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Dhauli Giri Hills

Situated along the River Daya, Dhauli Giri Hills is an important Buddhist pilgrimage destination near Bhubaneswar. Dhauli Giri is a hill surrounded by paddy fields. The hills are famous for the Kalinga war that brought the transformation of Ashoka. The battlefield and the River Daya is said to have turned the waters red by bloodshed. It is here that Ashoka, was transformed after the terrible guilt he felt. He later became the compassionate and even championed the cause of Buddhism.

To mark the site the Dhauligiri Shanti Stupa was constructed in 1972 by the Japan Buddha Sangha and the Kalinga Nippon Buddha Sangh. Here, one finds the edicts of Lord Budddha. The overall structure of the stupa is in the shape of a dome. One can spot the Buddha footprints as well as the Bodhi tree over the stone panels. In the vicinity of this stupa, there lays a monastery named as the Saddharma Vihar Monastery, which is much visited by the Buddhist devotees.

One can also spot a number of stupas, chaityas as well as pillars. There exist a number of edicts that display King Ashoka's intention to promote joy, peace and contentment all through the world. You come across a rock cut elephant that is considered to be the earliest Buddhist sculpture in Orissa. You will also find the temple of Dhavaleshwar. It was renovated in the year 1972.

Do make it a point to visit Dhauligiri. The place has beautiful landscapes and a charm that soothes the body, mind and soul in a splendid way.