Atharnala Bridge near Puri
History of Atharnala BridgeAtharnala Bridge was planned and constructed in 13th century during the rulings of Ganga dynasty by Shree Bhanu Deba, and is placed over top of the Mandupur stream. The name of the Atharnala is derived by an arrangement of two words, Athara and Nala. In the local Odiya language the 'Athar' means the number 18 and 'Nala' means a channel or a passage, hence 'Atharnala' altogether means '18 Passages'. And there are actually 18 brick passages upon which the Atharnala Bridge is made. The basic purpose of the bridge was to work as a make the transportation and communication easier for the people of Puri and also for the one residing in the nearby villages of it. The Bridge was helpful in crossing the Mandupur stream from one to the other.
Structure of Atharnala BridgeThis Atharnala Bridge was constructed in an effort to develop the transport system of the place. The Atharnala Bridge is 85 meters long and its width is around 11 meters. The architecture of the Bridge is that of the historical ones which is the prime reason for the visitors to visit the bridge and it has been a tourist spot. The Atharnala Bridge covers 18 arches which are of different length, starting from 7ft to 16 ft. The original bridge has been renovated and a new layer of concrete has been made on that in order to maintain the strength of this historical bridge. The bridge is now under the Archeological Survey of India and is said to be the protected site and heavy vehicles are not allowed to cross the bridge. The bridge is believed to be of 13th century and hence it is being preserved for the safety concerns of the visitors visiting this historic bridge of Atharnala.
The Atharnala Bridge is of special importance to the pilgrims visiting Puri. The pilgrims can get a spectacular long distance view of the Lord Jagannath Temple by standing on the Atharnala Bridge and often come here to offer prayers to their Almighty. The bridge is believed to be one of the most preserved historical structures of Puri and also attract thousands of tourist those who visit the city of Puri. Atharnala Bridge is one of the gateways to enter the city of Lord Jagannatha Puri, and it also portrays the spectacular engineering of the prehistoric times.
The bridge stands strong at one of the entrances to the Holy city of Puri and welcomes the tourists and also the common public who visits Puri.