Top Historical and Archaeological Sites in Tripura (2021)
Tripura is a land of rich cultural heritage and traditions. The place has few ancient and interesting historical and heritage sites of national importance. Some of these places date back to the 7th century. The archaeological sites are mainly dedicated to the Gods and Goddesses and are now prime tourist attractions.
Top Historical Sites in Tripura
1. Tripura State Museum (Ujjayanta Palace)
Ujjayanta Palace is a charming and gleaming white palace situated on the river banks. It is a very popular tourist destination. This place has now been built into a museum and is also known as Tripura State Museum. The palace was built in 1901 A.D by Maharaja Radha Kishore Manikya. It is a two-storied palace with marvelous architecture and has three high domes with a beautifully carved wooden ceiling. The floodlights add to the attractiveness of the palace. The palace has also served as the Tripura Legislative Assembly meeting place until 2011. Many Hindu temples and natural greenery surround this famous palace. The museum is a showcase of the lifestyle, art, culture, tradition, and customs of different communities.
- Location: Agartala, Tripura
- Timings: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Entry fee: INR 10
- Time required: 1-2 hours
Neermahal, meaning a Water Palace, is one of the most stunning attractions of this state. It is a very picturesque spot with a beautiful ambiance. The architecture of the palace is worth mentioning. The palace’s construction was completed in 1938 A.D., with its initiation in 1930 A.D. Maharaja Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya built it as their summer residence. India has only two water palaces, the other one being the Jal Mahal in Rajasthan. This beautiful palace is built in the middle of Rudrasagar Lake, which is another delightful sight.
Adventure lovers can also find some water sports activities, which makes it a perfect destination for some excitement and splendid views.
Also, the Neermahal Water Festival, which is celebrated for three days, is a very famous affair in the state.
- Location: Rudrasagar Lake, Melaghar, Tripura (53 Km from Agartala)
- Boat ride – INR 30 (shared boat)
- Timings: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Time required: 1-2 hours.
Top Archaeological Sites In Tripura
Unakoti is an ancient Shaivite pilgrimage site located around 178 Km from Agartala. It is also known locally by the name Subrai khung in the Tripuri language (Kokborok), which means one less a Koti in Bengali. The Shiva pilgrimage and the huge rock reliefs are dated back to the 7th-9th century. There are two types of images found at Unakoti: rock-carved figures and stone images. The rock-cut carvings consist of the Shiva’s head in the center and huge Ganesh figures surrounding it. The central part of the Shiva’s head is Unakotiswara Kal Bhairava and is around 30 feet high, including an embroidered head-dress, which is about 10 feet. There are two female figures on both sides of the head-dress of the Shiva. The one being of Goddess Durga standing on a Lion and the other figure on the other side.
Also, three giant images of Nandi Bull are found in the ground in a half-buried position. One can see various other stones as well as rock-cut images at Unakoti. The surrounding greenery and the magnificent sculptures are a tourist’s delight.
A very popular fair called Ashokastami Mela is held here in April every year, which is attended by Pilgrims from all over the place.
There Are Different Stories Behind The Famous Unakoti:
As per an old belief, Lord Shiva once, along with one crore (ten million) Gods and Goddesses, including himself, were traveling from Kailash to Kashi, and they reached Raghunandan Hill on their way at night. So they decided to take a rest on this Hill. Lord Shiva asked all the Gods and Goddess to wake up before sunrise the next morning to proceed further for Kashi’s journey. However, no one except Lord Shiva himself woke up before the sunrise. This made Lord Shiva angry, and he left alone for Kashi and cursed all the sleeping Gods & Goddess to become stone there forever. That is why the name of the place is Unakoti, as it has one less than a crore stone sculpture on the Hill.
According to another belief, once a local sculptor named Kalu Kamar dreamt that if he creates ten million sculptures of Gods and Goddesses in a night, this place will be considered an equivalent stature Kashidham. Kalu Kamar worked with full efforts and tirelessly throughout the night to complete this task. He was just one short of a crore image of the Gods and wished to create the last one as his sculpture, rather than of any god, so that the artist and his creation can be equally valued in the future. Since the task could not be completed before sunrise, there is one less than a crore image.
- Location: Kailasahar, Unakoti, Tripura
- Timings: 6:00 AM – 6:00 PM
It is an archaeological site that dates back to the 8th-9th century. The place is famous for the Hindu and Buddhist sculptures. A Hindu religious Trimurti terracotta image was found at Pilak is made in fired clay. There is another Surya image, the Sun God riding a chariot is found from the Sagardheba mound dates back to the 7th-9th century. The image is now deified in Rajesvari Ashram in a temple in Muhuripur. Also inscribed terracotta seals depicting the Buddhis stupas of very small sizes re-found at Pilak. As a general practice, in Tripura, it is the seal and not the Stupa that is worshipped. The place is an excellent destination for tourists exploring the history of the country. Both the Hindu and the Buddhist sculptures have been found during the excavation by the Archaeological Survey of India.
A Pilak festival is also held during December, which attracts locals and tourists in large numbers.
- Location: Jolaibari, South Tripura
- Time required: 3 hours
Devtamura is a hill range in South Tripura. The place is known for its archaeological site of rock sculptures and carved images of Hindu deities of Duga, Ganesha, and Kartikeya on the Gomti river banks. The stone images date back to the 15th-16th century.
Devtamura is situated at an altitude of 229 m above sea level and is around 85 km in length. From the top of the Devtamura commences the Damburu Falls. The site can be reached via boat only, a three-hour journey from Amarpur to Udaipur.
The archaeological site at Devtamura, Chabimura, is as old as 15-16 century. The site has massive carvings of the image of Devi Chakrakma.
There are 37 rock-cut images in total, including images of Durga, Ganesha, and many others. A fair is organized at the third terrace from the top of falls every year in mid of January. It is the time when the local tribals take a bath in the Gomti river.
- Location: Between Udaipur and Amarpur, South Tripura
- Time required: 2-3 hours