Samaleswari Temple is an ancient Hindu temple in the Sambalpur district of western Odisha. Shree Shree Samaleswari is known as the presiding deity of Sambalpur. “Maa” is also known as Samalei Maa among the natives.
From ancient times, Maa Samaleswari is worshiped as Jagatjanani, Adishakti, Mahalaxmi, and Mahasaraswati in the region. The kindness of the goddess is spread over Western Odisha to Chattishgarh.
The Samaleswari temple was build in the middle of the 16th century. It was built in Kalinga architectural style. After that, it was rebuilt by the king of Sambalpur Chhatra Sai Deo in between 1657 to 1665 AD.
Some historian says that from 3rd century the Idol of maa Samaleswari was worshiped by tribals under a “Simili tree” till the temple was build by Balram Dev.
Puja & Festivals
Nuakhai Festival: People of western Odisha mark this occasion by offering the newly harvested rice to Maa Samaleswari. More than lakhs of devotees come to the temple to get the blessings of the Goddess.
On Navaratri lots of devotees come to see the “Dhabalamukhi Besa” of the Goddess. In Dola Purnima and Jyestha Purnima special puja offers to the Goddess. There is a Tantra element ritual that is there at the temple. Goddess is offered both vegetarian and non-vegetarian on specific days.
From October month to March, especially in the winter season of every year is the best time to visit Sambalpur and Samaleswari temple. The temperature during these months remain gentle as well as weather.