Just the right place to witness and take part in colourful festivals round the year. Puri is famous for its celebrated annual festivals of Chariots, the "Ratha Yatra", which is held in the beginning of the monsoon and has been attracting pilgrims and tourists for centuries. It is the sacred journey of Lord Jagannath with brother Balabhadra & sister Subhadra from the main Jagannath Temple to another Shrine called Gundicha Mandir for nine days. Abode of Lord Jagannath, literally meaning Lord of the World, Puri is one of the four Holy Dhams in India for Hindus located on the shores of the Bay of Bengal. Puri is the site of the Govardhana matha, one of the four cardinal institutions established by Adi Shankaracharya, the others being those at Sringeri, Dwaraka and Jyotirmath.
The town is famous for its many Mathas (Monasteries of the various Hindu sects). It also houses the relics of many Hindu figures as traditionally it is seen as a holy place to die in or to be cremated. As a result, it has had a disproportionate number of widows. Like other old Hindu religious towns it has a lot of character that is difficult to be glimpsed or picked up on easily by a casual visitor.
In 1903, Sri Yukteswar established an ashram in the sea-side town of Puri, naming it "Kararashram". From two ashrams, Yukteswar taught students, and began an organization named "Sadhu Sabha." Srila Bhakti Siddhanta Saraswati Thakur, founder of 64 Sri Gaudiya Maths performed the final past-times of his life in Puri. It has one of the finest beaches in the world. This pilgrimage town is also the abode of artisans and craftsmen who produce a wide range of unique handicrafts and Sandart is world famous.
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