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Konark Temple in Odisha India: 10 fascinating facts

Image of Sun Tеmplе in Odisha, India- Facts and Importance

Konark temple located is a 13th-century Hindu temple around 35 kilometers (22 miles) northeast of Puri. King is credited with India’s rich cultural and spiritual legacy is exemplified by this architectural wonder. konark temple is situated along the gorgeous coastline of Odisha, India.

Architecture of Konark temple

The konark temple design is awe-inspiring: it resembles a colossal chariot with seven horses and twenty-four wheels, all intricately carved from stone. Dedicated to the Hindu Sun God Surya, this temple once stood over 200 feet high but now lies mostly in ruins. konark temple’s The Shikara tower over the sanctuary, which once soared even higher, has weathered the passage of time.

Image of Konark Sun Temple

Artwork of Konark Temple

Konark temple surviving structures and elements are renowned for their intricate artwork and iconography. The temple’s carvings depict various themes, including erotic Kama and Mithuna scenes. Known as the Surya Devalaya, it exemplifies the Odisha style of architecture (also known as Kalinga architecture).


Imagine the Konark Temple as a celestial chariot carrying the Sun God, Surya, across the heavens. Its wheels symbolize the passage of time, and the entire structure celebrates the cosmic journey of the sun.

Konark Temple: UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Konark Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to the unfathomable intricacy of its carvings. From gigantic chariot wheels to detailed depictions of life in ancient Orissa, this temple stands unparalleled in architectural grandeur.

Visitor Information

Nearly 2.5 million people visit Konark Temple annually, making it one of India’s most popular monuments.

  • The temple’s design follows the Kalinga school of temple architecture.
  • For more detailed information, you can explore the odishatourism on Konark Temple.
  • Remember, as you wander through the remnants of this ancient marvel, you’re not just witnessing stone and mortar; you’re stepping into a timeless saga of devotion, artistry, and cosmic reverence.

How long did it take to build Konark Sun Temple in India?

The construction of the Konark Sun Temple in bhubaneswar spanned several years, reflecting the dedication and craftsmanship of its builders. King Narasimhadeva I of the Eastern Ganga dynasty commissioned the temple around 1250 CE. The intricate carvings, architectural details, and the sheer scale of the temple would have required considerable time and effort at india konark temple.

While precise records are scarce, it is estimated that the construction process took several decades to complete. The temple’s grandeur and significance continue to captivate visitors, making it a timeless testament to India’s cultural heritage.

How did Konark Sun Temple fall into ruins?

Image of Konark Sun Temple fall into ruins

The Konark Temple, once a architectural marvel, gradually succumbed to the ravages of time and various historical events. Here’s how it fell into ruins:

Natural Decay

  • Over centuries, exposure to the elements—wind, rain, and extreme temperatures—gradually eroded the temple’s stone structure.
  • The porous nature of the stone made it susceptible to weathering, especially during the monsoon seasons.


  • The region around Konark Temple is seismically active. Earthquakes over the years caused structural damage, leading to the temple’s gradual decline.
  • The shifting tectonic plates and seismic activity took a toll on the delicate carvings and massive stone blocks.

Looting and Vandalism

During various historical periods, the temple faced threats from invaders and looters. The removal of precious metals, sculptures, and other valuable elements weakened the temple’s integrity.

Disuse and Abandonment

  • By the 16th century, the temple was no longer actively used for worship.
  • The decline of the Eastern Ganga dynasty and shifts in religious practices contributed to its abandonment.

British Colonial Rule

  • During British colonial rule, the temple faced further neglect.
  • The British administration considered it a site of superstition and did not prioritize its preservation.

Collapse of the Main Shikara

  • The central tower (Shikara) of the temple collapsed in the late 19th century.
  • This catastrophic event marked a significant turning point in the temple’s deterioration.

Conservation Efforts

  • In the early 20th century, efforts began to preserve what remained of the temple.
  • The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) undertook restoration work, but the damage was irreversible.

UNESCO Recognition

  • In 1984, the Konark Sun Temple was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Despite ongoing conservation efforts, complete restoration remains elusive.

Today, visitors witness the temple’s grandeur in its partially ruined state, marveling at the intricate carvings that have survived centuries. The Konark Temple stands as a poignant reminder of impermanence and the passage of time.

Let’s explore 10 fascinating facts about the Konark Sun Temple in Odisha, India:

Image of Konark Sun Temple

Origin of the Temple

Constructed around 1240 CE, the Konark Temple stands as a magnificent masterpiece of ancient Indian architecture. It was erected under the patronage of King Narasimhadeva I of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty. This monumental undertaking spanned roughly 12 years and reflects the artistic and architectural ingenuity of its time1.

Artistic Splendor

The temple’s intricate stone carvings and colossal chariot-like structure showcase the brilliance of its creators. Notably, the 12 stone-carved wheels at the base of the temple represent the 12 months of a year and also function as a sundial. Using the shadow these wheels create, visitors may determine the precise time of day.

World Heritage Site designated by UNESCO

A UNESCO World Heritage Site was established in honor of the Konark Sun Temple due to its cultural and historical significance. Its symbolic depiction of the Sun God’s cosmic voyage never fails to enthrall tourists from all over the world.

Love for Lord Surya

The temple was constructed as a tribute to the Sun God, Lord Surya. Its advantageous location close to the Odisha coast highlights the significance of the Sun God for commerce, navigation, and marine operations. The importance of Surya in people’s life was represented in King Narasimhadeva I’s design for the temple.

The Magnificent Building

The temple’s pyramidal design and elaborate sculptures are hallmarks of the Kalinga architectural style. The main sanctuary previously had a massive picture of Surya, albeit it is now in ruins. The dancing hall, or natya mandir, is still standing and displays the magnificence of the temple.

Getting Started on the Beach

Because of its unusual eastward orientation, the temple’s sanctuary is illuminated by the first rays of the morning sun. This alignment represents the daily path of the Sun God across the sky.

Challenges Over Centuries

The Konark Sun Temple faced numerous challenges over the centuries, including invasions, natural disasters, and neglect. Despite these trials, its architectural marvel endures as a testament to human creativity and devotion

Depiction of Wealth and Power

The temple’s construction was a statement of the Ganga Dynasty’s wealth, power, and cultural prowess. It served as a beacon of their influence and devotion to Lord Surya

Black Pagoda

The konark sun temple in india is also known as the Black Pagoda, a name attributed to its dark color and striking appearance against the sky

Image of Konark Sun Temple carving

Sculptures of Daily Pursuits of Life

The temple’s intricate carvings depict scenes from daily life, including dancers, musicians, animals, and mythological figures. These sculptures provide glimpses into the social and cultural context of ancient India

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

What is the main attraction of Konark Temple?

The main attraction of Konark Temple is its architectural brilliance and the iconic Sun Temple, dedicated to the Sun God.

What is the importance of Konark Sun Temple?

The konark sun temple in india is significant for its architectural beauty and historical importance.

Image by Freepik , Pexels, Subhrajyoti07, Andrew Moore, James Fergusson, SushG

Also, Read My Next Blog On Plan A Trip To Konark Sun Temple, Odisha, India

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