Jagannath puri is one of the most famous temple of India and it is visited by every hindu once in life. Next time when you plan experience below mentioned things and enjoy your holy trip.
1. Eat and buy Prasad from Anand bazaar
Mahaprasad is sold at Aanand Bazaar of the temple, it is situated inside the temple. It is the biggest open-air hotel in the world where lots of devotees come and enjoy the Prasad in pots. Different vendors sit with Prasad and you can obviously bargain with them, eating prasad at Anand bazar is an awesome experience, food is given in pots and you are given banana leaves to enjoy the feel of desi Indian culture. Prasad is of two types – ‘Sankundi’ and ‘Sukhila’. ‘Sankundi includes rice cooked in different ways, dal and vegetables while ‘Sukhila’ is dried prasad. The devotee carries Kaja and other dry prasad with them to offer to their friends at home.
Not even cooked prasad has importance but dried rice of Mahaprasad known as “Nirmalya” is also purchased by the devotee and used in sacred occasions.
2. Experience the crowd at morning Aarti
Jagannath temple is very famous temple among devotee and lots of devotee comes in the temple to get the first sight of their beloved Jagannath Lord. Devotee starts gathering from 5:00 a.m. in the temple but darshan is available at 7:00 a.m. after the purification rites. The inner sanctum of temple becomes overcrowded for a darshan of just a second, there is so much crowd that sometimes you might not be able to see deities and will be pushed out by the crowd. Getting a sight of lord after so much effort makes it more beautiful.
3. Attend the flag changing ceremony
Dhwaja Parivartan or the Flag Change ceremony is a must witness part at Jagannath temple. Every day flag at the main tower (vimana) is changed by pandas by climbing around 214feet atop on Nila Chakra. To person are trained since childhood from a particular Chola family to host the flag on the chakra without others help. These people climb very swiftly with the flag tied around their waist and this is the sight which none should miss. The old flag is sold to the devotee in exchange for some money. This is really thrilling and awesome experience.
4. Have a look at the world largest kitchen
You can view the kitchen of Jagannath temple by purchasing a ticket of Rs 5. You are not allowed to view kitchen from inside, there is a small hole(very small window sort of) throughout the kitchen from where you can view the food preparation. The kitchen is considered to be the biggest kitchen in the world. Around 1500 people are involved in the food preparation and distributing it, of which 400 are inside the kitchen and 1100 outside. Around 1100 kg of rice is cooked every day and it never gets less or left over.
5. Experience the harsh reality of our religion (Greedy pandas)
This is mainly for those who have never visited the Jagganath temple. Pandas in Jagannath temple have made it as a commercial center to earn money through it be with or without your consent. I have been to various temple all across India but never faced such a shameful marketing in the name of Lord. Puri is well known for this – everyone who visits puri experience this, and the most awkward part is that you will not be allowed to touch diety until you offer money, neither you are offered prasad without the donation. In an around the Jagannath temple and Gudicha maa temple you will see that they have unnecessary place the lord idol and in front of every idol they have placed donation box so that your first attention will be on the box. Well, such prevent yourself from these pandas as they will try their best to loot you and will even curse you in the name of God, better to give money to poor than these fake pandas.
6. Praise the wonderful architecture of the temple
Temple of puri construction started in the late 11th century and was built by Gupta dynasty. The temple walls are carved very beautifully and provide a magnificent view of religious and sacred feeling. Different stories of our religion are carved out of stone on temple Vimala.