Travel Attractions in Bhubaneswar
Places to see
Bhubaneswar, "The abode of the Lord of the World" and the
gateway to Orrisa, has slowly started to unbosom its mysteries for the
past few years. Tour around the splendid Lingaraj Temple, ancient
Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves and enjoy a superb boating experience
at the Chilka lake and Taptapani excursions. Once called the Kalinga
or Utkala, this city now boasts of cool avenues, upscale hotels,
shopping malls and excellent dining out options.
Dedicated to the Lord Vishnu and Shiv Linga, the Lingaraj temple is
one of Orrisa's famous temples, notable for the symmetrical sculptures
carved on its 45m high spire. The deity of Lingaraj, is an uncarved
block of granite 8 feet in diameter raised 8 inches above the ground
and is bathed daily with milk, water and bhang (marijuana). Plan your
trip during March-April to enjoy the joyous four-day chariot festival,
when Lingaraj is drawn on his chariot to Rameswara temple.
Bindusagar or "Ocean Drop" is a tank placed north of the
Lingaraj temple and is said to contain water from every river, lake
and holy stream of India brought by Lord Shiva. Taking a bath here and
drinking the water of this pool is said to cure any disease of the
stomach. A famous pilgrimage site for Indians, the tank is surrounded
by numerous temples and shrines. The best time to come here is around
Udaigiri Khandagiri Caves
These ancient caves which are over 2000 years old, are located at 8
km from Bhubaneswar. There are 44 caves carved out of sandstone
nestling on two opposite hills. The Rani Gumpha (Queen's Cave) is a
double storied structure, brilliantly festooned with carved
sculptures. Besides, there is Hanthi Gumpha ( Elephant Cave) which is
a favourite hot-spot among tourists.
The caves are open from 8 am to 6 pm and attracts vacationists from
all over the world.
Situated south of Puri, this 1,100 sq. km shallow lake is Asia's
largest salt water lagoon and is separated from the sea only by a
narrow sand bar. The lake is peppered with many small rocky islands
and is a vast reserve for aquatic flora and fauna. Hire a kayak and
look for Irrawaddy dolphins along with Siberian cranes or you can hike
through the jungles to discover white sand converging into blue water.
Visit the corner where city dwellers fear to go. Taptapani, home of
the primitive Kutia Kondh tribe, the Dingaria Kondh tribe, Bonda and
the Mali tribes. The residents are expert hunters, fiercely
independent and worship numerous gods and goddess. Stay in lodges and
get to know their lifestyle and unique tradition and cultural
heritage. Taptapani also offers a hot water sulpher spring and is
quite famous among tourists who visit here to revitalize themselves
with the naturally medicated water.
Orrisa State Museum
This four storey building holds within itself numerous artifacts of
state history. Displaying a massive collection of traditional dresses,
ancient and medieval tools and weapons. Stuffed animals, musical
instruments and hand looms and handicrafts of Orrisa, this museum is a
must see for every tourist who is inquisitive enough to know more
about this South Eastern state of the country.
Located near the exhibition ground, this Haat ( Market place) is a
hub for tourists who are interested to get some stuff with Oriya touch
along with their unforgettable memoirs. Ekamra Haat is aesthetically
designed to create a relaxed ambiance to browse through ethnic
handlooms and handicrafts from all over the country. The walls are
embellished with attractive terracotta sculptures and vibrant folk
paintings. Stalls display marvellous array of artifacts created by the
tribes whereas food stalls offer excellent traditional delicacies like
Chhenna poda, Chakuli pitha and Mutton curry. The Haat also has an
amphitheatre where folk and tribal dances are held.
About 8 km south of Bhubaneswar and to the right of the Puri road, is
the Dhauli edicts. Carved by King Ashoka on a rock five meters by
three meters, these 2000 years old inscriptions still bear the
instructions of the great king, to his administrators. Horrified by
the aftermath of the Kalinga war, the great legendary king, Ashoka,
became a follower of Buddha and spent rest of his life spreading the
Lord's messages across the globe. The site is also marked by a new
peace pagoda and rock edicts at Jau Gada.