The splendid Sun temple of Konarak, built in the 13th century and located about 35 km from Puri, is the finest example of ancient Orissan temple architecture.
The temple was conceived in the form of a colossal chariot for the sun god Surya, standing on 12 pairs of eight-spoke-wheels and drawn by seven galloping horses. The horses represent the seven days of the week, the wheels the 24 fortnights of the Indian year, and the eight spokes of each wheel the periods into which the ancients divided day and night.
Every aspect of life has been carved on the facades of the temple. The most striking sculptures are the erotic figures locked in postures drawn from the Kama Sutra.