Orissa is one of the best tourist destinations in India. The golden triangle tour including three pilgrimage sites, namely, Puri-Jagannath temple, Konark Sun temple and the Bhubaneswar Lingaraj Temple are three worth seeing places in eastern India. Various beautiful beaches, wildlife sanctuaries and tribal cultures of the state will add extra attractions during your trip.
There are a list of most visited tourist spots in Orissa:
Puri Jagannath Tour
Puri is considered as one of the four holiest (Chardham) Hindu sites in the world located about 61 km away from the capital city of Orissa, Bhubaneswar. This city is famous for Jagannath Temple and its beautiful swimming beach. Being a Hindu pilgrimage site Puri receives plenty of devotees round the year across the world. The authorizations bodies of Puri organize several fairs and festivals frequently round the year to providing enjoyment to the tourists. Some of the most important festivals of the city are Ratha Yatra, Puri Beach Festival, Chandan Yatra, Snana Yatra, etc.
Konark Sun Temple
This temple was constructed by the King of Ganga Dynasty, Narasimha Deva, in 1278. Konark is a small town on the bank of Bay of Bengal in Puri district about 64 km away from Bhubaneswar and 34 km from away Puri-Jagannath. This town is famous for its legendary Sun Temple. The annual festival of December in the temple is very popular when thousands of devotees gather here to participate to this festival.
Bhitarkanika National Park and Mangroves
Bhitarkanika is located about 206 km away from Puri and about 156 km from Bhubaneswar in Kendrapara District of the state Orissa, India. It is famous for its National Park, salt-tolerant mangrove forests and several small nameless beaches. Major attractions of the park are watching 23 ft Crocodile, Spotted Deer, Monitor Lizard, King Cobra and Pythons, 170 species of birds, 8 sub-species of Kingfishers, Open Billed Stork, Sea Eagles, Kites, Sand Pipers, Darters, Whistling Teals, Sea Gulls, and many more.
Chandipur on Sea Beach
Chandipur (properly known as Chandipur on Sea Beach) is a small sea beach on the Bay of Bengal located about 16.5 km away from the Balasore Railway Station. The sea recedes by about five km every day on the beach during ebb and returns to fill the emptiness Due to this uniqueness, the beach support a varied range of biodiversity. You will find here some rare species of fishes like Horseshoe crab, shells, shell fish and star fishes on the beach. The sea at Chandipur has no undercurrent or quick sands and you can splash water as much as you like.
Gopalpur on Sea
It is a small town about 15.6 km away from Brahmapur in Ganjam district of the state Orissa on the coast of Bay of Bengal. Once, the village was the main commercial place during British rule for its port. Gopalpur derived its name from a Krishna (Gopal) temple which was constructed in 18th century. Now this town is considered as one of the popular sea beach in Orissa. This beach is quite and noiseless where you can make a peaceful holiday from the away of your daily busy life. The long stretched coconut groves and cashew nut trees along with the coast provide you a lovely sight. There is also a Light House on the beach which will provide a bird eye view of Gopalpur, the sea and a portion of the Chilika Lake from the top of the lighthouse.
Bhubaneswar is the capital city of the Indian Middle Eastern state of Orissa located on the South-Western Bank of Mahanadi River. It is also refers to as the temple city of India due to its large number of religious temples include Lingaraj Temple, Temples of Khandagiri & Udayagiri, etc.
Lingaraja temple is located in the city of Bhubaneswar honor to Lord Shiva. It is the biggest temple in the city with a height of about 148 ft and its constructions are very similar to Lord Jagannath temple in Puri. Bindu Sarovara (a large pond or lake) is situated by the north of the temple.
Udayagiri hill is famous as a Jain religious site of ancient history located about 6.5 km away from Bhubaneswar. It has 18 superb caves which were used to live ancient Jain communities from the rule of Kharavela.
Khandagiri Hill is another popular tourist destination near the Bhubaneswar City. It is located adjacent to the Udayagiri Hill and it also an example of Jain Culture during the ancient age. You will get here a perfect example of rock cut temples on the top of hill and 15 caves which were occupied by Jains.
Dhauli Giri hill is situated about 7.8 km away from Bhubaneswar. This hill witnessed of the harsh bloody battle of Kalinga during 261 BC by Ashoka. A Shanti Stupa or peace pagoda is located at the right side of Dhauli hills.
Nandankanan Zoological Park was constructed by Orissa state government in 1960 but it was opened for public in 1979. It covers an area of 990 acres and a botanical garden, Chandaka forest, and a big lake named Kanjia Lake placed adjacent to the zoo. Beside of these there have lots of famous Hindu temples to visit. Among these the Parashurameshwara and Rajarani Temple are two must see places in Bhubaneswar.
Major tour spots in Cuttack
Cuttack is just 27 km away from Bhubaneshwar. Is is also known as silver city of Orissa and it surrounded by two rivers namely the Mahanadi and Kathjodi River. Barabati Fort is the main attraction of Cuttack City. Once it was a abode of Ganga Dynasty and it was constructed by them in 14th century. The fort is located just heart of the city with an area of 102 acres. It was a nine storey building but today is in ruin and its magnificent entrance gate still attractive today. Gada Chandi temple and Shahi mosque are placed inside the Barabati fort.
Cuttack Stone Revetments is a superb architectural palace in Cuttack on the Mahanadi River famous for its engineering works. It was constructed by the ruler of Keshari dynasty during 11th century. This tour spot not should be missed by travelers if they reach Cuttack.
Freedom Fighter's Memorial Hall of Cuttack is located at the Old Jail complex. Another a Netaji museum is placed in the Cuttack city at the place where Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was born. This Museum has some rare collections of original letters written by Netaji along with his other important materials.
Qadam-E-Rasool was constructed during the reign of Shujaddin Khan in 18th century. You will find four lovely small towers at the four corners of this monument. It is adorned with four flat domes and pucca pavements from all direction of the grave yard to the main octagonal building with a magnificent centre dome.
There have some beautiful parks in Cuttack city which are perfect for evening traveling or picnicking. Most popular park of the city located near the Barabati stadium. It is a deer park having an amount 61 deer. Some other important parks of Kattack are the CDA Sector-6 park, Khannagar park, Jobra park. Biju-Pattnaik Park at Bidanasi.
Juma Masjid is a big mosque constructed by Mughal rulers. It has several rooms for visitors and students. Earlier this mosque was used as a Madrasa now it shifted out of the mosque. The neighborhoods surrounding the Juma Masjid are inhabited both by Hindus and Muslims, who live peacefully with communal harmony.
Some other popular tourist spots in Orissa are Chilika Lake or Hradh, Anshupa Hradh at Athagarh, Pata Hradh at Chatrapur, Hirakud Dam at Sambalpur, Indravati at Kalahandi and Kolab Dam at Koraput, the Simlipal National Park, bird sanctuary in Chilika Lake, The Gharial Sanctuary at Tikarpada, Joranda falls at Mayurbhanja, Sanaghagara and Badaghagara falls at Keonjhar, Pradhanpat falls at Deogarh, Rabandhara falls at Kalahandi, Duduma falls at Malkangiri and Bogra falls at Koraput, etc.
Travel by Road
Orissa Government maintained a well road network with several National and state Highways. Bhubaneswar is the main destination city in the state for a tourist. It directly connected to Kolkata and Chennai by national highways.
Travel by Air
If you planned to go Orissa by airways then the Bhubaneswar Biju Patnaik Airport would be suitable destination to you. Regular flights of Indian Airlines from Hyderabad, Nagpur, Kolkata, Delhi, Raipur, Varanasi, Mumbai and Chennai are available here.
Travel by Rail
The main railway station of the state placed at Bhubaneswar. This railway station is connected to Kolkata, Puri, Madras, Delhi, Bombay, Bangalore, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Tirupati and Trivandrum.
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