The temples in North India which can be described as the typical Nagara style. These temples escaped the destruction due to invasion. The temples as well as the literature laying down the rules and mode of construction have been well preserved in Orissa. In this style, the structure consists 0f two buildings, the main shrine taller and an adjoining shorter mandapa. The main difference between the two is the shape of the Sikhara. In the main shrine, a bell shaped structure adds to the height. As is usual in all Hindu temples, there is the kalasa at the top and the ayudha or emblem of the presiding deity.
North India Temple Architecture
The basic structure of temples in India is a room or Garbhagriha (sanctum sanatorium) where the idol of the main deity is kept. The temple is approached by a flight of steps and is often built on a platform. A porch covers the entrance to the temples, which is supported by carved pillars. A prominent roof called the shikhara surmounts the top of the Garbhagriha, and dominates the surroundings. As time went, by small temples grew into temple complexes. Some temples have a hall or mandap from where one can reach the sanctum sanctorum.
Temple architecture in India is broadly divided into northern and southern styles, classified by the form and shape of the shikhara and the distinctiveness of its decoration. The shikhara of the temples in South India tend to be made up of distinct horizontal levels that diminish to form a rough pyramid. Each level is decorated with miniature temple rooftops. The shikhara of the temples in North and Central India, in contrast, resembles an upturned cone that is decorated with miniature conical shikharas. Some temples developed their own local flavor apart from adhering to their basic native style.