Did you know that Bhubaneswar, the capital city of the Eastern state of Odisha has a rich history that is reflected in over 500 temples located here? In a literal sense, the word Bhubaneswar means the “God’s World’ and is a reflection of the vast variety of temple architecture found here. In addition to being the ancient capital of the Kalinga, Bhubaneswar is also located quite close to Dhauli, a place where the famous battle of Kalinga was fought, after which Ashoka started following Buddhism.
The primary reason why tourists from all across the world flock to this part of India is the vast number of temples located here and their beautiful architecture. Dubbed as the ‘City of temples’, Bhubaneswar is called so after Tribhuvaneswar, the Lord of the Three Worlds, and houses more than 500 temples. The city also houses the famous Udaygiri and Khandigiri caves from the Jain period. Try and experience the rich cultural heritage of this part of Orissa once your Delhi to BBSR flight lands.
Attractions of Bhubaneswar
Along with the Konark temple and the world-famous Puri temple, Bhubaneswar makes the golden triangle in the state of Orissa. Historically, this city of temples has been known by different names such as Toshali, Kalinga Nagari, Nagar Kalinga, Ekamra Kanan, and Ekamra Kshetra.
Fast emerging as an IT hub, Bhubaneswar, however, remains popular for its hundreds of ancient sandstone temples, heritage ponds, and monuments reflecting the magnificent architecture of the Kalinga period. The temples in the city vary in size and include the ones with gigantic structures like the great Lingaraja, 128 feet high, to miniatures of a few feet located on the banks of the ancient tanks. The property of Bhubaneswar is testimony to the region’s spiritual, religious, and architectural wealth. The extensive ruins of Sisupalgarh, Ashokan rock edicts, and the ancient wall at Dhauli hillock provide archaeological evidence of the region’s rich history.
Some major temples that you should include in your itinerary are:
- The Lingaraja Temple-The oldest temple in the city is highly recommended for its unique architecture and structure. Built over 1,100 years ago, the sandstone structure consists of four divisions, the sanctum, the assembly hall, the festival hall, and the hall of offerings. What is unique about this temple is the belief among people that a secret stream flows below it and fills the nearby Bindusagar tank. The water is said to have curative properties.
- Muktesvara Deula– Another popular temple is the Muktesvara Deula, constructed in the 10th century. Also called the ‘Gem of Odisha Architecture’ this beautiful temple is built in Kalinga style and has a prominent gateway replete with sturdy pillars and beautiful carvings.
- Temples in the Present Town– Not to be missed are the temples of Laxmanesvara (whose origins can be traced back to the 6th century), Satrugnesvara and Parsuramesvara and Anantavasudeva (dates back to 1178AD).
- Kalingan Temple– Representing the Nagara style of temple architecture this temple depicts the grace, the joy, and the rhythm of life in all its varieties.
And before you catch your Bhubaneswar to Delhi flight, do not forget to try the famous fish gravy and rice and mouth-watering sweets like chhena poda. You can even buy some applique work bags and home décor products.