Rath Yatra 2023 is just around the corner. You must have known that Ratha Yatra is a major Hindu celebration held each year. Devotees celebrate the Rath Yatra at the famed Jagannatha temple in Puri, Odisha, India.
The Yatra is on Dwitiya Tithi during Shukla Paksha of Ashada month. This is according to the Hindu lunar calendar. In the Gregorian calendar, it is now in June or July.
Rath Yatra 2023
Puri Rath Yatra 2023 will begin on June 20th. According to the old Oriya calendar, the event is on the second day of the Shukla Paksha, Ashadh month. Hundreds of worshippers will pull the chariot on this day.
According to the data from previous years, approximately 4 to 5 lakh devotees will witness the Rath Yatra.
Rath Yatra 2023 Rituals TimeTable
Here are some of the important dates of the main rituals of Rath Yatra 2023:
|Snan Yatra||4 June 2023|
|Netra Utsav||19 June 2023|
|Hera Panchami||24 June 2023|
|Bahuda Yatra||28 June 2023|
|Suna Besha||29 June 2023|
|Niladri Bije||1 July 2023|
Rath Yatra 2023 Chariots
The three chariots are all crafted of wood and hand-painted by local artists. Lord Jagannath’s chariot is the largest of the three, with 16 enormous wheels and a 44-foot height.
Lord Balabhadra’s chariot has 14 wheels and is 43 feet tall. Whereas Goddess Subhadra’s chariot has 12 wheels and is 42 feet tall.
People hurry to help draw the chariots. Because they think that moving the chariot awards them good deeds. It also gives atonement for their faults. Lord Balaram’s chariot is first, followed by Goddess Subhadra’s, and lastly Lord Jagannath’s.
Rath Yatra Route & Rituals
Puri to Gundicha temple is just 3 km away. However owing to the massive crowds, Puri Rath Yatra takes a couple of hours to reach.
Once there, the goddesses stay in the temple for nine days. Giving pilgrims darshan before returning to Puri in the same manner. The trek back is also famous as the Bahuda Yatra.
The procession comes to a halt on the way back to the Mausi Maa Temple (their aunt’s house). Where the goddesses will have Poda Pitha (a type of delicious pancake). It is a belief that it is a poor man’s cuisine that Lord Jagannath enjoyed.
People celebrate Lord Jagannatha’s yearly visit to Gundicha Mata temple as Ratha Yatra.
The Lord Jagannatha, Balabhadra, and Subhadra leave their abode in the main temple.
They spend a few days in this temple built by Gundicha. Queen Gundicha was the wife of the legendary King Indradyumna. He built the Puri Jagannatha temple.
Lord Jagannatha worshippers clean the Gundicha temple one day before Ratha Yatra. Gundicha Marjana is a rite that takes place one day before Ratha Yatra to clean the Gundicha temple.
Read About: Jagannath Puri Temple Timing
What Happens Before Rath Yatra?
The three idols will have a traditional wash before the Puri Rath Yatra. After the bath, they are in isolation until the procession day. This is because they get slightly discolored after the bath. The lords are unwell for that period of time.
On the day of the Yatra, people gather outside the temple. They chant and dance, waiting for the King of Puri. There isn’t actually a king in Puri.
However, a descendant of Orissa’s Royal Family carries the idols out of the temple. He is the sole individual with total control over the Jagannath Temple.
Before declaring the chariot appropriate for the deities, he sweeps it with a gold-handled broom. Moreover, he also decorates the floor with flowers.
He then washes the ground in front of the chariots and sprays the area with sandalwood water. This is a well-known Yatra ceremony which is also famous as the Chhera Pahara.
This rite symbolizes that everyone is equal in the Lord’s eyes. It takes a couple of hours to place the statues in the Chariots, but the believers’ passion only grows.
Ulto Rath 2023 date is June 28. This marks the end of the Jagannath Rath Yatra.
The temple is open throughout the year. However, for 15 days before to the Rath Yatra, one cannot see the three deities. Which are Lord Jagganath, Balabhadra, and Subhadra. They are unwell during that time, so they do not offer people darshan. Please check the Rath Yatra schedule before traveling to Puri.
Rath Yatra is the biggest festival in Puri and Odisha. Hence, it is almost impossible to get hotels during Rath Yatra. However, if you book hotels in Puri in advance, that will be the best option. Check our Rath Yatra Accommodation Package for more details.
The temple will remain closed from June 4 through June 18, 2023. The illness is Anasara, and it occurs following the ritual bathing (Snana Purnima) of the deities worshipped at the Puri Jagannath Temple.
The Rath Yatra represents dedication, peace, harmony, and fraternity. Being a part of the event will bring good fortune and worldly prosperity to us.