Located 35 km from Puri
, the site of the Sun Temple of Konark is the third link in the Orissan Golden Triangle. It was built in 1250, during the reign of the Eastern Ganga king Narasimhadeva. Situated on the sands of the Bay of Bengal
, this architectural marvel has been conceived as a massive chariot, hauling the Sun God across the heavens by the seven splendidly carved mighty horses, standing aloft on 24 chariot wheels. The Nata Mandira, near the main temple, bears the carvings of musicians and dancers in various poses. The temple is so internationally renowned, that it is now protected under UNESCO's World Heritage Site Project.
The Sun Temple Museum
run by the Archaeological Survey of India has an excellent collection of sculptures from the temple ruins. The Konark Dance Festival is organized every year in the amphitheater with the Sun Temple as the backdrop. The Konark Beach
offers splendid views of the sunrise and sunset. Other places of tourist interest are the Ramchandi Temple, 10 km along the beach, the shrine of Amareswar at Chaurasi
, and the village of Kuruma.