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From: 2013.06.21 To: 2013.06.21
One of India’s largest and most impressive religious events, Ratha Yatra draws multiple thousands of devoted pilgrims (and curious tourists) every year to the holy temple town of Puri on the scenic Bay of Bengal. Marking Krishna’s journey from Gokul to Mathura, the festival centers on a stupendous procession, featuring three massive, ornately decorated chariots (rathas). The colorful, temple-like cars carry the image of Krishna (known as Jagannath in the region) as well as of his brother, Balarama, and sister, Subhadra. The rathas are pulled through the crowded streets to Gundicha Mandir, where the images take a week-long rest before being hauled back in the chariots to Puri’s Jagannath Temple. Accommodation gets booked up solid during the festival, so it’s wise to plan well in advance.