Bhubaneswar is a capital city of Odisha which is eastern state of India. It is a modern city with glorious past and a religious center of East India. It is India’s one of the well planned city like Chandigarh, Jaipur and Jamshedpur. German architect Otto Konigsberger had planned the city layout in 1946 with modern amenity like wide roads, parks and drainage system. It is also known as a ‘Temple city of India’ due to presence of more than 1000 small and big temples. It is one of the three cities that make Easter Golden Triangle along with Konark and coastal city Puri.
Brief history of Bhubaneswar
The city has a rich history that goes back to 3rd century BC that time this region was a part of Kalinga kingdom. Dhauli , 8 km from Bhubaneswar is the site of very famous Kalinga war that was fought between Kalinga and Mauryan Emperor Ashoka. Millions of people died in that war, seeing the huge massacre, cries and pain, Ashoka got disappointed with his deed and embrace Budhha religion. Then Ashoka had decided to dedicate his rest life for the peace of mankind and to spread Buddhism and its lesson around the world. Here in Dhauli, you can see complete edicts of Ashoka on a rock.
After the Mauryan, Mahameghavahana dynasty came into existence Kharavela was the notable ruler of this dynasty. You can see Kharavela’s inscription in Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves near Bhubaneswar. This region was under the influence of Budhhism and Jainism for several centuries.
In early 7th century, Somavamshi dynasty ruled this area and to establish Hiduism again they constructed number of temples in the area. And from 12th century Eastern Gangas ruled over this region as their capital in Kalinganagar ( today’s Bhubaneswar).
In the British India Cuttack was the capital of Orrisa provience, which was shifted to Bhubaneswar after independence.
Attraction around Bhubaneswar
1) Lingaraja Temple– Most famous and sacred temple of Bhubaneswar, located in the older part of city. It is a temple complex with approx 50 other shrine within the compound wall. Main temple is 55 mtr in height and great example of Kalinga archietecture.
2) Khandagiri & Udayagiri– 33 caves of 2nd century BC are found on the two adjacent hill Udaygiri and Khandagiri. There were used to be residence of Jain monks. These are located very close to main city of Bhubaneswar.
3) Muktesvara Temple- A ancient Hindu temple of Lord Shiva built in 10th century which is now a ASI protected monument . It is one of the best temple in terms of architecture, It has a Toran or Gate which make it unique from other temple of Bhubaneswar.
4) Parashurameshvara Temple- It is believed to be oldest Hindu temple in Bhubaneswar that was build in 7th century in Nagara style of architecture. This temple is situated in the same monument complex of Mukteshwara temple.
5) Brahmeswara Temple is also a important Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva built during 9th century, people who appreciate ancient architecture love to visit this temple.
6) Rajarani Temple- It another important landmark of the town, located near Mukteshwar temple. This temple was built during 11th-century which was originally known Indreswara and local people call it Love Temple. It have many erotic sculpture.
7) Ananta Vasudeva Temple- It is the only ancient temple in the city dedicated to Lord Krishna. It was built in 13th century. This temple has idol of Krishna with Balrama and Subhadra.
8) Bindu Sarovara- It lies between Lingaraja temple and ASI monument of Mukteshwara temple which is also known as Bindu Sagar. It is believed that this Sarovara contain holy water that was collected from different holy sources of water of the world.
9) Ram Mandir- It is newly built temple in the heart of city near Kharavel Nagar, Janpath, it has idols of Lord Ram Lakshman and Goddess Sita. Due to its high rise spire it can be seen from many part of the city.
10) ISKCON Temple- This is one of the many temple made by ISKCON society for propagating and educating spiritual knowledge throughout India. These temple always famous for its architecture. There you find Bhajan and Kirtan going on regular basis.
11) Odisha State Museum- It is great museum that will tell you rich history of Kalinga kingdom and many other dynasty. This museum is lies in the heart of city.It was established in 1938 and later moved to a new building in 1960. Its galleries contain various antiquities like manuscripts, tools, weapons and armory.
12) Dhauli hill- It is believed that this site belongs to famous Kalinga war fought with Mauryan Emperor Ashoka, that transform his life completely. Here you can see rock edict of Ashoka. A white Peace Pagoda (Shanti Stupa) was built by Japan Buddha Sangha and Kalinga Nippon Buddha Sangha.
13) Nandankanan – Its a combination of Zoo and a botanical garden, about 20 km from main city. Its nice place to visit with family and see animals. You can various endangered species here.
14) 64 Yoginis Temple– It is one of the Five famous 64 Yoginis Temple located at 15km from Bhubaneswar at Hirapur. It is an ancient temple of 9 th century dedicated to Yoginis, attendants of the great Goddess Parvati. These temples are importance for the followers of Tantra Vidya. Here you will see 64 sculpture of Yogini placed along a circular compound wall.
15) Pipli- This is considered a artisan village situated on the junction of Konark and Puri route and 15 km from Bhubaneswar. It is known for the applique work. These artist full fill the demand raise from the temples during many festivals. People who like to explore traditional arts of India should explore this village.
How to reach Bhubaneswar
Air: Biju Patnaik International Airport, Bhubaneswar is lies within the city that is well connected to other major Indian cities.
Rail: Bhubaneswar junction is major rail head which is well connected to major Indian cities and numerous trains passing through Bhubaneswar on Howrah to Puri or Howrah to South India route.
Road: The city is well connected with other city of Odisha via AC/ Non-AC Buses and Baramunda Bus stand is the main bus stand of Bhubaneswar.
Local Transport: For the local transport you can book Auto rickshaw or Ola Cab service.