Konark Sun Temple or Black Pagoda was constructed by the King of Ganga Dynasty, Narasimha Deva, in 1278 BCE. Konark is a small town on the bank of Bay of Bengal in Puri district about 64 km away from Bhubaneswar and 34 km from away Puri-Jagannath. This town is famous for its legendary Sun Temple. The annual festival of December in the temple is very popular when thousands of devotees gather here to participate to this festival.
According to the Odisa history, Kalapahad attacked the city in 1568 and destroyed Konark temple partially. Though the stone walls of the temple were about average 23 ft thick but he succeeded somehow to destroy the Arch stones of the walls. He also damaged most of the idols of the temple. Due to damage of the wall stones, the tower gradually collapsed and the stones falling down from the temple top. Instead of this ruin, the temple still today consider one of the seven wonders in India.
Architecture of Konark Sun Temple
Konark Temple literally means the temple of lord Sun (Kona - Corner and Arka - Sun). The entire complex of the temple was designed in a form of a huge chariot drawn by seven spirited horses on 24 of well decorated wheels each about 10 ft in diameter at its base. There have two sculptures of giant lions situated at the entrance of the temple which are each shown crushing a war elephant and these elephant sited up on a human. Every inch of the temple is covered with sculpture of an unsurpassed beauty, in tableaux and freestanding pieces ranging from the monumental to the miniature.
At the entrance of the temple is a Nata Mandir (Nataraj - the lord of dance according to Hinduism) where the temple dancers used to perform dances. The Main Sanctum was about 229 ft. high but it now in ruins but still it maintain a height of about 128 ft by its Audience Hall. The Temple measures 857 ft by 540 ft base and up the walls and roof are carvings in erotic style and these walls are decorated by the images of animals, foliage, men, warriors on horses and other interesting patterns.
Travel by Roadways
Konark is connected to other cities by Orissa State Public Transport buses. There are private owned deluxe Volvo buses with their comfy interiors. Volvo buses can be boarded from Puri as well as from Bhubaneswar.
Travel by Railways
Puri is nearest big city from Koark located about 32 km away. If you plan to visit the city with a train journey then the Puri railway station would be last stoppage for you. There are 2 trains named Puri Express and Purushottam Express that can take you to Konark.
Travel by Airways
The domestic airport of Bhubaneswar is the closest airport to the Konark city located about 63 km away. This airport is connected by regular flights from Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi and Hyderabad to the city.
Chaurasi is located about 31 km away from Konark Temple on the bank of Prachi River. There have some famous temples like the Laxminarayanan, Amareshras and Barahi Temple. Barahi Temple was constructed during 9th century AD and its deity is worshipped according to Tantrik practices. The deity of this temple is mother goddesses who has the face of a boar and is depicted holding a fish in one hand and a cup in another.
Astaranga is a fishing village located in Puri district about 20 km away from Konark city. This village is famous for a small beach with its panoramic view, especially during the sunset. Literally meaning of Astaranga in Oriya language is “colorful sun set”. The village lies near the Devi River and it produce a large scale of salt. Fishing is main trade here by the natives.
Balighai Beach is located about 24 km away from Konark Sun Temple on the way of Puri - Konark marine drive road. It is in Puri district on the shore of the Bay of Bengal and attracts lots of visitors to enjoy the natural scenery. Baliharina deer and the Sea Turtle Research Centre are the major attractions here. The best time to visit Balighai beach is from November to May.
Kuruma is a small village located about 7.8 km away from the Sun Temple of Konark. This place is famous as a Buddhist site where you will discover some ancient Buddhist antiquities like the image of Buddha seated in Bhumisparsa Mudra along with the image of Heruka, and a 17 meters long brick wall. You have to book a private car for visit this village.
Ramachandi Temple is located about 6 km away from Konark on the confluence of the Kushabhadra River. It is older than the Konark Sun temple but architecturally not so important. Devotees mainly visit this temple due to its religious importance. It is considered as one of the famous Sakti Pithas of Orissa. This site is also popular as a picnic spot.
Navagraha Temple is located just outside the Sun Temple compound; it houses a monolithic stone panel with idols of nine planets. Ichnographically, these temple idols are made with the superb sculpture of black chlorite stone where devotees come to provide respect to the nine planets of the Universe every day.
Archaelogical Survey of India (ASI) Museum is located close to Orissa Govt. Yatri Nivas Konark. This museum has a rich collection of sculptures, Panels and other artifacts mostly collected from around the Konark Sun Temple area.
Urban Haat of Konark is new shopping complex constructed on the pattern of Dilhi Haat. This shoping complex is situated just behind the Panthanivas complex near the Sun Temple. It covers an area about two acres with a rural ambience.
Some other major tour spots near the Konark sun temple are the Bhagabati Temple which is considered as on of Hindu Sakti Pitha and the beautiful Chandrabhaga Beach which placed just 3 km away from the temple.
OTDC, Konark, Puri-752111
Konark Marine Drive, Puri-02
Konark Police Station, Konark-01
Konark, Puri District, Orissa
OTDC, Konark, Orissa, India
Konark, Puri District, Orissa
|State||Orissa or Odisha|
|Languages||Oriya (main dialect), Bengali, Hindi, English, etc.|
|Climate||Winter Min - 10°C and Summer Max - 39 °C|
|Best time to visit||October to May|
|Railway Station||Cuttak Railway Station|
|Airport||Biju Patnaik Domestic Airport|
Konark Tourist Office (Yatrinivas)