Have you ever made a last-minute alteration to a plan? We did. We travelled to Konark instead of Puri to visit the iconic Sun Temple, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
To be honest, I wanted to travel on public transport. That is, in my opinion, a fantastic way to learn about the local way of life. And believe me when I say that the trip cost us not even close to what the 4-wheeler driver demanded. Continue reading to learn how our trip turned out as we explored one of the most well-known temples.
Bus journeys will save you a lot of bucks
We were concerned whether we would be able to return after visiting the sun temple as we started late from BBSR. When we inquired about it with a 4-wheeler driver, he told us the journey would cost Rs. 2000. The same guy also informed us that there were government buses available and that it was feasible to return the same day.
From Kalpana Square, Mo buses are available for both Puri and Konark. We had to wait for our bus for around 30 minutes. Since there were not many people on the bus, I was able to get a window seat and my husband was able to sit next to me. It took us more than 2 hours to reach Konark. The ticket price was 65 rupees per head. This was not an air-conditioned bus. Nonetheless, AC buses are also available.
The century-old temple wowed us with its intricate artwork
I wonder who among us has not been enthralled by the beauty of this historic temple. Dedicated to Lord Sun, the temple is located at Konark about 35 kilometres northeast from Puri city on the coastline in the Puri district of Odisha. It's interesting, as I reflect on it while writing this piece, that we braved the scorching heat to visit the temple of the Lord Sun.
The Konark temple, which dates back to the 13th century, features Kalinga style architecture. The Sanskrit words Kona and Arka are combined to form the word Konark. Kona denotes a corner or an angle, while Arka denotes the sun. The temple is a representation of Lord Sun's chariot, carved out of stone. The wheels of the chariot are adorned with symbolic designs.
The entry ticket was Rs 70 for two, and we purchased it online. Although you can purchase the ticket at the counter, doing so online will undoubtedly save you time.
Lunch at Gitanjali Restraunt
We had lunch at Geetanjali Restaurant. We chose vegetarian thali with omelette, and we thought the meal was so-so. We felt that the food lacked enough salt. The restaurant's atmosphere is however lovely. Moreover, it is spacious. It wasn't crowded, so we could eat quietly. We spent 590 rupees on lunch.
Return journey by AC Bus
When you don’t have the right information at the right time, even the simplest of things appear complex. We stepped out of the temple premise before sunset and waited for a bus. We waited and waited, but there was no bus in sight. We were a little concerned because the frequency of buses was not that high. We eventually found out from the shopkeepers that the next bus would arrive right away at 5 pm. The ticket price was 75 rupees per head.
Overall, it was a good trip. We wished we had more time to explore the place. It is better to travel here by early-morning bus because it will allow you to tour both the temple and Chandrabagha Beach, which is close by. You can easily rent a four-wheeler for the trip if you don't feel comfortable taking the bus. You can even opt for a self-drive car rental service.
Take a look at the pictures below.