Tripura has a cultural relevance and it is in the list of one of the seven states of the north eastern belt of India. The name Tripura is associated with Tripura Sundhari considered as the principal deity of the state having a great relevance among the Hindus solely because it is among one of 51 peeths having a great significance in the Hindu religion. When you talk of Tripura, you get the wonderful feel of the water bed as it is considered as the land that has the touch with the water. You have the wonderful connectivity of the state with India and it is by air, road and the sea. You can go to the capital of the state by the name Agaratala. Being in the beautiful capital of Tripura and seeing the temples and the churches is a great fun. The sculptures of Pitak can be a thrill. The beauty of Jampuri hill becomes more wonderful with the coolness.
When you see the palaces, the wildlife sanctuaries, the museums of this place; you really become mesmerized. Do not forget to go to the government museum of Tripura and you will get to see coins and other objects dating back from 8th to the 10th centuries. There are many wildlife sanctuaries in this state and you can have the wildlife adventure by going to Trishna wildlife sanctuary, Gumti wildlife sanctuary and many more. When it comes to visiting the temples of this place, you can go to the Tripura Sundhari temple and many more. Participation in the fair, festivals and interaction with the people of this belt will make the bond between you and them quite stronger. There are various dance forms in Tripura and you can feel the charm by seeing all forms of dance art.
One of the seven states in the North East, Tripura is believed to be originated from “Tripura Sundari” – the supreme deity of the state remarkable in Hindus as one of the fifty one peeths of Hindu Pilgrims. In addition to this it is also maintained that primarily the land was called “Tuipra” which connotes “A land adjoining the water.” Tour to Tripura India will be very exciting for you because of its ethnic cultural diversity, its bountiful natural purlieus, its temples, museums and palaces. Tourist attractions of Tripura inveigle flocks of tourists.
How to Reach Tripura
By Air: Agartala, the state capital has the main airport where many public and private airlines operate regular flights. The state has 3 more airports in Khowai, Kamalpur and Kailashahar where small chartered-planes can land easily.
By Rail: The nearest railway station is Kumarghat at a distance of 140 km. from Agartala. This railway station is connected to Guwahati which is well connected by other cities.
By Road: NH 44 connects Agartala to Guwahati via Shillong. But because of location reaching Tripura India is easier from Bangladesh by road.
Area :10,492 sq. km
Capital : Agartala
Districts : 4
Languages : Bengali, Manipuri and Kakborak
Minimum Temperature 24 Degree Celsius
Maximum Temperature : 35 Degree Celsius
Minimum Temperature : 7 Degree Celcius
Maximum Temperature :27 Degree Celcius
Clothing Summers- Cottons
Winters – Heavy Woolens
Places of Interest in Tripura
Agartala: The capital city, lying on the banks of Haora River, was the seat of the Kings of Tripura of the Debbarman dynasty. It is city full of temples and palaces. The Places of Interest in Agartala are the College Tilla (the college premises of Agartala), Ujjayanta Palace (a Greek styled palace built by by Maharaja Radha kishore Manikaya), Kunjaban Palace, Jagannath Temple, Venuban Vihar, Buddha Mandir, Ravindra Kanan, State Museum, Tribal Museum, Sukanta Academy, Laxminarayan Temple, Uma Maheswar Temple, Benuban Bihar, Gedu Mian Mosque, Malanch Niwas, Rabindra Kanan, Purbasha, Handicrafts Designing Centre, Fourteen Goddess Temple, Portuguese Church and Puratan Agartala.
Deotamura: This site is remarkable for the rock cut reliquary having antediluvian idols of Shiva, Ganesh, Vishnu, Kartikeya, Mahishasur Mardini Durga and other gods and goddesses carved out of stone. The large images carved on vertical rocks are immensely beautiful. You can enjoy a boat ride here to enjoy the panaroma of lush green vegetations, picturesque sites of hills and the breath taking sculptures.
Pilak: Dating back to 8th and 9th centuries it is a treasure house of Hindu and Buddhist sculptures. Beautiful images of terracotta plaques and sealing scattered in a vast area here showcases the existence of skeptical classes, creeds and sects of people followers of both Hinduism and Buddhism. Gargantuan stone images of Avolokiteshwar and Narasimha are also worth seeing here.
Udaipur: Formerly called as Rangamati and Radha Kishorepur, the city of Udaipur in Tripura India is a house of many temples. Tripura Sundri temple or Mata Tripur Sundri (Maa Kali) temple, Bhubeneshwari temple, Sepahijala-the wildlife sanctuary are must visit here.
Unakoti: It means “One less than a crore” and said that these many rock cut engravings are available here. According to the Hindu mythos Lord Shiva taook a night halt at this location when he was going Varanasi / Kashi along with one crore God and Goddesses. The next morning he asked other God and Goddesses to wake up and proceed for Kashi but no except Shiva proceeded for Kashi. Lord Shiva cursed others and since then they have transformed into stone images. Thereby there are one less than crore images in a charming lush landscape.
Jampui Hill: It is home of eternal springs, beautiful land scape and soothing climate. The hill ranges shelters Mizo and Reango tribes. You will find different species of orchids and other wild trees wearing blossoms. You will enjoy sunset and sunrise here and good trekking routes.
Museums and Palaces of Tripura
Ujjayanta Palace: Built by Radhakishore Manikya Bahadur in190, this Mughal and Indo Greek styled palace is located in the heart of city. The palace has been embellished with lush gardens, pools and fountains. You will see and enjoy the Musical Fountain on both sides of the domes of this three storied structure, Flood Lightings and the exquisite interiors.
Kunjaban Palace: This yet another imperial palace, built by Maharaja Birendra Kishore Manikya, is located nearby Ujjayanta Palace bears a testimony of affiliation of RabindraNath Tagore, the Nobel laureate poet, with it. The picturesque charm of this palace nestled in the emerald hillocks inspired him to compose many memorable songs. The lush gardens, lawns and yards are worth seeing which is the official residence of Governor of Tripura India. “Rabibdra Kann” is the southern part of the garden which is open for public.
Neermahal Palace: This water – palace built on RudraSagar Lake is a royal Palace with influence of Hindu and Mughal architecture. The castles, the whopping towers, the moats and the bridges here are simply breath taking. The two parts of the palace, one on Western side called “Andar Mahal (used by the royal family) and the other one on Eastern side (used by the security personnels and servants), flood lighting, open stage theater is very lovely here. How about the Light and Sound Show ! Yes, it has even more to it – water sports. Great recreation indeed !
Malancha Niwas: It is a bungalow adjoining the Kunjban Palace located on a hillock. It was basically a Kachcha House where RabindraNath Tagore stayed in 1919. It was gradually develpoed as a Pucca House and named Malancha Niwas.
Tripura Government Museum: The museum preserves the arts and crafts of Tripura consisting of rare stone and bronze idols and images, ancient coins, archaeological items of Tripura and neighboring areas, Embroidery of Bengal (Kantha) and Buddhist sculptures from Pilak dating back to 8th to 10th century.
Wildlife of Tripura
Tripura India is rich in flora and fauna and so there are many wildlife sanctuaries in Tripura that are a home to many animals, birds, insects and plant kingdom.
Gumti Wildlife Sanctuary: This sanctuary of South Tripura is stretched in a vast area where it has a great water reservoir which attracts several local resident birds along with some migratory birds. Elephants, Bison, Sambar, Barking deer, Wild goat or Sarow apart from many other animals and reptiles dwell in this sanctuary. If you are interested in Eco Tourism then this is the best destination for you. Boasting of many species of flora and fauna, it is rich in countless medical and therapeutical botanical species of plants.
Sepahijala Wildlife Sanctuary: Expanded in a vast area this sanctuary boasts of rare and exotic birds and primates. You will also find a Botanical Garden Zoo, which attracts a commoner and a Botanist alike, a lake and plentiful species of tress. All through the year this sanctuary is extremely green with plantation. Among primates you will see Rhesus, macaque, Pigtailed macaque, Capped langur, and Spectacled langur. It is not only a wildlife sanctuary but also a Research Center. The spectacular view of 150 species of migratory and non migratory birds is bewitching. The different sections of the sanctuary shelters different animals and birds, Carnivores Section, Primate Section, Ungulate Section, Reptile Section and Aviary Section. The lakes adorning the sanctuary like Abasarika and Amrit Sagar lakes provide facilities of boating.
Gondacherra Wild Life Sanctuary : If you are looking for a break from daily monotony come to this sanctuary and engross in pure and serene ambience. Traveling deep in the dense forests where a rendezvous with Tigers, Bison, Deers, various primates, even a few wild horses is possible will be enthralling with a mix feeling of excitement and fear. The water bodies adjoining the sanctuary is a home to many migratory and non migratory birds.
The Trishna Wildlife Sanctuary: Expanded in a large area this sanctuary is rich in vegetation and animals. It is kind of Research Center for younger generation to speculate the natural habitats of animals in depth. It has a huge collection of Indian Gaurs, migratory and resident birds like Pheasant tailed Jacana, Red Jungle Fowl, White breasted king Fisher, Indian Black drongo, primates and many animals. The water spots in the sanctuary are for studying the animals and birds of the place.
Temples of Tripura
TripuraSundari Temple: This temple, regarded as one of the 51 pithas of Hindu Pilgrimage, has a construction of sqaure type sanctum fashioned in unique Bengali styled conical dome in Udaipur. Two identical idols of the same deity, Tripura Sundari, one known as “Choti Ma” and the other “Tripura Sundari” is remarkable feature of this temple. It is also called “Karma Pitha” because of its tortoise shaped like affinity. Ma Kali’s idol of “reddish black Kashti Patthar” in the temple is worshipped in “Sorosho Form”.
Bhavanneshwari Temple: Standing at the river banks of Gomti in Udaipur, this temple was built by Maharaja Govinda Manikya. The name of the temple got cannonized through the works of RabindraNath Tagore, Visarjan and Rajarshi.
Jagannatha Temple: In addition to many temples of Vishnu, many temples of Siva and Sakta sect are also found in Udaipur. This temple is a specimen of Tripura exquisite architectural expertise. According to a belief Daityanaryana, the General-in Chief of Maharaja Bijaya Manikya had installed the idol of Lord Jagannatha brought from Puri.
Chaturdasha Devta Temple: This ancient temple located in Old Agartala has a historical importance. The temple has fourteen head images of Gods and Goddesses called ‘Chaturadasha Devta’ by the King Krishna Manikya which are ceremoniously worshiped during the ‘Kharchi Puja’. The temple has a Nat Mandapa and a Grabhgriha.
Uma Maheshwar Temple: Located opposite to the Jagannatha Temple, Uma Maheshwar temple is expanded on the grass land of Ujjyanta Palace. The temple is Saffron in color as the Jagannatha temple and has lavish green yards.
Kali Temple: Also called Kasba Kali Bari, this temple is located on a mountain overlooking a water pool “Kamla Sagar”. You will find affinity between the images of Dasabhuja Durga or Mahishasurmardini with the images of this temple. The idol of Kali is made of sand stone and the Shivalinga, stalagmite, at the feet has given it the name of KaliBari. During the festival season the place is abuzz with activities of infinite pilgrims.
Venuban Vihara: This Buddha shrine has a metal idol of Buddha made primarily in Burma but later brought to Venuban Vihara. Buddha Poornima is anually celebrated here with great zest and piety. The peaceful and composed ambience of the temple is very relaxing. This small shrine attracts many tourists and pilgrims.
Budha Temple: Located in the heart of city, Buddha Mandir, is a much revered religious place. The two beautiful idols of Buddha and Bodhisattva here are believed to have Burmese origin. The environ of the temple is tranquil and so it tempts us to relax and refresh.
Benu Ban Bihari: This temple is a clincher of Tripura’s hospitality and adoption of other cultures and religions. Tourists are attracted to the calm and peaceful temple and the monastery it has. It is located in the heart of city so going on foot is also possible.
Culture of Tripura
Art And Craft Of Tripura
The people of Tripura India are adept artisans. The things they make are very beautiful and useful . The state people are famous for CANE and BAMBOO work including table mats, floor mats, room dividers, decorated wall panels, attractive furniture of cane, various gift items, ceilings, paneling, plaques, Pot containers (Planters), small-framed mirrors, hair clips, powder cases, decorative trays. The elegant cane furniture of the state is exported to other countries also. On Tripura tourism, check out “Mudha”, the low stool made of bamboo and split cane. Special and peculiar ornaments of bamboo and cane are made only in Tripura. So, if you are fond of chic ethnic jewelery, then have some ornaments from Tripura.
The Handicrafts And Handloom industry of Tripura is also very unique. It is a replica of dexterityand exquisiteness of people of Tripura. Handloom is the main craft of Tripura and so you will find Tripura handloom with vertical and horizontal stripes with myriad of colors and embroidery.
Basketry is also equally important for Tripura India. You will easily find different varieties of baskets like jamatia firewood basket, riang carrying basket, tukri, karawala tukri, laii, sempa khari, date basket, turi, grain storage basket, dulla and sudha – the traditional fish trap.
Pathla Rain Shield is a circular shade of cone ot have a guard against rain. These shields are intricately made by the people of Tripura. SMOKING PIPES made by the Riang tribe to smoke tobacco are also remarkable. It is made in three parts with exclusive style.
Fish Traps And Fish Baskets are two more crafts of these people. Sudha and Dulla are different kinds of baskets and traps for fishing.
People Of Tripura
You will find many tribal and scheduled tribes communities in the state representing a harmonious social milieu. These people speak Bengali, Tripuri and Manipuri. The major tribes residing here are:
Tripuri Community : These people, living in hill slopes in a group, the constitute the largest part of the population of the social strata. Their typical houses are made of bamboo with a elevation of six feet for defense against wild beasts. Gradually these people have shifted to plains and adopted modern mannerisms in terms of dress, lifestyle etc. A tripuri woman wears a scarp – Parcha – reaching down below the knee.
Reang Community : Reangs are the second biggest community in the state. These people are much sophisticated and docile. “Rai” is the term for the head for the community. These people have no normal court of justice. Educationally and Economically backward, they are s still the primitive group.
Chakma Community : These people, followers of Buddhism, are found in the Sub-Divisions of Kailashahar, Amarpur, Sabroom, Udaipur, Belonia and Kanchanpur. They are divided into many groups nad sections. The chiefs of this community, called “Dewans”, enjoy immense powers and authorities. The Chakma women are also adept in weaving like other tribal women.
Halam(Malsum) Community : These people have hailed from sects of Kukis wh olive din Tripura even before Tripuris conquered the land. The Kukis who submitted to Raja of Tripur are called Halams. These tribes were divided in 12 groups or dafas. Gradually now there are sixteen clans. They are followers of Sakt cult and believe in offerings and sacrifices to avoid calamities. They solve their disputes in a social gathering at Puja for harmony and peace.
Garo Community : These people live in the South and Dhalai District of Tripura. Primarily they lived in Tong Ghar of Bamboo but now they prefer to have houses made of mud walls with “Chan” grass or roof. Like other tribes they also have unique lifestyle. “ Sangnakma” are the heads of the community and “Kama” is the priest of the community.
Lusai Community : They are basically residents of the east and north east hills of Tripura, but now setteld in Jampui hills. Their socail lifestyle and customs attracts others. They make their livelihood by Jhoom cultivation living at high altitudes of hills.
Darlong community : These people, living mostly in Kailashahar Sub-Division in North Tripura District, are the sub castes of the Lusai community. Their main occupation is producing pineapple, orange and cotton.
Moghs: This is another group of Tripuris residing in Arahan. They do not believe in any discrimation on the basis of community. They are very disciplined and peace loving people. The Mogh women are strong built and sedulous and fond of jewelery. Their occupation is jhoom cultivation and plough cultivation.
Fairs And Festivals Of Tripura
Garia Puja– It is celebrated on the 7th of April to seek prosperity and enjoyment round the year. It is marked with sacrifices of cocks, hordes of devotees, both men and women.
Kharchi Puja: This puja held in July is an attraction for all people visiting the Chaturdas Deutas Temple in Old Agartala to worship the fourteen deities of head image.
Ker Puja: It is a tribal festival celebrated within particular boundaries which is not allowed to be trespassed by anyone else.
Durga Puja: During the month of October/ November, durga Puja is celebrated with great active participation. After the celebrations end, the idols of Durga are taken in a procession and immersed in water bodies.
Tirthamukh: It is celebrated in January / February during the Uttarayan Sankranti by a lot many devout. People gather and take holy bath irrespective of their caste, class, creed or race during the festival.
Dances Of Tripura
aria Dance: This dance is performed by tripuris to thank God “Garia” for good harvest. This seven day long carnival involves dancing and singing to please the deity God.
Lebang Boomani Dance: When Tripuris expect monsoons after Garia, they dance during the period. Men make intricate rhythmically sweet sounds with bamboo chips to take the insects out of their hiding places and women run after the insects called ‘Lebang’ to catch them.
Hozagiri Dance: This dance form of Raeng community is unique. Restricted use of hands or upper part of body and graceful use of waist down body parts make it very charming. Women wear Parcha and Rea, coin ring and other beautiful ornaments.
Bizu Dance: This dance of Chakma community dentoes end of Bengali Calendar. They bid farewell to the bygone year and welcome the new year. ‘Khenggarang’ and ‘Dhukuk’ musical instruments (sorts of flutes) are played during the dance performance. The Chakma women put flower in their hair and wear jewelery.
Hai – Hak Dance: This is a dance form of Halam community during the culmination of harvesting season when they traditionally worship Laxmi. It is community dance with immense zest and grace depicting the traditional heritage of the past.
Wangala Dance: After a good harvest this dance is performed in every house. The head of the community visit each house and cuts a pumpkin as an integral part of worship. After the sacrifice of pumpkin women dance to the tunes of ‘Dama’ and ‘Aaduri’. It is a kind of rehearsal for war.
Welcome Dance: In this Lusai community dance the girls clad vibrantly in gaudy attires. They perform this dance on arrival of any guest to their house. As they dress up colorfully there is no room for ornaments but only some fragrant flowers.