Odisha is yet another culturally rich state of our country and has abundant ancient temples. These temples have a majestic grandeur and remind us of the Indo Aryan style of architecture. The most popular temple in Odisha is the Jagannath Temple in Puri; however you can visit some of the following equally popular temples there and awaken your religious self.
7. Mukteshwar Deula
This Hindu temple, constructed in the 10th century, is situated in Bhubaneshwar (often referred to as the ‘Temple City’ of India). It is a perfect mix of ancient and modern eye catchy designs. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, this temple sees devotees from across the globe. Its most important feature is said to be the arched gateway (torana) which reflects Buddhist architecture.
6. Ananta Vasudeva Temple
Dedicated to Lord Krishna, this temple was constructed in the 13th century. The temples resembles the Ligaraja Temple, however it has Lord Vishnu’s sculptures along with murties of Balrama and Subhadra.
5. Mausima/Ardhasini Temple
The temple is dedicated to the aunt (Mausima) of Lord Jagannath and is located in the village of Gajam District. Goddess Mausima is also referred to as Ardhasini, as she drank almost half of the sea water that had flooded Puri. During the famous Rath Yatra of Jagannath Temple, the chariot stops on front of this temple for while.
4. Rajarani Temple
This temple situated in Bhubaneshwar was originally popular as Indreswara or the ‘Love Temple’. As the temple was constructed with red and yellow sandstone called rajarani, it derived its name from there. There are various sculptures that depict Shiva and Parvati along with the notable naga-nagi sthamba and sculpture of Lakulisa.
3. Parasurameswar Temple
Built in 650 AD, this is considered to be oldest temple in Orissa. It has the beautifully decorated sculpture of the presiding deity Lord Shiva. The outer walls of the temple have sculptures of Lord Ganesa, Parvati and many other deities along with the sculptures of some animals, floral designs. Made in the Kalingan style of architecture, this temple is well organized and in the best condition.
2. Konark Temple
Also known as the Sun Temple, it has been built in the form of a chariot of the Sun God, with stone wheels, pillars and walls. It is directed towards the east so that the first ray of the sun illuminates its entrance. Though major part of this beautiful temple is ruins, all efforts are being made to revive it.
1. Lingaraja Temple
One of the most prominent destinations in Bhubaneshwar is the ever famous Lingaraja Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is one of the largest temples, 180 ft tall, which predominantly represents the Kalinga architecture. This temple is built in deula style, similar to Mukteshwar temple, that has four components namely vimana, jagamohana, natamandira and bhoga-mandapa.