The Longest Golden Beach & Shri Jagannath Temple are Puri's most well-known attractions. It is one of India's four Dhamas - Puri, Dwarka, Badrinath, and Rameswaram - the holiest of the holies. In Puri, Mahaprabhu Shri Jagannath is revered with his sister Devi Subhadra and older brother Mahaprabhu Shri Balabhadra (The Purusottama Kshetra). On the Bejeweled Pedestal are the gods (Ratna Simhassana). The Shri Jagannath Puri Temple, which was constructed in the 12th century in Puri by the famed Ganga Dynasty ruler Ananta Varman Chodaganga Deva, is one of the most spectacular structures in the Indian state of Odisha. The 65-meter-tall main temple of Shri Jagannath is an impressive and beautiful Kalinga-style building that is situated on a raised platform. In Puri, there are several Sri Jagannath festivals celebrated throughout the year. which include Sayan Ekadasi, Chitalagi Amabasya, Srikrushna Janma, Dussehra, Netrotsava, and Ratha Yatra (a automobile festival). The world-famous Rath Yatra (Car Festival) and Bahuda Yatra are the most significant festivals. To observe Mahaprabhu Shri Jagannath during this occasion, a sizable audience has assembled.
An inscription states that King Anantavarman Chodaganga of the Ganga dynasty gave the order to begin building the temple in the 12th century. Construction wasn't finished, though. His son, Anagabheema Deva III, added the final touches later in 1230 AD and subsequently placed all three deities.
Non-Hindus are not permitted inside the temple, and although admission is free, a little price must be paid to have a closer look at the sculptures during the special darshan.
The temple has 400,000 square feet of traditional Oriya architecture. The temple is surrounded by two concentric walls: the outside wall, Meghanada Pacheri, which is 20 feet high, and the inner wall, Kurma Bedha, which has 120 shrines and temples and surrounds the main temple.
Vimaana, Bada Deul, or Garbha-gruha (sanctum, where the gods are housed on the Ratna Vedi), Mukhasala (Front Porch), Natamandir / Nata mandir (dance or audience hall), and Bhoga mandapa are the temple's four buildings (offering place). At the pinnacle of the primary temple is a "Nila Chakra" (blue wheel) fashioned of Ashta-dhatu (eight metals). Singha dwara is the name of the main gate, which is guarded by two crouching stone lions. The Elephant Gate (Hathi dwara), the Tiger Gate (Vyaghradwara), and the Horse Gate are the other three gates in a line (Ashwa dwara).
There are several Mandapas, but only the Mukti Mandapas is chosen to host some eminent Brahmin scholars. Dola Mandapas are used to prepare various significant decisions as well as host the yearly Dol Yatra celebration. All of the idols of Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra are bathed at the yearly Snana Yatra using Snana Bedi.
Festivals Celebrated at Jagannath Puri Temple
PuriRath Yatra :
The most important Jagannath celebration is Ratha Yatra. The Jagannath triad are typically worshipped in the temple's sanctum, but once during Asadha (Odisha's rainy season, which typically lasts from June to July), they are brought out onto the Bada Danda and transported to the Shri Gundicha Temple in enormous chariots so that the general public may view them. Ratha Yatra, or the festival (Yatra) of the chariots, is the name of this celebration. The Shri Gundicha yatra is another name for Ratha-Yatra.
Three enormous chariots pulling the idols of Jagannath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra down Puri's Grand Avenue, or Bada Danda, to the Gundicha Temple, is a highlight of this amazing event.
Snana Yatra :
On the purnima (full moon day) of the Hindu month of Jyeshtha, deities participate in the Snana Yatra, which is also spelled Snana Jatra. Jagannath's blessed birthday is today.
Hindus consider it to be a significant holiday. According to the Hindu calendar, this is the first time each year when the gods Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra, Sudarshana, and Madanmohana are escorted in procession from the Jagannath Temple (Puri) to the Snana Bedi. In front of a crowd of followers, they are ceremonially washed and adorned there.
Chandan Yatra :
The longest celebration celebrated at the Jagannatha temple in Puri, India, is the Chandana Yatra, also referred to as the Gandhalepana Yatra. Chandana Yatra, which in Sanskrit means "Sandalwood Voyage," is observed in two stages: Bhitara and Bahara Chandana Chandana
Dola Yatra :
One of Orissa's most well-liked celebrations is Dola Purnima. It takes place at the same time as the Holi festival but is observed for six days. It starts six days before to Poornima (full moon) in the month of Falgun, on Falgun dasami day.
The primary activity of the six-day festival is the worship of Radha and Krishna in the swing festival. Dola Yatra and DolaJatra are other names for the celebration.
You may need at least two hours to finish your tour to the Lord Jagannath temple. Darshan typically begins at 5:30 AM when the temple opens and lasts until 7:30 PM or 8:00 PM. Between 1:00 and 4:00, there is a pause in darshan. The temple offers prasadam from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
Best time to visit
Every day of the week, the Puri temple is open. It runs from 5:00 am till 10:00 pm (Ideally visited before 10:00 am).
Between October and February, when the weather is calm, pleasant, and relaxing, is the perfect time to visit Puri. And if you want to see the renowned "Rath Yatra," you must go to Puri in June or July (which is actually the rainy Season of Orissa).
Places to visit nearby
Puri beach :
The golden sand beach on the bay of Bengal's eastern shore is a peaceful retreat for individuals who enjoy the outdoors. Due to its close vicinity to Puri's well-known temples, especially Jagannath Temple, the beach sees a lot of visitors throughout the year. Because there are so many places to stay and delicious food is so easily accessible, this beach is the perfect place to have a lovely vacation with your family and friends. This sun-kissed beach is a popular honeymoon spot for couples who like strolling along the windy shore and sharing breathtaking sunrises and sunsets.
Narendra Tank :
This enormous reservoir from the 15th century AD is located in Odisha and is surrounded by various temples. The pond has a number of Ghats where worshippers can take holy showers, and it is about two kilometres from the Jagannath Temple. During the Chandana Yatra celebration, several rituals are carried out in the famed tank where gods are also carried on the surface of the clear water. A stunning, little temple named Chandana Mandapa is located in the middle of the sizable tank.
Sudarshan Crafts Museum :
The Sudarshan Crafts Museum in Puri, which was founded by Sri Sudarshan Sahoo with the goal of explaining the development of handicraft to the curious, is a real treat for history and art enthusiasts. Here, traditional sculptures have been used to demonstrate how the art form has evolved. The museum provides the artists with the best assistance possible by giving them access to a studio and a gallery where their work may be shown. The museum is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and admission prices begin at 5 rupees. This museum is one of the best sites to visit in Puri or nearby Bhubaneshwar for any art enthusiast.
Laskshmi temple :
This temple, which is close to the Jagannath Temple, is particularly significant because of the myths associated with its past. According to legend, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati wed on the sixth day of the Jyeshta fortnight after accepting Goddess Lakshmi's invitation to this temple.
How to reach
By Rail :Puri Train Schedule, Puri Railway Station (PURI).
By Air : Biju Patnaik Airport in Bhubaneshwar, which is around 56 kilometres from the heart of Puri, is the closest airport. Mumbai and Delhi are connected to the airport
By Road : Through well-built highways, Puri is connected to the nearby cities.