Renowned for its sandstone temples, Bhubaneswar is an ancient city and important Buddhist and Hindu pilgrimage destination. It boasts excellent museums detailing its archaeological and indigenous history and offers easy access to the monk cave dwellings of Khandagiri and Udayagiri.
Things to do in Bhubaneswar
Stroll through the old city, which centres around Bindu Sagar Lake, to see sandstone temples dating back to the 11th and 13th centuries. Admire the elaborate carvings of the Lingaraja Temple, then see the sculpted figures guarding the cardinal and ordinal directions of the Rajarani Temple.
Visit the impressive Odisha State Museum, which houses an outstanding collection of artefacts detailing the region’s history. Get up close to antique weaponry and indigenous Pattachitra paintings, as well as traditional musical instruments and rare inscriptions.
If you’re interested in Odisha’s indigenous heritage, visit the Museum of Tribal Arts and Artifacts, which showcases the dozens of tribes that inhabit the state. Browse traditional costumes, ornamentations and hunting equipment, as well as replica houses of the Gadaba, Santa and Saora peoples.
A short drive from Bhubaneswar takes you to the twin hills of Khandagiri and Udayagiri, which are dotted with more than 100 caves that have been inhabited since the 2nd century BC. Serving as the site of an ancient Jain monastery, they feature sculptural friezes and beautiful carvings depicting people and animals, as well as beautiful views of Bhubaneswar from the summit.
Getting around Bhubaneswar
Biju Patnaik International Airport is a 15-minute drive south of Bhubaneswar and there are trains to destinations across India from Bhubaneswar Railway Station. Buses and auto rickshaws travel throughout the city.