Puri is one of the holiest places in India and is a highly underrated and underappreciated tourist destination. Close to the capital city of Odisha, Bhubaneshwar, the city is a very peaceful getaway for families. It is an ideal destination for those who want scenic beauty and coastal atmosphere together. Puri is the ancient coastal land of “Jagannatha dev” and also known as sacred pilgrimage spot. Being a pilgrimage place, it is encompassed with various temples which are famous for Hinduism and great architectural beauty.
The “Puri” name is related to “Lord Jagannatha”. In the ancient India Puri is known as “Sri Kshetra” and the temple of Jagannatha also had a local name “Badadeula. Puri and the temple were attacked by the Hindu and the Muslim from 4th century to 19th century. But till the early 18th century it was under the Mughal Rulers. Thereafter Marathas had cloven Odisha in to four district. In the year of 1803, the British captured Puri till the year of Independence(1947). The British divided Odisha into two districts(North & South). After that these two districts became united and Puri was announced the capital of the state till the year of 1816. In the year of 1828 the area was divided into three regions named-Katak, Balasore and Puri. Puri was established in 1948,after the division of Odisha from Bihar.
It is a coastal city of India along the Bay of Bengal .It is 67km away from the Bhubaneswar. It is the municipality and district headquaters also. In the British period, Puri was divided in two parts(North & South).Puri was announced the capital,1816.Then it was separated again and lastly Puri was established in 1948.
The total population of Puri according to 2011 census is 1,698,730 with 490 inhabitants/sq.km. The population growth rate till 2011 was 13%.The sex ratio(female & Male)was 963:1000. The literacy rate of Puri was 95.09%(2011 census).
Most of the people spoke Odia (95.09%).Beside this Urdu 2.36% and Telegu 1.92%(2011 census).
For the presence of sea it has a Moderate Tropical Climate with high humidity over the year.
During the Winter season comfortable and enjoyable weather. It is also the perfect time to visit the attractive beaches.
During the rainy season, Puri witnesses the heavy rain with thunderstorm. Sometimes accidents occur in the beach due to high waves.
Summer is the difficult to visit the Puri. If plan the tour in Summer, it will not be comfortable. Beside this you cannot enjoy the sandy beach for extreme heat.
The culture of Puri city is considered as the norms of Odiya society. Puri is famous for Jagannath temple all over the world. Puri culture is established on the basis of Jagannath temple which is a combination of diffents Indian worship with Vaishavism. The flourishing heritage of Puri is illustrated by several number of occasions. It has a strong religious view. The impotant festivals are Ratha yatra, car festival, Chadan snan and Snan yatra. Apart from this handloom appliqué, handcraft and architecture are pride of Puri culture. Another sign of its culture is mindblowing “Odissi dance”. Rehearsal has been continued over the year for this dance. Local dance of konarak is also famous. Beside this the Patta work, shell crafts, stone work are also various cultural heritage of this religious land. In fact, Puri is rich for its cultural heritage. Odiya is the main language but Bengali, Hindi and English are also appreciated. There are some museums and libraries which carry the document of ancient cultural heritage of Puri.
Its economy is mostly depends on tourism industry. But local people earn from the private service,Govt. service and temple. Apart from this some agricultural products like rice, vegetable; dairy product like ghee and fishery industry are also the source of income. But now a days newly growing industries are also added to increase economical growth.
Now , we know a little bit about Puri. If I discuss about tourist spots of puri , it will be a long list to visit. But you can choice 10 most popular spots. Let’s see these spots at a glance.
The Jagannath temple is reputed for its architectural value. Puri is related to “Char dham yatra” and the temple is a part of this. The temple was built by Indrayumna. If you miss the “maha Prasad” of this temple,you will miss a lot.
Its distance near about 7km. from Bhubaneswar. This cave was built by Kharavela in 2nd century BC. This place was a witness of Kalinga war which was fought against Ashoka’s soldiers.
The beach of Puri is one of the biggest attraction to visitors. It is located in the east along the Bay of Begal. You can see some structure made by sand on the beach. Beside this don’t miss the sea food.
It is the biggest salty lake in Asia. It is almost 50km. away from Puri city. The ambrosial green scenic beauty and a huge number of birds who are migrated in the winter season make this lake more romantic and attractive. You can enjoy the boating.
This beach is famous for its spellbound sunset. It is a ideal place for newly married couple with some food and coffee.
This museum is established by Shudarshan Sahu. It is a architectural place. It is the perfect place for that tourists who gives priority to architecture. You have to appreciate the traditional sculpture which is revealed here.
This artistic town of Puri situated 40km.away from Puri. Applique handcrafts is very populated here. Most of the families are dependent on this handcraft.
This bridge is awesome time spending spot for tourist. It gives a fantastic view of the “Lord Jagannath temple” and pride of incredible arches. It is the perfect place to interact with the nature and relaxation.
This beach is located quite far from the Puri city. If you come to this place you will be a witness of a romantic and magnificent sunset.
This beach was reputed as Chandipur beach also. But maximum tourists have no idea about this beach.
Astaranga is known for its attractive white sand. It offers you to a mesmerising sunset. You can snap its picture but internal feeling is much better than snap.
Puri is famous for its different sea foods and cost effective variant dishes. If you are a foodie person, you should go to Puri.
Here I have tried to enlist some various dishes of Puri.
I thik you can guess the food by its name. Yes, it is just like khichdi but odiya version. The dish is cooked from rice and lentils in ghee. It is served to Jagannath dev as “Mahabhog”.
It is a very famous sweet of here. The sweet is so crunchy to eat. Khaja is one type of bhog among “Chappan bhog” dedicated to the Jagannath.
Being a seaside city , Puri is known for sea foods. Chungdi Malai is prawn preparation made with the addition of coconut milk. Beside this crabs, fried fish are also be taken as delicious dishes.
Chennapoda is a delicious sweet, dedicated to Jagannath dev as his favourite sweet. It is made from cheese, semolina and sugar syrup.
Santhula is a healthy and nutritional food for vegetarian. It can be taken with rice or chapatti. It is just like curry made from brinjal.
It is the most wanted dish in all the occasions of Puri. It is just like cake made from rice- flour batter, sugar, cardamom, sweet fruits and palm syrup.
Puri is the place where you can shopping as your choice. There are many street shops just 5 munites to walk from the beach at Swargadwar. Puri is reputed for its conch jewellery and kotki print. The dresses for both male and female are equally famous for kotki print.
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-- India Enigma
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