Puri is the city, situated in the state of Orissa, in eastern India. Puri is one of the four holy dhams of Hinduism and the hallowed seat of Lord Jagannath and longest Golden beach. The District derives its name from the heritage city of Puri, one of the four pilgrimage centres of India.
Puri has the Bay of Bengal and Khurda district on its west, Sambalpur on its south and the state capital Bhubaneshwar on its northern side. The forest area lying to the west of Puri provides bamboo and Sal. The district of Puri encompasses most of the Chilika Lake, Asia’s largest freshwater lake. Bhubaneshwar is also located in Puri district.
Puri was once part of the kingdom of Kalinga, formed by Emperor Ashoka of the Mauryan Empire in 260 BC. The Sabaras, a tribe belonging to pre-Aryan and pre-Dravidian Austric linguistic group, inhabited the region. The region came under British rule in 1803. The Raja of Khurda rebelled in 1804, and there was a peasant uprising in 1817-18. The Orissa famine of 1866 claimed many lives in Puri.
Raghurajpur- Raghurajpur is 12 km from Puri on Bhubaneshwar road in 203 National highways, near chandanpur. Every household has a painter and can show you lavishly painted the age-old traditional paintings on canvas and other varieties like Pattachitra, masks, stone idols, toys and many more.
Sakhigopal- It is also known as Satyabadi, is famous for the shrine of Lord Krishna. Although the Sakhigopal temple was built during the 19th century, the legend has it that the Krishna image was brought here by King Prataprudra Deva after his victory over Kanchi.
Jagannath Rath Yatra- The much famous Temple Chariot Festival of Lord Jagannath takes place in Puri. In this festival the temple images are carried out of the temple to the street in three huge chariots on the name of Nandighosha for Lord Jagannath, Taladhwaja for Lord Balabhadra and Darpadolana for Goddess Subhadra.
Konark- Konark Temple, 35 km the Marine Drive. One can enjoy the natural beauty of the Marine Drive Konark while driving. One the way, there are a few scenic spots with Temple, like Beleswar and Ramachandi. While driving from Puri, you can cross Tosali Sand Resorts, a luxurious hotel. Here, sunrise is very beautiful and enchanting.
Best time to Visit
The Rath Yatra and Nava Kalevara are the famous festivals of Puri. Both these events are related to the reigning deity, Lord Jagannath. Commemorating the journey of Lord Krishna from Gokul to Mathura, the Rath Yatra is celebrated on the second day of the bright fortnight of Asadha (June-July). The image is placed in a heavy chariot and the efforts of hundreds of devotees are required to move it. The journey takes several days, and thousands of pilgrims participate. Perhaps many people will be surprised to know that the English word juggernaut, with its connotation of a force crushing whatever is in its path, is derived from name Jagannath, meaning “lord of the world”.
The Nava Kalebara festival is an immensely significant religious ritual, wherein the idols of the three deities-Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra-change their external forms. New idols are carved out of specially sanctified chandan/neem trees, following certain regulations. The ‘daru’ (wood) is then transported to the temple in full regalia.
Puri Beach Festival is celebrated annually in early November. Orissa craft, cruisine and cultural evening are the highlights of the event.
How to Reach
By Air- The nearest airport is at Bhabaneshwar, the state Capital.
By Rail- Puri is also linked to other cities in Orissa and the country by train. We would provide you all India tourist permit vehicles for the local transportations and also for the intercity drives too.
By Road- Puri is connected Bhubaneshwar, Konark, Berhampur, Taptapani, Sambalpur and Kolkata by road.