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About the City

About the City: The history of the city stretches back over 2000 years. The area first appears as the ancient capital of Kalinga during 4th century BC. Sisupalgarh was a major fort during the ancient period. Bhubaneswar was the center of temple building in the Kalinga style from 4th to 13th century. During the middle ages famous temples like Lingaraj, Rajarani, Mukteswar and Parsurameswar etc were built in Bhubaneswar. The Somavamsi and Kesari Kings were the main builders of the prominent and historical structures of Bhubaneswar. The Gangas were responsible for promoting Vaisnavism in Odisha. During their rule a predominantly Saiva city engulfed Vishnu worship. Shiva temples accepted Vaisnavism practices and names. During the Second World War Bhubaneswar was a station for the British- Indian military. The capital of Odisha province was shifted to Bhubaneswar from Cuttack in the year 1948, just after India gained its independence from the British. Otto H. Konigsberg, a German architect, was invited to plan the new city of Bhubaneswar. On 13th April 1948, the new city of Bhubaneswar was officially declared as the new capital of Odisha. Just like Jamshedpur and Chandigarh, Bhubaneswar also planned to provide new and improved amenities to its people. Most part of the modern city was a part of the Chandaka wildlife park. Forest was cleared to create the city. Now also wild elephants from Chandaka Wild Life Sanctuary enter the city area to recapture their lost land. Establishments: Being the capital city Bhubaneswar houses the provincial parliament Called Odisha Legislative Assembly and the state head quarters called the Secretariat. The Chief Ministers of the province along with other Ministers stay and operate from Bhubaneswar. Except the Odisha High Court and the Police Head quarters all other major offices of the province have shifted from Cuttack to Bhubaneswar. Regional offices and the local head offices of most of the banks are situated in Bhubaneswar. The Government has allotted land to many corporate houses to establish their offices. The city also has many local head offices of Government of India Departments like Income-Tax, Customs, Central Excise, etc. Education: Bhubaneswar is a major educational hub of Eastern India. It has three Government Universities and three private Universities. It has centers of educational excellence like IIT for engineering and AIIMS for health sciences. It has many centers for fundamental research like Institute of Physics, Institute of Life sciences, Institute for Minerals and Materials Technology. It has four Medical colleges, dozens of Engineering and Management colleges besides numerous under graduate and graduate colleges. Health Services: Bhubaneswar is a major health care hub for Odisha and India. AIIMS tops the list with its large facilities for treatment at lowest cost. It also has special centers serving the International community on Cancer treatment. It houses major health care centers like Apollo and AMRI. It has specialist hospitals in the private sectors for treatment of heart, kidney, etc. Detail information about the health care providers is available in the Directory page under health care.WITH DIRECTORY LINK. Places to visit: Bhubaneswar is an important tourist destination with its numerous temples, parks, archaeological sites, museums. Moving Around: Bhubaneswar being a plant city has wide roads with good greenery all around. The city roads are comparatively clean. One can move around the city in a bicycle. Its also possible to have a low cost ride with the shared three wheelers. There are plenty of town buses managed by private players and the municipality connecting important pockets of the city. Things to do: One can visit the beautiful parks and hills within and around the city. The old town with its numerous temples of middle ages and the traditional culture is worth experiencing. One can walk around the old town area to see the temples, ponds and springs. Visiting the parks Bhubaneswar has a numerous well maintained parks. At any time of a day the parks of Bhubaneswar are crowded and few of them are also romantic destinations. Visiting the hills There are many hills to visit here in the capital city and it is quite exciting to explore the natures scenic beauty. The nearest ones are Khandagiri and Sikharchandi. Visiting the old temples and Archaeological sites Bhubaneswar, also popularly known as the temple city has hundreds of old temples to visit and walk around. It has archaeological sites from the seventh century BC onwards, with the oldest being Sisupalgarh. It is worth experiencing and feeling the old times in these monumental places. Visiting the ponds and springs Bhubaneswar has beautiful springs and ponds. Only before a decade water from the springs in the old town area was exported to various cities for its healing qualities. It is worth walking around these water bodies. Walking around the old city The old city of Bhubaneswar still maintains old architecture and town plan. It has its own aroma of Hindu worshipping. The priests have their traditional dresses. It will be an experience to walk around the city and old area and feel the traditional and religious culture. Visiting the zoo Nandankanan Zoo is established in a natural forest area and still maintains its natural environment. The zoo is home to about 1660 individual animals representing 166 species, including 67 species of mammals, 81 species of birds, and 18 species of reptiles. Nandankanan is famous for itswhite tigerpopulation and is home to over 34 white tigers. There are also many endangered species such as the Asiatic lion, three Indian crocodilians, Sangal lion-tailed macaque, Nilgiri langur, Indian pangolin, mouse deer and countless birds, reptiles and fish have been breeding successfully at Nandankanan. The zoo includes 34 aquaria which are home to a large variety of fresh water fish. The Reptile Park's cave-like entrance is guarded by a life size Tyrannosaurus rex replica. It also houses numerous species of crocodiles, lizards, turtles, and snakes. This zoo enjoys a good reputation internationally for successfully breeding black panthers, gharials, and white tigers in captivity. The animal lovers can spend a great time here. Boating To get away from daily routines of life you can enjoy a mesmerizing experience of boating in Bhubaneswar. One can try it in Nandankanan Botanical garden, Ekamra Kanan, BDA Nicco Park. Taking a river walk Kuakhai and Daya are the major rivers of Bhubaneswar. One can walk or cycle on its embankments to breathe fresh air. Visiting malls Malls of Bhubaneswar are the most favorite hangout places for the youth. Enjoying the latest releases at movie theatres and multiplex Visiting the cinema halls or the INOX multiplex can be a great fun here at Bhubaneswar. The multiplex is over-crowded every weekend here in the capital city. At INOX the tickets have been priced between Rs 80 to Rs 250 per person depending upon the time and weekdays. The seats are divided into three categories. Lowest is the executive, then Club and Royale class is the highest. Get Exposed to Odissi dance with the masters Odissi is a popular classical dance form internationally. Bhubaneswar has a number of master teachers who practiced and teach Odissi. One can get exposed to the dance form with the great Gurus. Illeana Citaristi the award winning Italian dancer and Masaka Ono the Japanese dancer was mastered the art of fusion have their studios in Bhubaneswar. Visiting the museum and art galleries Bhubaneswar has many museums and art galleries to visit. Some of them are Odisha State museum, Museum of Tribal arts and artifacts, Odisha modern art gallery, Lalit Kala Academy and Regional museum of Natural History. Tasting the sweet delicacies and street food Street food of Bhubaneswar is becoming more attractive with the passage of time. The favorite street food of the city is Dahivada-aloodum, jalebi, bara-guguni. The city has many sweet shops and a sweet venue at Pahala. If you are coming in or going out of Bhubaneswar do not forget to stop at the region of Pahala on NH 5 which is a very famous sweet destination for serving its hot and fresh delicacies like Pahala Chena Poda Pahala Rasogola. Exploring the Nightlife The capital city also has caught up in the late night parties and DJs. Some of the famous nightlife destinations here in Bhubaneswar are Baron Baroness at Mayfair lagoon, Desire at Pal heights, Rob Roy at Swosti Premium, Xstacy lounge, Downing Street at Mayfair, and many more. Recently a few dance bars have also come up in Bhubaneswar to make the nights sensuous and musical. Exploring authentic Odia food Bhubaneswar has many restaurants serving typical Odia cuisine. The number of hotels is on the rise. Typical Odia food is neither heavily spiced like North Indian food nor very hot like South Indian food. It is mostly boiled food with rich aroma. It also has many healthy rice flour based pan-cakes for breakfast and dinner. A typical Odia dish called dalma is a boiled curry of vegetables and lentils is very nutritious and simple. Bird Watching Bhubaneswar is rich place for bird watchers. One can see hundreds of parrots visiting the city in summer to enjoy the ripened fruits or watch the migratory birds at Ekamra Kanan. One can also watch hundreds of dancing peacocks at Deuliapatana hills and on the borders of Chandaka forest. Learning to chisel on stone The city is proud of beautiful old sculptures as there are hundreds of studios onto stone carving. Many a master artists run their workshops in the city. One can experience chiseling in the millennium city and go back in time to the temple building period. Shopping handloom garments and textile products Odisha has a very old tradition of making handloom garments. It has been exporting precious garment for more than two thousand years. Many a materials and designs are still archaic. One can have the pleasure of shopping handloom clothes from various markets like Market Building Unit- II, Rajmahal square or Janpath.


Thetemple building process started in Bhubaneswar around 4th century. The process fastened up with revival of Hinduism in Odisha around 9th century. The older temples are not with much carving. During 4th to 8th century the temple architecture in Odisha was in the developing stage. The sculptural skills were growing. Hence the older temples are bland. The latter temples have unique Kalinga architecture and sculpture. The sculpture is influenced by Tantra Buddhism with a lot of erotica. Temples in Odisha are based on certain fundamental principles of stability and take their cue from the human body. The superstructure is basically divided into three parts, the Bada (Lower Limb), the Gandi (Body) and the Cula/Mastaka (Head). Accordingly each part is given a different treatment throughout, from the architecture to the final ornamentation of the temple. The Main body is vertical and the upper part is pyramidal in a typical Kaligan temple. The temples usually have a main temple and an assembly hall. The latter temples have additional temples for dance and offerings. Some of the important temples are Parsurameswar, Mukteswar, Rajarani, Lingaraj and Vaital. Vaital temple is influenced by southern architecture where the assembly hall is like an inverted boat. Parsurameswar Temple: It is a small but richly decorated shrine of Shiva that was built in the 7th century. It has sculptures featuring amorous couples, animals and floral motifs. It is the best preserved specimen of an earlyHindutemple dated to the Sailodbhava period of the seventh and eighth centuries A.D. The temple is dedicated toShivaand is one of the oldest temples inOrissa. Built during 650 AD in Nagara style, the Parsurameswar temple has all the main features of the pre-10th century Orissian style of architecture. It has a flat roofed rectangular pillared hall (Jagamohana) attached to a Triratha Sanctum (Deul) about 12.8 meters high, which carried a squat heavy-shouldered Sikhara. Its carvings are known for their simple charm. Architecture: The Orissian temples have two parts namely the sanctum (deulorvimana) and the other is place from where pilgrims view the sanctum (called jagamohana). The initial deul temples were without the jagamohana as seen in some of the older temples in Bhubaneswar, while the later temples had two additional structures namely nata-mandapa (festival hall) and bhoga-mandapa (hall of offerings). The vimana of Parsurameswar is square in plan and the walls are variegated by ressaults (calledrathasorpagas). The vimana has a curvilinear tower (calledBada) in the form of a pyramid composed of horizontal planes. Thevimana(sanctum) measures 9.875ft (3.010m)*9.75ft (2.97m) from the inside, 19.75ft (6.02m)*21ft (6.4m) from the outside and has a height of 40.25 feet (12.27m). Amalaka(also calledmastaka); a stone disk with ridges on the rim is placed over theBada(tower) of the temple.. The jagamohana(assembly hall) is of an extremely early type, rectangular in and measures 29.33ft (8.94m)*28.5833ft (8.7122m) from the outside. It is covered with corbelled slabs of heavy masonry. It has a two element sloping roof with clerestory windows between. The latticed windows are classified aspata jaliwhere perforations are square or rectangular in shape. In addition, there are trellised windows having slabs of stone sculptures depicting dancers and musicians. The temple is one of the earliest examples of Nagara style of architecture that emphasizes verticality and with subsequent temples like Mukteswar, Lingaraj, Rajarani temples in Bhubaneswar and Sun Temple at Konark depicts the architectural development from the 8th to 13th centuries. Sculpture: Though the temple is a Saiva shrine, it contains the images of numerous Sakta deities as Parsvadevatas (attendant deities) sculpted on its walls. For the first time the depiction ofSaptamatrikasimages, namely, Chamunda, Varahi, Indrani, Vaisnavi, Kaumari, Sivani and Brahmi are found in a temple in Bhubaneswar. The carvings of the temple include a variety of fruits, flowers, birds and animals depicted in scenes and parts of designs. The grotesque figures ofvetalas(ghosts) on the pilasters of itsjaga mohanand on the faces of itsvimanaare true to their traditional description. The figures ofnagas (male serpant) andnagins (female serpant) and other females show many graceful but chaste poses. Other interesting carvings are those of Shiva throwing down king Ravana, who is trying to uproot MountKailasa, the resting place of Shiva. Much of the sculptural decoration occurs inside stone 'frames' which are vaguely horseshoe-shaped. These are related to the chaitya-arches of early Buddhist rock monasteries. In the northwest corner of the temple compound there is an exotically unique sculpture one thousand Lingas. The Parsurameswara temple was repaired in 1903, with some ensuing changes in the roof of the inner sanctum, but most of the structure is in its original form.Being located in the eastern coast, the temple, along with the other Orissian temples was not much affected by the Muslim invaders during the 12-13th centuries. The temple is maintained by the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) as a ticketed monument. Festivals: Parasurashtami is the major festival celebrated in the temple on the 8th day of Ashadha (JuneJuly) when the festival image of Lingaraj is taken to the Parasurameswar temple and feasted. The temple, on the same side as theLingaraj Temple, is located 2 km south of city center and is close to the main Bhubaneswar-Puri road. Mukteswar Temple: Standing 34 feet tall, the Mukteshwar temple is one of the smallest and most compact temples in Bhubaneswar. It was built in the 10th century and is well known for its stone architecture. One of the most delightful expressions of the Kalinga School of architecture is the luminous beauty of the Mukteswar temple, often called as the 'Gem of Odishan architecture'. It is a glorious synthesis of the old and new styles. This temple has some of the most ornate carvings and renditions of stories from the Panchatantra. The arched gateway is particularly fine. It shows an excellent combination of Hindu, Buddhist and Jain features, which find a common voice in much of Odishan temple craft. The templeis built earlier to theBrahmeswara Temple(1060 CE). Architecture: It is a typical Deula style temple. The plan is similar to Muktesvara Temple, except that there is no second pidha Deula and khakhara Deula. This architecture is one of the basic reasons why Mukteswar temple is also known as the Gem ofOdisha architecture. The temple faces west and is constructed in a lower basement amidst a group of temples. The pyramidal roof to thejagamohanapresent in the temple was the first of its kind over the conventional two tier structure. The Porch: The most important feature of the Muktesvara temple is the horseshoe shaped 'chaitya' archtorana, or the arched gateway, dating back to about 900 CE and showing the influence ofBuddhist architecture.The arched gateway has thick pillars that have strings of beads and other ornaments carved on statues of smiling women in languorous repose. Vimana: TheVimanais square in plan and is built in a raised platform with pilasters in each facade. Theshikarais small compared to other temples; it has fourNatarajason and four kirthimukhas on the four faces. The top portion of theshikarahas thekalasa. The temple walls are decorated with legendary stories from the Panchatantra and sculptural designs of many animals including elephants, lions and monkeys. Jagamohana: This distinctive 10th-century temple is one of the smallest and compact temples. Thejagamohanais 35m (115ft) tall.It is decorated with intricate carvings by the Viswakarma Moharana sculptors. The temple is regarded as a gem of Nagara architecture ofKalinga architecture. The temple's red sandstone is covered with exquisite carvings of leanSadhusor holy men and voluptuous women encrusted with jewels. The images ofGangaandYamunaare carved next toChandaandPrachanda. The figures of Gajalakshmi,RahuandKetuare also sculpted in the structure.A small extension from the side roof of thejagamohanahas the image of a lion sitting on its hind legs. The exterior walls of the structure are decorated with pilasters withnagasandnaginis. Religious significance: Muktesvara means Lord of Freedom. The temple is dedicated to Hindu god Shiva..According to tradition, barren women give birth to sons if they take a dip in Madicha Kunda tank in the premises of the temple on the night before Ashokastami car festival. On the evening, the water in the tank is sold to the public. Presently the temple is more of an archeological site and is open to people from all denominations unlike a working Hindu temple. Festivals: The Department of Tourism of the state government organises a three-day yearly dance function called Mukteswar Dance Festival in the temple premises. This festival celebrates the features ofOdissi, the classical dance form of Odisha. Popular Odissi dancers perform during the function; accompanied by instruments likemardal. The event is webcast in the state government portal. Rajarani Temple: The Rajarani temple is an elegant example of great finesse in temple art architecture. It was built in the 11th century. The sensuous beauty of the female form and the filigree sweetness of flowers and fruits are enhanced by the artists dexterous skill. Lack of temple deity and celebration of the female form are some intriguing aspects of this temple. The Temple is made from the beautiful red and golden sandstone. The red and golden sandstone is locally known as Rajarani. Thus, the name of the temple is as such. The ornately carved figures of the temple are the major attractions in the temple. The temple is an embodiment of architectural stylishness and beauty. Sculptors of women in dance style hint the practice of Odissi dance. The stone imageries of women playing with birds and nature are also worth seeing. This is the only temple of this kind in the state. The Raja Rani temple is surrounded by a beautiful garden. The temple is located on open paddy field area. Earlier Raja Rani temple was known as Indreshwara Temple, which was dedicated to Lord Shiva. However, strangely today the temple doesn't have a presiding deity. The porch is constructed in the pyramidal structure and it is very plain. The Raja Rani temple has sculptures of 'Guardians of the Eight Directions' which project from the base of the temple to eight different directions. They are standing from the entrance in a clockwise order surrounding the porch and the deul to end back at the torana. Vaital Temple: One of the oldest temples (late 8th century),Vaital Deul Temples striking feature is the shape of its sanctuary tower.It is dedicated to the Goddess Chamunda (Kapali). It is said to have been a centre of Tantric worship. The Goddess can be seen in the murky depths of the inner sanctum, enthroned upon a corpse. This is also locally known asTini Mundia Mandira. Architecture: VaitalTemples striking feature is the shape of its sanctuary tower.The roof looks like an inverted boat. An example of the Khakara School of architecture, an offshoot of the Kalinga School, is quite different, even though it maintains the Deul and Jagamohana structures. Only here the main temple is rectangular in shape rather than curvilinear in shape. On the backside, the five pilasters have been crowned by two vidalas seated back to back above two carved moldings. Sculpture: The outer walls are encrusted with panels of Hindu deities, mostlyShivaand his consortParvatiin herShaktiform, hunting processions, capturing of wild elephants and the occasional erotic couples. The medallion in the upperChaityawindow houses in addition to a ten-armed Nataraj or dancingShiva, the figures of Lakulisa on the south and the composite form of Hari-Hara on the north.. In front of the flat roofedJagamohana is a stone post relieved with two Buddha like figures seated inDharma-Chakra. A unique sculpture of the temple is Ardhanariswar which is half man half woman. Another striking feature is temple'sTantricassociations, marked by eerie carvings in the sanctum and the image enshrined in the central niche, eight armedChamunda, locally known asKapalini. It is the terrifying form of goddessDurga. Baitala Deulais aShaktishrine. Some of the early erotic sculptures in Orissian art are found here. The erotica later became a conventional motif, ubiquitously present in almost all forms of decorative temple architecture. The figures depicted in various positions were probably relevant in the context of the tantric rites. The Deity: The presiding deity,Chamundaor Charchika sits on a corpse flanked. Her body, emaciated and reduced to skin and bones, is adorned with the garland of skulls. She is shown as the eight-armed slayer of the buffalo demon. Her necklace of skulls and the corpse she is sitting on are usually hidden by her robes. Owl and a jackal, sits on a corpse. In her arms she holds a snake, a bow, a shield, a trident, a thunderbolt and an arrow with which she is piercing the neck of the demon, thus displaying the most terrifying aspect of the goddess Kali. The tantric character of the temple is also marked by the stone post, to which sacrificial offerings were tethered, just in front of the jagamohana. You need an artificial light to see in the darkness of the interior, though early morning sun lights up the interior. Lingraja Temple: The great Lingaraja temple soars above the city of Bhubaneswar and dominates the landscape as far as 15 kms away, represents Odishan temple architecture at its most mature and fully developed stage. It has, in fact, been described as 'time quintessence of Odishan architecture'. Its aHindu templededicated to Lord Shiva, or Tribhuvaneswar. The temple is the most prominent landmark of the Bhubaneswar city and one of the major tourist attractions of the state. The central tower of the temple is 180ft (55m) tall. The temple is believed to be built by the kings from the Somavamsi dynasty, with later additions from the Ganga rulers. The temple is built in theDeulastyle that has four components namely,vimana(structure containing the sanctum),jagamohana(assembly hall),natamandira(festival hall) andbhoga-mandapa(hall of offerings), each increasing in the height to its predecessor. Spread over 25,000 sq ft the temple complex has 150 other shrines and is enclosed by a large compound wall. The temple is active in worship practices, unlike most other temples in Bhubaneswar and Shiva is worshipped asHarihara, a combined form of Vishnu and Shiva. The temple has images of Vishnu, possibly because of the rising prominence ofJagannathcult emanating from the Ganga rulers who built theJagannath Templein Puriin the 12th century. Lingaraja temple is maintained by the Temple Trust Board and theArcheological Survey of India(ASI). Lingaraja means The king ofLingam, the symbol ofSaivism. Shiva was worshipped as Kirtivasa and later as Harihara and is commonly referred as Tribhuvaneshwara (also called Bhubaneswar); the master of three Bhubaneswar is a city of temples. Legendhas it that Shiva revealed to Parvati that Bhubaneswar - orEkamra Tirthawas a resort favored by him over Benares. Parvati in the guise of a cowherd woman, decided to look at the city herself. Two demonsKrittiandVasadesired to marry her. She requested them to carry her upon their shoulders, and crushed them under her weight. Shiva, then created theBindu Saraslake to quench her thirst, and took abode here as Krittivasas or Lingaraja. Architecture: Layout plan of the temple is given below to understand Odishan architecture. Temple plan of Lingaraja temple - from the topvimana(structure containing the sanctum), jagamohana(assembly hall),natamandira (festival hall) andbhoga-mandapa(hall of offerings) The Lingaraja temple is the largest temple in Bhubaneswar.James Fergusson(1808 1886), a noted critic and historian rated the temple as one of the finest examples of purely Hindu temple in India. It is enshrined within a spacious compound wall oflateriticstone measuring 520ft (160m) by 465ft (142m). The wall is 7.5ft (2.3m) thick and surmounted by a plain slant coping. Alongside the inner face of the boundary wall, there is a terrace to protect the compound wall against outside aggression. The tower is 55m (180ft) high and the complex has 150 smaller shrines in its spacious courtyard. Each inch of the 55m (180ft) tall tower is sculpted.The deep-cut lines running perpendicularly on the spire create an optical effect which makes the temple look larger than its actual size. The door in the gate of the entrance porch is made of sandalwood. Religious significance: The lingam in the temple is a natural unshaped stone that rests on a Shakti. Such a lingam is called Krutibasa or Swayambhu and is found in 64 places in different parts of India. As per Hindu legend, an underground river originating from the Lingaraja temple fills theBindusagar Tank(meaning ocean drop) and the water is believed to heal physical and spiritual illness. The water from the tank is thus treated sacred and pilgrims take a holy dip during festive occasions. Festivals: Sivaratrior Jagara is the main festival celebrated annually inPhalgunmonth when thousands of devotees visit the temple.Apart from a full day of fasting,belleaves (wood apple) are offered to Lingaraja on this auspicious day. The main celebrations take place at night when devotees pray all night long. The devotees usually break their fast after theMahadipa(a huge lamp) is lit on the spire of the temple. Every year the chariot festival (Ratha-Yatra) of Lingaraja is celebrated onAshokashtami. The deity is taken in a chariot toRameshwar Deulatemple. Thousands of devotees follow and pull brightly decorated chariots containing the idols of Lingaraja and his sister Rukmani.This chariot procession stays for five days at the Rameshwar Temple. This festival commemorates achievements of Lord Lingaraja slaying a demon. Thousands of bol bom pilgrims carry water from riverMahanadiand walk all the way to the temple during the month of Shravan (monsoon) every year.Sunian day is observed from royal times in the month of Bhadraba, a day when temple servants, peasants and other holders of temple lands offer loyalty and tribute to Lingaraja.Chandan Yatra (Sandalwood ceremony) is a 22-day festival celebrated in the temple when servants of the temple disport themselves in a specially made barge in Bindusagar tank. The deities and servants of the temples are anointed with sandalwood paste to protect from heat. Dances, communal feasts and merrymaking are arranged by the people associated with the temple during the festival. The Lingaraja temple is active in worship practices, unlike the other ancient temples of Bhubaneswar which are not active worship centers. Non Hindus are not allowed inside the temple, but it can be viewed from the viewing platform located outside the temple. The viewing platform at the back of the temple can be reached from the chariot road to the right of the main entrance of the temple. Sanctity of the temple is maintained by disallowing dogs, sunbathed visitors, menstruating women and families that encountered birth or death in the preceding 12 days. In case of a foreigner trespass, the temple follows a purification ritual and dumping ofPrasad(food offering) in a well. Food offerings: The image of Lingaraja is cleaned with water (calledMahasnana) several times a day and decorated with flowers, sandal paste and cloth.Hemlockor hemlock flowers which are generally offered in other Shiva temples are not allowed in the Lingaraja temple.Bilvaleaves (Aegle marmelos) andtulasi(Ocimum sanctum) are used in daily worship. Offerings of cooked rice, curries and sweet-meats are displayed in the Bhoga Mandapa (hall of offering) and the divinity is invoked to accept them amidst scores of chanting of Sanskrit texts. Coconut, ripe plantains andkora-khaiare generally offered to Lingaraja by the pilgrims.Bhangbeverage is offered to Lingaraja by some devotees especially on the day ofPana Sankranti(Oriya New Year). The Lingaraja temple is open from 6 a.m. to about 9 p.m. and is intermittently closed duringBhoga(food offering) to the deity. The temple is closed at about 12 p.m. until about 3.30 P.M. A ceremony known asMahasnana(ablution) is performed once the doors are closed, followed by pouring ofPanchamrita(a mixture of milk, curdled milk, clarified butter, honey and ghee) upon the deity for purification. At about 2 P.M., theSakala Dhupa(morning's offering of food) takes place. After the food is offered to Lingaraja, the offerings are carried to the temple of Parvati to serve her. An offering calledBanda Dhupais carried out at 3.30 P.M. at the hall of offering. This food is later sold to the pilgrims asMahaprasada by the priests. Kedar Gauri Temple: Kedargauri Mandir alias Kedar Gauri Temple devoted to Lord Shiva (Kedareswar) and Goddess Gouri (Kedar Gouri) is one of the ancient temples at Bhubaneswar, situated behind the Mukteswar Temple. Kedar Gauri temple is one among the eight Astasambhu temples in Bhubaneswar. There are several legends associated with the construction ofKedar Gauri temple. One legend says that King Lalatendu Kesari constructed this temple in dedication to two lovers named Kedar and Gouri and another holds that it was constructed by Lord Shiva. The main attraction of Kedar Gauri temple is the 8-feet statue of Hanuman and Goddess Durga standing on a lion. Closely resembling Sidheshwar Temple, the 13.7 meter high Kedar Gauri temple has a Panch-Rath sanctum. The Jagmohana (rectangular hall) has a three-divisional wall with crowning ornaments. The temple premises houses two kunds (ponds) namely Khira Kund and Marichi Kund which are said to have sacred powers. The water from Khira kund is believed to relieve man from the cycle of birth and death and water from Marichi Kund cure woman's infertility. The ponds are filled with fresh water by perennial streams. The temple is also famous for the Lord Shiva's procession conducted annually from Lingaraja temple to Kedar Gouri temple, to commemorate the marriage with his consort, Parvati. During the Sital Sasthi festival the groom, a representative idol of Lord Shiva is carried in palanquins decorated lavishly with flowers, to the Kedar Gouri temple. Budhanath: The 12th century Budhanath temple is situated just about 22km from Bhubaneswar, is unknown to most visitors of the state .As you enter the compound, you find broken statues and other artifacts that have fallen off the temple building placed on a Mandapa because there is no facility nearby to display them in a museum. The village in which this temple is situated Garedi Panchana is just like another coastal village of the state with lots of coconut and betel nut trees. King Chodaganga Dev of the Somavanshi dynasty had built the temple. However, residents of the village say a smaller temple on the compound, named after Amrutalochani Devi, has an even older deity. Believed to be of tantric origin, the deity inside the Amrutalochani temple has six eyes. Budhanath temple is based on tantric principles, especially Garedi Yantra. Interestingly, Garedi in Odia means hypnotism and the name of the village also seems to have links to the claims. Legend has it that snakebite victims do not die if they are brought to the temple premises. It is known that after the 7th century, due to tantric effects on Buddhism, the followers of the religion were influenced by the tantric cult. The name of the Budhanath temple, its tantric links and the name of the village and the Garedi Yantra legend also prove that there could be a Buddhist link here. The presiding deity inside Budhanath is not a Shiva Linga, but a yoni, or female origin of the Shakti. Reaching the temple from Bhubaneswar is easy. If you do not want to take a car, take an auto rickshaw, a two-wheeler or even a bicycle. The road passes through rice fields.\ Chausathi Yogini temple: The ninth century Chausathi Yogini temple at Hirapur lies in the middle of paddy fields. A significant feature of this shrine is that it is hypaethral (no roof). It assumes an important place in the cultural history since it is the second of its kind in Odisha and one of such four temples in India. (Two of them are in Odisha and the other two are in Madhya Pradesh). It belongs to a genre of architecture which is completely different from the major Orissian School. Yogini shrines can be seen at Hirapur (near Bhubaneswar) and at Ranipur-Jharial (western Odisha). The temple is a circular shrine measuring 27.4metre in circumference and 2.4metre in height with a frontal projection resembling a yoni or female reproductive organ. The outer and inner parts of the temple were built with locally available coarse sandstone. The pillar-like structure in the middle of the temple represents the male sexual organ. It houses images of 64 yoginis standing on different mounts, postures and each exhibiting a distinct hairstyle. The image of the 10-armed presiding deity of the pitha, worshipped as Mahamaya, is the largest among the yoginis. In the centre, there exists a recently restored Chandi Mandapa displaying four Saivaite figures and yoginis. Interestingly, the yoginis at Hirapur temple have distinct mudras and postures and appear with their vahanas or vehicles in standing positions. There is an interesting yogini statue of Ganesha with female body parts here. History: The temple was perhaps built when the Bhaumakars or Buddhist rulers were losing powers to Somavanshis who were devout Sivaites. The lunar and solar calculations in Hindu calendars are important for tantric rituals and on special occasions there could be Puja in the compounds. From studies, it was found that the temple was in an isolated place not habited by human beings and these temples were built in cremation grounds called Maha Smasana (greater graveyards). Gradually the villages might have encroached into the periphery of the temple. The 64 Yoginis at Hirapur Shrine are: 1. Bahurupa 2.Tara3.Narmada4.Yamuna5.Shanti6.Varuni7. Kshemankari 8.Aindri9.Varahi10. Ranveera 11. Vanara-Mukhi 12.Vaishnavi13. Kalaratri 14. Vaidyaroopa 15. Charchika 16. Betali 17.Chinnamastika18. Vrishabahana 19. Jwala Kamini 20. Ghatavara 21. Karakali 22.Saraswati23. Birupa 24. Kauveri 25. Bhaluka 26. Narasimhi 27. Biraja 28. Vikatanna 29.Mahalakshmi30.Kaumari31.Maha Maya32.Rati33. Karkari 34. Sarpashya 35.Yakshini36. Vinayaki 37. Vindya Balini 38. Veera Kumari 39.Maheshwari40.Ambika41. Kamiyani 42. Ghatabari 43. Stutee 44.Kali45.Uma46.Narayani47. Samudraa 48.Brahmini49.Jwala Mukhi50. Agneyei 51.Aditi52. Chandrakanti 53. Vayubega 54.Chamunda55. Murati 56.Ganga57.Dhumavati58.Gandhari59. Sarva Mangala 60. Ajita 61. Surya Putri 62. Vayu Veena 63. Aghora 64.Bhadrakali The concept of Yogini: Yogini represents both a female master practitioner ofYoga, and a formal term of respect for a category of modern female spiritual teachers (in both Hinduism and Buddhism) in eastern countries such asIndia,Nepal, andTibet. In the Hindu tradition, mother is firstguru(teacher) and in the Yoga tradition, proper respect of Yoginis is a necessary part of the path to liberation. In some branches of tantra Yoga,ten wisdom goddesses(ordakinis) serve as models for a Yogini's disposition and behavior. Yogini can mean: In mythological context a female who is an associate or attendant ofDurga, a fierce aspect of the Divine Feminine, who slays illusion and delusion through insight and liberation. In yogiccontext, the word Yogini may indicate an advanced Yoga practitioner. In Buddhist Tantra it can mean a symbol or a company for Kundalini and other meditation practices including meditative sex. In severalTantriccults, the term refers to an initiated female who may take part inmaithunatantric rituals. Facilities at the temple: There is enough space to allow visitors and others to conduct a Puja inside and non-vegetarian Prasad and other food is allowed in the temple campus. How to rich the place: The temple is situated on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar. From Ravi Talkies Square one can take a drive through Tankapani road. After crossing the Daya River on the bridge one will find Hirapur, under Umadei Bramhapur Gram Panchayat near Balianta block office. Its around about 6km from the block office. The road passes through the valley of the picturesque Daya River and the Puri Main Canal.


The history of the city stretches back over 2000 years. The area first appears as the ancient capital of Kalinga during 4th century BC. Bhubaneswar, the 'city of temples', named after Tribhuvaneswar, 'Lord of Three Worlds', still preserves over 500 of India's finest temples, around which the religious life of the city revolves. Mythological references and the epigraphic sources describe the area as Ekamra Kshetra and Saiva Pitha. In 1936, the Odisha became a separate province with Cuttack as its Capital, which was eventually changed to Bhubaneswar in 1956. The history of Bhubaneswar may be viewed in terms of ancient medieval and modern eras. The ancient city has a history of more than 2,000 years, while the modern city emerged in 1948. The remains of the ancient city of Sisupalgarh, on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, are claimed to be at least 2,500 years old. Ancient Period: The history of Bhubaneswar takes you back to the 4th century BC to the Chedi dynasty. The rulers of the Chedi dynasty were the first to establish their kingdom in Sisupalgarh where Bhubaneswar is presently located. Although the city was founded by the Chedi kings, it remained unknown to the world for a long time. It was only in the 3rd century BC that the place rose to prominence. It was during this period that the famous Kalinga War took place between the Mauryan Empire and the state of Kalinga. One of the most completeedictsof theMauryanemperor,Ashoka, dating from between 272-236 BCE, remains carved in rock 8 kilometers (5.0mi) to the southwest of the modern city explains about the system of Governance during the era. The hills also preserve the first sculptures of Odisan artists. Medieval Period: During the medieval period, Bhubaneswar saw the dominance of various religious sects. With the introduction of Jainism and Buddhism in the province, the city became deeply involved in matters of philosophy. However, with time, the principles of Jainism and Buddhism began to fade and gave way to Brahmanism and Vaisnavism in the region. It was during this time, when Bhubaneswar reached the pinnacle of its religious status. During the 7th and the 12th century, the city rose to prominence because of its carvings, sculptures and architectural designs. With the invasion of the Mughal rulers in the 15th century on the eastern side of the continent, many of these magnificent sandstone compositions were destroyed and plundered. During this period the famous temples like Lingaraj, Rajarani, Mukteswar and Parsurameswar etc were built. The Somavamsi and Kesari Kings were the main builders of the prominent and historical structures of Bhubaneswar. The Gangas were responsible for promoting Vaisnavism in Odisha. During their rule a predominantly Saiva city engulfed Vishnu worship. Shiva temples accepted Vaisnavism practices and names. British India: During the 16th century Odisha was repressed by the mighty rulers belonging to the Mughal dynasty. In the 18th century, the place was overpowered by the British East Indian Company. With the entire region falling into the hands of the English, the state of Orissa, otherwise known as Odisha, underwent some administrative changes. Bhubaneswar lost its importance with the advent of the external rulers Modern History: Cuttack was the Capital of Odisha during the Mughal and British rule. The city is vulnerable to flood and is squeezed between two measure rivers. As a result, the capital was shifted to Bhubaneswar in the year 1948, just after India gained its independence from the British. Otto H. Konigsberg, a German architect, was invited to plan the new city of Bhubaneswar. On 13th April 1948, the new city of Bhubaneswar was officially declared as the new capital of Odisha. Just like Jamshedpur and Chandigarh, Bhubaneswar was also planned to provide new and improved amenities to its people. The site for the New Capital was selected after careful consideration. It has the advantage of lying on the border between the fertile delta land and the hilly forest areas of Odisha. It has the natural advantage with regard to Drainage. The ground slopes from west to east and is divided into two parts intersected by the railway line. The western Part is high land with laterite soil which permits the growth of forest and the eastern part is low with alluvial soil suitable for agriculture. From April to August the prevailing wind is from south and south-west and from September to March it is from north and north-west. The Velocity of the wind is maximum in summer.


Bhubaneswar is located inKhurda districtof Odisha. It is situated in theeastern coastal plains, along the axis of mountains of the Eastern Ghats. It is located between 20025N latitudes and 85055E longitude on the western fringe.The city has an average altitude of 45m (148ft)above sea level.It lies southwest of theMahanadi Riverthat forms the northern boundary of Bhubaneswar metropolitan area, within itsdelta. The city is bounded by theDaya Riverto the south and the Kuakhai Riverto the east;theChandaka Wildlife SanctuaryandNandankanan Zoolie in the western and northern parts of Bhubaneswar, respectively.Bhubaneswar is topographically divided into western uplands and eastern lowlands, with hillocks in the western and northern parts.Kanjia Lakeon the northern outskirts affords richbiodiversityand is awetlandof national importance. Bhubaneswar's soils are 65 per centlaterite, 25 per centalluvialand 10 per centsandstone. TheBureau of Indian Standardsplaces the city insideseismic zone IIIon a scale ranging fromI to Vin order of increasing susceptibility toearthquakes. TheUnited Nations Development Programmereports that there is very high damage risk from winds andcyclones. The1999 Odisha cyclonecaused major damage to buildings, the city's infrastructure and cost many human lives.Floods and water logging in the low-lying areas have become common due to unplanned growth. Topography: The city lies on the low lateritic plateau and the erosion has made its topography a valley-and ridge one, having series of drainage channels. Morphologically it lies in the Deccan upland of Gonwana origin. Water bodies: The city has 30 water bodies in and around the city. The important ones are: Bindusagar Lake: Bindu Sagar Lake alias Bindu Sarovara also known as Ocean Drop Tank is a sacred lake located to the north of the Lingaraj Temple and to the east of the Ananta Vasudeva Temple. Legend says that Bindu Sagar Lake was created by Lord Shiva by bringing water from all the holy places to quench the thirst of Goddess Parvati. Hence it is believed that a dip in the Bindu Sagar Lake would wash away all the sins and the devotees get rid of all their diseases by drinking the holy water. Located in a tranquil and peaceful atmosphere and surrounded by numerous temples and shrines, Bindu Sagar Lake serves as a popular picnic spot. The 1,300 feet long and 700 feet wide large Bindu Sagar Lake consists of a tiny island with several shrines in its middle. The lake is the venue for conducting the ritual bath of Lord Lingaraj (Lord Shiva), held during the annual Car festival (Ashokastami). On that day, the Shiva lingam of the Lingaraja temple will be taken to the Bindu Sagar Lake for the ritual bath. Kanjia Lake: It is another sweet water lake with about 134 acres (0.54km2) of area located in Nandankanan of Cuttack district near Bhubaneswar.   Kausalya Ganga: About 8 km from Bhubaneswar, on the State Highway No.8 towards Puri, there is a tank named Kausalya Ganga which is famous for pisciculture. In the middle of the tank there is an island-the remains of a palace. The tank is said to have been originally a kos(3.82 km.) long on each side; and though a great part of it is now silted up and under cultivation it is still about one and a half mile long (2.41 km) and five furlongs (1 km) broad.   Soil: Most parts of the city have laterite capping. The soil depth is variable ranging from 15 cm to 85 cm and the pH is acidic ranging from 5.5 to 6.2.The soil is Deltaic Alluvium type in Balipatna and Balianta block regions . Where as in Bhubaneswar, Jatni and Khurda block regions it is Laterite. Drainage: The city has around 22 natural drains in valleys. The rain water flowed out of the land immediately.Rapid unplanned growth around the capital city has resulted in large scale inundation during heavy showers. Vast agricultural fields used to constitute outer channel of Kanjia Lake of Nandankanan. However, as real estate developers and new settlers have started to convert agricultural land into residential colonies, the natural channels for water discharge are blocked now. Result is evident. Two hours of heavy rain would throw life haywire. Even the national highway near Acharya Vihar gets submerged. Traffic has to be diverted and vehicles remain stranded on road for hours due to water-logging. Experts blame it to construction of flyovers and development roads without paying much emphasis on water discharge mechanism. The new by-pass road on eastern side of GGP Colony, Bomikhal and Laxmisagar area too proved to be a bane for people who have been struggling to cope with water inundation during rainy season. The new road had also blocked natural discharge of water from capital city. While conceiving new infrastructure projects, water discharge system has been neglected. Apart from human miseries, water-logging has also an impact on economy of the city.

Places to visit in Bhubaneswar

The temple city of Bhubaneswar has many places to visit beyond the sand stone structures. It has a number of museums, galleries and a zoo developed in a natural forest.​ Kalinga Stadium: Kalinga Stadiumis a multi -purposestadiuminBhubaneswar,Odisha,India. Built in 2010, it has facilities for athletics, soccer, field hockey, basketball, tennis, table tennis and swimming.Other features of the stadium includes an 8-lane synthetic athletics track, a sports hostel, gymnasium and the India's first newly built Olympic standard pink and blue hockey turf. Kalinga Stadium serves as the home ground forHockey India Leaguefranchise,Kalinga LancersandI-League 2nd Divisionfranchise,Samaleswari Sporting Club. The Kalinga Stadium is finalized to host the2018 Men's Hockey World Cup. Odisha State Museum: Odisha State Museumis a museum inBhubaneswar,Odisha. The museum is well known and famed to glory its huge collection of manuscripts on palm-leaves. In its original form it was established in 1932 and later moved to the current building in 1960. The museum is divided into eleven sections, viz,Archaeology, Epigraphy, Numismatics,Armory, MiningGeology, Natural History, Art Craft, Contemporary Art, Patta Painting,Anthropologyand Palm leafManuscripts. The genesis of the Odisha State Museumgoes back to the year l932, when two notable Historians, Prof. N.C. Banerjee and Prof. Ghanshyam Dash of Ravenshaw College, Cuttack started collection of archaeological treasures from various places. The small Museum was then housed within the premises of the College. In l938, by a suitable order, the Government of Odisha transformedthis nucleus into the Provincial Museum of Odisha and appointed Committee of Management consisting of the Principal, the Head of the Department of History and three other Professors of the College. Initially, it was only an Archaeological Museum with a collection of sculptures, terracotta, numismatics, copper plates and specimens of fine arts. With the growing interest of the staff and people, the antiquities were reorganized in a systematic manner. Stone sculptures were rearranged in three groups related to their styles: such as Gandhara Art, North Indian Art, Odisha Art, and each group were subdivided into Buddhist,Jain and Brahmanical images. Terracotta objects and coins were also organised according to the spots they were found in, their age and types. With the shifting of the State Capital from Cuttack to Bhubaneswar in l947-48, the Provincial Museum was also shifted there. Slowly the collection of antiquities and specimens grew manifold and the necessity of having a special building for the purpose was felt. The foundation stone of this building was laid on 29th December, l957 by Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the then President of the Indian Union. Dr. H. K. Mahtab, the then Chief Minister of Odisha and a noted historian himself took the initiative for making the institutiona fully fledged Museum. The construction of the building along with an administrative block, an auditorium (Kalamandap) and a Guest House was completed in l960 and in the same year the Museum was shifted to the new building. The institution was renamed the Odisha State Museum. Orissa State Museum is open for public on all days from 10am to 5pm. It remains closed on Mondays and Government Holidays. Collections: GALLERIES ARTIFACTS PRESERVED IN MUSEUM: Sl No. Gallery No. of Artifacts Materials Period 1 Archaeology 237 Stone 3rd Century B.C. to 13th Century A.D. 2 Armoury 209 Iron steel, animal skin 3rd Century B.C. to 13th Century A.D. 3 Manuscripts 37,273 Palmleaf, Kumbhi barkbhurja, balakala (Bakala)birch bark, ivory old paper bamboo leaf 15th Century A.D. to 20th Century A.D. Abhinabha Geetagovinda 1493 4 Bronze 100 Bronze 8th Century A.D. to 19th Century A.D. 5 Painting 239 Patta Contemporary 6 Art Craft 1,260 Wood, ivory golden, brass, horn, terracotta, textile, lacquer, mate, cowdung, soap stone, cane, bamboo silver. 7 Epigraphy a) 115 b)24 Copper plate Stone 3rd Century A.D. to 13th Century A.D. 8 Numismatics 12,882 Gold, silver punch marked, copper and other metals 6th Century B.C. to 19 Century A.D. 9 Natural History 500 Stufed birds, mammals, reptile skeletons. Contemporary 10 Anthropology 2,566 Stone, copper, bronze, iron, gold, silver, brass bell metal, aluminium, horn, leaf, wood, grass, cowrie, libre, bronze, clay, gourd, leather, tribal musical instruments. 50,000 B.C. to 20th Century A.D. 11 Antiquities at Central Store 890 Archaeological, art object, anthropological objects etc. for research purpose. Contact: Odisha State Museum, Near Kalpana Square, BJB Nagar, Lewis Road Bhubaneswar Contact No: 0674-2431597 (O) 2431597 (F) Museum of Tribal arts and Artifacts: Tribal Museum also known as Orissa Museum of Tribal Art and Artifacts, located on Gopabandhu Nagar near CRP Square about 3 kms from the Bhubaneswar railway station, provides detailed information about the tribal life and culture of Odisha. Sometimes referred as Tribal Research Institute Museum (Museum of Man), it is basically a research center that reveal about more than sixty varied tribal groups of Odisha, their way of living, handicrafts, musical instruments, songs, dances and festivals. The Tribal Museum has a rich collection of stone and wood sculptures, metal objects and images, weapons, wooden objects, anthropological objects, jewelry, textiles, terracotta, tribal dresses and also some remarkable records, which have been conserved about these tribes. The museum also exhibits the huts of the Orissian tribes namely Santal, Juang, Gadaba, Saora and Kondh. Other added attraction of the tribal museum is the library and a small zoo. The tribal museum is kept open from 10 am to 5 pm on all days except National holidays and Sundays. Contact: Phone: 0674-256 1635 Odisha Modern Art Gallery: Housing a high standard of contemporary art by local artists, this small gallery also has prints and originals for sale. It is the first and only contemporary Fine Art Gallery existing in the State, offering a large collection of contemporary art and crafts from Odisha. Besides these the Orissa Modern Art Gallery provides the permanent exhibition of contemporary works of several artists from Orissa, which encourages the consciousness not only among the artists, artisans but also among the art lovers, visitors and buyers. The concept of the Gallery is to provide a permanent exhibition of contemporary art works in a growing collection of more than 800 pieces which remains open for seven days in a week. In addition to the high quality-exhibition it provides the appropriate space, proper attractive lightening for special exhibitions by individual artist, groups and organizations etc. What makes the Gallery different from other activities that the provision of marketing and an active support for promotion of art, artists and artisans within Orissa, India and abroad. This is the only platform of the Odishan artists to survive through their works. Since its inauguration, more than 50,000 visitors have been attracted towards gallery and the exhibitors have sold around 800 works which is an indirect earn of them. The works of more than 250 artists have been promoted by the gallery. More than 90 artists have enhanced their income through the gallery. Odisha Modern Art Gallery: Mr.Subrat Mohanty. No.132,Forest Bhubaneswar - 751009, Odisha, India Mobile:(91)-9090191226 Telephone: + (91)-(674)-2595765 Website: The Lalit Kala Akademi: The Lalit Kala Akademi (National Academy of Art)for the promotion of Fine Arts (Drawing, Painting Sculpture, Ceramic, Graphic and other Contemporary Plastic Arts forms, like Installation, Digital and Media Arts and Photography) in the country. This Regional Centre is spread over a total land area of 2.44 acres and covers art-related programmes and artistic activities across the states of Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, and Madhya Pradesh. Facilities: Publication All Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi, Publications. Library The Lalit Kala Akademi, Regional Centre, Bhubaneswar, has a small library having 77(seventy seven) reference books for reading purposes. This facility is available for the artists, art lovers, art critics, and for other readers. The library is open on all working days from 9.30A.M - 6.P.M. Educational Activities Workshops (Graphics, Ceramics, Sculpture, and Painting); studio facilities for artists, Interactive Lectures, Demonstrations, Artist-in-Residency, and other programmes from time to time. Galleries The Lalit Kala Akademi Regional Centre, Bhubaneswar, has an air conditioned gallery having wall space of 210 running ft. The total floor space is 227 sq. m. / 2442.52 sq.ft. The height of the gallery walls from ground to ceiling is 8ft. Functioning Year of Establishment :1988 Timings 9:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m. Holidays Saturday and Sunday and all Government Holidays Entrance Fees Nil Photographic Charges No charges/for outsiders, permission will be given only with a written request from the Regional Secretary. Video graphic Charges: No charges/for outsiders, permission will be given only with a written request from the Regional Secretary. The Centre is certainly located from the railway station (one Km. away) and is seven Km. from the Biju Patnaik Airport. Location: Address Lalit Kala Akademi, Regional Centre, Bhubaneswar III/4, Kharavela Nagar, Bhubaneshwar-751001 Telephone/Fax 0674-2391884 / 2391369 Email : Regional Museum of Natural History: The Regional Museum of Natural History, Bhubaneswar is a museum in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India. The Regional Museum of Natural History at Bhubaneswar was inaugurated in 2004. It was undertaken by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India. The museum is located near Acharya Vihar Square on Sachivalaya Marg, Bhubaneswar. The museum exhibits plants, animals and geology of the Odisha, the Eastern and north-eastern India and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands of India. The galleries emphasize the conservation of nature and natural resources while depicting ecological interrelationship among plants and animals. Visually challenged students can feel the exhibits of animals on the premises. The museum provides an extracurricular activity for schools and promotes environmental awareness. A skeleton of Baleen Whale has been installed in the museum, which is supposed to be largest for any museum in India. Planetarium: Pathani Samanta Planetarium is situated in the city of Bhubaneswar. It is founded for creating awareness about astronomy, astrophysics and space science. It carries on some interesting activities like night sky viewing, audio visual programs and poster shows etc. It also displays various astronomical devices. Pathani Samanta Planetarium encourages people who does research in the field of astronomical science and also provide them financial help for carrying out their researches. The planetarium has a well facilitated library containing books on science and technology. It remains open on Tuesday to Sunday from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM. It charges a very small fee for entrance. Nandankanan Zoo: It is located in the midst of greenish environment of Chandaka Forest, has credited with some rare species of animals. Nandankanan is composed of a botanical Garden, a sanctuary and a zoo and is in the shore of picturesque Kanjia Lake. Nandankanan, literally means Garden of Heaven, was established during 1960 and declared open as a sanctuary and zoo in 1979. The spectacular animals in the zoo include the rare species of white tigers. The zoo is also a home to the Captive Gharial Crocodile breeding center, first in the country. The sanctuary is habitat to many rare and endangered species of wild animals such as, lion-tailed macaque, black panthers and many other types of animals. Facilities for boating and forest safaris are available in this zoo. July to October is good for visit in this zoo. The sanctuary has been so named because of its exquisite beauty and alluring serenity. It serves as the natural habitat of a number of animals, ranging from the rare white tigers, reptiles and snakes to distinctive kinds of birds. Even for kids, this place is very enjoyable. They can take a joy ride in the toy train that runs here. For the elders, there are boating facilities at the lake. The whole atmosphere of the Nandankanan National Park is so serene that it completely rejuvenates the mind as well as the soul. Apart from the beautiful White Tigers, one can also find other wild animals in the Nandankanan Wildlife Sanctuary. These include Asiatic Lion, Lion-tailed Macaque, Nilgiri Langur, Indian Pangolin and Mouse Deer, Himalayan Black Bear, Rhesus Macaque, Black Buck, etc. How to reach: By Air:The nearest airport to Nandankanan is the Bhubaneswar airport which is at a distance of only 13 kilometers. Auto rickshaws are another option that is available to the traveler. Autos can be found outside both the airport and the railway station. By Rail:The nearest railway station is the Bhubaneswar Railway Junction on the East-coast Railway station, which has super fast trains connecting all the major cities. By Road:There are frequent buses that are also available from Bhubaneswar to the park. The Nandankanan is well connected to major cities of Orissa such as Bhubaneswar, Bhawanipatna, Nowrangpur, and many more. The ideal time to visit this sanctuary is October-March. Open on all days except Mondays, the park opens up at 7.30 am and closes down at 6.00 pm during summer whereas the winter timings are from 8 am to 5 pm. Sisupalgarh: From under the ruins of an ancient fort of Bhubaneswar, archaeologists have dug out the remains of a 2,500-year-old city which they believe was bigger than classical Athens. Eighteen pillars were found among the remnants of the grand city at Sisupalgarh, a ruined fortification first discovered 60 years ago. The findings include debris of household pottery and terracotta ornaments, pointing to an advanced lifestyle led by the people who lived there. The polished potteries even have ownership marks on them. Monica L Smith, head archaeologist from the University of California said the site is the most visible standing architectural monument discovered in India so far. It's a huge city that existed about 2,500 years ago. The city had four gateways and could have housed up to 25,000 people. Even classical Athens had only 10,000 people. It is believed to have been a very important city with well-built walls and a big expanse. The pillars we found were part of a gigantic structure, probably used for public gatherings. Sisupalgarh was once ruled by the Kalinga kings. Lingaraj Temple: Lingaraj Temple It is a magnificent monument dedicated to Lord Shiva. It was built by King Jajati Keshari in 10th century and completed by King Lalatendu Keshari in 11th century. The main spire is 54 meters high. Besides, there is a pillared hall, a dancing hall (Natya Mandap) and a hall for serving offerings (Bhoga Mandap).The walled campus has about 50 smaller shrines, including one dedicated to Goddess Parvati. It is the biggest temple in Bhubaneswar. This great temple represents the quintessence of the Kalinga type of architecture the culminating result of the architectural activities at Bhubaneswar. (Only Hindus are allowed). ISKCON Temple: Another contemporary temple is Krishna Balaram temple, built in 1991, and maintained by International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). Located on Nh-5 in Nayapalli, it has built in facilities, including lodging and boarding for the devotees. The main festival is the Car festival like Ratha Yatra of Lord Jagannath. Rajarani Temple: It is set in picturesque surroundings, noted for its intricate carvings of floral, animal and human figures. The sculptures alone repudiate the theory that the Rajarani was ever a Vaishnava temple, but there are also the Shiva sculptures on the body of the main temple. The side ciches has been robbed of their images, but the bases of the Southern and Northern ciches have been carved the scenes of Linga-worship. Besides the main temple also contains on its vacates three panels which shows Siva and his female counterpart dancing in the camping of attendants holding musical instruments. Constructed in the 11th century, it has an unusual tower. More interestingly, this has no deity. Mukteswar Temple: A 10th century monument, the Mukteswar Temple is famous for the stone arch and sculptures depicting stories from Panchatantra and is considered the gem of Odishan temple architecture. Ananta Vasudev: It was built in 13th century A.D. The plan of the temple differs considerably from that of the other temples. The main temple stands on a cruciform platform, a peculiarity which is the first of its kind in a dated temple, and has a three- chambered frontal adjunct consisting of the Jagamohana, the Natamandapa and the Bhogamandapa. Three pidha temples in alignment with the central niches were on the Northern, Eastern and southern sides of the Vimala. Vaital Deula: This is architecturally striking. It is a temple of Goddess Chamunda (Kapali) built in 8th century A.D. and has a tantric influence. This represents altogether a different conception, and its shape which does not confirm to the dominant Odishan type, might be traced to that of a Buddhist chaitya hall. The shape of the Vaital has been derived from the Ratha of Mahabalipuram. Parsurameswar Temple: Parsurameswar Temple is considered the best preserved specimen of an early OrissianHindutemple dated to the Sailodbhava period between the 7th and 8th centuries AD. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu godShivaand is one of the oldest existing temples in the state. It is believed to have been built around 650 AD in Nagara style and has all the main features of the pre-10th century Orissian-style temples. The temple is one among the Parasumeswar group of temples.

Places to visit near Bhubaneswar:

Bhubaneswar is a part of the popular golden triangle, the most important tourist circuitin Odisha comprising of Konark and Puri at the other ends. It has many beautiful places in the nature and magnificient places created by man around the city.​ Puri: The Abode of Lord Jagannath is also famous for its beautiful beach. It attracts both pilgrims and pleasure seekers all through the year. It is one of the originalChar Dhampilgrimage sites for IndianHindus. According to Hindu teachings, a pilgrimage of the temples of India is not considered complete without a journey to Puri. While at Puri, you could also visit: Balighai, Brahmagiri, Satyabadi, Baliharachandi, Raghurajpur and Satapada. How to reach: Puri is located at a distance of 65 km from Bhubaneswar. Puri is well-connected to Bhubaneswar by railways and road. However, the best way to reach Puri from Bhubaneswar is by road. The journey from Bhubaneswar to Puri will take less than 1 hour 30 minutes. During this short journey one will pass through towns like Bhubaneswar - 78 km - Pipili - 38 km - Puri. There are many petrol pumps of IOC and BPCL along the way at regular intervals Road- Take a car or hire a taxi from Bhubaneswar to Puri. The cost of the cab ranges from INR 9 to INR 24 per kilometer depending upon the type of car. Bus - Board a direct bus from Bhubaneswar to Puri. Plenty of buses are available from Kalpana Square at Bhubaneswar. The bus stand near the Gundicha Temple provides connectivity with Bhubaneswar. The journey time is about 1 hour 10 minutes and the fare is nominal. Buses to Puri are available frequently (every 10-15 minutes). For getting around Puri, you have cycle rickshaws all over the town. More information is available in our Konark website site Konark Temple: Famous for the Sun Temple, this small hamlet plays host to a huge number of visitors who are spell bound by both the size of the temple as well as the delicacy of the erotic sculpture. The beautiful Chandrabhaga beach is an added bonus to visitors to help them relax after the awe inspiring tour of the temple. While at Konark, you could visit: Kuruma, Chaurasi, Ramachandi, and Astranga. More information is available in our Konark website site . How to reach: By air: The adjacent airport is atBhubaneswar, which is about 64 km away. It is linked withKolkata,Delhi, Hyderabad,Chennai,Bangalore, andNagpurand operates several direct flights. By train: The railway stations nearest to Konark are located in the twin cities of Puri and Bhubaneswar. These stations are linked with almost all the major destinations in India by train. By road: The National and State Highways link Konark withPuriandBhubaneswarforming a virtual triangle popularly known as Golden Triangle of East. To reach Konark from Bhubaneswar, after traveling 20km take a left turn once you reachPipilivillage. The road straight ahead leads to Puri. Hiring a taxi is the best way of travel between Puri and Konark. There is good number of transport buses as well as private coaches plying from both the cities. State buses are also available to Konark from Bhubaneswar's Bus Stand, Vani Vihar and Kalpana Chaka. Travel by bus is however cheaper compared to renting a car. Pipili: Lying approximately 29 km from Bhubaneswar, Pipli is a small village that is famous as a centre for applique work. A visit to the village can bring you very close to the culture of Odisha. Colorful canopies, blooming gardens, bright beach umbrellas, shoulder and handbags, etc are some of the things you can shop for, when in Pipili. The total straight line distance between Bhubaneswar and Pipili is16 km. No direct flights or trains or buses are available between Bhubaneswar to Pipili. The convenient, fastest and cheapest way to reach from Bhubaneswar to Pipili is to take a taxi. Dhauli hills: Dhauli Hills are located on the banks of the river Daya, 8 km south of Bhubaneswar in Orissa (India). It is a hill with vast open space adjoining it, and has major Edicts of Asoka engraved on a mass of rock, by the side of the road leading to the summit of the hill. Dhauli hill is presumed to be the area where Kalinga War was fought. Ratnagiri: Ratnagiri is a splendid Buddhist site that comes under the Jajpur district of Odisha. It is situated at a distance of approximately 100 km from Bhubaneswar and 70 km from Cuttack. The site, situated on a small hill, stands surrounded by rivers from all the sides. As you climb up to Ratnagiri, you will come across magnificent views of vast plains, full of lush greenery. Excavations were carried out at the site and they led to the unearthing of two large monasteries, one of them being Sri Ratnagiri Mahavihara Aryabhikshu Sangha. This monastery stands adorned with gorgeous doorways, cellar sanctum, a huge stupa, Buddhist shrines, sculptures and a massive idol of Lord Buddha. Ratnagiri was one of the first sites to be excavated in India in the period 1957 and 1960. The artifacts and relics found here have been found to be as old as the reign of Narasimha Gupta Baladitya of Gupta dynasty, which dates back to 6th century AD. Initially, the site serves as one of the most prominent centers of the Mahayana sect of Buddhism. With the advent of 8th and 9th century, the focus shifted to the Tantrik Buddhism or Vajrayana art and philosophy. One can still see a number of sculptural relics on the walls, serving as a proof of the popularity of Vajrayana divinities during that time. Ratnagiri also contributed to the emergence of Kalachakratantra in the 10th century. As you enter the first monastery of Ratnagiri, you will notice that its walls are adorned with exquisitely carved stone statues of Vajrapani and Lokeshwara. One can also find sculptures based on the Hindu mythology, in the monastery. There is an isolated chamber inside its complex, in which a 10 ft idol of Lord Buddha, engaged in meditation, has been enshrined. The courtyard has been adorned with a magnificently carved door. There are a number of other fabulous sculptural evidences strewn throughout the monastery. In the second monastery of Ratnagiri, you will come across a life-size granite statue of Lord Buddha. Ratnagiri also boasts of a splendid Hindu temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna. The site is known for housing a massive stupa, which stands encircled by a number of small stupas, which were donated by the followers of Buddhist religion. They make Ratnagiri, probably, the only site in India with such a large number of monolithic stupas. Wherever you go in Ratnagiri, you will come across splendid motifs known as Kunjalata and Patralata. These motifs stand as testimony to the cultural transfer taking place at that time. Even the Buddhist sculptures adorning the site reflected the rich art of old times and have contributed to tourism in Ratnagiri. How to reach: Air:Bhubaneswar is the nearest airport, connected to most major cities in India. Rail:Cuttack is the best railway station within easy reach, at a distance of 70 km from Ratnagiri and well connected with major stations across India. Road:There are good roads from Cuttack, and direct buses run between the two places. Yogini Temple, Hirapur: Chausathi Yogini temple at Hirapur lies almost 15 km from Bhubaneswar. It is known for its hypaethral temple of sixty four Yoginis, which dates back to as far back as the 11th century. This temple is second of its kind in Orissa and fourth of its kind in India. Chilika: Asia's Largest Brackish Water Lake is famous for the wide variety of birds that come here during winter. It is also home to the Irrawaddy Dolphins that make every trip into the lake memorable. While at Chilika, you could visit: Narayani, Nirmaljhara, and Banpur. How to Reach: By plane the nearest airport isBhubaneswar, about 120 km away from where taxis, trains and buses are available to the lake. By rail the nearest rail stations is at Balugaon, on the Howrah-Chennai track. From Balugaon buses are available to the lake. Some of the trains which stop at Balugaon are: 12839/12840 Howrah Chennai Mail, 12703/12704 Faluknama Express, 18645/18646 East Coast Express, 12660/12659 Gurudev Express, 12863/12864 Howrah Yeshvantpur Express, 15228/15227 Muzaffarpur Yeshvantpur Express (weekly), 12508/12507 Guwahati Ernakulum Express (weekly), 12510/12509 Guwahati Bangalore Express (triweekly), 12516/12515 Guwahati Trivandrum Express (weekly). For timings etc. check with Indian Railways. By road a part of Chilika Lake is visible from NH5 and the Howrah-Chennai train track. Many buses ply from Bhubaneswar (Baramunda Bus Station) and Cuttack (Badambadi Bus Station) to Balugaon throughout the day, OSRTC buses ( i.e. state run buses) being the best ones. The journey takes 2 hours and costs less than Rs. 100 one way. From there, one has to hire a taxi or an auto-rickshaw to reach Barkul or Rambha (In case of Rambha, passengers can alight at Keshpur, which is further ahead from Balugaon, and from there hire an auto-rickshaw). Satapada is well connected by daily local buses from Puri. Visitors can take an OTDC day tour from Puri to see Satapada (Rs. 400; 3 hr boat ride and AC transport included). Travelers from Puri are aware that there are touts standing on the road to Satapada who try to misdirect the tourists to a place where their accomplices try to fleece you by offering boat rides at highly inflated prices. Pay attention to sign boards along the road. These touts are around 10 kms before Satapada. However, Satapada is not so well connected from Bhubaneswar and taxis have to be hired to get there. Atri: Atri is situated midst greenery and famous for the hot sulphur water spring. It is 42 km. from Bhubaneswar and 14 km. from Khurda is also a holy place with the shrine of Hatakeswar. A bath in the spring water is reputed to cure skin diseases apart from being a pleasant experience. Places Nearby: Bhubaneswar, Puri, Khurda Distance from Atri: 35km, 70km and 12 Km to Bhubaneswar, Puri and Cuttack respectively. Nearest Railway Station: Khurda 12Km Nearest Airport: Bhubaneswar35Km Major Railway Station: Cuttack 70Km and Bhubaneswar 35Km Bhagabati Temple: Bhagabati, the presiding deity of Banapur, is one of the twelve famous Saktipithas as mentioned by Sarala das in his Odia Mahabharata. Once it was the Capital of Sailodhvaba dynasty, responsible for the construction of the early group of temples at Bhubaneswar. The Present temple and its Jagamohana are said to have been constructed by the Gajapati Maharaja of Puri. Architecture: The Temple stands on the Edge of a deep pool within a high enclose wall. Temple and Jagamohana are built in Pidha Order and thickly plastered with lime mortar; and later a new pillared Mandapa has been added to the front of Jagamohana for convenience of the devotees. The niches of the inner wall of the Compound Contain loose sculptures of Ganesha, Kartikeya, Parvati and Chamunda. An image of Mahisamardini Durga locally known as Bhagabati is worshiped in the sanctum of the main temple. The large number of Buddhist images discovered at Banpur relates the place to the Vajrayan cult of Buddhism. The temple of 'Daksha-Prajapati' is a fine specimen of extraordinary artistic excellence of Odisha art. It was a tradition to serve the deity with animal sacrifice during Dussehra celebration but with the passage of time this practice of animal sacrifice has been abolished. How to reach: Banpur is 8 kms from Balugaon and 96 kms from Bhubaneswar. It takes 1hour 28 minutes to reach this place from Bhubaneswar. You can drive yourself to this place from Bhubaneswar or you can hire two wheeler or four wheeler to reach this place. Driving Direction: Bhubaneswar Nirakarpur Tangi Banpur. Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary: An exquisite biodiversity combined with beautiful terrains and a Mangrove dominated ecosystem is what Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary in Odisha is comprised of. The spectacular wildlife, birds and vegetation makes Bhitarkanika one of the most amazing wildlife sanctuaries in India. Located in the estuarine region of Brahmini- Baitarani in the state of Orissa the sanctuary continues to attract tourists all through the year. Mangroves are spread all over the entire 625 km area of the Sanctuary including the wet and the marshy lands. The sanctuary has 55 different varieties of mangroves which are used as nesting ground by the migratory birds coming from Central Asia and Europe. Teak, Salai, Bamboo, Hair, Babul, Zizphus, Kauriculata, Palas are the other significant flora of the region. The sanctuary is also the breeding location for the giant salt water crocodiles which includes the rare partially white crocodiles. To see these marsh crocodiles in their pristine habitat is an awesome experience. These are the primitive inhabitants of most of the creeks flowing around the Sanctuary. The sanctuary also houses 215 species of birds which includes eight different varieties of Kingfisher alone. Woodpecker, White Bellied Sea Eagle, Brahmini Ducks, Sea Gull, Hornbill, Waders, Bar Headed Geese etc are other avifauna of the region. Pestilential reptiles like pythons and king cobras reside in the sanctuary. Water monitor lizards, flying fox, wild dogs, leopards, wild boar, four horned antelopes, Chikana, Hyena, Blue Bull and Bear are the other important fauna which are flourishing within the protected area of Bhitarkanika National Park. A core area of 145 square kms has been carved out of the sanctuary to form Bhitarkanika National Park. The park is of immense geomorphologic, ecological and biological significance because of the crisscrossing creeks, rivers, estuaries, backwaters, mud flats and accumulated lands and constitutes an ideal location for trekking, camping and picnic. On the coast of Bay of Bengal on the sprawling beach of 35 kms lies the world heritage site of Gahirmatha Beach which is the nesting ground of the Olive Ridley Sea - Turtles. Motorboats are the only means of commutation as this island is approachable only through waterways. Orissa is blessed to have a rich and vivid wildlife. Hunting, poaching and illegal encroachments have endangered the life of most of these species and are facing threat of extinction. Many Wildlife sanctuaries in India have been set up to protect these species. Your Orissa national park tours are not complete if you have not witnessed the way these wonderful creatures are being nurtured in these sanctuaries and national parks. Wildlife Sanctuary tour Orissa is an indispensable itinerary of the Orissa trip. Bhitarkanika Tour Packages providing a glimpse on the ecosystem of the tidal region and its animal wealth is like an icing on the cake. Bhitarkanika wild life sanctuary tours are organized for the tourists to make them encounter all these incredible experiences. The forest rest houses and jungle lodges at Ekakula, Dangmal and Gupti are the modes of Accommodation in Bhitarkanika. The best season to visit the sanctuary is winter between the months of November to February. How to reach: By Road: Bhubaneswar - Khola / Gupti entry point: 160 kms Cuttack - Khola / Gupti entry point: 140 kms Bhadrak - Jayangar entry point: 70 kms (Via Chandbali). Nearest Railway Station: Bhadrak - 70 Kms from Jayanagar entry point Cuttack - 140 kms from Khola / Gupti entry point Bhubaneswar - 160 kms from Khola / Gupti entry point Nearest Airport: Bhubaneswar - 160 kms from Khola / Gupti

Top Venues

The capital city is a host to many road shows, exhibitions, corporates and cultural shows. The city has many well developed venues for promoting trade and business. Exhibition Ground: The Exhibition Ground is located behind Ram Mandir and due to its massive size, is a preferred venue ofBhubaneswarevent organizers. The large open space offers the perfect set up for trade fairs and commercial exhibitions. The venue offers flexibility to event planners so as to define the stage-setting according to the size of the event. The ground caters for a good parking area as well. With regular hosting of prominent business events, this extravagant setting is a landmark venue in the city. Every year you can witness fairs like National Handloom, Cotton fab, Book fairs, Four-wheeler exchange fairs and many more fairs all through the year. Mostly during winter season you can witness a huge crowd thronging over this place due to National Handloom fairs where one can get clothes from all other states and many other dcor items as well. Market Building: Market Building is a huge shopping complex in the city center ofBhubaneswar. The main attraction of the place is the bountiful collection of traditional hand-woven clothes from various parts of Odisha. Outlets of Kalaniketan, Kalamandirand Priyadarshini see a lot of local customers (mostly women) besides the numerous travelers looking for souvenirs. All the materials sold here are authentic and is of the highest quality, and will have considerable discounts seasonally. This place is a destination where one can get all types of daily need items starting from household items, clothes, utensils, and various other items. The large central courtyard has a few stalls where one can use a bit of bargaining skills. Overall a very unique set up that has welcomed old world charm. Daily Market: The daily market here in the capital city flocks to the daily needed items. The market has all the ranges of the products from electronics to clothing and jewellery to antique items. The colorful shops carrying the heritage of Odisha come among the must visit places in Bhubaneswar. The prices of all the products are reasonable. Bangles and handmade beaded necklaces with different designs and colors are sold here in abundance. The handicraft items that one can get from this market include god statues with beautiful wooden carving. Pattachitra paintings, the paintings made on the Palm leaf are also displayed in the Bhubaneswar markets. Thus it is famous market destination to cater to the daily needs of all the people here in this city. Pahala: Between Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, there is a small village known as Pahala. It is an important venue to traditional sweets. These stalls sell Rasgullah, baked cheese cakes and other cheese based sweetmeats. The shops are open till late night and some are open throughout the night. One can always get fresh sweetmeats from the oven. The rasgulas here are very light, melt in mouth but don't last a day. Unlike the Bengali counterfeit which is spongy, the Odia version has the goal of melting in the mouth. They are available in different sizes, starting from 2 rupee to 20 rupee.   Janata Maidan: Janata maidan or ground in Gajapati Nagar Bhubaneswar is an exhibition ground where a number of exhibitions take place all through the year. Out of all other exhibitions, Toshali National Crafts Mela is a unique showcase which takes place every year during the winter season which attracts a huge crowd from all through the city. This event provides a huge platform for various talented artists, painters, weavers, sculptors and craftsmen from around the country as well as other SAARC nations to display their creativity. An ambience resembling the typical setting of Indian Rural Haat is created to infuse life into this unique concept. This 13-day long Mela gives an opportunity to the visitors to interact with nationally and internationally acclaimed craftsmen and buy their exclusive creations. Various stalls display some of the best handicrafts and handlooms of India like cane craft from North East, chiki woodcraft from Kashmir, wood and cane inlay work from South India, oxidized jewellery, sea-shell decorations from Rajasthan, patola and bandhni from Gujarat and Rajasthan, ikat of Odisha, chikan from Lucknow, kantha from Tripura West Bengal, kanjeevaram from the South are found in this mela. Besides, many colourful cultural programmes and food stalls with variety of delicacies add to the attraction of the Toshali National Crafts Mela. Entertainment like the standard traditional dance and music performances are also held here. Infocity:   The IT Park spread over 350 acres houses IT companies like Infosys, Wipro, TCS and Mind Tree. Equipped with modern infrastructure including a 9-hole golf course, it is the biggest IT Park in the Eastern India.     Fortune Tower: Fortune Towers is another IT specific projects of IDCO which is a 7(seven) storied building with 3.61 acres of land at prime location in Bhubaneswar the Capital of Odisha. It is built-up space in a hi-tech steel and glass structure equipped with high-speed connectivity.   Infocity II: A sector specific SEZ for IT/ITES/BPO industries at Goudakashipur, Bhubaneswar, on the outskirt of Bhubaneswar called Info Valley (Infocity-II) is being developed by Idco over 500 acres of land . Another 180 acres of land is being developed as Electronic System Designing and Manufacturing (ESDM) cluster by Idco jointly with Odisha Computer Application Centre. Singapore based Jurong Consultancy Pt. is engaged to prepare the master plan of the Info Valley. The city has allotted land to IT majors like Infosys, TCS, Wipro, etc to develop their own infrastructures. The city is closed to National Highway 5 and is near to the Airport.


The capital city hosts a number of festivals throughout the year. The winter season in the city is active with many festivals organised in its numerous venues.​ Mukteswar Dance Festival: The Mukteswar Utsav of Odisha is one of the most well known festivals celebrated in the state. This festival is named after one of the most renowned temples of Odisha i.e. Mukteshwar Temple. The Mukteshwar Utsav in Odisha is mainly a dance festival, in which many talented Odissi dancers perform. This temple is a very important part of cultural life of the people of Odisha as the architecture at the temple entrance is considered to be one of the most beautiful specimens of the Odisian School of architecture. This temple signifies the transitional phase of the architecture of Odisha between the initial and the later stages of Kalinga architectural style. The beautiful architectural works of the temple add to the splendor of the Mukteshwar Utsav. This festival is an important event for people who take interest in the traditional dance forms of India. The festival is being organized by the Department of Tourism as part of Ekamra Utsav that is aimed at promoting Bhubaneswar as a major destination for cultural tourism. It will be an exclusive Odissi dance festival unlike the other. Tribal Festival: The Tribal Exhibition popularly known as Adivasi mela is organized for one week from January 26th every year in the Adivasi exhibition ground, situated in the heart of the capital city, Bhubaneswar by the state Government. This is considered as the oldest and the most colorful festival of tribal people where all the 62 tribes people including 13 PTGs, come over to the exhibition ground spread out their ethnic mosaic. The festival reflects the culture centric life of the tribal people. The Vibes of continuity and change of ethnic life are showcased in the exhibition. The main objective of the fair is to exhibit and promote tribal culture, tradition, lifestyle and arts and crafts besides sale of their products. An ambience of tribal village and haat (market) is created at the festival site. Forest products and tribal products are exhibited and sold here. The citizens eagerly wait for one year to buy tribal products directly from the communities. Cultural programmes presented by tribal communities are organized every evening at the fete. This is a rare occasion to have a glimpse of the unique tribal culture of Odisha in the urban city of Bhubaneswar. The tourists throng to get an overall picture and feel of the tribal society. Tribal Dance Festival: Organized by the Bhubaneswar based SC and ST Research and Training Institute (SCSTRTI) in collaboration with the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (IGRMS), the Festival is etched in history as a landmark event for Odisha, not only for the excellent quality of tribal dances it brings to fore but at the same time for the rich congregation of diverse tribal communities in one place. It also offers a chance to the people at largeto see and savor the rich culture of the diverse interior tribes. The festival features tribal dance troupes from Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha North Eastern states. The festival is held every year at the Utkal Mandapa in the premises of the Utkal Sangeet Mahavidyalaya. The mellifluous tribal music flocks a huge audience every year here in the capital city. The Madal, Dhangdi, Dhemsa, Khutmandar , Bagadwal , Pouna, Karma dance Jhadia Paraja, Gadaba, Koyas, Bagadwal,Bir Vairab, Sarhul and Rinjha are some of the famous tribal dance forms performed with a great flair in this dance festivals every year. The tribal dance itself is vast in variety indicating their importance in the social and religious life of the people. The tune of traditional instruments like horn, trumpet, flute and drum, etc. captivates and flocks a huge audience every year. These dance pieces are basically performed to show respect towards men, nature and animal. In todays mechanized and fast times, the Tribal Dance Festivalbrings back the understanding to appreciate simplicity and the base values of being a human. Tribal art forms like their dance and music needs to be preserved as well as boosted. Platforms like the one provided by this Festival is really the right way to give fillip to the rich and fantastic Indigenous tribal culture of our country. The haunting lilt of the traditional music and the rhythm of the supple and sprightly dance movements are thoroughly cherished by huge crowd visiting this Festival. Utkal Divas or Odisha Day: In 1st April 1936, the state of Odisha was formed and to remember the contributions and sacrifices made by the people of Odisha in those olden days, Utkal Divas or Odisha Day is celebrated all over the state. Not only in Odisha but Utkal Divas is celebrated in many cities and towns in India and abroad, where people from Odisha reside. In ancient times the region of Odisha was the center of the Kalinga kingdom, although it was temporarily conquered (c.250 B.C.) by Asoka and held for almost a century by the Mauryas. With the gradual decline of Kalinga, several Hindu dynasties arose and built temples at Bhubaneswar, Puri, and Konark. After long resistance to the Muslims, the region was overcome (1568) by Afghan invaders and passed to the Mughal empire. After the fall of the Mughals, Odisha was divided between the Nawabs of Bengal and the Marathas. In 1803 it was conquered by the British. The coastal section, which was made (1912) part of Bihar and Odisha Province became the separate province of Odisha in 1936. In 1948 and 1949 the area of Odisha was almost doubled and the population was increased by a third with the addition of 24 former princely states. In 1950, Odisha became a constituent state of India. Celebration of Utkal Divas: Utkal Divas is celebrated to commemorate the foundation day of our state Odisha on 1st April 1936. Odisha took birth as a separate linguistic state because of the pioneering efforts of Utkala Gaurav Madhusudan Das, Utkalamani Gopabandhu Das, Maharaja Shri Ramachandra Bhanjadeo, Maharaja Shri Krushna Chandra Gajapati, Raja Baikunthanath Dey, Fakir Mohan Senapati, Gangadhar Meher, and Gouri Shankar Ray. Later on the State was divided into 13 districts and then 30 districts. The day is celebrated as State Holiday in Odisha. On this occasion various cultural evenings, seminars, competition are organised in different parts of inside and outside the State. Odia communities all over the world also celebrate wherever they are. Bhubaneswar Day: Odishas capital city Bhubaneswar celebrates its Foundation day on 13th April every year. Although its presence is rooted deeply in the history of the state and it has been a center of activity since the mighty emperor Kharavela established his capital in Sishupalgarh, it was only in 1948 that after careful considerations, that this sleepy town was chosen as the spot to become the administrative capital of Orissa. Long before Pandit Jawhar Lal Nehru inaugurated it as the capital of the state on April 13th 1948, the place was well known as the Temple city boasting of more than 1000 temples that were as old as 7th century. The master plan of Bhubaneswar was prepared by the internationally acclaimed architect and urban planner, Otto H Koenigsberger in 1948 for a population of 40,000 over an area of 16.48 km2 with a density of 10 to 12 families per acre. The innovative master plan of the city with modernist buildings, land-use patterns, provisions for education, recreation, medical and social services created a landmark in the history of town planning in India. Bhubaneswar was after all the second city in the country and only after Chandigarh to be developed on a master plan. The City saw a greater change in the late 1980s when light industries and manufacturing activities were added into the ambit of the original master plan that envisaged it primarily for administrative activities. This led to influx of working population into the sleepy town and for the first time showed the seeds of expansion. Three decades later, today the government with its intention of projecting Bhubaneswar as the Prime destination of Education in the eastern India, the city has taken quantum leaps not only geographically but demographically too. The city which is growing towards north, northwest and southwest direction along the main transport routes and has already taken areas like Chandaka, Jatani, Uttara, Patia and Hansapal into its sway is today one of the fastest growing cities in India. Agricultural and vacant land that once donned the outskirts of the city has been now replaced with high rise buildings. There are engineering colleges and other educational institutes that are coming up there! The city boasts of more than 40 engineering colleges and three medical colleges. Top institutes like that of IIT, BITS and AIIMS have already started operating in the city. This has brought in structural changes in the demography of the city too. Today students and younger working professionals coming out of the state are becoming majority. Service sector industries like the Software sector and ITES industries have started operations in the city in scores! Similarly infrastructure companies that have their eyes on the future too are now very active in the city. In fact the city has become the cynosure of all infrastructure activities and boasts of some big players like DLF, Tata and Vipul. These companies are redefining the future of the city by creating residential and commercial complexes in the city. On a nutshell, Bhubaneswar city is going through a transition that is simply unprecedented. And nothing defines this transition more than the cultural conversion that we are experiencing today! The youth of today in the city is more aggressive and extrovert than he ever was! While Hindi and English are slowly replacing Odia as the mode of communication, the shopping habits of the residents have undergone sea change with the advent of mall culture. Similarly concepts of eat outs and night parties have become popular too. While all these changes might not be welcome, but transition is just a way of life and one need to accept the fact that Bhubaneswar is well on the path to compete with other cities on scales of infrastructure, development and economic success. It might not be too far off when we actually see Bhubaneswar as the best city in the country.

Parks & Wildlife Sanctuaries

Jaydeb Batika: The park is on the hills of Khandagiri hills. It retains the trees of old Chandaka sanctuary. It has large lawns to relax. The park is spreads in an area of 100 acres. It has abundant of trees. It has forest area earmarked for picnic. Visitors can cook their food in the park area under the large trees. The park has water points at different places for the picnicking community. The park has artificial streams to make the place romantic. It tries to make the place as romantic as Burundian, the garden where the mythological character Krishna made romance. The park is a host to many birds, snakes and jackals. Its on the borders of the elephant Chandaka elephant sanctuary. Ekamra Kanan: Regional Plant Resource Centre, popularly the Ekamra Kanan the Botanic Garden of Regional Plant Resources Center offers a variety of entertainment, fun and amusement to all classes of tourists both young and old, children or adult apart from its principal objective of plant biodiversity conservation. Childrens park: A childrens park established at a vitally important location with quite a number of play equipments sews to engage the kids in play and recreational activities. A 'multi action play system' is the centre stage of the corner with several individual play equipments. Pleasure boating: The large pure water body (lake) adds varieties to amusement through 'pleasure boating. Self pedaled two seater and four seater boats are presently put on use. A boating fee of Rs.15/- per half an hour and Rs.25/- per half an hour is charged for two and four seater respectively. This facility is available to public during opening hours of the garden. The garden is open to public from 8 AM to 7 PM during summer and 8 AM to 6 PM during winter. An entry fee of Rs.10/- per head is charged for adult while children are charged only Rs.5/-. The garden is open on all days. Annually, more than two lakhs visitors visit the garden. Sprawling lawns: The park has flat as well as landscaped lawns covering 30 acres. It is a real pleasure spot for romancing couples and people interested to lie on the grass in an isolated place. It is worth knowing that the park is a part of the Chadaka sanctuary. Bird Watching: One of the exciting attractions of the nature lovers is viewing ' migratory birds'. The protected wetland in the lake is regularly visited by migratory birds like Gadwall, Little Grebe, Cormorant, Oriental Darter, Brown Crowned Night Heron, Little Green Heron, Purple Heron and Little Egret. Musical fountain: The 'musical fountain' set in the Garden is a rare amusement in Odisha feasting both audio and video. Multiple mixed colored water jets dunning to the tune of rhythmic music are a spotto sit and relax. A finger jet fountain system comprising lighting with tricolor effects add new essence to the pleasure. A floating fountain also adorns the lake with its tall jets. Walking: It is a morning walkers paradise. It is a 3 kilometer walk way. The park has a novel scheme of allowing 'morning health walking' along the winching and decorative garden paths onnominal monthly fees of Rs.50/- per person and daily fees of Rs.5/-per person. The walking is allowed to public from 5-30 AM to 7-30 AM during March-October and from 6-00 AM to 8-AM during Nov-February. Cactus garden: With a collection of 1050 species/ varieties of cacti Ekamra Kanan has the largest collection of cacti in Asia. It has evolved about 200 varieties/ hybrids of cacti by breeding, mutagenesis and growth manipulation. A walk through the cacti garden is mesmerizing. The plants have flamboyant colours to please the eyes. Research work at the Centre relates to standardization of culture techniques, propagation methods, breeding, mutagenesis, cytogenetic and molecular characterization of principal cactus genera. In India, there are over 12,000 species of orchids; of which, about 550 occur in North-Eastern India. Odisha alone harbors 133 species including many novelties and new distributional records. Ekamra kanan has a collection of about 220 orchid species/ cultivars/ hybrids collected from Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, North Eastern States, other parts of India and abroad. The principal genera of orchids are Dendrobium, Habenaria, Vanda, Coelogyne, Eria, Oberonia, Bulbophyllum, Acampe and Aerides. Of the rare and endangered species, Habenaria panigrahiana, Pomatocalpa decipiens, Didymoplexis pallens, Odisha cleistantha, Crepidium purpureum, Tainia hookeriana, Micropera pallida etc. deserve special mention. Palm garden: Palms (Palmae/ Arecaceae) are a natural and ancient group of plants represented by about 212 genera and 2,780 species in the world. Palms are mainly tropical and occur in all habitats from per-humid lowland rainforest to desert and from mangrove swamps to high mountain thickets. This is one of the most economic groups of plants producing rattans, coconuts, copra, dates, sago, oil palm and fibres (coir raffia). The palmetum spreads over 7 acres of land and hasa rich collection of 108 species of palms, rattans and canes was devastated by the super cyclones of October, 1999 and subsequent elephant menace, the Centre is maintaining a collection of 38 species of palms in the botanic garden and nurseries. Nandankanan: Nandankanan Zoo is created out of a natural forest. It is adjacent to Chandaka-Dampara Wildlife Sanctuary. The very name of Nandankanan, in mythology, delineates the ecstatic but imaginary beauty of the celestial garden. It also indicates the real beautiful spots par excellence on earth, where one can see the panoramic views of nature and appreciate the glamour that exists in the external morphology of plants and animals. The zoo is enriched with 101 enclosures with 202 sub-enclosures at Nandankanan. There are 54 cages and 47 open moated enclosures to house all the captive animals of Nandankanan. There are more than 1580 number of animals, including 634 mammals, 812 birds and 134 reptiles. Eighty eight (88) species of indigenous species along with 32 exotic species of animals add glory to the collection of Nandankanan Zoological Park. Nandankanan is the only zoo in India with the credit of having Patas monkey (Erythrocebus patas), Eastern Rosella (Platycercus eximus) and Open-billed Stork (Anastomus oscitans). Besides, it has the glory among the 2 zoos in India having Orang-Utan (others in Kanpur Zoological Park, Uttar Pradesh), Indian Pangolin (others in Jhargram Zoo, West Bengal), Spotted Munia (Others in Sayajibaug Zoo, Gujurat) and Burmese Python (others in Calcutta Snake Park, West Bengal). It is among the three zoos of India having Green-wingedMacaws, Cinereous Vulture and Nicobar Pigeon. UNIQUENESS OF NANDANKANAN: It is the host zoo for white tigers. White tigers were born to normal colored parents in 1980, a unique event in the world. Lion Safari Tiger Safari Bear Safari Large Bird Aviary Zoological Park timings for visitors: April to September: (07.30 hrs. to 17.30 hrs.) October to March: (08.00 hrs. to 17.00 hrs.) Zoological Park remains closed on every Monday. For details look at Kanjia Lake: Kanjia lake popularly known as Nandankanan lake is situated between 85 48 to 85 50 East longitudes and between 20 23 to 20 25 North latitudes spreads over an area of 105 ha. The water spread area of main lake is 75 ha, where as about 30 ha is now separated by a road, which gets connected during monsoon. It is an important wetland lying to the south of Mahanadi delta head, within the boundary of Nandankanan Zoological Park. The zoological park remains in the south side of the lake where as the Botanical garden is situated in the north side of the lake. Kanjia lake has been declared as a Wetland of National Importance by Govt. of India since 2006. Nandankanan Botanical Garden: The State Botanical Garden is adjacent to the zoological park. It spreads over 173 acres and is situated in the sylvan settings of the moist deciduous forest. It is hammed between two wetlands Kanjia Lake Kiakani Lake. It was established in the year 1963, on the edge of bustling capital city of Bhubaneswar at Latitude of 20 24 15 N and Longitude of 85 49 30 E, 40 meters above MSL. One would be definitely impressed by the nature's symphony and impressed by the exquisite touch of the wilderness here. Here the time ought to pass under the name of calmness. When one look around, he would have the sweet illusion of the rolling landscape being captured in the frame of a scroll. One can enjoy the changing colours of the seasons here. Important parts of the park: It has a spacious glass house of 2013 square feet is developed for housing succulent plants. A state of art green house of 5200 square feet houses the cultivars of 60 species of indoor plants like Aglaonema, Philodendron, Calathea, Cordyline, Dieffenbachia, Spathiphyllum, Peperomia, Monstera, Hemigraphis, Asplenium etc. The park has different gardens like Mughal garden, Japanese garden, Medicinal garden, Dry garden, Evolution garden, Rose garden and an arboretum. Besides it has a childrens park, a Buddha garden and an artificial zoo. The park has guest houses with attached toilets and lawn on the hills and the lake side. Reservation can be obtained from Deputy Director Nandankanan's office for accommodation during the Garden's opening hours. The park has exclusively designated place for picnic having mineral water supply toilet facility. The platforms can be booked at the time of entrance by paying requisite fees. Botanical Garden for visitors: April to September- (07:30 am to 7:30pm.) October to March- (08:00 am to 7:00 pm) Botanical Garden remains closed on every Monday. Rajarani temple garden: The Raja Rani temple in Old town area is surrounded by a beautiful garden. The lawns are lush green. Any time in the year the gardens are a great place to relax. Watching the sun set near the temples will give a different feeling. Indira Park: The park is a favorite spot for the people to rest down and gossip as well as for the morning joggers. It lies in front of The Secretariat on Sachibalaya Marg in an area of 10.60 acres of land. There is a statue of Late Prime Minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi in the green park that is decorated with fountains and flowers.The park gets visitors throughout the day. The evenings are quite crowded. Forest Park: Forest Park is a posh landmark of Bhubaneswar. It is also known as the Biju Pattnaik Park. The UN, British government's DFID office, bungalows of ministers and senior officials and the capital Hospital is located adjacent to the park.The park has well laid walking tracks. The park is visited by senior politicians and officials in the morning. It is said that people who wish to meet these high ranking people do walk on the tracks to get personal encounter. The jogging track gets quite crowded in the evening. The park has beautifully landscaped lawns and plenty of trees. BDA Nicco Park: BDA Nicco Park in Bhubaneswar is located in Madhusudan Nagar, very near to the Regional College. It attracts visitors to the park for modern games and boating facilities. The Park is a place of fun and frolic. It the most favored place for children in the city. It remains crowded with enthusiasts in the evenings. Nicco Park is an amusement park that was built by the Nicco in collaboration with the BDA in 1997. An artificial lake has been made in the centre of the park. There are four marriage mandaps of different sizes and shapes, and additional facilities like a musical fountain. The lawn area can cater to groups ranging from 350 - 2000 people in various setups and styles. The park is open right from morning to evening. People can visit the park anytime to spend their time and to have a recess from their daily schedule. There is no entry charges collected till eight in the morning. However, visitors will be charged with a nominal fee of Rs. 5 till evening. Nehru Park: Nehru Park in Bhubaneswar is located near Master Canteen Chowk. It is not a well-maintained garden and is frequently visited by the poor section of the city.It is also a starting point of many political rallies. Satsangvihar Park: Satsangvihar Park in Bhubaneswar is located in Satsang Vihar. It is a well maintained park with lush green surroundings and flower garden. Buddha park, Niladri Vihar: The park has been established on the foot of Sikharchandi hills in Niladri Vihar, Chandrasekharpur area. It has a light and sound arrangement to please the visitors. Gandhi Park: It is one of the well-known parks in Bhubaneswar developed by BDA. The main attraction of this park is the Mahatma Gandhi statue, sitting in a prayer position. The park is located opposite to Swosti Plaza Hotel. The park offers natural and the fresh environment, stunning landscape and enticing fountain. Chandaka Forest: Chandaka is a forest area very close to the Bhubaneswar in Odisha. This forest is the house for Nandankanan National park as well as too many more natures beauty. Out of those Chandaka Elephant Reserve is most visited by tourists for the elephants in the Chandaka Elephant Reserve, Odisha in general, venture out during the night and there are provisions like watch towers close to the water-holes, to enable the tourists to spend a long evening within the elephant reserve. Apart from that there are other Elephant Reserves namely Mayurbhanj, Mahanadi and Sambalpur. In 1967, a wild tigress from the Chandaka forest on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar walked into the Nandankanan Zoo nearby, lured by the calls of a male tiger in one of the moated exhibits, and jumped in to join him, surely unaware that there was no way out. The tigress later named Kanan lived on in the zoo. Predictably the press went to town about the wild tigress that voluntarily chose captivity. For the state forest department it was a bonanza, for the then fledgling zoo got a new free tiger. Few thought of the only, lonely tigress who had simply responded to the call of her own. She was the last wild tiger in Chandaka. In May 13 the male tiger that has strayed into the Nandan Kanan Zoo in Odisha from the Chandaka forests last week is under the scanner of National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA). While the State Forest Department is in two minds whether to retain it or release it, NTCA has suggested the restoration of the big cat in its natural habitat. The forest, however, continued to be a refuge for elephants, leopards, sloth bears, jungle cats and a host of bird species, and was declared the Chandaka-Dampara Wildlife Sanctuary in 1982, intended to protect elephants and serve as Bhubaneswars green lungs. Bloomed to become a fabulous Eco-diversity, Chandaka- Dampara forest, near Bhubaneswar represents the north-eastern limits of Eastern Ghats. This is now an isolated forest, which once formed a part of vast Eastern Ghats forest and Central Indian Elephant range. The area was once a stronghold of tiger, until 60s; when the last tiger embraced captivity in 1967. It fell inside an open air enclosure in Nandankanan Zoo. The forests once teemed with tiger, leopard, Sambar, Barking deer, Chital, Wild Boar, Gaur and other wild animals. With the establishment of state capital at Bhubaneswar in 1957, this forest came under enormous pressure for firewood, and timber. Consequently, forests deteriorated significantly and elephants, which were in harmony with their habitat, became problematic. The year 1982, was a turning point in the conservation history of the area, when state Govt. constituted this forest as a wildlife sanctuary for overall protection of the then gasping forest ecosystem more particularly, to provide a safe haven for resident elephants. The details of external boundary of Chandaka-Dampara wildlife sanctuary have been described in Govt. Notification No.13482/FFAH dtd.10.06.1988 which was published in Orissa Gazette Extra ordinary No.21 Dated: 07.01.1994.This can also be described in short as follows: North: Upper Pathapur, Gayalbanka, Bhagipur, Banra, Garsar, Samantarapur. South: K.Muktapur, Nuapara, Gomeriah, Doria, Manpur, Mandalpur, Minchinpatna, Majena, Mahula, Angarapara, Madhapur, Aranga, Kumarabasta,Paniora, Palaspur, Ghatibar, Binjhagiri,Jamujhari, Haridamada, Kalajhar,Kalapada Sahi, Manei Sahi, Kantabada, Daspur, Bhola, Jagannath Prasad, Andharua, Nayapalli. West: Balisahi, Baghaitangi, Gadahaldia, Samantarapur, Talabasta,Hamira, Purunasahi, Govindpur, Dampara. East: Baranga, Daruthenga, Chandaka, Sundarpur, Barmana, Pathargarh. Chandaka-Dampara forests formed parts of erstwhile Puri Forest Division. Forest blocks of Khurda (old Puri District) have been notified as R.Fs. or D.P.Fs. To know more about Chandaka-Dampara log on to:

Picnic Spots

Deras Dam: Deras Dam is situated in the Chandaka national park on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, Odisha. To be precise about, it is situated 20 kms from Bhubaneswar main bus stand (Baramunda). Chandaka NP is spread across area of 94kms. This place is silent, serene and great weekend gateway. Also can be a great honeymoon gateway. Dam consists of rainwater reservoir, cottage on a hilltop and guided safari of around 40 kms. Different style shape of bamboo houses were present over there. Anyone who wants to take some rest can stay over there and spend some memorable time. The fresh environment of the place makes an ideal picnic spot with breathtaking view. It could be a magical and tremendous experience. Though chandaka is famous for elephants, presently spotting them is rare and difficult. An entry fee to the park is Rs20 per head. Timing is 10 am to 5pm. Reaching Deras could be a problem for outsiders as there is no signage on the way. So one has to navigate asking for direction and go by local village roads for good part of the journey. One way it takes one hour. Since the closing time of the dam is 5 pm so anyone can enjoy the scenic beauty during the day time. How to reach: One can easily reach Deras from Bhubaneswar (only 15 kms) by two wheeler or four wheeler. However if you dont have one, you can opt for a hired vehicle. Best time to visit Derasa water dam:- Its ever green place for nature lovers and photographers. For seeing the water flows then please go before Oct and after July. Sikharchandi Hills: The hill near Chandaka Industrial Estate, famous for its deity Sikharchandi, with lots of greenery is a good place for tourist local people to spend time with near dear ones. This place provides people a better alternative to relax. For those who love non-veg this is the best picnic spot for them. The view of greenery all around gives a mesmerizing experience to the nature lovers. It is also a good destination for the peace lovers who are often seen here spending calm hours lost in the natures sight. The city police plans to increase patrolling and deploy personnel at these spots to keep vigil. As the picnickers before have indulged in rowdy activities now this place is fully secured as the cops are leaving no stone unturned to ensure that you enjoy your New Year picnic safely and incident-free. The best time to visit sikharchandi is during the winter autumn season to enjoy the beauties scenery of nature. Its good to have a tour with family as picnic or holiday trip. How to Reach: Driving directions to Sikharchandi road, Aryapalli, Patia, Bhubaneswar, Odisha 751024, and India. Head north on Nandan Kanan Rd Pass by Bharat Petroleum Petrol Pump (on the left in 3.4 km) Turn left at KIIT Chowk onto KIIT Rd Pass by Pizza Hut (on the right) Turn right Restricted usage road Destination will be on the right. Barunei Hills: Barunei Hill is one of thefamous picnic spot. Every year thousands of tourists come here to enjoy its scenic beauty. The major attraction of Barunei Hillis Goddess Barunei. The Barunei Temple is located at about 150 ft high of the Barunei hill which is very near to Khurda of Odisha. The deities of the Barunei Temple are Goddess Barunei and Goddess Karunei. For identity between the two names the temple is known as Barunei temple. Many people knew Goddess Barunei as Goddess Arunei. The two idols of the two deity of this temple are made of Black granite stone (Kalamuguni Pathar). The left side is Goddess Barunei and Right side is Goddess Karunei. The height of each idol is about 18 inch. The two idols are wearing battle dresses. There is a story behind this. In Kanchi Battle God Jagannath and Balabhadra helped King Purusottam for winning the battle. It is believed that the two deities or Goddess killed many English soldiers at that time. After that the English soldiers came to know about that and planned how to decrease the energy of the Goddess and also did that successfully. After that the King got defeated. History: There are also some other tourist spots present on the Barunei Hill such as Pandava Cave, Pandava Guha, Pandabahara etc. It is believed that God Rama Chandra lived here some days at the time of his Unknown living. The stone on which God Ram Chandra lived is known as Shree Ram Stone (Shree Ram Pathar). One day after cooking Goddess Sita washing the pots and told ldquo;till the earth is there the water of this place will not dryrdquo;. And it is true that even in summer days the water of this place does not dry. Geographic Statistics: The length of the Barunei hill is about 7km and breadth is about 800m. There are about 88 steps you have to cross to go to the Barunei and Karunei temple. The height of this hill is about 304.8m and about 150m above the ground level the Barunei temple is situated. There is also a Guest House here. Every year during Raja a very big festival is celebrated at this place. Besides that in winter season during X-mas and New Year time picnickers flock to this place in great numbers. Non- veg lovers choose their picnic destination here and have a great time far from routine life to enjoy the natural scenic beauty. How to Reach: This Barunei Hill of Odisha is situated at about 25 km from the Barmunda Bus stand of Bhubaneswar, Odisha. You can go to this Barunei Hill of Odisha by Taxi from this Barmunda Bus stand and if you want to travel by Train then the nearest railway station of Barunei Hill of Odisha is Khurda Road. The distance from Khurda Station to Barunei Hill of Odisha is about 13kms. Kenduli village: Kenduli Sasan is a village in the banks of the Prachi River (a Triveni sangam) in Khurda district. It has recently been recognized as the birthplace of the well-known Sanskrit lyricist, Jayadev known for his magnum opus ldquo;Geeta Govindardquo; (12th century). This village appears to have been a center for Hindu literature during the 10th and 11th centuries. Jayadev himself refers to his birthplace in the seventh song of the Gita Govinda as Kenduvilva, located by the sea ldquo;Kinduvilva samudra sambhava Rohini ramanenardquo;. Kenduli Sasan has several brick temples and sculptures dating back to the time of Jayadev in the tenth and eleventh centuries A.D. In fact, several such temples belonging to Jayadevs period have also been excavated here by the Archaeological Survey of India including statues belonging to Jainism Buddhism. The Jayadev Pitha is maintained by Odisha Tourism Archeological Survey of India. The artificial water way is named Yamuna River. Apart from it, theres a scenic man-made pond inside the Jaydev Pitha called ldquo;Padmavati Pond which has the image of Lord Krishna dancing on the multi-hooded tamed serpent lsquo;Kāliyā. The huge artificial garden inside the complex is called Jayadev Heritage Garden. It is a very beautiful pond attracting the visitors. Theres lsquo;banabhoji (picnic) facility available inside the garden at a nominal fees. The Jayadev Sanskrutika Parishad, a cultural organization, has established a museum here containing images and other archaeological relics excavated here. An annual cultural function in honor of the poet Jayadev is organized at Kenduli. On Akshay Trutiya day, which falls on the poets birth day, a two-day procession is taken from Bhubaneswar to Kenduvilva, the poets birthplace. How to Reach: By Rail: Vani Vihar Rail Way Station, Mancheswar Rail Way Station are the very nearby railway stations to Kenduli.How ever Bhubaneswar Rail Way Station is major railway station 7 KM near to Kenduli. By Road: Bhubaneswar Railway station gt;gt; Rasulgarh gt;gt; Naharakanta Road gt; gt;Jagannathpur gt;gt; Kurang Sasan gt;gt; Barahipur gt;gt; Kenduli Sasan. Ugratara: This place is very famous for temple Ugra Tara. This temple is located in between Rameswar Chowk and Chandpur. The icon of Mother Tara is Chaturbhuja, holding potent weapons in her hands. She is very popular as Ugratara due to her fierce aspect, but benevolent to the adorers. Ugra Tara is the presiding and the protecting Goddess of the fort of Mulajhargarh, which is just in the border of Chilika Lake. Hence this place is famous for fishermen#39;s ground, because Chilika Lake is nearby to this village. Even though in course of time this fort of Odisha has been lost to oblivion still then Goddess Ugra Tara, the deity of the fort is worshipped by Brahmin priests under Tara Mantra and offer Her with cooked vegetarian and non-vegetarian items, and preserve Her glory and popularity which still continues as the presiding Goddess of coastal Odisha. This spot is an ideal place for picnics. Bhusandpur is about 50 kms by road from Bhubaneswar, which is a scenic spot frequently visited by tourists and picnickers. It is beautiful natured location for movie shooting also. Devotees from almost all parts of Odisha, visit this holy shrine every day. The shrine draws huge crowd throughout the year. Especially on Raja Parba in the month of June, it is one of the most famous festive occasions of Ugratara Shaktipitha. Narayani: Narayani Temple is one of the sacred places of high religious significance. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Narayani, manifestation of Durga. A beautiful figurine of Goddess is enshrined in the sanctum, which draws attention of the travelers. The shrine is in the lap of Valery Mountains of Eastern Ghats and is one of the famous picnic spots of the region. Besides, there is a perennial spring and green mango groves at the site that draws attention of the tourists. Narayani Temple is located at a distance of 7 kilometers from the lake and is well-connected with several public transportation modes. Picnickers can be seen in large numbers during the winter season. Nandankanan Botanical Garden: Spread over a vast space of 400 acres or 990 acres, these gardens include the Kanjia Lake of 134 acres, zoo, sanctuary and botanical gardens strategically located in Bhubaneswar, the capital of Odisha, this garden was opened for public in 1979. Though established in 1960, this garden was initially a zoo which later on became the first Indian zoo to be recognised on International Forum by inclusion in the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums in 2009. The literal translation of Nandankanan Gardens means the gardens of Heavens and is located in the peripherals of Chandaka forest. The gardens have a footfall of 2 million visitors of tourists every year. This place is also a picnic destination for the people. Every year during winter season this place attracts a large number of picnickers who enjoy a day out with their near and dear ones and have a beautiful time away from daily routine time. Some important information about this place might help you to plan your picnic to this place: Charges for picnic spot: Up to 10 persons - Rs.100/- More than 10 up to 25 persons - Rs. 250/- More than 25 up to 50 persons - Rs. 500/- More than 50 to 100 persons - Rs.1,000/- Kitchen room - Rs. 250/- Parking Charges for Vehicles: Four Wheeler (light vehicle) - Rs. 20/- Three wheeler - Rs. 10/- Two wheeler - Rs. 5/- Heavy Vehicle. - Rs. 50/- Timings: April to September ndash; 7.30 hrs to 17.30 hrs October to March ndash; 8.00 hrs to 17.00 hrs Park remains closed on every Monday Jaydeb Batika: The park is on the hills of Khandagiri hills. It retains the trees of old Chandaka sanctuary. It has large lawns to relax. The park is spreads in an area of 100 acres. It has abundant of trees. It has forest area earmarked for picnic. Visitors can cook their food in the park area under the large trees. The park has water points at different places for the picnicking community. The park has artificial streams to make the place romantic. It tries to make the place as romantic as Brindavan, the garden where the mythological character Krishna made romance. The park is a host to many birds, snakes and jackals. Its on the boarders of the elephant Chandaka elephant sanctuary.

Romantic Places.

Bhubaneswar, the capital city of Odisha besides being the temple city this place is also avery romantic city for the love-birds. At any time of the day when you are out from your home you can always see couples on bike rides or on romantic walk with hand in hand everywhere. Mostly they can be seen in Parks, malls and movie theatres. Ekamra Kanan: Regional Plant Resource Centre, popularly known asEkamra Kananthe Botanic Garden of Regional Plant Resources Center offers a variety of entertainment, fun and amusement to all classes of visitors both young and old, children or adult apart from its principal objective of plant b biodiversity conservation . This beautiful place gives opportunity to these young and eager couples for some personal time like boating together, a walk in the romancing weather can also be a good fun or having peaceful chit-chats far away from the hustle- bustle of daily routine life. The musical fountain in this garden makes the couple go crazy to pose and click for new photos and add more to their lovely memoirs. To add more to this list a walk through the cacti garden is mesmerizing. This greenery lawn attracts a numerous couples who are completely blown away by the natures sight and get totally lost in themselves thereby making their chit-chats more interesting. Jaydeb Batika: This garden is another romancing destination for the love-birds of all ages. It has large lawns to relax. The large park covered with natural forest and stone chairs offer marvelous spot to love-birds for picking, poking and beyond. The park has artificial streams to make the place romantic. It tries to make the place as romantic as Brindavan, the garden where the mythological character Krishna made romance. Couples always enjoy visiting this garden and enjoying their personal time. Since the park charges entry fees not many street chasers enter the park. Indira Gandhi Park: This park is a favorite spot for the couples. At any time of a day you can witness visitors and couples here in this Park. This park is popularly known as IG Park for the people here in Bhubaneswar. Mostly the evenings are quite crowded. Nandankanan Botanical Garden: This park is situated adjacent to the zoological park. Garden is a perfect place for plant enthusiasts and nature lovers and quixotic couples. This place has a sweet illusion of the rolling landscape being captured in the frame of a scroll and thus framing a romantic atmosphere and allowing the love-birds to have a great time. Big Bazaar: Besides the parks love-birds can also be seen in Big Bazaar forum mart here in Bhubaneswar. Inside big bazaar all around you can see couples sitting, gossiping and sharing romantic movements. There are also hungry couples eating as well as dating their crushes. This mall also has place to sit just outside the mall which has turned into a recurrent couples destination and it seems quite exotic that this love-pairs have acquired all public places leaving not a single place to mingle and thus irritating the older cohort. The pizza-hut situated just next to Big-Bazaar also marks the perfect dating destination for this love-pair. At any time of a day love-pairs are seen flirting and spending a good time. BMC Mall: Besides enjoying the latest released flicks at the INOX multiplex, it is also a great place for the couples. They can be seen in large numbers everywhere in this big mall having a great time. Apart from the above during any occasion you can also witness couples making gifts to their consort to make their relationships more strong; lovable and memorable. Khandagiri Hills: The most romantic venue of the capital city is Khandagiri hills. Every day couples in large numbers visit the place and have a great time. This place does not charge any entry fee for the visitors and probably a reason for its crowdedness. Here you can see couples having chit-chats, tickling, poking and fully engaged in themselves and totally lost in their world. One of the funny happenings here is that there are large bushes where you can see couples sitting inside such large bushes and having fun. Couples also sit inside the caves to spend their private time. At any time of the day you can see this place is crowded with couples and making their relationship a lovely one.


Entertainment plays a very important role in shaping the lifestyle of a person. Bhubaneswar, too, has caught up in the late night culture. Bhubaneswar offers an array of entertainment package and bustling nightlife to the people of the city. A tourist or a commoner in the city can easily enjoy the nightlife and become a part of the nocturnal entertainment.There are now many places where you can rock the night away. Below is a list of such places: Rain- The Club: The pub runs in a first floor building on Cuttack road. It has a pol and a beautiful dancing floor. It offers drinks and hookah with different aroma. The management engages glamorous girls to dance on the floor when the visitors are in lethargic moods. The pub runs a restaurant in the ground floor and offers delicacy to its clients. Groups occassionaly book the bar for private late night programmes. Baron Baroness: TheBaron Baronesspub at the Mayfair Lagoon Resortis fashioned like a Victorian-era pub - the door like the entrance to a medieval manor house opens onto a wooden dance floor and bar. Swords, shields, a life-size knight in armor, nearly two hundred year old cans and bottles of ale complete the royal grandeur. It is a very chic and sophisticated venue, ideal to savor some delicious cocktails and bar food.The live DJ and a wide selection of drinks and cocktails elevate one to a new height. Rob Roy: Rob Royis the exclusive Scottish bar with a disco at Swosti Premium. The bar serves some of the capitals finest cocktails and the live DJ makes the disco rock. Its brings hard liquor with unlimited complimentary snacks, it is perfect place to relax and carry into a true Scottish bar atmosphere from the simple tradition decor, authentic hospitality and Scottish style menu featuring, Scottish Bar offers a wild range of rare and world finest Cocktails like Panther Lady, Hang on the Beach, Blood and Sand, Tequila Sunrise, Mojito, Black Devil, even they provide most famous Mock-tails as well. Also you can get some special beer, hard liquor package and regular music including Scottish night on Thursday. The Scottish Bar makes you feel like comfort as you sip your drinks here. Landowne: The pub in Marrion is vibrant and alive into the late hours. Sparks: The pub in discotheque near Xavier Square offers exciting night Life. Rock On: It is a pub just opposite to XIMB is one of the best places to hangout with your friends and your close ones. Xstacy: Xstacy is one of the Premiere Nightclub in the city frequented by the elite and chic clientele. It is a very hot and happening club. This lounge has a great collection of most exquisite drinks and also serves great variety in Hookah. Desire-Pal Heights: A lounge bar is a pub where you can dance to the thundering music in the night and unwind the day's work pressure. Club-on-the-Roof, ThePresidency: Theother place to hang out is Club-on-the-Roof on hotel Presidency. Ithas a cocktail lounge and an exclusive Italian restaurant besides a funky dance floor to shake your legs. Playing a great mix of house and techno music - from the rock n roll of the 60s and 70s to the latest English chartbursters, the club operates on all days of the week . Weekends are usually dedicated to special events - celebrity DJs, Bollywood and Halloween nights and series of theme parties to add to the fun quotient and make it more hip and happening. Downing Street: The Cellar (Freak-out zone) is the name of this club atHotel Mayfair Lagoon. It is one of the most happening places of Bhubaneswar. It is broadly known as TDS among the nightlife community. DJ playing to the moods, the bowling Alley, a pool table and fascinating discotheque make a poignant ambiance to blot you in high spirit. For more details about the Nightlife joints-


Dhauli hills: It is located on the banks of the river Daya, 8 km south ofBhubaneswarinOdisha(India). It is a hill with vast open space adjoining it, and has major rock edicts of Asoka engraved on a mass of rock, by the side of the road leading to the summit of the hill. Dhauli hill is presumed to be the area where Kalinga War was fought. On the top of the hill, a dazzling white peace pagoda has been built byJapanBuddha Sangha and the Kalinga Nippon Buddha Sangha in the 1970s. The nearby region also houses Ashokan edicts and possibly a stupa at Bhaskareshwar temple at Tankapani road as argued by scholars. The Dhaulagiri hill also has an ancient Shiva temple which is the place for mass gathering during Sivaratri celebrations. Udayagiri and Khandagiri Hills: The twin hills of Udayagiri (Kumarigiri or Sunrise Hill') and Khandagiri (Kumaragiri or broken hills) facing each other across the road. The 135 feet high Udaygiri having 18 caves and 118 feet high Khandagiriwith 15 caves are reminiscent of influence of Buddhism and Jainism in Odisha that reveal the sculptural art of the 2nd century BC. The major attractions of these caves are their wonderful carvings adorned with stone sculptures and most of them are named according to the carvings on the walls. A flight of steps and an ancient ramp rising gradually from the foot of the hill paves the access towards these caves. Sikharchandi hill: Sikharchandi hill near Chandaka Industrial Estate is famous for its deity Sikharchandi, will be converted into a major tourist hub and recreation centre, is a very beautiful place and an ideal picnic spot here in the capital city. Deuliapatna Hill: Deuliapatna Hill is on the south of the city. It is a part of the Chandaka forest. Elephants use it for their transit. Bhalu Khol: The present house of the Governor called Raj Bhawan was a hillock before 1950. It was called Bhalu khol since many bears had made their abode in the natural caves. Presently a building, gardens and a mini zoo exists on the hill.


Approach:Bhubaneswar is well connected by air, rail and road to the rest of India. By plane: The modern Biju Pattnaik airport is being extended to receive wide bodied aircraft, and has limited international flights. A cargo berth is under construction. Air India, Jet and JetLite, Indigo, Vista-air operate flights from Bhubaneswar. By train Bhubaneswar is the divisional headquarters of East Coast railways. It is situated on the main line from Kolkata to Chennai and is well connected by direct train service to most major Indian cities. For timings and other details check the Indian Railways website. By road: Bhubaneswar is situated on the National Highway no.5 that runs between Kolkata and Chennai. It is 480km from Kolkata, 445km from Visakhapatnam, 1,225km from Chennai, 32km from Cuttack, 130km from Chilika Lake (Barkul), 184km from Gopalpur-on-sea, 64km from Konark, 62km from Puri. The main bus stand of Bhubaneswar is at Baramunda. Its on the Kolkata Chennai National Highway. Buses fly from here to all the towns and small trading centers in Odisha. There are also buses going to major cities in bordering states like Kolkata, Hyderabad, and Raipur. Bhubaneswar, Puri and Konark form the golden triangle for travelling in this part of India. Travel within city: Bhubaneswar city is well connected with town buses. One can also travel by the three wheelers called autos. Autos: The auto rickshaws move on the main routes as passenger carriers. You can catch one with other passengers. You have to pay as per the distance travelled. For the budget traveler, Bhubaneswar offers shared autos, where you can make journeys even for Rs. 5. One can also hire one as a chattered carrier and travel to the destination. The meters on these rickshaws do not work; hence you have to bargain the price before you start your journey. Auto-rickshaw drivers in Bhubaneswar are courteous and helpful. Still, negotiate a rate with the driver beforehand, and make sure that the driver understood your destination. There are prepaid autos available at railway station. For the security of women the police recommend and authorize Pink autos. Travelling by cycle: Bhubaneswar has many cycling commuters. But the city does not have any special roads for cyclists. Cycling will be like going up and down on small hills. By Bus: Town buses ply throughout the city. These are government-run and extremely cheap. You can buy bus tickets on route. Extreme caution is advised in using these buses as typical of any other Indian city. Government has launched the DTS city bus service which is Dream Team Sahara city bus service which operates around the city with 15 mins difference. You can ask to any locals of the city for guidance. The few routes along with their Route No are 207, 306, 405, 504, 603, 333, 801, 414, 171, 324, 315, 225, and 432. By Taxi: There are several taxi companies operating in Bhubaneswar. You can hire by hours, kilometers, and day or by destination. There is a minimum fare for first few kilometers and for every subsequent kilometer they charge in increments. Cabs are the best choice in case you want to tour the city all day or visit nearby places. Also, generally there is a special price ('tour package') if you can bargain for it. Foreign nationals are advised to carry local current.


Bhubaneswar is a major educational hub of Eastern India. It has three Government Universities and three private Universities. It has centers of educational excellence like IIT for engineering and AIIMS for health sciences. It has many centers for fundamental research like Institute of Physics, Institute of Life sciences. It has applied research centers like Institute for Minerals and Materials Technology. It has four Medical colleges, dozens of Engineering and Management colleges besides numerous under graduate colleges. It also has prestigious colleges on music and arts. In the 60s Bhubaneswar had a popular and respected university called Utkal University. Most of the good students of the state pursuing general education were joining the university. Similarly it had a prestigious under graduate college called BJB College. Now also the college attracts the creamy layer of students after secondary schooling. Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) have its main campus in Bhubaneswar. It has education and research facilities in the fields of agriculture and forestry. Government established a university to promote culture and aesthetics with the name Utkal University of culture. At Bhubaneswar the university has a campus teaching different aspects of culture. There is a prestigious college for performing arts styled as Utkal Sangeet Mahavidyalaya which has courses on instrumental music, vocal music and drama. There is respected a college for art and crafts having the name B.K. college of Arts. Bhubaneswar has an IIT. It also has a NISER. These are prestigious institutions of India who attract students from all over the country. Bhubaneswar has a university for womens education with the name Rama Devi Autonomous College. From early 90s private educational institutions had a boom in Bhubaneswar. Presently there are three deemed universities viz. are KIIT University,Siksha O Anusandhan University and Centurion University. These universities are specializing on engineering education. Bhubaneswar has All India Institute of Medical Sciences which provides excellent medical education and health care in its hospital. Besides, there are three more medical colleges i.e. Kalinga Institute of Medical Sciences,Hi-Tech Medical College Hospital,Institute of Medical Sciences and Sum Hospital. There is a proposal to start post graduate classes on health sciences at Capital hospital. Bhubaneswar has around thirty engineering colleges in and around the city. Students from all over India come to Bhubaneswar for engineering education in these private colleges. Hence all around the city there are hostels for the students. Similarly Bhubaneswar has dozens of Business schools in and around the city. Xavier Institute of Business Management (XIMB) still tops the list in management education. The city has many graduate colleges in the Govt. and private sector. The city also has good law colleges managed by the Govt. and private universities. The detail list of educational institutions is available in the DIRECTORY LINK.

Traditional Ceremonies

Being a city of two and half milleniums, the city celebrates many traditional ceremonies in traditional colour and practice. The old city and also the residents of new colonies organise and enjoy the old festivals. It is said thatOdisha has thirteen important festivals in twelve months. Rukuna Rath Yatra: Rukuna Rath Yatra of Lord Lingaraj, a unique festival of its style is celebrated annually in Bhubaneswar. The Chariot Festival of Lord Lingaraja also called Rukuna Rath Yatra is celebrated on the day of Ashokastami every year. The festival takes place on the 8th day of the wane in the month of Chaitra (March-April) the day preceding Ramanavami. On the day of Ashokastami three deities i.e. Chandrasekhar (the representative of lord Lingaraja), Rukmini Basudeva are ceremonially brought to ascend chariot. Then the four-wheeled 35-ft wooden chariot is drawn to Rameswar temple. The deities and the chariot remain there for four days called Gundicha Ghar. During their stay at Gundicha Ghar; in a striking resemblance to the chariot festival at Puri; Parvati comes on the 3rd day to express her indignation, as she was not made to accompany her consort Lord Lingaraja in the Chariot. She then breaks a portion of the Chariot and returns back to the temple. On the fifth day, the three deities start the return journey called Bahuda. While returning the Chariot is drawn to the temple from the backside without having any turn (The Chariot does not take a turn. The altar of the deities is only changed). Hence, the saying in Odia is Rukuna Ratha Analeuta i.e. the chariot of Rukuna never turns back. There is a Puranical historicity about the origin of the festival. It is said that Lord Ramachandra, inspite of all efforts couldn't kill Ravana as Goddess Kali was protecting him. Then he was advised by Bibhisana, the younger brother of Ravana to propitiate the Mother Goddess and to win her support. Then Ramachandra prayed the Goddess for long seven days with elaborate rituals and could please her to withdraw support from Ravana. When her favor was withdrawn it became easy for Ramachandra to kill Ravana through 'Brahmastra', the unfailing weapon. To celebrate this victory he took out Shiva and Durga, in a chariot, out of pleasure and satisfaction. From that day the festival is being observed. As the 'shoka' or sorrow of Ramachandra was removed by the death of Ravana, this day is called Ashoka (devoid of shoka) Astami or Ashokastami. Some religious texts are of the opinion that Parvati could get Shiva as her husband on this day and she became 'Ashoka' (removed off sorrowfulness) and therefore, the festival has been named as Ashokastami. The celebration of Ashokastami starts with the Mangal Arati early in the morning followed by Sahana Mela and Mahasnana later in the day. Following the rituals, Pahandi is done, during which idols of the deities are taken to the decorated chariot. As per the decided time thousands of people pull the Chariot. Traders put up stalls on the route to sell food, decorated items, appliances, small games for children etc. Jagara / Maha Siva Ratri: Jagara or Siva Ratri or the night of Shiva is a festival held in honor of the God. The devotees observe strict religious discipline by abstaining from food for the day and keep themselves awake the whole night. Shiva linga is worshipped throughout the night with chanting of the Panchakshyara mantra Om! Namah Shivaya!' The next morning, they take their bath and after worshipping Shiva again break their fasts. Many are the stories narrated in the Purana about the efficacy of the observance of this festival. The devout usually break their fast after theMahadipa(a huge lamp) is lit on the spire of the temple. Maha Shiva Ratriis aHindufestival celebrated every year in reverence of LordShiva. Sivaratri literally meansthe great night of Shivaorthe night of Shiva. This festival is observed with great sanctity by the people on the fourteenth day of the dark fortnight of Phalguna (February-March) every year .In Shiva Purana, Shiva says to her consort Parvati that no festival other than Shiva Ratri observed by his devotees gives Him so much pleasure and satisfaction.The festival is principally celebrated by offerings of BelorBilva/Vilvamleaves toLord Shiva, all-day fasting and an all-night-long vigil. All through the day the devotees, chant the sacred Panchakshara mantra dedicated to Lord Om Namah Shivaya. In accordance with scriptural and discipleship traditions, penances are performed in order to gain boons in the practice ofYogaand meditation, in order to reach life'ssummum bonumsteadily and swiftly throughout the night and keep a vigil to witness the sacred lamp on the temple top. The Purana contain many stories and legends describing the origin of this festival. According to a legend it signifies the day on which Lord Shiva swallowed the deadly poison that emanated from the churning of the ocean of milkwhich would have killed the Gods. Because of it, his throat turned blue, and he was given the name Nilkantha, the blue-throated one. Not knowing that it would not cause any harm to Him, all the Gods and Goddesses kept vigil throughout the night praying for His life. The prayer that was offered to Him that night is repeated since then on Sivaratri. Yet another story tells that at the time of the deluge [Pralaya] the whole world was covered with utter darkness and the Divine Mother restored light to the world by offering prayer to Shiva. According to another legend that finds mention in the Purana, Brahma and Vishnu, the two supreme Gods had a difference as regards their supremacy. The matter was referred to Shiva for a verdict. Shiva then asked both the Gods to gauge the depth and measure the height of his Linga. Vishnu took the form of a boar and dived below to ascertain the depth and Brahma on his swan vehicle scaled high to ascertain the height. High above in the void Brahma came across a petal of Ketaki flower drifting downwards. As it was falling from the top of the Linga, He asked the petal about the further distance upward. The petal couldn't answer since how many ages that it was drifting downwards. Brahma refrained from going up and went to the nether world to meet Vishnu. Showing the petal He claimed to have ascertained the height of the Linga. At this false pretext, the petal objected. As Brahma was exposed because of the disclosure of the petal, He, in wrath, cursed - From this day you would be unworthy for the worship of Shiv. Vishnu, being pleased with her truthfulness blessed saying, 'On Shiva chaturdashi (the 14th day of the dark half of Phalgun month) you will be worthy for Shiva's worship. Therefore only on this day Ketaki flower has the right to be offered to the deity. On no other occasion the flower is ever used for worship. Almost all the important shrines for Shiva bear festive look during the festival. Thousands of people flock to the temples from the early rooming to offer worship to the deity. In some places big fairs are arranged where large varieties of goods and implements are bought and sold. Shiva being an ascetic god, Maha Sivaratri is very popular with ascetics. Kusuma, a drink made with cannabis, banana, coconut, and milk, is essentially drunk by the devout. This is so because cannabis is said to have been very dear to Shiva. Chandan Yatra: The Chandan Yatra is held for twenty-one days from the Akshaya Trutiya, i.e. the third day of the bright fortnight in the month of Vaisakha. Every day the proxy image of Lord is taken to the Bindusagara, where the Lord enjoys the boating festival. The float here is moved to the Mandapa- an inlet-like structure which is more an elevated platform; in the middle of the tank. Similar to human beings, the Hindu deities, who are modeled on human behavior pattern only, are also treated the same way. During the Chandan Yatra, they are taken out of the temples in procession for a holy patrol in water on floats or boats. It is because of the belief that all the ceremonies of the land must be culminated with an aquatic sojourn for a deity. The floats or boats of the deities are very richly decorated and are called 'Chapa'. In most of the Vishnu and Shiva temples, the 'float' festival marks the conclusion of the prime annual festival and is therefore celebrated with a great pomp and show. Devotees take decorated representative deities of Harihara in the evening in decorated palanquins. They are accompanied by priests, musicians and dancers. A number of devotees wait for the arrival of the Lord. Upon arrival, the idols are placed on the decorated boats. These boats are rowed then for a long time by the servitors. The boats are generally red and white in color and are so designed that they resemble huge swans floating on water. The deities continue taking boat rides till early morning and then retire to their respective shrines. This procedure is followed during the entire festival. Bhaunri is the last day of the festival. Special arrangements are made for this. Parasurashtami: Parasurashtami is the major festival celebrated in the temple on the 8th day of Ashadha (June July) when the festival image of Lingaraj is taken to the Parasurameswar temple and feasted. Lord Lingaraj hands over the power to rule to Parsuram and goes for a long sleep of around 4 months. Khandagiri Mela / Magha Mela Fair: Khandagiri Mela alias Khandagiri Kumbha Mela is a colorful one week long fair held at Khandagiri, on the lunar month of Magha (January and February). This cultural fair displays various types of local hand made products for sale. Large number of vendors from different parts gathers at Khandagiri mela here to sell their products. The most notable thing about Khandagiri mela is that it is observed in the nighttime. About 450 makeshift stalls, each measuring 8x8 sq ft, are erected on both sides of the road connecting NH-5 to the Khandagiri hills. The Mela coincides with Magha Saptami. Leaders and followers of various Hindu religious sects assemble here in large numbers from far and wide every year during the mela. The saints usually come to Chandrabhaga beach at Konark for a holy dip. Later they proceed for Khandagiri to participate in the rituals of holy fire (yajna) being conducted at the hill for the past 44 years. The mela is a much-awaited affair for the women who prefer to buy a wide variety of household goods from the fair; artisans and crafts persons coming here from different parts of Odisha. The fair is a show case of other contemporary Odisha cultural shows called Jatra or open dais drama. Several groups perform their shows in the night. The shows are known for their melodrama and group dances. A city-based Kalu Nanda Memorial Foundation, in association with different departments of the State government and Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre, Kolkata, is hosting a week-long annual festival of dance and music here that has added a contemporary flavor to the ancient fair. Habisa at Bindusagar: In the month of Kartika falling around October-November, widows and elderly ladies perform a month of penance. Old widows from various parts of Odisha come to Bhubaneswar and stay together in Dharmasalas or pilgrim houses to conduct the month long rituals. Early morning the vow keepers gather around Tulasi dais for Chaura Puja. They draw various symbols using organic color powder. In the afternoon a Brahmin priest recites the ancient scripture or Purana of the month. The celebration ends with boat festival. Kartika Purnima: Kartika purnima is celebrated in Bhubaneswar by the local community. It is an Odia festival conducted to remember the glorious past of the Odisha marine traders. Odisha had a thousand years of tradition of trading in south East Asia. The traditional trading was stopped by the colonial British rulers to promote their marine traders. The festival is being organized by the Department. It would feature solo, duet and group presentations.