Updated May 25, 2023
To Hindu pilgrims, Puri’s Jagannath Temple is one of the most sacred temples in India. People worship the idols of Lord Jagannath, Balaram, and Goddess Subhadra here. It is among the Char Dham pilgrimage sites. This article will throw light on many unknown histories of this holy temple.
History of The Jagannath Temple of Puri
The Puri Jagannath Temple is one of India’s most ancient and sacred Vaishnava sites. Puri Jagannath Temple’s history is fascinating. Everyone believes that King Anantavarman of the Chodaganga dynasty built this temple in the tenth century.
However, the temple got its gigantic structure through the initiative of King Anang Bhim Deo in 1174 AD. In 1568, during the reign of Mukunda Deva, the deities were smuggled out of the ‘Garbhagriha.’ However, it was soon discovered and brought back to its previous grace. From 1751 to 1803, the temple was under the control of the British. Later, the royal family returns the power of control to the then-rulers. In the present era, the royal family is in charge of the temple.
The Jagannath Temple of Puri: A Place of Mystery
The Jagannath Temple of Puri has been attracting pilgrims as a center of astonishing, mysterious facts. To the devotees, these matters are nothing but the blessing of the Lord.
1. The Flag Flows in the Opposite Direction of The Wind
The flag on the top of the holy temple always flows in the direction opposite to the wind. It is an exception to the principle of nature.
2. A Place with no Shadow
Except at mid-noon, the shadow is standard at any place. When some object obstructs the way of light, a shadow forms, but in this sacred temple, not a bit of shadow comes into view.
3. Flying Objects are Not Allowed
This is, again, a mystery. No flying objects, birds, or planes fly above the temple. The reason is still unknown.
4. The Sacred Food or ‘Bhog’
The people cook the holy food meant as an offering to the Gods in seven vessels putting one above the other. The topmost vessel always cooks first, and the rest cook in the same order. No food gets wasted, even though 2000-200000 people eat here regularly.
You will find many such amazing facts around the temple. After all, it is the Lord’s land!
Why is it so Famous?
The Jagannath Temple of Puri is famous for being a holy temple for Hindu pilgrims. Lord Jagannath is an Avatar of Lord Vishnu. So every Hindu pilgrim wants to visit this holy place at least once. The Pioneer of the Vaishnava religion Shri Chaitanya Deva also spent many years in this sacred place. So the followers of the Vaishnava religion consider this temple holy.
During Rathyatra, many devotees gathered to see and touch the sacred chariots of the deities.
Best Time to Visit Puri
In Puri, visitors can enjoy a pleasant atmosphere at any time of the year. However, October to February is the best time to visit Puri. Again the time of Rath Yatra festival attracts many tourists and devotees to witness the auspicious festival.
Puri is the best place for a small tour on a pocket-friendly budget. Puri trip costs ₹5,000 to ₹8,000 per person for a three to five days tour. However, the rate depends on the number of days spent.
Nearby Sightseeing in the Jagannath Temple of Puri
The Jagannath temple and Puri are famous for many other sites. Here some of them are described below.
1. Konark Beach & Sun Temple
This famous tourist spot’s location is on Marine Drive, Puri. The Sun temple and the Ranchandi temple near the Konark beach are worth seeing. The spot is located about 30 kilometers from Puri.
2. Puri Beach
A nature lover will find peace in the beautiful landscape of Puri Beach. The vast sea and long sea beach are enough to take your breath away. From the Puri Jagannath Temple to Puri beach, the distance is just 5 kilometers.
3. Puri Lighthouse
This lighthouse is like the eye of the city. It attracts visitors to have a 360° view of the beach from the top. It is one of the favorite photographic places for tourists. Puri lighthouse’s location is just 3 kilometers away from the Puri Jagannath Temple.
4. Sudarshan Crafts Museum
This museum is worth seeing for art lovers. There is an attractive amount of artistic variations that are much more enjoyable. One can find various types of paintings, sculptures, and artworks here. The museum is on the station road, which is about 3.5 kilometers away from the Puri Jagannath Temple.
5. Chilika Wildlife Sanctuary
Chilika Wildlife Sanctuary is the best spot to spend the day with animals in a natural circumference. Various standard and rare species of animals welcome tourists with their funny activities. A boating facility is also available to enjoy the beautiful lake in the Sanctuary. This wonderful creation is just 40 kilometers away from the temple.
6. Vimala Temple
This temple is a very peaceful place. The devotees can indulge in the meditation of God in this temple. It is within the Jagannath temple’s complex. Everyone worships the Adi Shaktis here.
7. Chilika Lake
Chilika lake is a pleasurable trip for all tourists, mainly for boating and enjoyable scenery. The water changes color with the position of the sun and clouds. In winter, it is the best site to see migratory birds.
History, culture, and belief mingle in the Jagannath Temple of Puri. The unique culture of this place has been attracting devotees for decades. Various government initiatives have also made Puri a must-visit holy place on the lists of tourists and pilgrims.
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