India > Orissa > Puri

Puri Jagannath Temple Tour

Puri is considered as one of the four holiest (Chardham) Hindu sites in the world. Hindus believe that a pilgrimage tour (Tirtha Yatra) never be completed without visit to Puri. This city is mainly famous for Jagannath Temple and several beautiful swimming beaches. It also serves as the administrative headquarters of Puri district. Puri is located on the bank of Bay of Bengal about 61 km away from the capital city of Orissa, Bhubaneswar. Being a holy place Puri receives plenty of devotees round the year across the world. According to Hinduism there have seven major sacred pilgrimage sites in India include Puri, namely these are Ayodhya, Mathura, Maya, Kasi, Kanchi, Avantika, Puri and Dvaravati.

sand sculpture at puri beach festival

(A lovely sand sculpture of Puri Beach festival, Orissa)

Being the address of many Hindu temples includes the Jagannath temple the city is some time refers to as the cultural capital of Orissa. Hindus believe that Puri is a holy place to die in or to be cremated and so a large number of widows or older citizens come here across all over India to spend their rest of life. Usually, these widows take shelter in several Hindu Mathas (monasteries) in Puri around the Jagannath Temple. Initially in 1903, Sri Yukteswar constructed a Matha or ashram close to Puri beach. After that Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur (original name Bimal Prasad Dutta) who was the preacher of Gaudiya Vaishnavism established 64 Gaudiya Maths in Puri.

How to reach Puri ?

Travel by Roadways
Puri is directly connected to its adjoining state cities namely Kolkata and Vishakhapatnam by roadways. Several night super buses run from these two cities to Puri via Bhubaneshwar. There are two major bus terminuses at Puri one at Baramunda and the other opposite side of Ashoka hotel. You can also make a private car journey to this city.

Travel by Railways
Railway network of the city is under the Eastern Railway Zone. Puri Railway station is the main destination station which located at the city hub. The city is connected to the major Indian cities with regular super-fast trains like the Puri-Delhi super fast Express, Purushottam Express, Utkkal Express, Sri Jagannath Express.

Travel by Airways
If you planned to go Puri by flight then the domestic Biju Patnaik airport of Bhubaneshwar will be suitable destination to you which is placed about 62 km away from Puri. You will get regular flights to this airport from the other major cities of India like, Delhi, Chennai, Calcutta, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Raipur and Vishakhapatnam.

Tourist Attractions

Shree Jagannath Puri Temple was constructed by the king of Ganga dynasty, Anantavarman Chodaganga Deva, during 11th century respect to Lord Jagannath (Jagat - Universe and Nath - lord). This temple is considered as one of the four holiest sites (Chardham) by Hindus and its annual Ratha Yatra festivals of July make the temple world famous. This is a festival of chariot when the three main temple deities are hauled on huge and elaborately decorated temple cars.

Narendra Tank one of the largest tanks in Orissa located at Mauza Dandimala Sahi, about 2 km away from Puri Jagannath Temple. This lake is especially famous for the festival of Chandana Yatra of Lord Jagannath. This lake is surrounded with many small and big temples and an island in the center of the lake, with a small temple called Chandana mandapa connected with a bridge. During the festival of Chandana Yatra Lord Jagannath is taken to this Mandapa.

libraries in Puri: There have two large libraries in Puri. One is the famous district library located at station road which have a collection more over 15001 books to read include daily newspapers and monthly magazines. Another is the Panchasakha memorial hall library located at Sakhigopal. It contains about 4001 collections of books. Both of these two libraries is managed by the department of culture, Orissa and any one can visit here with out an entry fee.

Puri Beach is located about 2.5 km away from Puri railway station on the bank of Bay of Bengal. The beach is famous for its annual beach festival which is co-sponsored by the Indian Ministry of Tourism, the Development Commissioner of Handicrafts, and the Eastern Zonal Cultural Center, Kolkata. This is a golden sandy beach perfect for swimming and other water sports.

District Museum of Puri was opened for people since 1997. This museum is placed at the Station Road, Puri-2. It shows the typical culture of Orissa and you have not need any entry fee to visit this museum. There have also another handicraft museum at Batagaon about 4.9 km away from Puri city hub on the Puri Bhubaneswar road.

Swargadwar Beach is believed as the doorway to heaven. That is why the beach is remained away from the modern cultural offing and still it maintains a pure natural view. Hindu devotees visit this beach to take a holy bath. It is assumed that the beach was the bathing place of Sri Chaithanyadev, founder of Vaishnava Religious.

Ganesha temple is also a famous temple in Puri. Hindu devotees visit frequently this temple round the year. This is dedicated to lord Ganesha. Kapalamochana Temple is located just close to it. Kapalamochana is a small Shiva Shrine.

Some other tour spots in and around Puri are Shankaracharya's Gobardhan Pitha Math, Shree Lokanath, Sunara Gaurang Temple, Bedi Hanuman Temple, Chakra Tirtha Temple, Mausima Temple, Shree Gundicha Temple, Chandrabhaga Beach, Chilika Lake, Satapada Dolphin Sanctuary, Alarnath Temple, Puri Konark Marine Drive, Pipili, Raghurajpur, Balihar Chandi Temple, etc.

Some major festivals in Puri

Puri is a land of fairs and festivals. The authorizations bodies of the city organize several fairs and festivals frequently round the year to providing enjoyment to the tourists. Some of the most important festivals of the city are Ratha Yatra, Puri Beach Festival, Chandan Yatra, Snana Yatra, etc.

Rath Yatra or Car Festival (Festival of Chariots) is most popular festivals in Puri. During the festival the idols of Jagannath Temple namely Jagannath (the Lord of the universe, Vishnu), Balabhadra (his elder brother) and sister Subhadra, are brought out of the temple, and placed in to a chariot procession from the main gate of the temple to the Garden House (Gundichaghara) in June or July. After seven days, the return journey of these deities (Bahuda Yatra) is also celebrated in a traditional manner and they brought back to the main temple from the Garden House.

Chandan Yatra Festival is another popular festival of Puri start from the Akshya Tritiya of Baisakh Month (Third day of the bright half of the month). This festival continue from Akshya Tritiya to next 20 day (total 21 days) regularly and the images of the deities (Rama, Krishna, Madanmohan, Laxmi and Vishwadhatri) are taken out in great procession with gorgeously decorated boats and rowed to the accompaniment of music and dance to the nearby Chandan tank or Narendra kunda. On the last day of the festival 'Bhaunri Yatra' is performed.

Puri Beach Festival is usually organized to presenting the culture of traditional Orissa. It is celebrated winter season during the month of November and it officially (Tourism Dept. of Orissa) last for 5 days. The festival is a platform to show the traditional artistic events by the natives for the visitors like the fashion shows, classical and folk dance performances, sand sculptures, food festivals to rock concerts, DJs, beach parties; rock music, shopping traditional handicrafts, enjoying the beach and to have night-long fun on beach, etc.

Snana Yatra (bath festival) is celebrated on the full-moon day of Jaistha (May or June). According to the tradition of the festival Lord Jagannath, Subhadra, Balabhadra and Sudarsan are fetched out from their places and taken to give them a bath on bathing platform (Snan Vedi). During this bathing event the priests of the temple recited of Vedic hymns, 108 pots of consecrated water are showered on the deities. At the end of the ceremony they appear in 'Gaja Vesha' and withdraw into isolation place for fifteen days.

Some other popular festivals of Puri are Kumar Purnima Festival, Hera Panchami Festival, Avhisheka of Lord Jagannath, Durga Puja, Jhulan Yatra, Jhulan Yatra, Ganesh Chaturthi, Magha Mela, Shivaratri, Sitalasasthi, Dayanalagi, Navakalebara, Makara Sankranti, Saraswati Puja, Sriksetra Mohoshav, Anala Navami, Dola Yatra, Holi, Janmastami, Gundicha Utshav, etc.

Hotel, Restaurants and resorts

Hotel Vijoya International
Chakratirtha Rd, Puri-752002
Phone: +91-6752-222702
Tóshali Sands
Konark Marine Drive, Baliguali
Phone: +91-6752-250571
Hotel Samudra
C.T. Road, Balukhand, Puri
Phone: +91-6752-224155
Hotel Arya Palace
Chakratirth Road, Puri-752001
Phone: +91-6752-232688
Mayfair Group
Chakratirtha Road, Puri-752 002
Phone: +91-6752-227800
Hotel Sonali
Swargadwar, Puri-752001
Phone: +91-6752-223545
Hans Coco Palms 
Swargadwar Beach, Puri-752001
Phone: +91-6752-230951
Hotel Holiday Resort
Chakratirtha Road, Puri-752002
Phone: +91-6752-222440

General information about Puri

Country India
State Orissa or Odisha
District Puri
Languages Oriya (main dialect), Bengali, Hindi, English, etc.
Climate Winter Min - 12°C and Summer Max - 42°C
STD Code 06752
Best time to visit Any time
Railway Station Puri Railway Station
Airport Biju Patnaik Domestic Airport