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The small and beautiful state of Tripura is tucked away on the Northeast India’s boundary. To its north, south and southeast, Tripura has an international boundary with Bangladesh while coming to its east it shares a common boundary with its neighbouring states of Assam & Mizoram. This Panoramic tiny State is inhabited by 19 ethenic tribes, Bengali, Tripuri Manipuri etc. community. Though the 3rd smallest state of India but its unique. Its blessed with scenic beauty, ancient places, temples, breathing taking verdants hills and bio-diversity treasure trove of wildlife santuries. The state has a historical past and one can find it across time from the Rajmala chronicles of kings of Tripura. The state had 185 royal rulers. There is a reference to he rulers of Bengali helping the Tripura kings in the 14th century as the kings of this state had to face frequent Mughal invasion with varying success.
The belief through once upon a time was that Tripura’s boundary was once extended up to Bay of Bengal that was when rulers spread powers from the Garo Hillsto Arakhan. With that it’s said that Tripura’s name has been coined from two Tripuri words: Tui meaning water and Pra means near. But different people has there way of thinking, some also believed that the name Tripura derived from presiding deity Tripurasundari. The deity is famous as one of the 51 Peethas important to Hindu Pilgrimage.
• Ujjayanta Palace – The gleaming white Ujjayanta Palace located in the capital city of Agartala evokes the age of Tripura Maharajas. It is a unique experience to witness living history and royal splendour within the boundaries of the Palace. Constructed by the king of Tripura Maharja Radha Kishor Manikya during the late 19th century and finished off in 1901. The Indo-Saracenic building is set up in large Mughal-style garden with two man-made lakes on its both sides. The palace is of two-storied mansion and has three domes, each 86 feet high, stunning tile floor, curved wooden ceiling and wonderful crafted door. Floodlights and light and sound fountain has been set up in the palace.
• Unakoti – means one less than a crore. Located about 186 km from Agartala, Unokoti is an important site of archaeological wonder. It is a Shaiva pilgrimage attraction and dates back to 7th-9th century A.D. The site consists of several huge vertical rocks-cut carvings on a hillside. The site shows strong evidence of Buddhist occupation but also has a central Shiva head and imposing Ganesha figures having a height of 30 feet. The rocky walls also have a carved images of Hindu pantheon like Durga and Vishnu. The unakoti rock-cut carving have the distinction of being the largest bas-relief sculpture in India.
• Bhubaneshwari Temple – Another temple of eminence of Tripura is this temple. located 55 km from Agartala on the eastern fringe of Udaipur town by the bank of bank of river Gomati. The temple is now under the control of the Archaeological Survey of India. It was built by Maharaja Govinda Manikya (1660–1676). The temple is immortalised in Rabindranath Tagore’s famous play known as Bisarjan and Rajarshi. Maharaja Govinda also features an important character in Tagore’s play. While approaching Bhubaneshwari Temple one can find the ruins of the palace of the Maharaja. Down below the temple the river Gomati flows.
• Gunabati Group of Temples – From its name it reveals that it was built in the name of her Highness Maharani Gunabati (wife of Maharaja Govinda Manikya), in 1668 A.D. The two other tempel also bears contemporary look but there actual history is still unveiled. Architecture of these temples resembles other contemporary temples of Tripura except the top most parts are without Stupa. Core-Chambers are marked by a presence of pitcher circular core chamber and its vestibule which was large with Stupa like crown is beautifully crafted like lotus.
• Chabimura – A famous panel of rock carving on the steep mountain walls on the banks of Gomati. There are huge images carved of Shiva, Vishnu, Kartika , Mahisasurmardini Durga and other Gods and goddesses. These images date back to 15th – 16th century A.D. Chabimura is 30 km away from Udaipur. It is situated in Amarpur subdivision. Devatamura means God’s peak and it a full range between Udaipur and Amarpur Subdivision. Its famous for a lot of idols of gods and goddess. These beautiful images are carved with a lot of dexterity on the rocky faces of Devtamura which is steep at 90-degree. The hill ranges are covered with thick jungles and one cab reach this adobe of gods only after trekking through these jungles.
• Boxanagar – Recently after denudation of a nature forest area, ruins of a brick built building emerged in the northwestern part of Sonamura Sub-Division on the edge of the border with Bangalasesh. The local people initially attribute the remains to the ancient temple of Manasa- the goddess of Snake. Attention was drawn to the Archaeological Survey of India and they took over the site. There an idol of Lord Buddha was discovered and it was confirmed that once upon a time it was a Buddhist Temple i.e. a Monastery. More than excavation of the site will unearth the hidden story.
• Pilak – a famous place of attraction for its archaeological remains of 8th-9th centuries. Pilak is situated at a distance of 144 km from Agartala. The place is a treasure house of Buddhist and Sculpture in the Hindu Sculptures. There runs a hilly rivulet near the place which is known as Pilak stream. Its an attractive with scenic beauty. Few temples with plaques of terracotta and stone images can be found here. Huge sculptures made of stones of Avalokitesvara in the 9th century. A.D. and Narasimha image of the 12th century A.D. were found here. Both of there are now preserved in the Museum of Agartala. Even now one can find many sculptures of Goddess in Pilak as Lord Durga, Lord Ganesha, Lord Suriya, etc. There is image of a God holding a lotus which is of 10 feet high. There are terracotta images of Kinnars. Two bronze statue of Buddhas were discovered in Rishyamukh near Pilak. All these lead to establish that the place was once under the rule of Buddhist kings followed by Hindu rulein subsequent years. Pilak, the treasure-trove of archaeological riches has close association with Mynamoti and Paharpur in Bangladesh. It is believed that the area has more hidden treasures and as such recently further excavation drive has been taken up by Archaeological Survey of India. Tourist may find it delighted to explore the history of this lovely destination.