Orissa : Sun Temple of Konark

 

Konark Sun Temple:
The sun temple, built in the city of Konark, is one of the grandest temples of the world. No one had thrown lights on one of the finest temples of the world but thanks to the initiative taken by Lord Karjan. He revamped and reconstructed the stunning temple in 1904. In 1830, the contemporary king had taken out the marvelous architectural sculptures from the temple and used those in his own Durga temple. Imperative attractions like 3 doors positioned at the entrance, were shattered by the king in a slapdash fashion. But still the remarkable façade of the main temple is popularly known to the crowd for its majestic architectural grandeur. Different portions of the temple were closed due to the various reasons but now again the visitors can watch the awe inspiring inner vista of those portions. To uphold the fine arts of the surya temple, the authority is renovating its architecture. The numbers of tourists are also increasing at a rate of knots.
Samba, the son of the Hindu deity Sri Krishna, had built the striking temple and the image of the deity, Surya, discovered by Samba, is now residing in the temple. It is believed that to recall that finicky mythological tale a fair is organized every year during January-February in the adjoining meeting spot of Chandrabhaga and Bay of Bengal. Take a bath in the water of Chandrabhaga River to get rid of the committed sins. The soaring waves can cause some problems for you if you are not careful enough. A light house is also there to show the intended ways to the ships through the deep ocean.

Arguably, the Sri Ram temple, flanking the banks of the Ramchandi River, about 5 km towards the south of Konark, was built by Sri Ram.

Two elephant sculptures are positioned at the entrance of the main gate of the temple to welcome you in the superlative temple. Jagmohan is the balcony by which you can get into the temple and 60 feet tall edifice was refurbished by the British Government. Stairways will take you to the top of Jagmohan. 3 impressive idols engraved on the chlorite rocks on the balcony are there. In 1984 the temple was renovated by the archeological department. The temple has got the recognition from different parts of the world. Now it is also enlisted in the world heritage site of UNESCO.  
 
The structure of the temple was built in the shape of a gigantic chariot with seven horses and twenty four wheels. Seven horses illustrate seven days of a week. Likewise each and every part of the temple has a special and inside meaning and that makes the temple so special. Instead of getting recognition, the carelessness has destroyed the richness of the temple. The wheels (9 meters diameter) are out of shape now. Only one wheel out of the seven is still there with its prominent structure. The glory days of yester years can still be remembered though. It is not only the fascinating architectural grandeur which entices tourists from India and abroad but the structure of temple also depicts the influential and cerebral thought that was put into it. It is evident from the fine arts that men could think themselves powerful and wealthy from the very beginning of their existence in the world. The lion, elephant and human being imprinted on the temple, portray the intellectual power, richness and truthfulness of human beings respectively. If you look at the wheels of the temple relentlessly for few minutes, then you will feel that the wheels are moving due to the magnificent architectures of the chariot. More than 1700 carved elephants are adorning the temple premise. The ornamentations of the smooth platform, divided into four different parts, are worth watching. Different Hindu deities engraved on the walls of the temple display the aesthetical excellences and captivating creations. The numbers of the Methuen sculptures are more than any other existing carved sculptures. A lot of sculptures on war are embossed and it gives an impression that the manufacturer and artists were engrossed with the glory of the war.  Different activities and actions related to the kings and kingdoms are also portrayed with lot of care. Idols of Zebras are also carved on the walls as a symbol of Business dealings. The women sculptures on the first balcony will catch your eyes when you reach there through the stairways. The eight dancing Bhairav idols in the four different corners will also entertain you. The three surya (sun) idols on the balcony, which can be seen directly from the premise, fascinate tourists a lot. The roofless temple of Chayadevi, the wife of the deity, sun, definitely deserves a visit. The architectural flair on the wall has definitely lost its excellence but few existing examples of the fine arts still look attractive.

The 227 feet tall reck deul, positioned at the rear of Jagmohan (the balcony through which the temple can be accessed), is almost demolished. The major idol of surya, formed by the chlorite stone, is missing. There was a huge rock atop the temple called Kumbhapathar, a magnet which had an immense attractive power. The ships used to change their way to avoid the attraction of the fastidious magnet of the temple. The huge metallic utensil, the flag stand along with the magnet was also smashed. The idol of the deity of Konark is now increasing the elegance of the Delhi Museum. The door of the Konark temple is open for each and everyone irrespective of his/her religion.
The exact story behind the temple is still unknown but 12000 laborers and 1200 architects had put in their earnest efforts on this to complete the remarkable temple which is still marked as a temple which displays an unparalleled architectural majesty. The brightness and richness of the temple used to diminish the fame of the contemporary temples. The pagoda type aesthetics of the temple displays the Indian fine arts on its black rocks. The temple was also renowned as Black Pagoda in yester years. Konark was a rich port and an affluent city life was also there around the port.
Dazzling architectural sculptures and wonderful archeological items are maintained in the adjoining museum of Konark temple.

Konark dance festival is organized during 1st to 5th Dec to attract tourists. Another on stage odyssey dance program is also organized at the backend of the temple in November. Artists assemble here from all over the country to showcase their talents.

Temporary arrangements for a night stay are also done at the time of the dancing carnival.

Kurum: Kurum village, about 8 km from Konark, has places which display the cultural mix of Hindu and Buddhist religions. Kurum was a rich village according to Hew-en-sang. The excavation in 1963 has revealed the presence of old scriptures, coins and many more items of the ancient era. Interested and ardent tourists can hire an auto or taxi to watch all these important and valuable archeological items in the museum, located adjacent to the school, built by the teacher Sri Braja Das.

How to reach: Buses are connecting Konark to Bhubaneswar and Puri regularly. Matadors and jeeps are also going to Konark from Puri bus stand. You can also avail conducted tours to Konark from Puri and Bhubaneswar as well but tourists who are interested in viewing each and every small detail of the majestic temple should stay there for a night.
 
Where to stay: Panthanivas, Yatrinivas, Sun Villa, Labanya Lodge, Shanti Hotel, Royal Lodge, and Hotel Sunrise. Check our hotel booking links below for photos, rates, options and online bookings.

 

  Sun Temple of Konark        Konark        Chariot wheel at Konark

      Sun Temple of Konark                                   Konark                                          Chariot Wheel at Konark

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