Table of contents:
- A bit of history
- Description of the city
- Puri Attractions: Jagannath Temple
- Gundich Temple
- Konark Sun Temple
- Lake Indradyumna
- Lake Narendra
- Lake Chilika
- Shopping in Puri
- Puri Hotels
- Hotels in Marine Drive
- Panthanivas Puri
- Inns in the fishing village
- Pink House
- Hotel Derby
- Puri, India Reviews
Located on the shores of the Bay of Bengal, the small town of Puri is one of the four most revered temple cities and pilgrimage centers in India. In addition, it is also a popular resort.
The city of Puri in India is famous for the famous Jagannath temple, which rises above the cramped narrow streets. Tourists and pilgrims are attracted here by the opportunity to take part in one of the most picturesque annual religious celebrations - Rath Yatra. The town is also interesting on ordinary days. Tourists are amazed by the many ways used by locals to glorify the god Jagannath: images of his face on bidi packages, rickshaw covers, making dolls. The town is small, you can get acquainted with its sights as part of an excursion group. If there is no such desire, you can visit Puri on your own - guests are welcome in India.
The city is located in the coastal region of Eastern India, in the state of Orissa, attracting the attention of explorers, pilgrims and travelers since time immemorial. Puri citylocated on the shores of the Bay of Bengal, 61 km from the state capital - Bubaneswar. Exact geographical coordinates: 19°4753 s. sh. and 85°4929 E. e. According to the latest data, the population is 170.8 thousand people.
A bit of history
This ancient Indian city has few ancient monuments. Until the 17th century, the city of Puri in India was mentioned only as one of the settlements located on the trade routes between the south and north of the Bengal coast of the country.
The sands and surrounding forests belonged to the Shabar tribe, who inhabited these lands since ancient times. The flourishing of the city is associated with the name of Shankaracharya, who chose Puri (India) as a place for one of his monasteries (matha). Ananta Chhotagangga of the Gangav Dynasty built the Purushottama temple on this land in the 12th century. During the reign of the Gajpati dynasty, in the 15th century, the temple was rebuilt and turned into a temple of the Lord of the World (Jagannath) to unite the disparate lands of the kingdom.
Today the city is one of the most revered and significant pilgrimage centers in the country.
Description of the city
The infrastructure of the city of Puri, the photo of which we posted in this review, is focused on three categories of guests who constantly come here. First of all, these are pilgrims, the second includes foreigners, and the third includes vacationers from India. Similarly, the city is divided into three completely different parts.
This area is located northwest of CT Road, is an ordinary provincialan Indian town, where dilapidated and sometimes already abandoned pompous British colonial buildings with huts covered with palm leaves, narrow shopping streets and numerous tiny temples adjoin. There are bunkhouses, shelters and guesthouses for pilgrims here. Foreigners do not enter this area of Puri in India infrequently. And it’s completely in vain: in the bazaars and shops here you can buy the same goods as in tourist areas, but much cheaper. In addition, it is very interesting to walk here along the crooked narrow old streets.
In the eastern part of the city, along the coast, where Indian tourists stop, there is a crowded and noisy area with high-rise hotels, Tibetan and Kashmiri shops of fake antiquities, entertainment infrastructure, travel agencies. Marin Pde is always noisy, expensive and not very clean.
In the western part of the city along CT Road and the coast to the fishing village there are ashrams, guesthouses, shops and restaurants. The further west, the cheaper and more democratic. Here you can eat inexpensively and tasty, buy, frantically bargaining, at a great price local craftsmen made of stone, wood, palm leaves, silk, rummage through the widest range of adivasi bracelets and rings.
Puri Attractions: Jagannath Temple
The main temple of the city is located in its very center. It occupies an area of about 40 thousand square meters, surrounded by a wall. Its height exceeds six meters. The main building of the templemeasuring 128 x 96 meters, located behind the wall. Historians claim that the temple was built by a king from the Ganga dynasty - Anant Varma Chhotagangga. It consists of four buildings. Chief among them and the tallest is Viman (65.47 m), followed by Jagamohan, Bhoga Mandap and Natya Mandap (dance hall).
The top of the temple is crowned with a bright red flag and a "wheel of dharma". The halls of the temple, called "mandapa", have pyramidal vaults and resemble the tops of mountains. Inside the temple consists of three halls: meetings, dancing and hall of offerings. Since early morning, hundreds of worshipers have been drawn to the temple to get to Jagannath for a greeting (darshan).
The temple annually for many centuries organizes and holds a luxurious Ratha-Yatra festival, during which temple deities are carried along the main street of the city of Puri (India) in magnificently decorated huge chariots. Locals can visit the Jagannath temple every day except Sunday from 10.00 am to 12.00 pm and from 4.00 pm to 8.00 pm. However, foreigners are not allowed inside.
If you wish to take part in worship services, you can do this from the roof of the Raghunandan Library, located opposite the central gate of the temple.
Located at the northern end of Puri's main street in India. She is called Badadanda. The temple houses the sanctuary of Jagannath, where the deities Baladeva, Subhadra and Jagannath are delivered once a year during the celebration of Ratha Yatra.
Konark Sun Temple
The Temple of the Sun, Konark, is a 13th-century landmark. Hefamous for its unusual architecture. The temple is impeccably designed and shaped like a chariot. It is located in the suburbs of Puri, which is easily accessible by car. The temple is decorated with unique carvings, some of them are erotic. They are very reminiscent of carvings depicting scenes from the Kama Sutra in the famous Khajuraho temple complex in Madhya Pradesh.
It is located northeast of the Gundicha Temple. The lake is considered a holy place. Its width is 120.7 m, and its length is about 148 m. Several small temples were built on the shores of the lake.
Located 1.21 km northeast of Jagannath Temple. It occupies an area of about 3.2 hectares. In the center of the lake there is a small island with a small temple located on it. It is connected to the southern shore of the lake by a bridge. In the sanctuary of the Madana Mohan temple in April-May, during the celebration of the Chandana Yatra (for 21 days), the deity Jagannath is located. Every day at noon during this period, the deity, accompanied by numerous pilgrims, is taken by boat across the lake.
Nature lovers who want to watch birds are recommended to go to Chilika lake with brackish water. It is the largest in Asia, covering an area of over a thousand square kilometers. This place attracts many birds, including several migratory species. Tourists can go boating here and even see one or two dolphins. Don't be surprised at Lake Chilikaindeed, there are some species of dolphins.
Shopping in Puri
The streets that are adjacent to the Jagannath temple live their measured life. True, the activity on them is more commercial than religious. There is a market along the main street of Puri in India. Here you can buy a Shaivite rosary consisting of 108 beads, Ayurvedic remedies, images of Jagannath for a symbolic price.
On Cremation Street in the southern part of the city, tourists can feel dizzy from the abundance of smells of sweets, incense, and spices. At the end of the street there is a cremation ground, where curious tourists with video cameras are not very favored
There are always a lot of tourists in India. There are many hotels in the main pilgrimage and tourist center of the state of Orissa. Despite this, during the high season, during the New Year and Ratha Yatra, it can be very difficult and quite expensive to stay in them. The most respectable hotels of the city are concentrated in the southwest of the coast, the cheapest - far from the coast, the most comfortable - in the northeast, near the fishing village.
If quality service and comfort are important to you, you should choose a hotel in the Marine Drive area. The cost of living here is quite high, but it is always crowded and comfortable. Those wishing to stay in an inexpensive colorful hotel surrounded by interesting neighbors and sincere locals who will greet you on the second day, as with old acquaintances, should go to the northeast of the city.
Hotels in Marine Drive
If you decide to stay in this area - go to the lighthouse. There are several fairly decent hotels here, the cost of living in which ranges from 2,000 to 10,000 rupees (1830-9150 rubles).
Quiet and clean hotel with a cozy courtyard and a picturesque garden. Rooms with balconies are air conditioned. During the high season (December-February), you should book rooms in advance. The hotel is located on the southern edge of the beach in a respectable area.
Hotel of the Ministry of Tourism of the State of Orissa. As in most hotels of this state-owned chain, it is clean, but … uninteresting. The staff is not very friendly to guests. The restaurant is rather dull, but the administration strictly monitors the observance of sanitary standards. The best rooms of this hotel are located on the first floor.
Inns in the fishing village
Those who wish to stay in the eastern part of ST-Road are advised by experienced tourists to drive to the Pink House restaurant, leave their luggage there and go in search of a hotel. There are many of them here. Here are some of them.
Pretty nice place. Cozy and clean beach houses with verandas are located near the beach on the dunes. Nearby there is a restaurant of the same name in an open area. The hotel attracts tourists with a pleasant atmosphere, professional staff. But, unfortunately, there are almost no free rooms in Pink House.
Hotellocated west of Pink House, on the opposite side of the sandy area. The vintage hotel offers only ten cozy rooms. The building is located in a well-kept shady garden, right on the beach. The hotel has a small cozy restaurant Golden Green
Puri, India Reviews
The town is interesting to visit. However, most tourists believe that it is more suitable for an introductory trip with a pilgrimage to India. Rest here is of little interest. According to travelers, the noisy and not the cleanest in India, Puri, whose photos are published by many tourism publications, mainly attracts pilgrims and Indian holidaymakers. In addition, you can meet young people here who are attracted by the lack of a ban on the purchase of drugs.
Meanwhile, exotic lovers will undoubtedly find a lot of interesting things in this Indian town. Fans of sightseeing and beach holidays are better off choosing another place, for example, the beaches of Goa.