June 22, 2015

Papanasini Temple Complex - Bhubaneswar

Site Name: Papanasini Temple Complex
Site Type: Hindu ancient temple
Location:   Near Lingaraja temple, Bhubaneswar city, Odisha state, India
Highlights: Architecturally beautiful ancient temples
Nearest Railway Station: Bhubaneswar
Nearest Airport: Bhubaneswar
How to reach: Well connected by road, rail and air
Hotel: There are many options across the city
Restaurants: Varieties of options 

Bhubaneswar is not only about the gigantic Lingaraja temple or the architectural marvels such as Raja Rani temple or Parasurameshwar temple. The city has a lot more to offer for any enthusiastic and art loving traveler or devotee. The city, which is the capital city of Odisha (formerly Orissa) state of India, is called as 'the City of Temples'. It once had around 3000 temples and even today hundreds of temples are located in every nook and corner of this heritage rich city. Let us explore a little known temple named Papanasini temple in this article.
Papanasini and Baneswar Shiva Temples


It is very difficult to provide the exact location of small and little known temples. Papanasini group of temples, though is historically prominent and architecturally important, remains little known. It is located on the left side of the Ratha Road leading from Lingaraja temple to Badehibanka Chowk in Bhunabeswar. The nearest temple to this complex is Chitrakarini temple. 

Unknown Temple, Papanasini Complex

Papanasini temple complex has the following sites:
  • Papanasini Tank
  • Papanasini Temple
  • Baneswar Shiva Temple
  • Maitreswara Temple
Papanasini Tank:

Papanasini tank is a beautiful tank that belongs to the temple but it is unfortunately poorly maintained. Locally known as Papanasini Kunda, it was built in the 11th century CE. In and around this tank, there are many heritage rich ancient temples the main being Papanasini temple.

Papanasini Temple:

Although the temple complex is called as Papanasini Temple Complex, the actual Papanasini temple is not the main building in the complex. It is a small temple lying in a corner in this complex. The temple just has sanctum sanctorum and it does not have Jagmohana. The vimana is Pidha type (pyramidal in shape). There is no deity found currently in this tiny Shiva temple. The temple is facing towards the southern direction. The entrance has Navagraha panel. The temple was built around 14th or 15th century CE.
Maitreswara Temple

Baneswar Shiva Temple:

To the east of Papanasini temple, there is a small temple named Baneswar Shiva temple. The temple has Triratha Vimana. The niches around the temple wall are empty without any idols. The deity of the temple is Shiva Linga. Nandi idol is found facing towards the deity. The temple is facing towards east direction and it does not have Jagmohan. The temple can be dated back to Somavamshi period in the 9th century CE.

Unknown Temple, Papanasini Compled

Another Temple:

There is another Shiva temple in Papanasini temple complex. The name is not known. It has tall rekha deul type vimana and Pidha type (pyramidal) Jagmohana. There is no deity inside the sanctorum nowadays. The Navagraha panel is found at the entrance of the temple. The walls around the temple has good sculptures. This temple was built by Suryavamsi Gajapati ruler Kapilendradeva in 1449 CE. There are few records which call this temple also as Papanasini temple.

Maitreswara Temple
Maitreswara Temple:

Maitreswara temple is the main temple in the complex. It has rekha deul type vimana on top of the sanctum sanctorum and Pidha type roof for Jagmohana. There is no deity found in the sanctorum. The upper portion of vimana as well as Jagmohana are broken. There are a lot of beautiful sculptures around the walls of the temple such as Nagas, Mithuna figures, dancing girls, elephant procession, etc.
The temple was built by the Gangas in the 13th century CE.

Happy travelling.

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