A trip to Odisha #puri #konark

30th Aug 2019
Photo of A trip to Odisha #puri #konark by Monika Swarna

This time I planned a trip to Odisha. When I started my research I didn't get much about it. Even my friends were against this trip. But as usual I booked train and stays at puri and Bhubaneswar, bikes and flight for return.

My plan was to visit Bhubaneswar, puri and konark.

Thanks to indigo my flight is preponed and I couldn't explore Bhubaneswar.

Budget was around 8k for 4 members.

Bhubaneswar --> Jajpur --> Puri --> Konark --> Bhubaneswar.

We are on budget trip so we booked train to Bhubaneswar from Hyderabad which took almost 21 hours to reach.

Day 1

We reached Bhubaneswar early morning. My mistake was I didn't book ac coach. Weather is so humid. BBS railway station maintenance was not good too. We booked a OYO to fresh up and faced another disappointment as the room was bad.

After fresh up we went to have some breakfast and another disappointment hit hard as food was worst there.

So finally we went collect our bikes booked from Zoprent and our journey to Jajpur started.

Jajpur is around 100kms North to Bhubaneswar via Cuttack. There are 18 shaktipeeth which we call ashtadasa shaktipeeth where parts of goddess sati's corpse fell, Jajpur is one of them. Here goddess is called as Birija/Girija devi (wrist part fell at this place). This was not in plan at first, we suddenly decided and went to Jajpur. After asking locals for location finally we reached to temple. The temple is not for architecture lovers. It's a simple, plain temple with no carvings like I visited before, but that place has religious importance. We had lunch there and waited till 3pm, offered our prayers and returned to Puri.

Note: don't follow google map for destination. Please ask locals they'll guide you exactly.

Main temple will be closed from 12pm to 3pm.

Don't let anyone loot you. Pay for parking fee only. There some of priests try to give you bagle and asks you to bind it to tree, I'm not aware of the purpose but they demand money for that and won't accept what you offer. Temple premises also not clean, I have been to some shaktipeeth before, this is nothing like that. I never felt that urge to leave a temple before.

We reached Puri by 7pm and checked into to hotel Seagulls, a beach front hotel. We went to beach, spent some time which was the best 2 hours in whole day. We had dinner and rest for the day.

Day 2

Puri is a Eastern coast city, which is famous for Jagannath temple and beaches. We woke up before sunrise and went to beach. We we're not lucky that we couldn't watch sunrise because of clouds.

Puri Jagannath temple is a important pilgrimage dedicated to Lord Jagannath, a form of vishnu. Puri Jagannath temple is one of char dham(four abode), others are Badrinath(located at North side of india), Dwaraka(west side of india) and Ramrameswaram( South Side of India) and also famous for its Puri Ratha yatra/chariot festival.

Jagannath, Balabhadra and subhadra are trio deities worshipped here. This is a always busy temple where you can see lots of people offering prayers to their ancestors. This temple stands 214 feet tall built in 12th century by Ganga dynasty with some beautiful carvings. There are other small temples inside the compound.

Note: Mobiles are not allowed inside temple. Don't trust if someone says they take you to main shrine directly.

There are so many shops outside where you can do some shopping.

After having South Indian breakfast, we started our journey to konark. Drive from Puri to Konark was awesome, we drove through lush green trees and reached sea and then it led to beautiful and mighty konark sun temple.

Konark temple is a UNESCO world heritage Site, built in kalinga architecture in 13th century by Ganga dynasty. It looks like a huge chariot with large wheels, which are almost 10 feet in height and horses. The temple walls and even the wheels are filled with so many carvings and sculptures which represents the life style, culture and traditions of India that time. This temple is in ruins and repair work is in progress. There is 40INR entry fee for Indians. Tourists are not allowed inside temple.

It started raining heavily but we had to visit varaha devi temple, which is small temple but protected monument on the way to Bhubaneswar from konark.

Varaha devi temple is bit far from main road. It is easy to go there by bikes than any 4 Wheeler as the road is narrow and also a 2 way road. It's a 9th century temple, here goddess is worshipped by tantric rituals. Temple architecture style is different from Jagannath temple. There is less light inside temple and the deity is carved with Black stone. So it is even difficult to see with mobile torch too.

We didn't spent much time here as we were drenched already and it started getting dark and raining again.

We reached Bhubaneswar by night and went to homestay, cooked and also celebrated one of my friend's birthday.

Day 3

We didn't do much this day...

Just checked out from our stay as our flight is preponed, we don't have much time to visit Bhubaneswar. We returned our bikes, had breakfast and went to airport.

But here I'm mentioning some places to visit:

Lingaraj temple,

Rajarani temple complex,

Parasurama temple,

Ananta basudev temple,

Udaygiri and khandagiri caves.

This trip is mixed, I got upset with someplaces and didn't blink my eye for others. I thought Odisha can do more to develop tourism.

But finally for a traveller, every experience is a lesson and a beautiful memory.

Birija devi temple- Jajpur

Photo of A trip to Odisha #puri #konark by Monika Swarna

Jagannath temple

Photo of A trip to Odisha #puri #konark by Monika Swarna

Konark temple

Photo of A trip to Odisha #puri #konark by Monika Swarna

Varaha devi temple

Photo of A trip to Odisha #puri #konark by Monika Swarna

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