Traces its history from Gupta Period, Muchalinda is a Buddha Monastery in Odisha which is located near the confluence of the Magar and Ang Rivers in Gaisilat Block, Padmapur Subdivision in Bargarh district. The statue of Muchalinda was first discovered by an art historian, Charles Fabri in 1961. In 1978, an excavation project was carried out here by P.G. Department of History, Sambalpur University. However, it is said that this popular heritage site in Odisha was once had a multi-storied structure. But due to brick robbing, most of the foundation plinths have been destroyed. The excavation also discovered the traces of walls of the chambers and cells of the Bhikshus, chaitya hall, and mendicants. Along with that, two Buddha idols were also recovered on a small stone called mandapa. These idols include the statues of a Muchalinda Buddha and Buddha at Sarnath while giving the homily. As per Buddhist scripture, Vinaya Pitaka, the serpent King Muchalinda protected Lord Buddha during the second of his enlightenment programme. Muchalinda created an umbrella from his hood to protect Buddha from the rain and storm. Thus, the locals worship his statue call him as Naga-Muni.
Best Time to Visit
Winter season is the best time to visit Muchalinga. The season starts in the month of October and lasts till March. Throughout this whole time, the weather remains all comfortable and pleasant to plan a trip to the place.
How to Reach?
Swami Vivekananda Airport is the closest airhead from Padmapur (174 km), the place where Muchalinda is located. However, the nearest airport, However, Bargarh Road Railway Station is the nearest railway station from Muchalinga. One can also reach the place by road as it is very well connected through roads and highways.
Nearby Tourist Attractions
- Nrusinghanath Temple: One of the most esteemed Hindu temples in Odisha, Nrusinghanath is devoted to Nrusinghanath, another form of Lord Vishnu. Erected at a height of 45 feet, the temple has two section; the first part is where Lord Nrusinghanath is seated and other comprises four pillars supporting three gates.
- Gandhamardan Hill: Believed to be a part of the mountain which was carried by Lord Hanuman in the epic Ramayana, Gandhamardan houses over than 5000 rare herbs with medicinal properties. The place is also known as a wildlife sanctuary as the place is also a home to a number of rare birds and animals.
- Astasambhu Temple: Astasambhu Temple is one of the largest shrines in Odisha dedicated to Lord Shiva. Constructed during the ruling period of the Chauhan dynasty, this temple boasts the finest and amazing intricate carvings and artistic architecture.