About Puri Jagannath Temple

The Jagannath shrine of lord Jagannath is one of the four holy dhams attracting pilgrims who visit to spend 3days and 3 nights here which is considered particularly auspicious. The present structure was founded in the 12th century by the Ganga King Chodagangadev and completed by another King of the same dynasty. The temple stands on an 8m elevated mound known as Nila Parvata and has four gateways. The elegant stone column (8m) at the gate topped with the figure of Aruna, Charioteer of Surya, was brought here from the sun temple of konark in the 18th century, There is a strong wall around the inner temple known as the Meghanad Prachir which has four gates. Guarded by two massive stone lions, The entrance is known as Simha Dwar (the lion gate) and is used during the Rath horseback, tigers entrances in South, West and North respectively. The original temple built in Kalinga style, consisted of a deul or the sanctuary (also called bimana) in which deities of Lord Jagannath , his brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra were installed and the Jagamohana or the porch (also called mukhashala). The other two, the natamandir 9dance hall) and bhoga mandir (hall of offering ) were added in the 15th and the 16th century. These four have another walll surrounding them, known as the Kurma Prachir (Tortoise Wall) pierced by six gates. Within is another concentric wall inside which stands the tallest surviving shrine in Orissa,65 m high, topped by a long scarlet pennant and the eight spooked wheel (chakra) of Vishnu. On the higher ground in the enclosure are many deities and placesw connected with the lord, total of about 30 small shrines. Pilgrims are supposed to visit at least three of these smaller shrines before entering the main temple. To the left of the main entrance is the temple kitchen where 56 varieties of food is prepared daily to offer to deities 5 times in a day as bhogas and then distributed as Bazaar to thousands. At festival times as many as 2,50,000 can be served daily. The pilgrims go for a holy dip in the four sacred tanks of which Narendra Tank is particularly revered since the deities are symbolically bathed there during Snana Yatra.

About Jagannath Rath Yatra 2014 (Car Festival)

Puri Jagannath Rath Yatra 2014 Date is 29 June 2014

The Jagannath Rath Yatra actually takes place during the full moon of the following month, Asadha (June/July) in a spectacular riot of color and noise. Designed like a temple sanctuary the immense chariots are draped with brightly colored clothes. Lord Jagannath’s Chariots, 13m, is the tallest and has 16 wheels each 2m in diameter. Subhadra has a white face and rides in a chariot with 14 wheels and 4 horses. Loud gongs announce the boarding of the deities onto the chariots with the arrival of the Raja of Puri accompanied by bejeweled elephants. The Raja sweeps the chariot with a golden bloom, fulfilling his role as the sevaka (servant) of the gods, a gesture symbolizing humility and equality with azll castes. The procession is led by Balabhadra’s chariot, followed by Subhadra’s with the Lord Jagannath’s bringing up the rear, dragged by about 4000 honoured devotees to their garden house, the Gundicha Ghar. On the way deities are treated to special Cake, Podapitha offered at the shrine of goddess Aradhamsini (aubnt or masi) of Lord Jagannath. Once the chariots reach Gundicha Ghar or Mandir, the deities give darshan to devotes every day. After a rest of 8 days, they return to Jagannath Temple with a similar procession. The festivities attract about 5-6 lakhs devotees to puri each year. After the festival, the raths are broken and bits are used for firewood in the kitchens or sold to pilgrims as relics. New chariots are constructed each year to rigid specifications of make laid down in temple’s ancient manuals. The assembled multitudes from all over India, the cacophony of music and percussion and the decorated chariots provide an unforgettable experience. Stories from ancient times, about some fanatics throwing themselves under the attainment of eternal bliss, abound.

Jagannath Rath Yatra 2014 Tour Package

Day 1 : Arrive -Bhubneswar - Konark - Puri
In the morning arrive at Bhubneswar and leave for Konark visiting the world famous, Sun Temple. Also known as Black Pagoda, standing in solitary splendor amongst the sand dunes, the temple is most striking example of Kalinga architecture. At this spot on our planet the solar eclipse took place in 1980, to the utter amazement of modern astronomers and scientists. Proceed to Puri , one of the four most holy Hindu Dhams(abodes). A place with many names over the centuries – Nilanchal, Nilgiri, Niladari, Jagannath Dham, Jagannath Puri, etc – Puri is dominated by two great forces, one created by God and the other by man. On arrival at Puri, check in at hotel.Overnight at hotel.

Day 2 : Puri
In the morning after breakfast y sightseeing tour of Puri, where the main attractions are the temples and the Mathas (monasteries); visit Jagannath Temple, Loknath temple, Indradyumna Tank, Garden House and beach. Overnight at hotel.

Day 3 : Puri
full day at leisure, Overnight at hotel.

Day 4 : Puri - Departure
In the morning after breakfast check out from the hotel, and transfer to railway station to catch the train for onward destination.

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