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Welcome to Orissa
 
Orissa
 

Over the millenia Orissa has successfully assimilated and synthesized the best of Buddhist, Jain and Hindu cultures. Orissa has a history spanning a period of over 3000 years. In ancient times, it was the proud kingdom of Kalinga. Kalinga was a major seafaring nation that controlled and traded with most of the sea routes in the Bay of Bengal. For several centuries, a substantial part of South Asia & Southeast Asia was under its cultural influence. The famous temple at Angkor Wat in Combodia is a fine example of Orissan-influenced Indian architecture.

The landscape of Orissa is dotted with a number of ancient manificient temples. The temples of Orissa conform to the Indo Aryan Nagara style of architecture, with distinctive features specific to this region. The best known of these are the Lingaraja temple at Bhubaneshwar, Jagannath Temple at Puri and the Sun Temple at Konark.

Orissa also has the largest variety of indigenous tribal communities, which are at various stages of socio-economic development. At one extreme are the group which lead a relatively secluded and archaic mode of life, keeping their core culture intact, while at the other extreme there are communities which are indistinguishable from the general agricultural communities.

The tribal people express their cultural identity and distinctiveness in their social organization, language, rituals and festivals and also in their dress, ornaments, art and craft.

 
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