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Odisha Tourism

Odisha known as the ‘land of temples’ is a remarkable state of India rich in culture, architecture, and history. The land is famous for its temples, monuments, beaches, lakes, hills etc. Orissa’s famous sights are clustered together in a compact triangle. In the eastern coast are the 13th century Konark temple, a UNESCO world heritage site and other magnificent temples at Puri and Bhubaneswar.The beautiful temples and Boudh caves near Bhubaneswar are silent witnesses to the indigenous culture of Odisha.

Odisha Tourism
Odisha Tourism

People from the whole world come to the pristine beaches and lakes and also to have the divine blessing of the Lord Jagannath.Odisha is gifted by the nature with long and beautiful coastline, dotted with golden sand beaches and gentle sunshine. It provides excellent opportunities for easy relaxation. The beaches of Puri and Gopalpur are fringed by coconut groves and fishing villages. There are numerous natural sites which are quite enchanting. The chirping of birds, flowing of streams and meandering paddy fields all add to the natures charm.

Top Cities to Visit in Odisha

Odisha is filled with many destinations, each of them are unique and special. Some are known for their beaches, while some for their temples, some for their modern adaptation while some for natural resources. It is a very hard job for a traveler to choose between destinations while visiting. There are so many places to plan a vaccation. Here are a few places worth visiting in Odisha:

Puri

Tourist places in Odisha
Rathyatra at Jagannath Puri

Puri, one of India’s most important pilgrimage centres is dominated by the towering Jagannath temple and is one of the four sacred Dhams of Hindus. The 65-m high spire landmark was an important landmark for European sailors. It was named as White Pagoda to differentiate it from Konark Sun temple which was known as Black Pagoda.This sacred seaside town holds an important place in the hindu religion. It is said that temple pilgrimages in India is incomplete without making journey to Puri. Besides its architectural beauty, Puri mesmerizes with natural beauty. It is blessed with beautiful beaches, historical monuments, religious mathas (hermitage) and moderate climate. But owing to the rough sea, water sports are not popular. For the presence of sun, surf and sand, the beach at Puri is referred as one of the world’s most picturesque seacoast, ideal for surf riding.

How to Reach ?

By Air: Bhubaneswar is the nearest airport - 60 km from Puri. Indian Airlines offers excellent connections to Bhubaneswar from Delhi, Kolkata, Visakhapatnam, Nagpur, Hyderabad, Chennai, and Mumbai.

By Rail: A terminus on the S.E. Railway having fast and super-fast train link with New Mumbai, Delhi, Guwahati , Hyderabad, Thiruvanantapuram Calcutta and Baidyanath Dham & etc. Puri has good rail connections with Delhi, Calcutta, Tirupati and Ahmedabad.

By Road: 60 km by State Highway from Bhubaneswar. One can also approach by road via Konark and then through the Marine drive covering about 100 km.

Bhubaneswar

Temples in Bhubaneswar
Ram Mandir, Bhubaneswar

Bhubaneswar, the capital of Orissa is famous for its superb Hindu temples, constructed between 7th to the 13th centuries. These temples are located in the older, southern part of the city, while the new town with its modern administrative buildings and wide tree-lined avenues is in the north.A distinctive version of the North Indian style of temple architecture was evolved in Orissa over centuries under the patronage of different dynasties. More than 400 temples remain of the 7000 that are said to have once embellished Bhubaneswar, earning it the title, the “City of Temples”. Today, Bhubaneswar is a modern city with extensive infrastructures and facilities, making it an ideal tourist destination. Bhubaneswar offers tourists several interesting locations to visit. Some of them include, Lingaraja temple, Rajarani Temple. Cactus garden, BDA Nicco Park, Khandagiri caves, Udaygiri caves, etc. The best time to visit this city is round the year as the coastal climate offers a warm temperature throughout the year.

How to Reach ?

By Air: Bhubaneswar has a domestic airport known as Biju Patnaik airport which receives wide bodied aircrafts from destinations like New Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Vishakhapatnam.

By Rail: Bhubaneswar is the head quarter of East Coast Railway Division. It is an important railhead on Kolkata-Chennai railway line. There are quite good numbers of express and super-fast trains available to/from Bhubaneswar. The New Delhi Bhubaneswar Rajdhani express takes only 23 hours. From Howrah, the Dhauli Express and the Janshatabdi Express are two super-fast trains reaching Bhubaneswar within 7 hours.

By Road: Bhubaneswar has an excellent network of roads. The National Highway No.5 passes through the city and connects it with Chennai and Kolkata. There are regular and frequent bus services from Bhubaneswar to all most all parts of the state and also to neighboring states.

Cuttack

Cuttack, an ancient city and the most important trading centre of Odisha, was the old capital of the state from 10th century onwards until 1956. Situated on the bank of the Mahanadi delta, Cuttack has very little evidence of its historic past. The city is famous for its rich art and crafts and monuments. The most worth visiting sites in the district include Chandi Temple, Barabati Fort, Cricket Stadium, Chhatia etc.

Cuttack in Odisha
Cuttack Railway Station

Cuttack is another important city of Odisha. This city is one of the oldest city of Odisha. Resting on a fertile delta of two rivers, Cuttack is a commercial centre of Odisha. The city is always bursting with trade, business, and traffic. Cuttack was once the capital of Odisha but owing several floods and different rules Bhubaneswar. This city is full of ancient temples that are the exact representation of the unique culture and building skills of the people. Cuttack is not very far from Bhubaneswar or Puri. The best time to visit Cuttack is September to March.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Cuttack is just 29 kms from Bhubaneshwar, the state capital and 483 km from Kolkata. National Highway No.-5 (Kolkata-Chennai) runs through the city. It takes hardly 45 minutes from Bhubaneswar to reach Cuttack by bus.

By Rail: Cuttack is on the East Coast Railway line with direct rail link to Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Cochin, Patna, Puri etc.

By Air: Nearest air port is Biju Patnaik Airport at Bhubaneshwar (29 kms.).

Balasore

Travelling in Odisha
Chandipur Beach

Balasore is the head quarter town of Balasore district located in the north eastern part of Odisha. It is also known as sand city. The entire district offers an ample of tourist destinations. The famous sea beach of Chandipur is at a distance of 16 kms from the city centre. Among other destinations, you can visit to Remuna, the famous Khirachora Gopinath Temple is here and also to Baliapal where you can have the natural beauty of Choumukh Beach and Subarnarekha river near Badhapal village. Kuldiha Wildlife Sanctuary is best place to explore wildlife.

How to Reach ?

By Road: National highways No. 5 and No. 60 pass through the district and run from Kolkata to Chennai. The National highway No.5 covers a distance of 66 Kms. and No.60 covers a distance 53 Kms within the district.There are frequent bus services available from Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Puri and other important places in the state and the neighboring states.

By Rail: Balasore is an important railhead on south eastern railway line and connected with Kolkata, Bhubaneswar and Chennai. All important express and super-fast trains take halt at Balasore station. It takes hardly 4 hours from Balasore to reach Bhubaneswar by express trains.

By Air: The Kolkata International air port & Bhubaneswar National air port are only about four hour journey by rail from Balasore.

Konark

Konark Sun Temple
Konark Sun Temple

Konark is another famous destination in Odisha. Located on the seashore and very close to Puri, Konark is the historical centre of Odisha. Konark, the name comes from 'Kona' and ‘Arka’, which means corner and sun respectively. The Sun Temple of Konark is the centre of attraction here and everything including the architecture, name, and design is made according to it. Even the town is named after the Sun god. Konark is one of the best-known architectural specimen of India and it boasts being the top destination in Odisha, from the spiritual standpoint. Konark is also famous for the Chandrabhaga Beach and Konark Dance festival. This place can be visited during any season, however monsoons should be avoided.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Konark is well connected by road through extensive road channels. Several national highways and state highways connect Konark to other major cities of the state. Volvo buses offer long distance tours as well as short distance tours to Konark and from Konark.

By Rail: Konark is located in between Bhubaneswar and Puri. Both Bhubaneswar and Puri is well-connected by express, superfast, and local trains. Availing any trains and boarding it from any station that plies to Bhubaneswar or Puri will easily take you to Konark.

By Air: Konark is connected by air through Bhubaneswar airport. Therefore, if you are planning to fly then Bhubaneswar airport is the right choice. The airport is centrally located, from where local transports like buses and cabs can be easily taken for a nearby ride to Konark.

Baripada

Tourist spots in Baripada
Jagannath Temple in Baripada

Baripada, the district head quarters of Mayurbhanj is the main market town of northeastern Odisha. It is the gateway to Simlipal National Park and is famous for Jagannath temple. Baripada is an ideal place to pick up handloom products of Chandanpur and stone carving of Khiching. The town is about 50 kms from Balasore and 280 kms from Bhubaneswar.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Baripada is well connected by all weather motorable roads. The National Highway No. 5 passes through the district and connects it with Kolkata and Bhubaneswar.

By Rail:There was a narrow gauze railway line from Rupsa (Balasore district) to Baripada. But recently a broad gauze railway line is under construction which will be functional soon. Balasore station is the nearest railway station to Mayurbhanj. It takes nearly 2 hours from Baripada to reach Balasore by bus.

By Air: An aerodrome field is located near Rasgovindpur in Mayurbhanj district. No flight service is available to this destination.

Berhampur


Berhampur in Odisha
Gopalpur Beach

Berhampur (or Brahmapur), one of the four major cities of Orissa is also a city of tourist’s delight owing to its beaches and temples. It is sometime referred to as the “Silk City” of Orissa as the famous Berhampuri Pata Sari is designed here. It is also a city of passionate cinegoers, famous for huge cinema theatre complexes. The city holds some of the famous educational institutions of the state. The very famous Gopalpur Beach is located quite near to the city. You can visit the sea beach to enjoy your weekends.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Berhampur falls on the National Highway No.5 which has recently been developed to a four lane express highway. There is frequent bus service from Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and other parts of the state as well as from nearby state of Andhra Pradesh. It takes nearly four hours from Bhubaneswar to reach Berhampur.There are frequent bus services available from Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Puri and other important places in the state and the neighboring states.

By Rail: Berhampur is the principal city of Ganjam district. It is an important rail head on the east coast railway line. All express and super-fast trains have their stoppage at Berhampur station.

By Air: The nearest airport to Berhampur is Biju Patnaik airport at Bhubaneswar. Buses and taxis are available near the airport.

Rourkela

Tourism in Odisha
Rourkela in Odisha

Rourkela is the industrial hub of Odisha. Rourkela Steel Plant- a unit of SAIL is a major center of attraction. It is a town surrounded by beautiful hills and rivers. The township is designed to cater to every needs of the people of the town. Rourkela is also known to be the tribal heartland in Odisha. The town organizes many industrial fairs from time to time to attract for business and trade. One of the main commercial centre's in Odisha, Rourkela is a nice place to visit. It is a mix of traditional culture and modern industrialized city. Many temples and dams make this place even more interesting.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Rourkela is well connected by road networks and highways. Daily buses ply from Kolkata, Jamshedpur, Ranchi and Cuttack to Rourkela. Other than buses private cars and taxi's are also available that take the National highways and state highways to reach the city.

By Rail: Rourkela has its own railway station. Trains from different states comes to this major station of Odisha. Since Rourkela is an industrial city of Odisha, it is well connected with local as well as Express trains. Direct trains are available from all eastern region cities of India.

By Air: This city do not have its own airport. The nearest airport is Ranchi (250 km). Bhubaneswar International Airport is 347 km away. If travelling by air, bus or taxi needs to be availed to reach here.

Daringbadi

Daringbadi hill station
Daringbadi Hill Station

Daringbadi is a hill station in Odisha. It is known as the 'Kashmir of Odisha'. During winters, this is the only place in Odisha that experiences snowfall. The hill station is filled with tress, tea plantations, coffee gardens, etc. A small but very cozy hill station, Daringbadi is the perfect place to come for a small vacation. Daringbadi is easy to reach. Local transport and car tours are available here. Best time to visit this place is all throughout the year.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Road transport is the most easiest and easily accessible way to reach this beautiful location. Taxi and buses can be easily availed from anywhere in Odisha to reach Daringbadi. However, Berhampur is the nearest city from where travelling to Daringbadi becomes easy.

By Rail: Daringbadi is not well connected with rail roads, the nearest station is Berhampur, which is about 125 km away. Therefore, if traveling to Daringbadi, you need to take a bus or car from Berhampur to reach here.

By Air: There are no nearby airports in Daringbadi. The only airport is in Bhubaneswar, which is 250 km away. It takes nearly 6 hours from airport to reach Daringbadi.

Keonjhar

Keonjar in Odisha
Sanaghagara Water Fall

Keonjhar is a major tourist attraction district of Odisha. The place is of religious and architectural significance. Many important temples like the Vishnu Temple, Siddha Kali temple, Jagannath Temple, and several other temples are located here. The temples are filled with stone sculptures and carvings. Sanaghagara Water Fall is a very famous sightseeing spot and is located quite near to the town. Keonjhar can be reached by road or rail. The best time to visit the place is from October to March. There are several local hotels where arrangements for stay can be done at a nominal cost.

How to Reach
?

By Road: Keonjhar is well connected to a network of rods. These roads include both State ways as well as national highways. The Odisha State Transport buses, private buses and cars are available to take you to and from Keonjhar.

By Rail: Keonjhar do not have its own railway station. The nearest railway is J.K Road, which is about 114 km away from Keonjhar. This station connects Keonjhar to the rest of Odisha.

By Air: The nearest Airport to Keonjhar is the Bhubaneswar international Airport. However, this airport is quite far and connects you to this city through any other form of local transport. Domestic flights and certain international flights can be availed to reach Bhubaneswar by air.

Sambalpur

Sambalpur is a famous place and attraction for tourists coming to Odisha. The place is famous for several things some of them include the Sambaleswari Temple, Hirakud Dam, Ushakothi Wildlife Sanctuary and its silk sarees. Sambalpur is a district head; it is a commercial town, where traders from everywhere, come to trade on the special Sambalpuri silk material and design. Another attraction is the Bhadrav Ekadasi festival. The festival is held in August or September. Sambalpur is easy to reach by rail and road. Anyone can visit this town any time of the year.

How to Reach ?

By Road: Buses are easily available to and from Sambalpur. There are two major bus stands in this location, VSS Marg bus stand and the private bus stand. Buses from Bhubaneswar, Puri, Cuttack ply regularly.

By Rail: Sambalpur is well connected with railways. It has two railway stations, Sambalpur Road Station and Khetrajpur. The main station is only 3 km away from the main city. Sambalpur Road Station is much closer than the other one. Daily trains ply to these stations, some express trains are also available in this route.

Top Famous Beaches and Lakes in Odisha

Beaches and Lakes in Odisha
Puri Beach

Puri Beach

Puri, besides being an important pilgrimage centre is also a famous recreational center owing to its golden beaches. Puri’s long beach front is always crowded with stalls and groups of pilgrims and tourists along Marine Parade. Local fishermen wearing conical hats serve as lifeguards on the beach, and take visitors out to sea in the boats to watch the sunset. Though the pulsating beach of Puri is visited by tourists throughout the year but the best time to visit the beach is during early November when the Puri Beach festival is organized. This is the time when you will see the rich art and crafts, cuisines and culture of Orissa in their best forms.

Chandipur Sea Beach

Chandipur-On-SeaAbout 16 kms from Balasore town is Chandipur, a place famous for its calm beaches and defence research establishments. Chandipur Sea Beach is one of the finest and longest beaches of the country where the sea recede nearly 4 to 5 km everyday with tide. Low budget hotels, resorts, panthanivas and tourist bungalows are available near the seafront. Chandipur is also important for the fact that, the ITR (Interim Test Range) of Govt. of India is situated here. The place has great importance in defense research and development program.

Choumukh Beach

About 64 km from Balasore town is Choumukh, an ideal site for picnickers and nature lovers. The calm and serene atmosphere of Choumukh village and its lovely beaches attract visitors from the nearby areas. During special occasions like Christmas and New Year’s Day the site is packed with picnickers from the whole district and even from the nearby West Bengal state. Choumukh is easily accessible from Balasore. Direct buses are available from Balasore to Baliapal. From Baliapal one has to go by taxi or auto.

Gopalpur-on-Sea

Coastlines in OdishaRemember the first time you saw sea? Or sand plugged between your toes?Or the charm of playing volley ball at the sea shore?If not at all; then visit Gopalpur-on-Sea to have all the above experience in a single place. About 16 kms from Berhampur city is Gopalpur, a splendid retreat for beach lovers. This seaside town was, in ancient times, a great seaport for Orissa’s maritime trade with Indonesia. It also witnesses the past glory of the Sadhavas in their commercial activity with this old sea port. The crumbling walls and light house are still preserved to prove the existence of this old sea port. The British later developed it as a beach resort.

Talsari Beach

Owing to its geographical location, Odisha enjoys a long coastline. A long coastline offers more beaches throughout the state. Talsari is another famous beach of Odisha situated in the Balasore district. A unique beach offers a peaceful and calm environment. The sea itself is very calm and quiet here. This place is also blessed with backwaters. A unique amalgamation of different types of water bodies and location, Talsari beach is a place to visit. The beach is filled with small red crabs, a specialty of this beach.

Chilika Lake

Lakes in OdishaChilika Lake is righteously named as the queen of nature owing to its eternal beauty. It spreads over an area of 1100 sq. km in the eastern coast of Orissa. Due to its varying nature of degree of salinity, it allows various fauna to grow. It attracts birds across the world for its well climatic condition.A large portion of the lake lies in Ganjam district. This brackish water lake contains many islands, out of which The Kalijai is the most exciting one. The charm of boating to reach this destination is a mere traveling experience. The sun rise and sun set are very beautiful and it can be well viewed while traveling by train. The local poet Gopabandhu Das had described it as a canvas of beautiful scene. The scene of flying birds during dawn is like platoons marching towards the battle field. Their languages are so heart touching that even hunter stops a while to quench the thirst of love.

The place is well connected with train and bus. Travelers are advised to get down at Balugaon station and those who are traveling by air will have to reach at Bhubaneswar and then to Balugaon. One can also start his/her journey from Berhampur.There are large numbers of hotels and panthanivas present in the area near by. One can choose the best to have a unique experience of hospitality.

Holy lakes

The sacred city Puri is known for five holy lakes: Markanda (4 km), Shweta Ganga (4 km), Narendra (2.5 km), Indradyumna (2.5 km) and Parvati Sagar (4.5 km). There are few inscriptions seen on the steps of these lakes. Devotees enter to various temples only after sprinkling waters of these lakes on their heads.


Top Famous Monuments and Museums in Odisha

Khandagiri & Udaygiri

Monuments and Museums in Odisha
Udayagiri Caves

Khandagiri and Udaygiri caves in Odisha are a symbol to the Jain culture and religion practiced here. The caves date back to the 2nd century B.C. Both caves are carved in two adjoining hills. Each cave has several chambers that are believed to the residents of Jain monks, the king, and queen. Intrinsic sculpting work is found in every corner of the cave. These stone works are the perfect representation of the then artisans. The caves can be visited anytime of the year. Private tours can also be arranged.
Hathigumpha inscription of Kharvela is part of Udayagiri caves.

Ratnagiri Monastery

About 70 kms from Cuttack city there are three ancient Buddhist sites - Ratnagiri, Udaigiri and Lalitgiri, famous for their monasteries and beautiful landscapes. These sites can be best approached either from Bhubaneswar or from Cuttack. Of the three, the most impressive is Ratnagiri which, between the 7th and 11th centuries was a major Buddhist University and monastic establishment.The best preserved structure here is a monastery with an image of 4-m high sitting Buddha, superbly carved and decorated. A small archeological museum is also there displaying other sculptures found at the site.

Barabati Fort

Forts in OdishaThe most magnificent and stunning monument of the city is the Barabati Fort located to the northwest of Cuttack city. This 13th century citadel which once had a nine-storeyed palace is now in ruins. The remains of the fort include its moat, gate, and the earthen mound of the nine-storied palace. The Barabati Stadium is located in this fort area. It is one of the largest cricket grounds in India with a sitting capacity of nearly 35,000 people.

Haripur

Haripur, just 16 kms southeast of Baripada is a place of historic importance. It has evocative ruins of palaces and temples built by the rulers of Bhanja dynasty who had made this their capital in 15th century. The most impressive ruins include the Rasikaraya temple and the Durbar Hall of the Bhanja kings. Baripada, the district head quarters town of Mayurbhanj district also holds some buildings of the Bhanja era. The Maharaja Purnachandra College and Collectorate Building are best preserved buildings which are symbols of Bhanja architecture. Baripada has a small museum towards the eastern part of the town. I t preserves fine sculptures, pottery and coins found in the area. The museum is open for public from Tuesday to Sunday. Entry is based on tickets.

Odisha State Museum

Odisha State Museum is one of the best maintained museums in the country displaying varied objects of ancient origin. The exhibits include a rich collection of Buddhist and Jain sculptures, coins, and painted palm-leaf manuscripts etc. There are also collections of tribal art, traditional jewellery and musical instruments.

Asoka Rock Inscriptions at Jaugada

The rock edict at Jaugada is located along N.H 32. The inscriptions of the rock hold a very famous story. After King Ashoka became the occupier of Kalinga, he was full of sorrow at the misery that he caused. Soon he converted to Buddhism and spread word of justice and law. In order to succeed in his mission he inscribed his edicts on several rocks, pillars, and caves at different places. This edict is one of them. The inscription on this rock is written in Prakrit. The rock edict attracts tourists every year.
The easiest way to reach Jaugada is by bus, taxi’s or private cabs. Road transport is the best possible way here. The nearest bus stop is Behrampur (28 km). Taking a bus from the bus stand there or hiring a taxi will take you to Jaugada, Gangam within an hour.

Top Wildlife Destinations in Odisha

Wildlife Destinations in Odisha
Wildlife in Odisha

Simlipal National Park

Established in the year 1980, Simplipal National Park is a wildlife reserve in Odisha. The name of the national park is derived from the Red silk cotton tress, known as Simul in local language. Similipal National Park is one of the earliest and finest of India's fifteen Tiger reserves. The park is situated in the centre of Mayurbhanj, the northernmost district of Orissa. Situated at a distance of km from Baripada town, Similipal is an ideal habitat for tiger, leopard, elephant, sambar, deer, birds and other wild species.The park covers a large forest area of 2750 sq. kms. Its variation in topography, climate and vegetation has supported large varieties of flora and fauna. According to survey the total population of tiger is 98, leopard is 115 and elephant is 449. The Sanctuary remains open to visitors tentatively from 1st November to 15th June. Prior permission from the Conservator of Forests is required.The nearest railway station here is Baripada.

Bhitarakanika Sanctuary

Bhitarakanika is the earth-paradise and a breeding ground for Olive Ridley turtles. The second largest mangrove forest of the country, it was declared a sanctuary in 1975, in order to protect the estuarine crocodile and the turtles in their rare mangrove habitat. It is located in the district of Kendrapara and is about 110 kms from Cuttack.

Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary

Gahirmatha Marine SanctuaryGahirmatha Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Gahirmatha coast of the Kendrapara district of Odisha. The site is a declared world heritage site. It is the breeding and nestling ground of Olive Ridley sea turtles. The best time to the visit, this place is between October to February. One must visit this wonderful site. The Gahirmatha Turtle Sanctuary is sprawled over 1435 square km. The government is trying very hard to make this place a perfect area for the Olive Ridley turtles to breed. Fish trawlers are banned in this area to prevent the turtles from being harmed. Close to this sanctuary is the Bhitarkanika wildlife sanctuary and National park. The sanctuary is well connected to local roads, state ways, and highways. Local buses, cabs and long tour buses ply daily. As a world heritage site, tourists come to this place in abundance.

Nandankanan National Park

Nandankanan National Park is a zoological park located in Bhubaneswar. The national park is situated in the Chandaka forest that is full of wild animals, flowers, plants and a lake. The park is designed in a fashion that will entertain tourists to see animals, white tigers, etc. while enjoy boat rides and cable car rides. The park remains open throughout the year. Group tours and private tours are organized on a daily basis for better viewing of the park and the animals.Nandan Kanan Zoo.

Nandan Kanan, the only biological park of Orissa has varieties of plants and animals, living in a state of their natural habitat. This is also a dwelling place for animals which constitute the zoo. The other part, which is the Botanical Garden, is isolated from the zoo by a narrow lake that is meant for boating. The animals like tigers, European Black Bears, Grey Pelican, Pythons, King Cobra, Grey Pelicans, and Gorillas create a sense of curiosity in the mind of children. The place is frequently visited by school children to see and learn about plant and animal kingdom.The site is located in the district of Khorda and is nearer to Bhubaneswar. One can easily reach the place by bus or taxi; the distance is only 20 kms from Bhubaneswar, the state capital.

Chandaka Elephant Reserve

Chandaka Elephant reserve is located near Nandankan National Park. It is an elephant reserve in the same area where the Nandankan Zoo is established. The elephant reserve is the only famous reserve in Odisha that is known for preserving wild elephants. The reserve is filled with natural beauty. It is a forest that has ample trees, plants, lake and land area for the animals to move around, eat, and breed. There is a water hole in the reserve for the animals to drink and bather. Watchtowers are erected near this water hole so tourists can watch over the elephants.

Ushakothi Wildlife Sanctuary

Ushakothi Wildlife Sanctuary also known as Badrama Sanctuary is a beautiful location in Yavatmal, Odisha WildlifeOdisha. It is well known for its population of leopards, panthers, tigers, elephants and sloth bears. Other animals like nilgai, chital, gaur and sambal deer are also available. The sanctuary is ideally located with dense deciduous forest surrounding it. It is one of small sanctuaries in Odisha. A watchtower in the sanctuary allows you to see animals and birds from top. Jeep rides and accommodation is available at nominal charges. Guides are available for tourists to easily learn and locate animals in this sanctuary. Ushakothi is located 45 km from Sambalpur. Once you reach Sambalpur, it is very easy to reach here. Local cars, auto and travel buses are available for hire. Some of them also offer daily tours to this sanctuary.

Tikarpada Wildlife Sanctuary

Tikarpada Wildlife Sanctuary is located between the Satkosia gorge and Mahanadi River. The great river passes through the dense forest and sal trees of this sanctuary to create a wonderful reserve for the animals. A visit to this wildlife sanctuary is a wonderful experience. The forest offers several adventure activities like hiking, fish angling, water rafting, trekking, etc. A rescue and rehabilitation centre of the endangered species of crocodile is located here. The sanctuary is abundant in different species of birds and the Indian pitta. Saptasajya, a beautiful picnic spot is also located here. The forest offer food and lodging facilities to travelers who want to stay. This wildlife sanctuary can be easily visited by road. Angul is 58 km away, while Dhenkanal is 120 km away from here. If you plan to take the railways then the nearest station is Angul. From Angul, a bus ride or car hire is the best option available.

Debrigarh Wildlife Sanctuary

Debrigargh is another wildlife sanctuary located in Sambalpur district. Owing to the topography and natural resources available, Sambalpur offers dense deciduous forests all around. These forests are the homes for several species of wild animals. An initiative to save them, the government of India has opened many national parks and sanctuaries throughout the district. Debrigarh Wildlife Sanctuary is one such initiative of the government. This sanctuary is one of the big reserve in Odisha. It offers a panoramic view of nature. The flora and fauna attracts a large number of tourists every year. The reservoir found in this sanctuary is the largest manmade water body in Asia. Many different species of birds and animals are found here. The most suitable time to visit this sanctuary is from November to April. Sambalpur is connected with networks of large and small roads. NH42 and NH6 are the highways most transport automobiles use to travel to this location.Hirakud and Sambalpur are the nearest railway stations located here. Hirakud is 27 km away while Sambalpur is 40 km. Most express trains halt at Sambalpur.

Heritage and Religious Destinations in Odisha

Jagannath Temple

Temples of Odisha
Jagannath Temple

The temple of Lord Jagannath was created by Ananta Barma Chodagangadev in the 12th century AD. It is one of the tallest monuments of the country measuring a length of 214 feet from the ground. The whole Jagannath temple complex spreads over an area of 4, 20,000 sq. ft. Its architecture is highly praised by the international archeologists. The temple is dedicated to Lord Jagannath, Balaram and Devi Subhadra.The Deities of Lord Jagannath, Subhadra and Balaram are made up of margosa wood but prove their presence when devotees call with eternal love.

Surrounded by a 6-m high wall, the temple’s main gate is guarded by a pair of brightly painted stone lions and for this reason the entrance gate is known as Singha Dwara. Another feature of this temple is that non–Hindus are not allowed to the inner sanctum. But they can take the enchanting view from the roof of the Raghunandan library.The architecture of this temple is similar to that of the Lingaraj temple at Bhubaneswar. From the temple, Puri’s main street Bada Danda runs through the town crammed with pilgrims, houses and shops. Another attraction is its huge kitchen that feeds holy food called Mahaprasad to thousands of devotees everyday. The famous Rath Yatra festival is organized in the month of June or July when the deities are brought in great Chariots to the Gundicha Bari along the Bada Danda.

Gundicha Temple

Temples of PuriThis temple is nearly 3 kms northeast of Jagannath temple along Bada Dande. The temple becomes a home for Lord Jagannath for one week during the Ratha Yatra festival. It is said that the wife of Indradyumna, the king who originally established the temple of Jagannatha, was known as Gundicha. A major part of the present structure was built in 16th century. The temple has two walls, the outer and the inner. The main deity is present inside the inner walls. Unlike other Hindu temples in Orissa, it is a dome structure with a wheel of Vishnu on the top.

Lingaraj Temple

The Lingaraj Temple is another major temple and religious site in Odisha. Located in Bhubaneswar, Lingaraj temple is dedicated to lord Shiva. The temple is the centre temple in Bhubaneswar, surrounded by several other temples. Pilgrims visit this temple throughout the year. The Shiv Ratri festival held during February- March is worth visiting here.

Konark Temple

Religious places in OdishaKonark Temple is the pride of Odisha. It is an example of architectural excellence. UNESCO has decided this temple dedicated to the Sun God as a world heritage site. The temple is grand in itself. The architectural design and the intrinsic sculpture surrounding the temple are worth viewing. The temple is like a chariot of the God. Every year a Konark Dance Festival is organized, where classical dancers from all corners of the world come to perform.This pioneer structure is nearest to Bhubaneswar. Tourists are seen to visit frequently to see beauty in the form of metallic green chromites stone, carved with images of Sun covered from three sides of the temple – the north, south and the west.

Khirochora Gopinath Temple

Remuna, a small town about 9 kms from Balasore town is famous for the historic Khirochora Gopinath temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna. It was a seat of the Vaishnavite culture during ancient period. Shri Chaitanya, a great devotee of Vishnu had also visited Remuna to worship Kirochora Gopinath. Today, the temple is visited by hundreds of devotees everyday to have blessings of Lord Gopinath (a form of Lord Krishna). A special condensed milk is prepared in the temple which is famous for its great taste.

Tara-Tarini Temple

Hindu pilgrimage centers in OdishaTara-Tarini is one of the ancient Shakti Pithas in Odisha. Goddesses Tara and Tarini are regarded as the presiding deity (Ista-Devi) in almost every house in South Orissa. This important and famous Shakti Pitha is situated on a hill top at a distance of 30 Kms towards north of Berhampur on the south bank of river Rushikulya. The height of the hill is approximately 708 ft. There are 999 steps on the front side of the hill leading to the hill top shrine.

Dhauligiri

Located near Dhauli, Dhauligiri is a very important Buddhist pilgrimage in India. The shrine is a peace pagoda built after the Kalinga war. When King Ashoka realized the horror of war and embraced Buddhism, this caves and shrine became a symbol of peace for all. Odisha is land with history that goes back to 7th century. This shrine is a proof to the history. Dhauligiri is easy to go. Private tours are arranged every day for enthusiastic tourists.

64 Yogini

According to the Hindu mythology, there are 64 yoginis or attendants of Goddess. These yoginis believed in Tantrik or Black magic practices. The 64 yoginis is a temple dedicated to all these attendants of Goddess. Located near Konark and Pipli, this temple has something new to offer to tourists bored of same temples.

Top Famous Hotels in Odisha

Accommodation plays a very important role in the comfort and stay of travelers. Most of the time travelers need a good place that will offer them comfort, good stay, food and other facilities. As Odisha is a tourist-favored state, it has ample hotels of different standards located all throughout the state. Odisha has so much to offer to its people that it really becomes the job of the hotel industry to bring a boom to travel. Odisha is filled with forest, history, temples, architecture, and parks. All of these aspects of Odisha can be enjoyed with a comfortable stay. These hotels located in every city and town of Odisha offers home like comfort at a very reasonable price. Some of them offer extra facilities and services at a little extra cost. Today hotel booking has become much easy. With the help of internet, online booking makes things easy for travelers. It is always better to book hotels beforehand, especially during the peak travel season.

MAYFAIR Lagoon
8-B, Jaydev Vihar,
Bhubaneswar – 751 013, India
Phone : +91 674 6660 101
Fax : +91 674 2360 236
Email: lagoon@mayfairhotels.com
Website: http://www.mayfairhotels.com/mayfair-lagoon/

Trident, Bhubaneswar
CB-1, Bhubaneshwar Bhubaneswar - 751013
Orissa, India
Tel: 91 674 230 1010 / 91 672 301 0000
Fax: 91 674 230 1302
Website: http://www.tridenthotels.com/hotels-in-bhubaneswar

Blue Heaven Hotel, Bhubaneswar
Address : Scr 260 Bapuji Nagar
Area : Bapuji Nagar
City : Bhubaneswar
State : Odisha
Pincode : 751009
Contact No : 0674-2597079, 0674-2592381, 674-2532381

Hotel Sonar Bangla, Puri
New Marine Drive, Baliapanda,
Dist: Puri, Orissa.
Phone: (0675) 2230009
(0675)2321263
(0675) 2230089
+91 9583818098

Asian Inn Puri
New Marine Drive Road
Baliapanda, Puri- 752001
Orissa (India)
Phone- 06752 231307, 231347
Fax- 91 6752 231348
Email- puri@hotelasianinn.com
Website: http://www.hotelasianinn.in/puri.html

Hotel Lucky International
Chidia Polo, Balasore,
Orissa-756001
Ph : 06782-260308/260309
Mob : 08280042095
eMail : info@hotelluckyinternational.com
Website: http://hotelluckyinternational.com/

Hotel Neeladri
(Approved by Govt. of Orissa Department of Tourism)
Mangalabag,Cuttack-753001,Orissa
Phone:0671-2414221,2414331,2414771
Email:contact@neeladri.com
Website:http://www.neeladri.com

Hotel Akbari Continental
Address: Haripur Road, Dolamundai, Cuttack- 753001
Near Cuttack Bus Terminal
Tel: (0671) 2423254, (0671) 2423264
The Chanakya BNR Hotel
Chakratritha Road, Puri
Orissa, India
Phone No.:+91 6752 223006
Contact No.: +91 9778373373
Fax: +91 6752 222063
E-mail (s): reservations@chanakyabnrpuri.com
therailhotel@gmail.com
Website: http://www.chanakyabnrpuri.com

Sambit Palace
Sea Beach Road,
Renuka Lane,
Swargadwara, Puri
Odisha
Phone :- 06752-229059
Mobile :- 9861268766

Hotel Radhika Regency
Address: Bisra Road, Rourkela-769001(Odisha)
Direct: 0661-2510300 / 2510392
Cell No: +919777226226, +91 7205097787 , +91 9439784547
Email:radhikaregency@gmail.com

The Central Park
Bisra Road, Rourkela
Odisha 769001
Tel : +91 661 2511611/711/811
+91 9238110442
Fax : +91 661 2511411
Email : info@thecentralpark.in , stay@thecentralpark.in
Website: http://www.thecentralpark.in/

Hotel Bombay Inn
Ice Factory Road
College Square
Cuttack - 753 003, Odisha (India)
Phone : (0671) - 2549009-18 (10 Lines)
Booking lines - (0671) - 6549801 / 2010566
Fax : (0671) - 2548888
Website: http://www.hotelbombayinn.com/

Grand Residency
Palamandap, Badambadi, Cuttack - 753012
Phone : 0671-2313129 /229 /329
Cell : 9238306696 //9861446996/9853850212
Email: reservation@grandresidency.co.in,
ritesh@grandresidency.co.in,
sales@grandresidency.co.in
Website: http://www.grandresidency.co.in/

Hotel Meridian
Address: Near Sai Temple, Station Road, Balasore, Odisha, India
Pin- 756001
Tel: +91 6782-261788
Fax: +91 06782
Email: info@hotelmeridian.in
Website: www.hotelmeridian.in
Click to Find City Wise Hotels in Bhubaneswar | Baleshwar | Cuttack | Berhampur | Baripada | Puri | Sambalpur

Best Time to Visit Odisha

Odisha is a costal state; hence, there are no best times to visit the area. The weather remains pleasant always. Nevertheless, October to March is considered the best time, as it is not too hot or cold. Other nearby areas from Bhubaneswar can be easily visited during this time. The sky remains clear and if visiting any wildlife sanctuary the weather serves as a boon.

How to Reach Odisha ?

Odisha is an easily accessible state. It is well connected with roads, railways, waterways, and airway that make travel and trade easy. There are a good many train networks from all major cities and towns of India. Local trains and Superfast Express ply daily from different corners of the country. There is only one airport in Odisha, Bhubaneswar. Daily flights from few international region and all domestic cities reach Bhubaneswar with tourists and cargo. Several national highways and local roads connect the state and its towns for easy travel. Odisha receives a moderate climate. Owing to its coastal location and topography, the summers are not too hot and winters are not too cold. Anytime is the best time to visit Odisha.

Helplines and Important Numbers

Odisha Tourism
The Director
Dept. of Tourism, Paryatan Bhawan, Museum Campus, Bhubaneswar - 751 014
Tel.No. (674) 2432177 email: ortour@orissatourism.gov.in
Call Us : 1800 208 1414 (Toll free)
Website: https://odishatourism.gov.in/

Also Read

Tourism in Bhubaneswar | Baleshwar | Cuttack | Berhampur | Baripada | Puri | Sambalpur


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