Odisha formerly Orissa, an eastern Indian state on the Bay of Bengal, is known for its tribal cultures and its many ancient Hindu temples. The capital, Bhubaneswar, is home to hundreds of temples, notably the intricately-carved Mukteshvara. The Lingaraj Temple complex, dating to the 11th century, is set around sacred Bindusagar Lake. The Odisha State Museum is focused on the area’s history and environment.
Puri is home to the 12th-century Jagannath Temple, dedicated to its namesake the Lord of the Universe. Farther along the coast, Konark is the site of the ruins of the 13th-century Sun Temple, a famous example of the region’s native Kalinga architectural style. North of Puri, the crafts village at Raghurajpur offers visitors traditional Oriya paintings and tribal handicrafts. Odisha is also known for its beaches at Puri, Balighai, and elsewhere. Other natural attractions include the mangroves at Bhitarkanika National Park, the bird sanctuary at brackish Chilika Lake, and Simlipal National Park’s tiger reserve and waterfalls.