About Konark Sun Temple
Konark Sun Temple in Odisha Dedicated to the Hindu god Surya, what remains of the temple complex has the appearance of a 100-foot high chariot with immense wheels and horses, all carved from stone. Once over 200 feet (61 m) high, much of the temple is now in ruins, in particular the large shikara tower over the sanctuary; at one time this rose much higher than the mandapa that remains. The structures and elements that have survived are famed for their intricate artwork, iconography, and themes, including erotic Kama and mithuna scenes. It is a classic illustration of the Odisha style of Hindu temple architecture. The cause of the destruction of the Konark Sun Temple in Odisha is unclear and remains a source of controversy.Theories range from natural damage to deliberate destruction of the temple in the course of being sacked several times by Muslim armies between the 15th and 17th centuries.
History of Konark Sun Temple
Konark Sun Temple in Odisha also referred to in Indian texts by the name Kainapara, was a significant trading port by the early centuries of the Common Era. The current Konark Sun Temple in Odisha dates to the 13th century, though evidence suggests that a sun temple was built in the Konark area by at least the 9th century. Several Puranas mention Surya worship centers in Mundira, which may have been the earlier name for Konark, Kalapriya (Mathura), and Multan . The Chinese Buddhist pilgrim and traveler Hiuen-tsang mentions a port city in Odisha named Charitra. He describes the city as prosperous, with five convents and “storeyed towers that are very high and carved with saintly figures exquisitely done”. Since he visited India in the 7th century, he could not have been referring to the 13th-century temple, but his description suggests either Konark or another Odisha port city already featuring towering structures with sculptures.
Importance of Konark Sun Temple
The temple follows the traditional style of Kalinga architecture. It is oriented towards the east so that the first rays of the sunrise strike the main entrance. The temple, built from Khondalite rocks, was originally constructed at the mouth of the river Chandrabhaga, but the waterline has receded since then.The wheels of the temple are sundials, which can be used to calculate time accurately to a minute.
How to reach temple and timing
6.00am to 8.00pm
Nearest airport is at Bhubaneswar which is 62 km away. The train is available to Bhubaneswar