The seaside resort of Puri, 60 km from Bhubaneswar, is one of the four dhams (holiest Hindu pilgrimage places in India). Religious life in the city revolves around the great Jagannath Temple and its famous Rath Yatra. Puri's other great attraction is its long sandy beach that draws large numbers of Western travellers and Indians. Jagannath Temple : The temple makes Puri one of the four dhams, cardinal centres of pilgrimage. The temple is protected by two surrounding walls. The outer enclosure is nearly square. The walls of the enclosure are six metres high. Inside, a second wall encloses the actual temple. The conical tower of the temple is 58 mtr. high and is topped by the flag and wheel of Vishnu. In front of the main entrance is a beautiful pillar, topped by an image of the Garuda. The main entrance is known as the Lion Gate due to the two stone lions guarding the entrance. The southern, eastern and northern gates are guarded by statues of men on horseback, tigers and elephants respectively. Gundicha Mandir : The walls enclose a garden in which the temple is built. It is also known as the Aunt's House. It is the Garden House, in which the images of the god reside for 7 days each year.



You will come across quiet a few craft and salespeople offering fabric, bead and bamboo work. Some of it is well worth a second look.



GETTING THERE AND AWAY BUS Puri's new bus station is beside the Gundicha Mandir, though some of the private buses depart from around the nearby junction of Grand Rd and Hospital Rd. TRAIN There are two overnight trains each way between Puri and Calcutta. There are several trains between Puri and Bhubaneswar. If you are travelling to or from Madras and stations in the south it is not necessary to go via Bhubaneswar. There is a booking office with a 2nd-class quota on Grand Rd opposite the police station.

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