Located along the pristine coastline of the Bay of Bengal the city houses numerous pilgrimage sites & beaches. Buzzing with devotees who come here to pay obeisance to the deity. The city is widely famous for hosting celebrations larger-than-life.
1] Tourist attractions
The city can be mainly bifurcated into two parts based on the grounds of interests of tourists – temples & beaches. So, following is a list of places & must do’s :
- Jagganath Temple
Being one of the Char Dham pilgrimages one is expected to pay a visit at least once in a lifetime to gain merit. This coastal town of Puri enshrined Lord Jagganath, Lord Balabhadra & Goddess Subhadra in this colossal temple. The temple is famous for its annual chariot festival – Rath Yatra.
- Sun Temple
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the precision & intricacy of architecture is worth gazing at hours at. It remarkably proves the sheer brilliance of architects of that era. The temple is designed in the silhouette of a gigantic chariot along with 7 horses & 24 wheels. It was conceived as a chariot of the Sun God. Spread across a sprawling area it also a beautiful garden.
- Puri Beach
On the outskirts of the city, it’s fringed with beaches & lakes that remain blanketed in relative calm & serenity. Nothing beats over lazing around on the warm sands under the sun, with the sound of the waves and the glorious view of the distant horizon. It is also known as the Golden Beach. You may also spot some camels here offering rides to tourists at the beach. While others can be seen getting some cheap thrills by the seashore.
- Chilika Lake
Chilika Lake is a brackish water lake and the biggest inland shallow lagoon. Chilika is a hotspot of biodiversity and has been designated as the biggest breeding place for Flamingos. Every year as winter sets in millions of migratory birds from different parts of the world i.e Siberia, Russia, etc. flock the lake making Chilika. A significant population of Irrawaddy Dolphin is also found here. And if you are a pescatarian don’t forget to try out some exotic species of fishes.
2] Art & Culture
Arts and crafts including handiwork, handlooms, and architecture reflect the prevalent temple culture. The cultural history of Puri dates back to primordial times. The ancient culture of Puri has some most expressive dance forms i. e Odissi & Mahari. They are an integral part of the folk culture of Puri. Patta-Chitra paintings are folk paintings that are the most indigenous, antique & spectacular paintings found here. Palm leaf paintings, tussar paintings, palm leaf engravings, stonework, cow dung, and papier-mache toys are also famous here. Sand sculpture and applique art are significant to the city’s sand beaches.