Tripura Sundari Temple is the holiest Hindu pilgrimage site in Tripura. The temple is more than 500 years old and is popular for being one of the 51 peethas of Hindus. The locals called it the Matabari. Maharaja Dhanya Manikya built the temple in 1501 AD, at Udaipur, the former capital of Tripura kingdom. The site is believed to be the place where Sati's right foot fell when Lord Shiva performed his Nataraj dance.
According to the legend Maharaja Dhanya Manikya was instructed in his dream to install goddess Tripura Sundari in the temple that stood at the edge of Udaipur town. A temple already stood at the small hilltop, but it was dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The king was amused by it. But he had the same dream again the next night. The king did as he was instructed and the temple came into being.
The temple is located few minutes’ drive from the main town. For its popularity, the temple was a lot smaller than I imagined. The temple was built on a small mount surrounded by shops selling religious items. The Kalyansagar Lake behind the temple makes the place a lot more scenic. The lake is home to many fishes and tortoise, well fed by hundreds of devotees that visit each year.
Before climbing up the few steps to the temple, there are many shops that sells all kinds of religious items, mostly sacrificial items. I spotted an old woman and her son with a goat climbing up the stairs. The goat was later taken up to the temple as a sacrifice. I couldn't know why but a lot of pilgrims come here each day to pay their tributes. The temple is also known as Kurma Pith because of its resemblance to that of tortoise or Kurma.
The temple has square shaped sanctum, like that of a typical rural Bengal hut with conical dome. The sanctum of the temple is quite small and one can only go as far as the door. There were identical statues of the same deity Maa Kali. The bigger one stood at 5 ft and is known as Tripura Sundari and the smaller one (2ft) is known as Chhotima; reportedly carried by kings on his hunting and other ventures.
The temple receives the largest number of visitors during Diwali festivals.
How to Reach:
The temple is located at Udaipur, which is around 55 km from Agartala.