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Things to do -  general

Puri is a city and a municipality in the state of Odisha in eastern India. It is the district headquarters of Puri district and is situated on the Bay of Bengal, 60 kilometres (37 mi) south of the state capital of Bhubaneswar. It is also known as Sri Jagannath Dham after the 12th-century Jagannath Temple located in the city. It is one of the original Char Dham pilgrimage sites for Hindus.

Puri is known by several names since the ancient times, and was locally known as "Shrikhetra" and Lord Jagannath temple is known as "Badadeula". Puri and the Jagannath Temple were invaded 18 times by Hindu and Muslim rulers, from the 4th century AD till the early 19th century with the objective of looting the treasures of the temple. Odisha, including Puri and its temple, were under the British Raj from 1803 till India attained independence in August 1947. Even though princely states do not exist in India today the heirs of the Gajapati Dynasty of Khurda still perform the ritual duties of the temple. The temple town has many Hindu religious maths or monasteries.

The economy of Puri town is dependent on the religious importance of the Jagannath Temple to the extent of nearly 80 percent. The 24 festivals, including 13 major ones, held every year in the temple complex contribute to the economy; Ratha Yatra and its related festivals are the most important which are attended by millions of people every year. Sand art and applique art are some of the important crafts of the city.

Puri has been chosen as one of the heritage cities for Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) scheme of Government of India.

Puri, located on the east coast of India on the Bay of Bengal, is in the centre of the Puri district. It is delimited by the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, the Mauza Sipaurubilla on the west, Mauza Gopinathpur in the north and Mauza Balukhand in the east. It is within the 67 kilometres (42 mi) coastal stretch of sandy beaches that extends between Chilika Lake and the south of Puri city. However, the administrative jurisdiction of the Puri Municipality extends over an area of 16.3268 square kilometres (6.3038 sq mi) spread over 30 wards, which includes a shore line of 5 kilometres (3.1 mi). Puri is in the coastal delta of the Mahanadi River on the shores of the Bay of Bengal. In the ancient days it was near to Sisupalgarh (also known as "Ashokan Tosali"). Then the land was drained by a tributary of the Bhargavi River, a branch of the Mahanadi River. This branch underwent a meandering course creating many arteries altering the estuary, and formed many sand hills. These sand hills could be cut through by the streams.


According to the Köppen–Geiger climate classification system the climate of Puri is classified as Aw (Tropical savanna climate). The city has moderate and tropical climate. Humidity is fairly high throughout the year. The temperature during summer touches a maximum of 36 °C (97 °F) and during winter it is 17 °C (63 °F). The average annual rainfall is 1,337 millimetres (52.6 in) and the average annual temperature is 26.9 °C (80.4 °F). The weather data is given in the following table.


Puri, the holy land of Lord Jagannatha, also known by the popular vernacular name Shrikhetra, has many ancient names in the Hindu scriptures such as the Rigveda, Matsya purana, Brahma Purana, Narada Purana, Padma Purana, Skanda Purana, Kapila Purana and Niladrimahodaya. In the Rigveda, in particular, it is mentioned as a place called Purushamandama-grama meaning the place where the Creator deity of the world – Supreme Divinity deified on an altar or mandapa was venerated near the coast and prayers offered with Vedic hymns. Over time the name got changed to Purushottama Puri and further shortened to Puri, and the Purusha came to be known as Jagannatha. Sages like Bhrigu, Atri and Markandeya had their hermitage close to this place.Its name is mentioned, conforming to the deity worshipped, as Srikshetra, Purusottama Dhāma, Purusottama Kshetra, Purusottama Puri and Jagannath Puri. Puri, however, is the popular usage. It is also known by the geographical features of its location as Shankhakshetra (the layout of the town is in the form of a conch shell),Neelāchala ("Blue mountain" a terminology used to name a very large sand lagoon over which the temple was built but this name is not in vogue), Neelāchalakshetra, Neelādri.In Sanskrit, the word "Puri" means town or city,and is cognate with polis in Greek.

Another ancient name is Charita as identified by General Alexander Cunningham of the Archaeological Survey of India, which was later spelled as Che-li-ta-lo by Chinese traveller Hiuen Tsang. When the present temple was built by the Eastern Ganga king Anantavarman Chodaganga in the 11th and 12th centuries AD, it was called Purushottamkshetra. However, the Moghuls, the Marathas and early British rulers called it Purushottama-chhatar or just Chhatar. In Moghul ruler Akbar's Ain-i-Akbari and subsequent Muslim historical records it was known as Purushottama. In the Sanskrit drama Anargha Raghava Nataka as well, authored by Murari Mishra, a playwright, in the 8th century AD, it is referred to as Purushottama.It was only after the 12th century AD that Puri came to be known by the shortened form of Jagannatha Puri, named after the deity or in a short form as Puri.It is the only shrine in India, where Radha, along with Lakshmi, Saraswati, Durga, Bhudevi, Sati, Parvati, and Shakti, abodes with Krishna, who is also known by the name Jagannath.

According to the chronicle Madala Panji, in 318 AD, the priests and servitors of the temple spirited away the idols to escape the wrath of the Rashtrakuta king Rakatavahu.In the temple's historical records it finds mention in the Brahma Purana and Skanda Purana stating that the temple was built by the king Indradyumna, Ujjayani. S. N. Sadasivan, a historian, in his book A Social History of India quotes William Joseph Wilkins, author of the book Hindu Mythology, Vedic and Purānic as stating that in Puri, Buddhism was once a well established practice but later Buddhists were persecuted and Brahmanism became the order of the religious practice in the town; the Buddha deity is now worshipped by the Hindus as Jagannatha. It is also said by Wilkinson that some relics of Buddha were placed inside the idol of Jagannath which the Brahmins claimed were the bones of Lord Krishna. Even during Maurya king Ashoka's reign in 240 BC, Kalinga was a Buddhist center and that a tribe known as Lohabahu (barbarians from outside Odisha) converted to Buddhism and built a temple with an idol of Buddha which is now worshipped as Jagannatha. Wilkinson also says that the Lohabahu deposited some Buddha relics in the precincts of the temple.

The history of Puri is on the same lines as that of the Jagannath Temple, which was invaded 18 times during its history to plunder the treasures of the temple, rather than for religious reasons. The first invasion occurred in the 8th century AD by Rastrakuta king Govinda-III (798–814 AD), and the last took place in 1881 AD by the monotheistic followers of Alekh (Mahima Dharma) who did not recognise the worship of Jagannatha.From 1205 AD onward there were many invasions of the city and its temple by Muslims of Afghan and Moghul descent, known as Yavanas or foreigners. In most of these invasions the idols were taken to safe places by the priests and the servitors of the temple. Destruction of the temple was prevented by timely resistance or surrender by the kings of the region. However, the treasures of the temple were repeatedly looted.The table lists all the 18 invasions along with the status of the three images of the temple, the triad of Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra following each invasion.

state Odisha,India
Country India
Area 16.3268 km2 (6.3038 sq mi)
Languages spoken Odia,English
Currency Ruppee

Top Things In Puri

Places to visits

  • Jagannath Puri


    Built in 1161, the Jagannath Temple is one of the major Hindu Temples in India.

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    Shree Jagannath Puri temple, one of the most majestic monuments of Odisha, was built by a famous king of Ganga Dynasty Ananta Varman Chodaganga Deva. This stunning Vaishnava temple, dating back to 12th century, enshrines Lord Jagannath, Devi Subhadra and Balabhadra. The architectural splendor of this temple is influenced by the Kalinga Dynasty. The temple is also a host to the biggest festivals in Odisha, the Rath Yatra attracting thousands of pilgrims and tourists to the temple. Beware of fraud priests - Refined conmen, many of whom will seek you out right from Puri Railway station.

  • Puri Beach, Puri

    Puri Beach is a fine coastline of Bay of Bengal with the sun gleaming on the pristine waters of the beach.

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    Located at a mere distance of 35 km from the Sun Temple, the place is ideal for holiday makers looking for some solitude. Adorned with fine white sand and crystal clear water, Puri Beach is quite renowned for its peaceful and calm surroundings. It is often flocked with devotees visiting the beach for a purification dip who come to Puri to pay their homage to Lord Jagannath. The beach is also renowned for the sand sculptures made by internationally known sand artist Sudarshan Patnaik. The sculptures are usually inspired by the art covering the temple walls or other mythological character or episode. However, the most entrancing time at the beach is during sunrise and sunset.

  • Rath Yatra

    Jagannath Rath Yatra is one of the most awaited and much-celebrated festival in Orissa as well as countrywide.

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    It is celebrated every year in the month of June or July. It is dedicated to Lord Jagannath i.e. Lord Krishna, his sister Goddess Subhadra and his elder brother Lord Balabhadra. It is commonly known as Gundicha Yatra, Dasavatara, Chariot Festival and Navadina Yatra. As the Yatra proceeds, three richly decorated chariots, made to resemble temple structures, are pulled through the streets of Puri, called Badadanda.These chariots are pulled by devotees from all over the world, who go to Puri with an earnest desire to help pull the Lords' chariots with the help of other priests, all of them pulling the chariots with ropes. This is considered a pious deed and people many times risk their lives in the huge crowd. This is the only day when devotees who are not allowed in the temple premises, such as non-Hindus and foreigners, can get their glimpse of the deities. The huge processions accompanying the chariots play devotional songs with drums, tambourines, trumpets etc, making this quite a loud and vibrant affair. Children line the streets through which the chariot will pass to add to the mass chorus. The Ratha carts themselves are some approximately 45 feet (14 m) high and are pulled by the thousands of pilgrims who turn up for the event, as millions of devotees congregate at Puri for this annual event from all over the country and abroad.

  • Chilika Lake,Puri

    Chilika Lake, crowned as Asia's largest brackish water lagoon is sheltered in the heart of the coastal Odisha.

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    ChilikaÔ_is known as one of the most beautiful wetlands in the world because it inhabits a vast variety of birds. Chilika Lake shows tourists a mind boggling display of its avian charms in a million different colors and varieties presented by around 160 species in the peak season between November and February. The lake and its stem islands provide shelter to many birds-white bellied sea eagles, ospreys, golden plovers, sand pipers, flamingos, pelicans, etc. An instance of paradise for bird watchers and enjoyable boat rides are what make the lake a favorite for all its visitors.

  • Narendra Tank

    Narendra Tank is one of the largest tanks in Odisha and is believed to have been built during the 15th century.

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    This tank is considered holy and has a lot of small and big temples surrounding it. There is an island in the middle of the lake with a small temple called Chandana Mandapa.

  • Lokanath Temple

    According to a legend popular in Orissa, long ago, Puri was a centre of Shiva worship.

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    According to this legend, Lord Ramachandra himself installed the Lingam in the Lokanath Temple. This lingam is always submerged with water, which substantiates the legend that Goddess Ganga flows through the top of the shivalinga as a stream. It can only be seen on Pankodhar Ekadasi, before Shivaratri, when the water is removed from the lingam. On that day, thousands of devotees come for a darshan.

  • Markandeswara


    Assumed to have been constructed during the 13th century, Markandeswara temple is known for its magnificent architectural and artistic essence.

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    The entrance of the temple is adorned with a figure of Nataraja with ten arms. The tiny figurines of Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati and Lord Ganesha are intricately detailed and are placed in the niches of the main shrine. The corners of the temple have shrines of Lord Shiva in different avatars. Overall, the temple, in all the grandeur of its past glory is one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in Puri.

  • Lakshmi Temple

    Situated near the Jagannath Temple, this is a very important temple owing to the beliefs around the history of this structure.

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    It is believed that the marriage of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati happened on the sixth day of the fortnight of Jyeshta and they were invited to this temple by Goddess Lakshmi. This temple is a must-visit for all tourists and devotees in Puri.

  • Ganesh Temple

    Inside the famous Jagannath temple complex in Puri, is situated a small Ganesh temple, housing an exclusive image of Ganesh known as Natya Ganesh.

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    Inside the famous Jagannath temple complex in Puri, is situated a small Ganesh temple, consisting of an exclusive image of Ganesha known as Natya Ganesh i.e. Dancing Ganesh. The temple has great archaeological significance. In spite of its small size, every year large number of devotees offer their prayers. History reveals that the idol is gifted by the King of Kanchi. The Jagannath temple complex comprises of many other temples dedicated to gods Hanuman, Surya, Saraswati, Vimala. In front of the Ganesh temple, a small water-pot built up of stones known as Rohinikund is also present.


  • Vegterian Thali

    Vegterian Thali,To follow the culture of India.Its a prigrimage place so the vegetrian thali are provide a nearest places.

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    Vegterian Thali traditional Goan cuisine, It serves delicious vegetable vindaloo with rice and spicy Portuguese inspired chouricos, (spiced sausages) or mouth-watering masala prawns. The little balconies lit up with dim lights, slightly rickety tables, coconut-skin lamps, walls covered in old and new graffiti.

  • Bhojohori manna

    Though it looks like a beach shack, the Bhojohori manna is actually the Radisson's gourmet multicuisine seaside restaurant, with a strong emphasis on fresh.

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    Though it looks like a beach shack, the Bhojohori manna is actually the Radisson's gourmet multicuisine seaside restaurant, with a strong emphasis on fresh seafood.Open since 2007, the restaurant prides itself on serving simple yet delicious Italian food, including its specialty – thin crust pizzas and homemade pastas. However, the seafood and fish dishes do reflect Goan tastes, with plenty of emphasis on prawns, tuna and calamari.

  • Chatpata Namkeen

    Chatpata namkeen,Its so spice or tasty.Its a street food og puri.

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    Chatpata namkeen, and with daily seafood specials chalked up on boards. The offerings and prices aren’t that different from other tourist-oriented restaurants, but there’s a little more love put into the cooking here and it's tastier. Treasures include huge casks previously used to store a locally brewed liquor known as fenny, and a giant whale rib which has been converted into a glass rack.

  • The Gajapati

    The pasta, pizza, sizzlers, crepes and momos are genuine and tasty service is good.

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    The pasta, pizza, sizzlers, crepes and momos are genuine and tasty , service is good, and the chilled-out setting, with bamboo posts, floor cushions and lamps dangling from a thatched roof, has a touch of the romantic. Fresh produce is key to producing the house favorites, which make the most of local seafood.

  • Thandai

    Thandai, wallet-friendly South Indian fill-up, swing by this simple, packed-out veg restaurant pumping out morning idlis.

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    For an authentically good, wallet-friendly South Indian fill-up, swing by this simple, packed-out veg restaurant pumping out morning idlis, vadas and dosas,filter coffee and banana-leaf lunchtime thalis. It's right beside the bus stand.



Things to do -  general

Puri is a diverse and exciting city with some of the best sights and attractions in the world.

Jagannath Puri or Purusottama Puri (approximately 1 and a half hours or 60 km from Bhubaneswar by bus, about 2 hours by train) is a pilgrimage town with the famous temple of Lord Jagannath (means Lord of the Universe) and is a major tourist destination with all its beautiful and pleasant sights. There are many hotels, most overseas tourists stay near to the beach. The Sun temple at Konark is also near by. If you go to Puri by road from Bhubaneswar you will go past Pipli with its beautiful applique handicrafts, worth a look. The Puri sea beach is a major attraction with its fantastic sea face view and golden sand, the water is a bit rough (which is good if you like to surf).


Things to do - Sports and nature

Puri is one of the greenest capitals in the world, with plenty of green and open spaces. There are more than 3000 open spaces.

There are many hotels, most overseas tourists stay near to Chakratirtha Road (C.T. Road) - try Hotel Lotus - for the best of star hotels like hotel holiday resort, mayfair beach resort or you can ask rickshaws for 'Sea Beach Road or Swargadwara'. Some good hotels are Hotel Puri and Hotel New Sea Hawk (in Swargadwar) The Sun temple at Konark is also near by. If you go to Puri by road from Bhubaneswar you will go past Pipli with its beautiful applique handicrafts, worth a look. The Puri sea beach is a major attraction with its fantastic sea face view and golden sand, the water is a bit rough (which is good if you like to surf).


Things to do - Nightlife

Puri being a pilgrim city mostly offers pure vegetarian food in its restaurants. One can have local Oriya cuisine as well as South-Indian delicacies.

The city is also known for a lip-smacking Chinese cuisine that one must try. Other than this, being in Puri, on must experience food from the Jagannath Temple which is known for having largest kitchen in the world and the enthralling setup serves simple yet delicious food.