Bhubaneswar is known as the City of Temples and rightly so because it is home to more than one thousand temples. The famous ones include Lingaraj Temple, Mukteshwar Temple, Rajarani Temple and Ananta Vasudeva Temple. The city also offers an impressive blend of architectural heritage and urban design. It’s a neat and well-planned city interspersed with wide, tree-lined roads and if you’re visiting even for two days, you will end up having the time of your life.
Take a trip to Dhauli – the place that changed Emperor Ashoka and got him to walk on the path of peace. About 8km from the city, Dhauli is marked by the dazzling white peace pagoda, built in the 70s. You can find splendid edicts of Ashoka embossed on a mass of rock in Dhauli. Take some time out to sit by the Guardian Lion and enjoy the sprawling view of the cityscape.
Explore the wealth of monuments at Ekamra Kshetra dotted with a series of ancient sandstone temples, heritage ponds and water tanks. The ornate structures here are a testament to a historical heritage spanning over 2,000 years and are the foundation of architectural, artistic and cultural brilliance. Also visit Ekamra Haat – a one-stop for all your Odishan handicrafts, indigenous cuisines and cultural activities set in a traditional rural marketplace.
A trip to Bhubaneswar is incomplete without visiting the twin caves Udayagiri and Khandagiri chiselled out of huge sandstones that were once home to Jain monks. The cells where the monks meditated and prayed are simple; but the hallways and verandah walls are replete with carvings that depict hunting expeditions, royal processions and daily lives from the time of King Kharavela of Chedi Dynasty.
Nandankanan is one of the finest zoo’s in the state – known for its spaciousness, cleanliness and large enclaves built for exotic animals like the elephant, zebra, lion, green anaconda, rhinoceros, baboon and the white tiger. For those also interested in museums, remember to pay a visit to the State Museum. You’ll get an insight into Odisha’s rich past here; it is filled with countless works of priceless art, historical artefacts and valuable manuscripts. The huge galleries have on display a variety of collections that include archaeological finds, religious sculptures, coins, ornaments, cloths, artillery, armour, weapon, musical instruments, antique paintings, and decorative arts.