Sun Temple- Konark is one of the popular tourist attractions in Orissa. It ranks among the World Heritage Sites and draws hundreds of tourists, archaeologists and historians from all over the world. The temple is located at a distance of around 35 kms from Puri in Orissa and is situated on the banks of the Chandrabhaga River. By embarking on a trip to the Konark Temple, you can witness the grand architecture of ancient India.
The Konark Temple in Orissa was constructed in the 13th century and is dedicated to the Sun God. The temple represents the majestic pace of Surya or the sun God on his chariot. The temple is also known as the Black Pagoda as it is built with black granite rocks. The temple was constructed by King Narasimhadeva I of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty. The temple is shaped as the chariot of the Sun God. The entire complex of the temple is designed like a huge chariot drawn by seven horses on twelve pairs of beautifully decorated wheels. There are 2 exquisitely carved sculptures of lions crushing war elephants in the gateway.
The Konark Temple belongs to the Kalinga School of Indian Temples. At the entrance of the temple is located the Nata Mandir. The Nata Mandir is the place where the dancers used to perform various traditional dances in homage to the Sun god. The temple is surrounded by a beautiful garden. There are also beautiful sculptures and carvings of various humans, divine and semi-divine figures in a number of poses. There is a museum known as the Konark Museum which is managed by the Archaeological Survey of India.
Another attraction of Konark is the Konark Dance Festival. It is a classical music and dance festival which is held every year in the month of February. Hundreds of art lovers, dancers and musicians take part in the festival and enjoy themselves.
Konark is also easily accessible from various parts of the country. The nearest airport is at Bhubaneswar, which is around 64 kms away from Konark. Both the places are well accessible. There is also a well developed road network connects the place with other parts of the country. The nearest railway station is at Puri which is around 35 kms away. It takes around 90 minutes to come from Puri to Konark.