About the Temple
Sri Astasambhu temple is small temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located in Tiadi Sahi of Puri. In native language 'Asta' means 'Eight' and 'Sambhu' is another name of Lord Shiva. Astasambhu temple houses a cluster of eight different colored shiva lingas made of precious stones. Some are white while some are red and black. The shiv lingas appear different in color when viewed from different directions. The color changes due to the reflection of the sun. These eight shiv lingas are named after Lord Shiva.
The temple is constructed from grey sandstone and the style used for building was dry masonry which belongs to the Kalinga style of architecture. The temple has a vimana and a porch. When the vimana is elevated, it stands 3.85m tall.
Apart from the main deity Lord Shiva, the four-armed Ganesh shrine is a must visit, because of the unique pose of the deity. Two upper hands are broken whereas the parasu can be seen in the lower left hand and the lower right hand has the rosary with the varadamudra posture.
The architectural pattern of this temple belongs to the Kalinga style and there are enough evidences in the form of the bada division and Pabhaga sculptures that proves that this temple belongs to the 10th century AD. This temple is not functional anymore because the structure looks entirely worn out. It was an amazing piece of glory in the past but now in ruins because of the shoddy maintenance of the temple. The Ratnakara Gargabatu family has taken up the private ownership of this temple.
This is the ancient temple related to the Puri kings. It is said that Asta Sambhu cured once the ancient king from a life-threatening ailment. As per the legend, the Shiva lingas here are ones that were captured when the kings defeated opposing kingdoms.
Festivals and Celebrations
The festivals such as Mahashivaratri and Rathyatra are celebrated at a grand scale in this temple.
How to reach
By Air: Bhubaneswar is the nearest airport which is only around 52km away from the temple.
By Train: Bhubaneswar railway station is the nearest to the temple and has train services from and to all the major cities. This station is just 49km away from the temple. Other nearby stations are Bani Bihar, Lingaraj road and Mancheswar.
By Road: There are lots of cab services from Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Konark and Puri. Dhenekal is also the nearest place from where cab service is available to and from the temple.