Location: Ichhapur (Tulasi Khetra), Kendrapara, Odisha
The magnificent temples of Odisha have always been a reason to be proud about India’s architectural prodigy. With a rich historical background, these temples have attracted a large number of connoisseurs from all over the world. There are apparantely more than 4,000 temples in this state and each one has its own historical as well as spiritual prominence. Fortunately, most of the prominent temples have successfully survived the ravages of time and still stand intact with their ancient glory. One of such temples is the Baladevjew temple located in the Kendrapara district. It is a very old temple and has been dedicated to Lord Balarama.
Spread across an area of 2 acres, the Baladevjew temple is one of the most famous temples of Odisha. Along with Lord Balarama, Lord Jagannath and Devi Subhadra are also worshiped here. The temple complex is mainly divided into two parts: one consisting of the temples and the other of a garden. The first part includes four temples called Sri Mandir, Majhi Mandir, Natya Mandir and Bata Mandir. A boundary wall, standing at a height of 14 meters, circumferences the temple complex. All the temples within the main complex have been built in a traditional style.
The main temple measures 75 feet in height and 40 feet in width. It is a seven step construction, at the end of which, an idol of Goddess Tulsi seen in a sitting position is stationed. Arrangements for 3 main and 5 minor offerings to the deities are made in a day. The deities are dressed and decorated in different ways on different occasions. This tradition is called Besha or Alankara. The chariot on which the three deities perform the famous Car festival is the biggest chariot in the world and is known as Brahma Taladhwaja Ratha.
The state of Odisha is replete with temples. Yet, a visit to this very temple in Ichhapur is absolutely a must for all!