Ras Mancha Temple, Bishnupur, West Bengal

With this post I start off on my tour of Bishnupur Temples.As a traveler it would be a sin if you are visiting Kolkata in India and give Bishnupur a miss! Bishnupur, a small peaceful town in Bankura district, 132kms west of Kolkata, is a treasure trove of terracotta temples. As a UNESCO World Heritage site lover I definitely could not miss visiting this place. No, the group of terracotta temples is not declared as World Heritage Site yet, but it is in the tentative list since 3rd July 1998. That is a long time! I hope it will be approved soon.

Ras Mancha Temple
Ras Mancha Temple

As I toured, what I got to see here was nothing like the stone architecture in the door frames of Reims, France or the intricate designs of Madurai Meenakshi Temple of Tamil Nadu, India. Instead it was fragile, delicate terracotta work. Worn off at many places, yet vibrating with life! I am highlighting the Ras Manch Temple, Bishnupur in this post.

Ras Mancha Temple, Bishnupur

King Bir Hambir, whose reign is considered as the golden age of Mallas, introduced the worship of Madan Mohan (Krishna). He built the impressive Ras-Manch Temple in 1587 AD. King Bir Hambir was a contemporary of Akbar in Delhi then. This temple was not dedicated to any particular deity but during the annual Ras festival, idols of all deities were congregated here. The temple has a unique pyramid like structure, only one of its kinds in the whole of West Bengal. Be sure to place it high in the list of must sees here in Bishnupur in West Bengal.

Location of Ras Mancha Temple

Here is the google map for directions from Kolkata to Bishnupur. You can reach by road (bus, taxi) and by rail.

By air: The nearest airport is Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International, Kolkata, about 150 km away. Then take a train, bus or cab

By train: There are direct trains from Howrah to Bishnupur.

By bus: Regular buses ply from Kolkata’s Esplanade and Shahid Minar Bus Terminus.

Nearby Temples:

Jor Bangla Temple

Kalachand Temple

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52 Responses

  1. for a building built five hundred years ago these temples look in surprisingly good condition. How do you get to Vishnupur for Kolkata

  2. Liebe Indrani, herzlichen Dank für diesen interessanten Einblick…

    Grüsse aus der Schweiz, Hans-Peter

  3. Fascinating and beautiful terracotta architecture !

  4. The architecture is so lovely, wonderful arches. I wonder why it's taking so long to be declared a World Heritage Site.

  5. Thanks for the comments friends.
    Hi Empty Rucksack I have added 'how to reach' to the post.

  6. Sudhir R says:

    Wow! Magnificent to say the least. The most beautiful. And so well composed the first image is. I hope too that this would be a heritage site.

  7. Icy BC says:

    Amazing temple and your photos detailed it so well! What a beautiful travel you did!

  8. TexWisGirl says:

    the arches are beautiful!

  9. Carver says:

    That's a beautiful temple.

  10. Sylvia K says:

    Such an incredibly beautiful temple, Indrani! I, too, love the arches! Superb captures and such wonderful detail!! Thanks as always for sharing the beauty!

  11. What interesting architecture, I would love to visit one day.

  12. George says:

    What a beautiful temple! Your first photo is simply gorgeous.

  13. Fantastic photos and beautiful structures.
    I am charmed.
    Greetings from far away Polish.

  14. Bibi says:

    Gorgeous….the brick and terra cotta look brand-new. Very well preserved.

  15. A beautiful temple! Fascinating! I love the second photo!

  16. so charming. idk if that's the appropriate word for this gorgeous temple, but i find it replete with charm. i hope that it gets that much coveted status so that it can be ensured of protection and preservation.

  17. Pradeepa says:

    Amazing terracotta architecture. I am eagerly waiting for a chance to visit Kolkata.

  18. ladyfi says:

    Wow wow wow – amazing!

  19. Beautiful terracotta architecture. Would love to visit them when am in Kolkata.

  20. eileeninmd says:

    Indrani, it a beautiful temple. I love the arches. Gorgeous photos. Have a happy week!

  21. Excellent capture of Wonderful architecture !

  22. arabesque says:

    i wish i could get there and see it one day,
    it's indeed beautiful.

  23. Jeevan says:

    You made awesome pictures here! I could understand from your write up how significant this temple complex was. The pyramid like structure seems unique on its kind

  24. ashok says:

    amazing architecture…i need to visit

  25. Did not know it is a Heritage site. The architecture is awesome.

  26. Laura says:

    Such exquisite architecture Indrani!

  27. Pallavi says:

    What beautiful architecture. Lovely temples indeed .

  28. I have been here so many times, Bishnupur is so special to me!! and this monument is one of my favorites!!!


  29. DeniseinVA says:

    An amazing place Indrani, it is gorgeous! Great photos!

  30. Beautiful. Such brick temples fascinate me. Thanks for sharing.

  31. vaisakhi says:

    Beautiful clicks..:) and i seriously wish it gets into the world heritage site list…

  32. I wonder what is stopping the World Heritage authorities to declare this a UNESCO monument! Such a beautiful architecture, and there's less visible vandalism too!

  33. What the huge walls of the temple!! Sounds an interesting place to visiting.. thanks for sharing your experience with us through this article..

  34. Never heard of these temples. Thanks for posting. Will keep in mind when visiting that part of the country. 🙂

  35. Great pics ..and text too..!

  36. So beautiful… Loved them Indrani…

  37. I've visited the Rash-mancha Temple..its really gorgeous…great shots Indrani.

  38. Lovely photos Indrani.

  39. Vow! what an amazing monument!

  40. wow! beautiful captures indrani.

    history sure can captivate an individual…

  41. historical captures are always beautiful !

  42. amazing amazing clicks… every brick is shining like rusted gold …loved it !Kokila

  43. D. Prabhu says:

    Amazing captures 🙂

  44. bubblecube says:

    Amazing temple. Nice pics!!

  45. wow, it looks so beautiful and wonderful. Doesn't look like a temple though 🙂 Great captures 🙂

  46. They are amazing and love the historic structures:)

  47. Never seen anything like this….wow.

  48. This place reminds me of Talatal Ghar in Sibsagar. Has got a very similar architecture. They are also of the similar period as Ras Mancha, but yet it is ironic that the latter still awaits UNESCO attention for so many years.
    Noted on my bucket list. It will be even more ‘criminal’ for a ‘Bong’ not to visit. Thanks

  49. vatsala mallya says:

    Beautiful temple .amazing architchture of bricks terracotta shining like gold.lovely arches and pyramid like structure. Really one can’t give a miss if one visits kolkatta.

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