The Konark Temple- Devoted to the Sun God

Posted On February 4, 2010 


The Konark Sun Temple is many times spelled as Konarak temple. It is a Hindu temple that belonged to the early thirteenth century and it is devoted to the sun god. The shape of the temple is like a huge chariot, the temple is acknowledged all across for the wonderful rock carvings that envelop the complete construction.

The Konark Sun Temple is the most renowned tourist attraction located in Orissa in India. The Konark Sun temple has been decalred as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in the year 1984. The temple is situated in the Konark village, which is located at a distance of around 35kms to the north of Puri in the coastal region of the Bay of Bengal.

konark sun temple in orissa


King Narasimhadeva, who ruled the East Ganga ordered for the construction of the temple at Konark around the year 1250. It is believed that he had constructed the temple as to celebrate his victory against the Muslim attackers.

As stated in the various stories regarding the temple as well as its construction, the temple possess a huge aura of power. It is believed that this enormous power comes from the two powerful magnets. It is stated that these magnets are used in the construction of the tower. The magnet made the throne of king to hover in the middle of the air.

A number of European mariners who used to sail off the coast were using the tower of the temple for the navigation purposes. They named the Sun temple as the Black Pagoda for the repeated ship wrecks that used to take place along the coastal lines. They credited the tragedy to the renowned magnets’ result on the tidal model.

The Muslim Yavana army did sack by the Konark Sun temple in the early 15th century. The vital statue which was been preserved inside the temple was been smuggled all the way to Puri by priests. The Sun Temple faced a huge damaged due to the attack.

Later the destruction of the temple was over taken by the nature. For many centuries which passed by the sea used to move away the sand which later surrounded the building also the salty breezes that came from the sea played a key role in the worming out of the stone. The sun temple remained covered beneath a massive mound of sand in anticipation of the early 20th century, when the restoration of the temple began under the rule of the Britishers.

British archaeologists exposed the inferior elements of the temple that had stayed behind well conserved under the sand and re-establish what they could of the remaining parts of the remains. Many trees were planted surrounding the temple as to cover the temple from the huge harmful winds and also a museum was later opened to exhibit whatever sculpture were left. Also many sculptures were sent London, Calcutta as well as Delhi.

The Earl of Ronaldshay in the year 1924 announced the newly- exposed temple to be “one of the most stupendous buildings in India which rears itself aloft, a pile of overwhelming grandeur even in its decay.”

The major entrance in the temple is place on the east side and it faces the sea. This entrance is located in the façade of bhogamandapa which is also known as the Hall of Offerings. The sculptures of dancers as well as musicians is engraved on the walls of this hall, hence the hall was later used for the traditional dance recital.

At a point of time the sanctuary tower was showpiece of the Konark Sun Temple. This masterpiece of the temple today is nothing but just a clutter of various sandstone slabs which are kept one over another. It is located in the western side of the temple. This impressive construction has a pyramidal roof which is actually a terrace. Commonly it is known as jagamohana.

The roof of jagamohana has a roof that has around 3 tiers and many statutes are placed over them. The statutes are either of dancers or the musicians. It is believed that the statutes perform for the sun god who looks up to them from heaven. The platform at the base also has a sculpture of Lord Shiva as Nataraja and performing the dance. The interior of the terrace is now-a-days barren up.

The stairs that takes you up towards the Statute of Surya is located beyond the terrace. The statute of the Sun god is carved out a huge green colored chlorite stone. It is supposed to be the most beautiful work of art present in Konark. The statute of Surya is shown as wearing huge riding boots. An image of Aruna is also engraved with the statue. You can make your way further to the original shrine of the deity.

Lovely sculptures are carved on the surface of the Konark temple. The sculptures are of varied subjects which also include numerous erotic sights which are influenced by Kama Sutra. Such sculptures are seen in the hallway that takes you up to the terrace and also by the side of platforms as well as in the doorways’ region located in the main structure.

What to See:

A huge chariot is been formed in the Sun temple for the sun god, Surya. The chariot is very huge and has 12 pairs of stone-carved wheels and also a squad of seven running horses. Till date only one of the seven horses has survived intact.

Wheel of Konark Orissa India

The temple does represent the passage of time, and declares that the time is under the control of the sun god. The sun temple which is pulled towards the east by the seven horses, symbolizes the seven days of the week. Also, the 12 pairs of wheels stand for the 12 months of the year. Further the eight different spokes placed in each and very wheel represents the eight perfect phases of a day in a women’s life.

Getting There:

You can use the regular buses as well as the Jeeps that serve between Konark and Puri. The distance between Puri and Konark is around 33 km away from the coast. The time required by the bus trip is about an hour. Remember that last bus that comes back to Puri leaves in the evening at 6:30pm. You can also try out the option of an auto-rickshaw. The round trip will cost you something around Rs250-300 which even includes waiting period.

The Official guided tour for The Konark Sun Temple leaves from the city of Panthaniwas in Bhubaneswar. They also visit the Dhauli. The official tours are available everyday expect Monday from 6:30 in the morning till 6:30 in the evening.

Opening Timings:

The temple is open for the visitors from morning 9 to evening 6.

Entrance fees:

The entrance fees that is to be paid at the booth before entering the temple is Rs 250/- per individual.

Related Posts


8 Responses to “The Konark Temple- Devoted to the Sun God”
  1. Essien says:

    One of the most known place in India. If you go to India you must visit this place. Its totally different experience.

  2. Joe says:

    India is a country of miracles! Every temples are unique and stand on its own identity! Its truly amazing to visit India once in your life!

  3. Cole says:

    What a temple! This creativity can be done by Indians only! No one can be so delicate while making it.

  4. Ashley says:

    I always find mind soothing and relaxed whenever I visit India and the temples situated. You feel totally different as if your in heaven. People make you feel that way.

  5. Cheryl says:

    What a summarized history explained in one article! Indians believe in Gods can completely brainstorm your mind and you will start believing in them.

  6. Frank says:

    Rs. 250/- is nothing for this! I’ve seen people giving thousands of rupees for their well being.

  7. John says:

    I would like to tell one thing that an Indian will always support to the needy people irrelevant of any part of the world they belong to.

  8. Boulter says:

    I’ve visited this place and it was mind blowing. Only I can say is perfect planning for the construction.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

CommentLuv badge