Lingaraj Temple is the largest temple situated in Bhubaneswar. The temple holds significance due to a number of reasons. It is one of the oldest temples of the city. It was built around the 10th or 11th century. The temple acts as a major landmark of the Bhubaneswar city.
The temple is dedicated to Harihara, which is a form of Lord Shiva. The architecture of this beautiful temple is no less than a masterpiece. It is one of the finest Hindu temples in India. The temple has a height of about 55 m and every inch of the Lingaraj temple features flawless carvings done in an elaborate manner.
The temple follows a few strict traditions. Non-Hindus are not allowed to enter the temple. But an elevated platform has been constructed near one of the boundary walls to allow non-Hindus to view the temple from there. The temple attracts pilgrims and tourists throughout the year.
Bindu Sagar Lake is situated to the north of the Lingaraj Temple. It is amongst the most visited tourist spots of Bhubaneswar. The lake is also used as a picnic spot by visitors due to the calm and the natural beauty of the place. The Bindu Sagar Lake is a large one; it is 1300 ft long and 700 ft wide.
The Bindu Sagar Lake also holds significance among the Hindu pilgrims. Every year, the idol of Lingaraj, the reigning deity of the Lingaraj Temple, is brought to this lake and the idol is given a bath following a ritual.
The pilgrims believe that due to this effect if anyone takes a bath in the water of this lake, he or she will get cured from all illness. It is also believed that all sins get washed away upon bathing in this lake. This has increased the popularity of the lake.
Udaygiri and Khandagiri Caves are a major attraction of Bhubaneswar. Lying at a distance of 8 km from Bhubaneswar, these twin hills are a place of complete calm and serenity. Udaygiri and Khandagiri were once the sites of a famous Jain monastery.
The monastery used to function from chambers carved out of rocks on the hilltops. These chambers today can be seen as the caves of the place. The monastery was an ancient one and was constructed around 2nd century BC.
There are carvings in a few of the caves. There exists a double-storied cave that is called the Queen’s Cave or the Rani Gumpha. This particular cave is decorated with a lot of carvings. Another large cave is present there and is known as the Elephant cave or the Hathi Gumpha. There are 18 caves in Udaigiri and 15 caves in Khandagiri.
Mukteswar Temple is a 10th century temple that stands with pride in the capital city of Bhubaneswar. It is an important landmark of the city. The temple has gained popularity due to several reasons. The most common cause of Muktesvara’s popularity is due to the outstanding sculptures and amazing architectural styles that envelop the temple from all sides.
The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, one of the most revered Gods of the Hindus. The meaning of Muktesvara is “Lord of Freedom.” The temple premises are used every year to host a three day dance festival. This dance program is organized by the Department of Tourism of Odisha in order to promote tourism in the state. The traditional dance of Odisha, Odissi dance is featured in this program.
The temple holds attraction for both, tourists as well as Hindu pilgrims.
Old Town of Bhubaneswar holds major significance among the Hindu pilgrims. The place is considered to be important as most of the famous and well-known temples of Bhubaneswar are situated in this area.
The temples present in this part of the city belong to the ancient group and were among the initial temples that were constructed in Bhubaneswar. The evidence of this fact has been found as all the temples belonging to this area were constructed between the time-period of 11th to 13th century.
The place houses around 400 temples. One can find temples of various sizes here. As Lord Shiva is the main deity worshipped in most of the temples of Bhubaneswar, the influence of the deity is found in the Old Town area also.
The ISKCON Temple is situated in the middle of the capital city of Bhubaneswar. The ISKCON temple of Bhubaneswar is also a part of the worldwide ISKCON temples. In Bhubaneswar the temple has deities of Krishna, Balaram, Jagannath, Gaura Nitai and Subhadra.
The ISKCON movement has a widespread presence in the capital city. It has two centres. One of the centres of the ISKCON movement lies in the populated Swarg Dwara area of the city and the other centre is situated in the outskirts of the city.
Devotees visit the ISKCON temple in large numbers on a regular basis. During festivals of Krishna or Jagannath, the temple becomes crowded with pilgrims. Tourists visiting Bhubaneswar make it a point to pay a visit to the ISCKON Temple. Devotees sing Bhajans and offer Pooja daily in the temple. The maintenance of the temple is done in an exceptional manner by the temple management.
The Orissa State Museum is the result of the efforts of great historians, William Jones, Prof. Ghanshyam Dash and Prof. N.C. Banerjee of Ravenshaw College. They started the process of collecting archaeological treasures in 1932.
By 1938 the Govt. of Odisha took the museum under its own wings. At that time it was named as the Provincial Museum. Since then the museum has only gained in popularity and progressed in its collections.
The museum has a lovely collection of rare sculptures, numismatics, terracotta items and plates in metals like copper, several examples of fine art, and a lot of other things.
There is also a nice collection of old and rare coins inside the museum. In 1947-48 the museum was shifted from its earlier location in Cuttack to its present location in Bhubaneswar. The museum started operation from the present location in 1960 and was renamed as Orissa State Museum.
Biju Patnaik Park in Bhubaneswar is a wonderful park. The park is situated at Berhampur, just next to the United Nations office. The British government’s DFID office lies adjacent to the park. The park was created to show respect to the chief minister of Odisha. So, it has been named after the chief minister of the state.
The beauty of the park can allure anyone to spend a few relaxing moments in the vicinity of the plants and flowers. The park enjoys a wide area of about seven acres. Among the main attractions of the park are the floating mountain and a fountain that dances in tune to music.
Boating facilities are available in the park and tourists can enjoy boat rides in the beautiful atmosphere. The illuminated park is visited by tourists during day and at night too.
The Museum of Tribal Art & Artifacts is also known as the Tribal Museum. The museum is situated at a distance of about 3 km from the railway station of Bhubaneswar. The museum provides detailed information about the life and culture of the tribal people of Odisha.
The museum is sometimes referred to as the Tribal Research Institute Museum. The research center at the museum gathers information about the way of life of the tribal people and then displays their findings at the museum to create awareness about this tribe. There are more than 60 groups of tribal people in Odisha.
The museum also preserves a wide collection of wooden sculptures, metal items, textiles, jewelry, etc. There is also a library and a small zoo inside the museum. The museum remains open from 10.00 am to 5.00 pm. Photography is not allowed inside the museum.
Chandaka Wildlife Sanctuary is situated to the Northwest side of the capital city of Bhubaneswar. The sanctuary covers an area of 175.79 sq km. The sanctuary was originally designed as an elephant reserve in December 1982.
The sanctuary presents a rich flora and fauna. Various rare species of trees are found inside the green sanctuary. In case of wild animals, the most popular ones are the elephants. But there are other species too like the leopard, barking deer, wild pig, Pangolin, Indian wolf, and many more.
Several kinds of birds are also found inside the sanctuary. Apart from these, a wide number of reptile species are found in this sanctuary. Visitors can watch the animals and birds from the watch towers situated for observing wildlife. There are two reservoirs, Deras Dam and Jhumka Dam near the sanctuary. There are beautiful cottages near the dams to stay and enjoy the atmosphere of the place.
Pipli is a small hamlet near Bhubaneswar. The village is famous primarily for its handicrafts. Pipli produces bright and beautiful applique crafts on various items like handbags, umbrellas, shoes, clothes, wall hangings, pillow covers, cushion covers, bedcovers, etc.
But the one thing that catches everyone’s fancy as soon as they enter Pipli is the bright canopies. This form of handicraft has been a preferred occupation of the villagers for long. Even the kings of Odisha used to appreciate and encourage this beautiful art form.
The craftsman selects beautiful patterns depending on flowers, birds, animals, trees, sun, etc. and then combines textiles to produce an exceptional design. The designs are then further highlighted by adding small mirrors to it.
The village is often visited by the tourists who want to carry home souvenirs and gifts for near and dear ones or keep a coloured item as a token of the days spent in Bhubaneswar.
Dhauli Giri is a significant place of interest for tourists. The specialty of the place is that it contains a rock edict that was constructed by Emperor Ashoka from the Maurya Dynasty. This edict was installed around 3rd century. The surprising element is that the rock edict remains the same till date.
Dhauli Giri is an excellent destination for exploration by the lovers of history. The place offers a serene atmosphere and a beautiful view. A visitor can easily spend hours sitting and relaxing in this place. It is presumed that the Dhauli Hill was the place where the Kalinga war was fought. Symbols of Buddhism are found in the place.
The top of the hill houses a gleaming white peace pagoda. This pagoda is a recent addition to the hill top and was built in 1970. The pagoda has added beauty and charm to the place.
Deras Dam is located on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar and in the vicinity of Chandaka National Park. The dam is the third largest one in Odisha. The beauty of the place is simply mesmerizing. The serene atmosphere charms tourists to spend some relaxing moments while enjoying the natural beauty of the place.
The Dam consists of a reservoir filled with rain water. The cottage near the dam is located on a hilltop and offers amazing view of the area surrounding the cottage. The hilltop cottage comprises of 3 furnished huts.
There is a facility of guided safari for around 40 km near the dam. Tourists can plan a picnic at the dam and then decide to stay for the night at the cottage. The dam is ideal to be visited throughout the year.
Buddha Jayanti Park is dedicated to the teaching of Buddha. Odisha was introduced in a new way in Odisha after the Kalinga war. People were encouraged to think of the betterment of fellow human beings, as was taught by Gautam Buddha.
To maintain the good work and teachings of Buddha, the creation of the Buddha Jayanti Park was sought by the Bhubaneswar Development Authority. Situated at Chandra Sekhar Pur and covering a huge area of 44 acres, the park is a majestic sight to behold.
The park has been designed to be at an elevated platform. The Chandaka natural forest shares a boundary with the beautiful park. Tourists can enjoy a quiet walk or can sit back and relax in the shade of trees. The natural setting of the park and the chirping of birds can transform anyone into a world of complete peace and tranquility.
I.G. Park or Indira Gandhi Park is an exceptional piece of beauty. Spread over a huge area of 10.60 acres of land, the park occupies a place of pride in the tourist spots of Bhubaneswar. The park is located at the AG Square of Bhubaneswar.
The Odisha Secretariat and the State assembly form the backdrop of the park. Previously, the park was the ground on which parades took place in Bhubaneswar. After the park was planned and designed, it was dedicated to the public.
The place has a historic significance. It is the very place where the late Prime Minister Smt. Indira Gandhi had given her public speech on 30th October, 1984. It turned out to be her last public speech. There is a statue of Indira Gandhi inside the park. Tourists can enjoy the beauty of the place throughout the year.