A Guide to Puri’s Annual Rath Yatra

 A Guide to Puri’s Annual Rath Yatra

Rath Yatra, the Festival of Chariots, is truly a spiritual marvel that everyone should experience at least once in their lives. With the majestic chariots, great history, and thrumming divine spirit, the Rath Yatra in Puri is like none other.

You would be shocked to see a larger than life gathering at the event, but simultaneously you will also feel at home amidst the religious chants and sacred rituals. If you are planning on attending the festivities of the Annual Rath Yatra, then, there are several things you should be aware of before planning your trip!

Travel: How to reach Puri?

There are many ways to reach Puri. It is advised that you reach Bhubaneswar first, as there are several options from there.

  • Train – During rath Yatra, you can book trains to Puri from almost anywhere in India. There will be special trains allocated for this festival, so do not fret! If you are looking to travel from Bhubaneswar, you can find a local train every hour. It will take you around 2-3 hours to reach the Puri station – around 2 Kms from the Jagannath Temple.

  • Car/Taxi – Looking for a comfortable way of travel? Then, you can use a taxi booking app and rent a taxi or use your vehicle to reach Puri from Bhubaneswar. Make sure you have the needed permits and passes to get near the temple.

  • Bus – Another cheap option, this is a good alternative to trains. Again, this mode of travel will consume up to 3 hours of your day.

Stay: Hotel inside or outside city limits?

Naturally, during this magnificent spiritual season, you will be able to find numerous places that offer a place to stay. Finding the right hotel depends on the number of days you are planning on spending during the festival.

Rath Yatra is an elaborate festival that takes place for nine days. Usually, day one and day ten are the days when the city is brimming with crowds. So, if you are looking for a short visit, you can plan a 1-2 day visit either at the beginning or end of the festival.

But, if you are looking to follow the festivities and watch its splendor, you need to spend 10-12 days in the city. For a short visit, you can stay at a hotel for a maximum of 2 nights.

As per your convenience, you can either choose to stay on the Grand Road, near the Beach, or elsewhere in the city. A hotel on Grand Road could be pricey, but it’s the nearest option. If you are looking forward to spending a long time in the city and soaking in its spirits, make sure that you have booked your rooms well in advance.

There is almost zero chance for you to find lodgings during the Rath Yatra season. Also, note that, during this season, all hotels and other lodging facilities tend to charge you prices higher than the usual price.

The best way to go about this trip is to either book one of those Bhubaneswar to Puri cabs or reserve a ticket on train ages before the festival begins. As for the lodgings, consider your comfort, the price, and most importantly, your safety!

Choose the best options, plan your trip perfectly, and enjoy a spiritual journey to Puri!

Teresa Martinez

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