Architectural Treasure: Sun Temple, Konark

A UNESCO World heritage site, “Sun Temple” in Konark, Orissanot only boasts of its amazing architecture marvel but also takes the pride of one of the “Seven Wonders of India” by NDTV and The Times of India. So witness, explore and discover the
marvellous piece of architecture which will definitely leave you awestruck.

History:

Dedicated to Lord Surya or Sun, “Konark Sun Temple”, has been an interesting history and legends/myths. It’s believed that King Narsimhadeva I of the Ganga dynasty was built Sun Temple in 13th-century to celebrate/ remember his victory over Muslim invaders.

On the same side, according to ancient texts, there are many myths and legends which are also connected with the creation of Sun Temple in Konark. First one is Samba,the son of Lord Krishna, who was suffered from leprosy, worshipped Surya deva anddid penance for 12 years. It’s believed that lord Surya impressed with his devotion/penance and in order to show his gratitude he cured his disease and blessed him with the Sun Temple.

Another famous legend regarding the temple is a wonderful aura of power in and around it.The aura is assumed to be magnetic in nature and said to have been built into the tower. It is amazing but true that the magnets allowed the king’s royal chair to fly in mid-air during king’s court sessions.

Things to do:

First have a look on twelve pairs of wheel spilled by 7 horses located at the base of the temple. These wheels are not common wheels but tell time as well – the bars of the wheels create a sundial. One can calculate the accurate time of the day by just looking at the shadow cast by these bars.

Another unique feature of this temple is East-West location, as here you will watch that the first rays of the sun always falls on the main deity.

Don’t forget to watch enticing carvings on its walls and roofs. Sculptured animals, leaves, solider on horses, scenes from daily lives of men and women and other symbols are also seen in the carvings. Three images of the god sun that are arranged to catch the rays of the sun at dawn, noon and sunset are heart-stopping. Every part of sculpture, free standing or part of elaborately designed sceneries surely captivates you.

Other dazzling sights to watch are: The Audience Hall, Dining hall and Dancing Hall.

Last but not least have a look on richly decorated Navagraha slab that is common to Orissa temple architecture, constructed for the protection of the temple.

If your heart still wants more than explore “Chandra Bhaga beach” just 3 km from sun temple and “Archaeological Museum” which is little away from the main temple

Note:Museum Timings: 09:00AM – 05:00PM and charges INR 10 (per person) fees.

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Visiting hours and festival information:

The temple is open all days between 6:00am to 8:00pm.

About festival“Konark Dance Festival” are a 5 days festival celebrated every year in the month of December and displays the various traditional dance forms ranging from the classic Bharatanatyam, Odissi and Manipuri to Kathakali and Sattriya dance styles of India. More a jugal bandi of painting,crafts mela and music will also be organised alongside the Konark Festival, So that visitors can uncoverthe master craftsmen of the region, sculptures,and handicrafts and enjoyed the performances of the highly trained dancers.

sun_temple_konark_orissa_india

Instructions and Guidelines:

Devotees and Tourists have to follow few rules that are as below:

  1. Entrance fees for the temple INR 10 (per person) for Indians and INR 250 (per person) for foreign tourists (children up to 15 years no entrance free).
  2. You can take your camera and mobile. However video camera is permitted at an additional charge of INR25.There is a restriction of carrying or using stand for taking photographs. Photography climbing upon sculptures and architectural part is prohibited.
  3. A guide is must

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How to reach Sun Temple:

Konark is well connected to all the major cities of India by road, rail and air. Bhubaneswar airport which is about 64 km from Sun Temple, Konark, can offer all means of transport like taxis or cabs to make your way to the Temple. And more the railway station that closest to Konark Sun Temple is Puri Railway Station (31 km) can also avail taxis or cabs to reach there.

Also Read :  Most Spiritual Meenakshi Amman Temple, Madurai

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