Puri Rath Yatra Date & time 2018-Rath Yatra Celebration 2018 - Rath Yatra Procession - Ratha Yatra Chariots- Pictures 2018

Jagannath Rath Yatra Date & time 2018

Rath Yatra for the year 2018 is celebrated/ observed on Thursday, July 14.Rath Yatra is a Hindu festival that is celebrated mid summer each year. The three deities, Jagannath, Subhadra, and Balabhadra are celebrated.As per the traditional Odia calendar, the Rath Yatra begins on the second day of Shukla Paksha (waxing phase of the moon or bright fortnight) of the Hindu lunar month of Ashadha.

Dwitiya Tithi Begins = 04:32 on 14th Jul2018
Dwitiya Tithi Ends = 00:55 on 15th Jul 2018

About Rath Yatra 2018 - Rath Yatra Celebration 2018



One of the four most famous holy pilgrimages of the Hindus in India is the Jagannath Temple of Puri. The festival of Rath Yatra celebrated here, is world famous for the enormous crowd of devotees that gathers to witness Lord Jagannath's yearly journey in his huge chariot. Perhaps the only deity to be brought out of the temple every year, Lord Jagannath, with his brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra, goes to his garden house for five days, visiting his aunt on the way. At the end of the five days, the three siblings are brought back to the Jagannath temple in a procession called the Ultarath.

As the preparations for the procession begin, all routine activity in the town comes to a standstill. The temple kitchen - the largest in the world - serves more than 75 quintals of rice everyday along with 55 other dishes. These are offered to the gods in the temple and later distributed as Mahaprasad to the devotees. 

 Procession during Rath Yatra

The wooden idols of the three deities, every year, are taken from the Jagannath Temple to the Gundicha Temple. These idols are placed in decorative chariots, and are accompanied by chants and conches, which can be heard all around. Before the Yatra commences, the idols are bathed with 109 buckets of water, which is Snana Pornima. These are then placed in isolation till the day of procession, as it is believed that they are ill. This event is called Ansara. On the day of the procession, the holy ritual of Chhera Pahara is performed by the royal successor of Orissa. At this time, hordes of locals and devotees flock around the temple area.

During Chhera Pahara, the deities are brought from the temple by the King and are placed on the chariot. Before keeping them, the king himself sweeps the chariot with a broom that has a gold handle. He later decorates the chariot with flowers with his own hands. The ground on which the chariot will move is also cleaned by him, after which sandalwood is sprinkled on it.


Through this ritual, it is proposed that everyone is equal in the eyes of the Lord. Jagannath temple is accessible only by Hindus but on the day of the Rath Yatra, people of all faiths can visit the temple. The 3 deities remain at the Gundicha Temple, their aunt’s place for a span of 9 days. Later, they are back to their home. This return journey is called the ‘Bahuda Yatra’.

On reaching the Jagannath Temple in the evening, they wait outside. On the next day, the idols are adorned with new clothes as babies. This event is called Suna Vesa. After this day, the deities are placed again into the sanctum sanctorum, marking an end to the Rath Yatra of Jagannath Puri.


The Chariots in Ratha Yatra

The prime attractions of the Rath Yatra of Jagannath is the elaborate Chariots. The preparation of the chariots starts on the day of Akshay Tritiya. There are 3 main chariots, pulled by hands using long ropes, which are 50 meters in length. It is believed that pulling this rope is like adding to your good Karma, and doing penance for your bad deeds.

45.6 feet in height, Lord Jagannath’s Chariot is called Nandighosa and has 18 wheels. The chariot of Lord Balaram’s is 45 feet in height, comes with 16 wheels and called Taladhvaja. Similarly, Devadalana is Goddess Subahdra’s chariot, which has 14 wheels and come with a height of 44.6 feet. Artists decorate these chariots in a beautiful manner with the help of designs, motifs and paints.


As the procession starts, the chariot of Lord Balram is pulled, followed of Goddess Subhadra and that of Lord Jagannath at last. The distance between the two temples is just 3 km but the whole enthusiasm of the tourists and the devotees clubbed with chants and drum beating, takes a few hours. For the next 9 days, devotees can seek blessings of the Lords and the Goddess.

During the return Yatra, the Bahuda Yatra make a halt at the Mausi Maa Temple. Here the deities are served Poda Pitha, a sweet pancake. It is believed that this pancake is the poor man’s food and the Lord is fond of it.

Jagannath Rath Yatra or the Chariot festival is known to be one of the oldest and also the grandest procession festival, which is celebrated every year in India. It also finds its mention in Puranas of Hinduism such as Padma Puran, Brahma Puran and Skanda Puran.

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