagannath temple, beautiful sand beaches and
appealing sunrises and sunsets. The Ratha Yatra Festival held at
June-July in Puri is accountable in gathering billions of pilgrimage
from all over the world. Nilgiri, Niladri, Nilachal, Purusottama,
Jagannath Puri are some popular names of Puri. The place also offers
beaches for refreshment of its travelers. Placing at a distance
of 60 kms from the capital of Orissa, Bhubaneshwar, Puri is well
known for deity of Lord Jagannath and the Jagannath Temple. The
Temple of Jagannath is unique and probably the only temple in India
where the idols of sister and brother worshipped together. The Puri
temples are the holiest shrines in India and frequently visited
by a huge array of devotees.
Prime pilgrimage attractions of Puri
Jagannath Temple : The Jagannath temple is
considered as one of the four Dhams of Hindu as well
as the only Dham of east India. This temple is the tallest that dominates
the townscape and the skyline of Puri. The present temple structure
is made by the 'Ganga' King 'Choda Ganga Deva' at 12th century. The
temple sited at the Nilgiri Hills and is an excellent example of Kalinga
style Architecture. Jagannath temple is the important landmark of Puri
and Ratha Yatra, a unique attraction of the temple. The story behind
the festival Ratha Yatra, is at the time of the occasion, Lord Jagannatha
goes to the Gundicha temple and halts there for one week. After one
week he goes back to the original temple and thus the festival ends.
Mandir : Gundicha Mandir (Temple) is about
3-km northeast of the Jagannatha temple. At the time
of Ratha Yatra festival, as per the "Chaitanya-Caritamrita",
Lord Jagannatha goes to the Gundicha temple for one week. The temple is believed
to be the home of Lord Jagannaths’ aunt. Jagannath along with Balabhadra
and Subhadra are taken on an immense wooden chariot from the Jagannath temple
to Gundicha Ghar.
Konark Temple: On the sea shore of Bay of
Bengal, 20 kms north east of Puri lays the popular sun temple of Konark.
This temple is a great example of historical significance and architectural
splendor. Besides, Puri has witnessed a number of other religious
places and pilgrimage sites of the state.