is popular for its wonderful sea-beach and the famous Sri Jagannath Temple. The
weather at this part is comfortable all through the year because of the soothing
effect of the Bay of Bengal.
known as "Shreekshetra or Sri Purusottama Dham" in scriptures, is inter-nationally
famous for the temple of Lord Jagannath. One of the four celebrated religious
centers of India, Puri, the abode of Lord Jagannath needs no introduction. According
to tradition Puri was once a thickly wooded hill inhabited by the Sabaras (Pre-Aryan
and Pre-Dravidian tribes of the Austric linguistic family).
Jagannath - Legend of the Lord:|
account as found in the Skanda-Purana, Brahma Purana and other Puranas and later
Oriya works state that Lord Jagannath was originally worshipped as Neela madhab
by a Savar king (tribal chief) named Viswavasu. Having heard about the deity ,
King Indradyumna sent a Brahmin priest, Vidyapati to locate the deity, who was
worshipped secretly in a dense forest by Viswavasu. Vidyapati tried his best but
could not locate the place. But at last he managed to marry Viswavasu's daughter
Lalita. At repeated request of Vidyapti, Viswavasu took his son-in-law blind folded
to a cave where Neelamadhab was worshipped.
Vidyapati was very intelligent.
He dropped mustard seeds on the ground on the way. The seeds germinated after
a few days, which enabled him to find out the cave later on. On hearing from him,
king Indradyumna proceeded immediately to Odra Desha (Orissa) on a pilgrimage
to see and worship the Deity. But the deity
disappeared .The king was disappointed .The Deity was hidden in sand.
king was determined not to return without having a darshan of the deity and observed
fast unto death at Mount Neela, Then a celestial voice cried 'thou shalt see him
'. Afterwards the king performed a horse sacrifice and built a magnificent temple
for Vishnu. Narasingha Murti brought by Narada was installed in the temple. During
sleep, the king had a vision of Lord Jagannath.
Also an astral voice
directed him to receive the fragrant tree on the seashore and make idols out of
it. Accordingly the king got the image of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra
and Chakra Sudarshan Made out of the wood of the said tree and installed them
in the temple.
famous Puri Temple, built during the 12th Century A.D., is one of the finest forms
of ancient Indian architecture with all its finesse and glory. This is the abode
of Lord Jagannath- the Lord of the Universe, Balaram and Shubhadra.
temple premises are spread over an area of more than
ten acres and the main temple is surrounded by innumerable
smaller temples. Nilachakra (the blue disc made of an alloy of eigh t metals)
is positioned on the top of the temple. Youd be surprised to know that the
kitchen of Lord Jagannath temple is the largest kitchen in the world. Every day
up to 25,000 devotees take the food, called Mahaprasad, prepared in this kitchen
and during festive days, the number increases to 1,00,000.
The temple is located in the heart of the sea
shore town of Puri. It has great religious tradition as well as architectural
significance. The main temple is 65m (214 ft.) high and is built on a raised platform
approachable by a flight of 22 steps. This gives you a posing impression as you
first come within the sight of the temple.
Roth Yatra or the car festival draws lakhs of pilgrims and tourists to Puri every
year. Internationally famous festival of Lord Jagannath is the car festival, performed
from the second day of the bright fortnight of Asadha (June-July). The three deities
come out of the temple in a spectacular procession called Pahandi.The three Chariots
of Balabhadra, Subhadra and Jagannath
constructed each year with Sal wood, customarily brought from the ex-princely
State of Dasapalla, by a specialist team of carpenters who have hereditary rights
for this. Lord Jagannath's Chariot is called Nandighosa. It is forty-five feet
square at the wheel level. It has sixteen wheels, each of seven feet diameters,
and is decked with red and yellow coverings of cloth.
Chariot of Lord Balabhadra, called the Taladhwaja, has fourteen wheels, each of
seven feet diameter,
is covered with red and blue cloth.
Its height is forty-four feet. The Chariot of Subhadra, known as Darpadalan is
forty-three feet high with twelve wheels, each of seven feet diameters. This Chariot
is decked with the coverings of red and black cloth. Around each of the Chariots
are nine Parsvadevatas, the guardian deities, and four horses. Each chariot has
a Charioteer called Sarathi, Matali, Darruka and Arjuna are the three charioteers
attached respectively to the three Chariots of Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra.
sunny beach at Puri is one of the finest in the world. Watching the sunrise in
a symphony of colors is a wonderful experience. It is one of the most popular
sea-side resorts where visitors from any part of the globe can comfortably relax.
The fine white sands of Puri beach and the roar of the breakers
rolling in from the Bay of Bengal have fascinated visitors throughout the ages.
Beach Fun: The local fishermen, with their catamarans and wide brimmed
cane hats are welcomed by tourists for they not only provide you with a ride on
their boats but also act as lifeguards if you wish. And yes, they are also expert
masseurs. With excellent beach facing hotels and guest houses, the Puri beach
is an ideal holiday spot where you can easily spend a lot of time.