Chandan Yatra also known as Gandhalepana yatra is the longest festival observed at Jagannath temple, India. Chandan Yatra meaning Sandalwood Voyage in Sanskrit, which continues for 42 days is observed in two parts: Bahara Chandana and Bhitara Chandana.
Bahara Chandana starts from Akshaya Tritiya and continues for 21 days. Construction of the chariots for the annual Rath Yatra festival starts from Akshaya Tritiya.
On the first 21 days the representative idols of the main deities of the Jagannath temple as well as five Shivalingas known as the Pancha Pandava are taken in a procession from the Singhadwara or the Lion Gate of the Jagannath temple at Puri to the Narendra Tirtha tank. The deities Madanmohan, Bhudevi, Sridevi and Ramakrishna participate in this yatra for 21 days. The deities are taken on two chapas (boats), namely, Nanda and Bhadra, on an excursion around the Narendra Tritha. After various rituals the deities are taken to the Narandra pond located near the Jagannath Temple and they are placed on grandly decorated boats for an evening cruise of the tank.
The last 21 days include rituals held inside the temple itself. Instead of the daily cruises, the playful ride happens here on four occasions, the Amavasya, the full moon night, on the Shashti and the Ekadashi of the bright fort night.