Konark Sun Temple - Captivating and artistic, the Konark Sun Temple figures on the list of tourists to Orissa. Take a trip.

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Konark Sun TempleLocation - Orissa

Best Time To Visit - November to February

India is a religious country, a statement though cliched but indeed true. People from all across the globe visit India to have a look at its various religious spots , in order to get the real feel of India.

The Sun Temple at Konark is one of the most stupendous monuments of religious architecture in the world. One can find a perfect religious and spiritual satisfaction after visiting the Sun Temple at Konark. It is located 35 km north of Puri and is considered to be one of the finest buildings of the world. It was built by King Narshimhadeva in the thirteenth century. The entire temple has been designed in the shape of a colossal chariot, with seven horses and 12 wheels, carrying the Sun God, Surya across the heavens.

Temple in the Making
Golden Pagoda, Konaditya and Arkakshetra are the other two names of the Sun Temple at Konark. According to a legend, the temple was constructed by Samba, the son of Lord Krishna. It is said that Samba was afflicted by leprosy, brought about by his father's cure on him. After 12 years of penance and hardships, he got finally cured by Lord Surya, the Sun God. Therefore the temple was built in the honour of Sun God. It is also assumed that the temple couldn't be shaped in the manner as was decided, mainly because the foundation was not strong to bear the heavy weight of the dome.

Art & Architecture
Konark Sun Temple is one of the grandest temples of India. The temple is a superb example of architectural grandeur. Apart from the architectural highlights, the temple is also known for the intricacy and profusion of sculptural works. It was rightly said by the poet Rabindranath Tagore that " Here the language of stone surpasses the language of man".

The carvings on the walls of the temples reminds a visitor of the erotic art forms of Khajuraho. The 24 wheels of the temple are each 10 feet in diameter. The wheels are beautifully carved and draws umpteen tourists towards them. On the walls and the roofs, the images of animals, foliage, men, warriors on horses and other interesting patterns are found. There are three images of the Sun God, positioned in a way so as to catch the rays of the sun at dawn, noon and sunset. The overall archotecture of the temple can be said to have based on the Central Indian style. However it does not have tall shikharas of the later temples of Orissa and Central India.

Apart from the temple there lies a small museum, that informs the tourists of the past golden era that once existed and now lies in ruins.

Feather to the Cap
The Konark Sun Temple has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 1984. The temple enjoys immense importance of the tourists. If in Orissa, visiting the Konark Sun Temple is a must. Konark is also home to an annual dance festival, held every December, devoted to classical Indian dance forms, including the traditional classical dance of Orissa, Odissi.

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