Temples in Odisha
Odisha houses some of the best temples in the country. The temples in Odisha are said to have given supreme expression to architecture. Taking the Kalinga pattern of architecture to its zenith, these Orissa temples are unique in both plan elevation and decoration details.
Temples in Bhubaneswar
The temple dedicated to the lord Shiva is a major landmark in the history of India. Built in the 11th century AD, the temple is famous as it was constructed during the phase of metamorphosis of early and late school of architecture of Kalinga. Its spire is about 180 feet tall. There are more than 64 smaller shrines in the stretched temple complex. They are magnificently decorated with sculptures of gods and goddesses, female figurines, hunters, dancing girls, musicians and peacocks etc. The glorious heritage of the temple makes it a real wonder for the visitors to explore. The temple presents a palatial gateway or torana which is gorgeously designed.
Mukteswar that means ‘Lord who gives freedom through yoga’ is one of the most acclaimed temple of Bhubaneswar. It is a small but compact temple which is 34 feet tall. It is famous for its exquisite stone archway and ceiling with eight petal lotus inside its porch. The temple architecture is significantly famous for its lion head motif. This temple has art of the history which speaks about Hindu mythology, folk tales of Panchatantra and Jain monks. One should also learn about the Mukteswara dance festival, held in the temple premises during January each year. It is a world class event popular for its cultural diversification.
The name originates from the Red Rajarani sandstone, used to build up the temple. Its intricate carved structure is its attraction. Unique in its nature that it has no deity, the temple is believed to have been a pleasure resort of an Oriya king and queen. Better known as ‘Khajuraho of the East’ it is a place of relaxation and meditation. Figurative images and floral designs with numerous erotic sculptures cover the entire outer wall.
Most famous Rajarani Music Festival during January each year is a treat to the music lovers.
The temple is again a shrine of lord Shiva which is around a kilometer east of the Lingaraja Temple. Built in the 11th century AD, the temple pays honor to the deity Brahmeshwar. The height of the temple is 60feet. The temple walls bear iconography of the musicians and dances of the era. There are several carvings of erotic couples and voluptuous damsels. The Mukteshwara is widely famous for its engravings of deities in frightening aspects, religious scenes and various animals and birds. Stories can be depicted from the pictures on the temple exterior walls.