The Sun Temple

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The Sun Temple


Konark is known for its religious architecture. The Sun Temple is a World Heritage Monument and reflects the symbol of our great cultural past, our ancient history, art, sculpture and scenic grandeur. The temple depicts the cultural heritage that has blended harmoniously with the march of time.

In a way, this 13th century temple is the culmination of the evolution of the Orissa temple school. The Sun Temple was built by King Narsamhadev of Easten Ganga Dynasty. The temple symbolizes the majestic stride of the Sun god.

Situated 30 kms to the North East of Puri, Konark Temple is the grandest and best known of all Sun Temples in India. The name Konark is derived from the words Kona meaning ‘Corner’ and Arka meaning ‘Sun’. The Sun temple is also known as The Black Pagoda is a grand and magnificent temple in the form of the suns chariot drawn by seven horses marking the 7 days of the week. The 24 huge wheels, magnificently carved and decorated, mark the hours of the day.

A Nata Mandir is at the entrance of the temple where the dancers used to perform dance in order to pay reverence to the Sun god. The temple comprises of numerous figures and images of holy being and human musicians, dancers, lovers and innumerable scenes of chivalrous life and relaxation can also be seen. These are interspersed with birds, animals, legendary creatures and complex symmetric decorations. Though much of the temple is in ruins, enough remains to impress one with glory of Orissa’s distinctive temple architecture. The temple is a crowning piece of Orissan architecture and sculpture.

The main chamber of the temple is 229 feet in height which was constructed along with the audience hall having128 feet height and external projections. The main sanctum which enshrined the presiding deity has fallen off. The Audience Hall survives in its entirely, but only small portions of the Dancing Hall (Nata Mandir) and the Dining Hall (Bhoga-Mandap) have survived the obstacles of time. The construction of the Konark temple was completed between 1253 and 1260 A.D.

Orissa is not only an ideal choice for temples and monuments, beaches and flora and fauna but also colourful fairs and festivals. The festivals are numerous.

Konark Festival: A festival of classical dance forms held every December are performed by the celebrated danseurs of the country on the Open Air Auditorium set amidst the casuarinas grove against the backdrop of Sun Temple. During the festival evenings the atmosphere is surcharged with rhythmic dancing beats and melodious tunes.

Exquisite temples and historical monuments make this place a veritable haven for the lovers of past mysteries.

Best time to visit

The summers are unbearably hot so the best time to travel would be during October to March when the weather is cool.


The Sun Temple is one of the most famous of India's Brahmin Temples! A visit to the temple is a must.


Visit the temple anytime of the day! You will surely witness its awe- inspiring beauty throughout the day.

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