Archive for the 'Nature spots' Category

Current and planned eco-toursim centers in Odisha

Angul, Balasore, Bhadrakh, Bhitarakanika, Ecotourism, Gajapati, Kandhamala, Kendrapada, Mayurbhanj, Nature spots, Satkosia gorge and tiger reserve, Similpal, Waterfalls Comments Off on Current and planned eco-toursim centers in Odisha

Following is an excerpt from an article in Pioneer.

In the biodiversity management, three eco-tourism destination sites were developed in Satkosia, Bhitarakaniaka and Similipal. Community reserves and heritage sites were developed in five places. Bichitrapur mangrove area near Jaleswar, Rissia wildlife sanctuary in Baleswar wildlife division, Mandasaur in Phulbani forest division, Khasada waterfall, Black Pepper plantations, Gandahati waterfall and Red Sanders plantations in Paralakhemindi Forest Division were taken up for development as  new eco-tourism destinations.


Camping on the riverbed in Satkosia: a Telegraph travel report

Angul, Ecotourism, Nature spots, River Cruise, Satkosia gorge and tiger reserve, Tourist promotion, Wild life 1 Comment »

The full article by Bibhuti Barik is at Following is the graphic from that article.

Nrusinghanatha and Harishankar Temples in Gandhamardana Hills

Balangir, Bargarh, Gandhamardan Hill Range (needs to be made), Hills and hill stations, Nature spots, Temples Comments Off on Nrusinghanatha and Harishankar Temples in Gandhamardana Hills

Following is from the site

Located in the sacred Gandhamardan Hills, which according to legends, Hanuman carried on his shoulders from the Himalayas as described in the ancient epic Ramayana, the temple at Nrusinghanath is an important pilgrimage site. It is also an exceedingly fascinating and beautifully  located temple and is worth the journey to this rather remote spot.

The present temple, located at the source of the Papaharini stream, is a 14th century structure built on a more ancient site. The four pillars within the Jagmohana suggest that the earlier temple was built in the 9th century. The beautiful doorframes have been dated to the 11th century.

The site of the temple is unique. Stone steps wind up the hillside behind the temple, leading past a  waterfall, and eventually curving under the falls to a spot where some beautiful, and very well- preserved relief sculptures are found. The climb to the carvings and return journey will take about an hour. Since shoes are not permitted on these sanctified pilgrimage steps, those with tender feet should take along a pair of heavy socks for the climb.

On the opposite slope of the hill on which the temple is located, is the Harishankar Temple. Between the two temples there is a 16 km. plateau, littered with Buddhist ruins that scholars feel may be the remains of the ancient university of Parimalagiri, referred to by the seventh-century Chinese traveler Hiuen T’sang as ‘Po-lo-mo-lo-ki-li’. The trek along this plateau is a long one, but for the serious student of history, it is an unforgettable experience.

Following is from

he Harishankar Falls is located in Balangir, on the Southern slope of the Gandhamardhan hills. The waters of the Harishankar Falls gushes down the slopes in a series of captivating waterfalls that creates an out of the world scene.

At a distance of about 81 Kilometers is located the pilgrimage site of Harishankar. This locations is encapsulated in the charm of nature and is the shrine of the dual Hindu deity, Hari and Shankar. A very holy place for both the Vaishnavs and the Shaivites, Harishankar is the popular pilgrimage spot. The Harishankar Falls is a part of this pious place and the water of the Harishankar Falls cascades down to the granite floor of the shrines. The Harishankar Falls also acts as a natural shower for the pilgrims.

The site has some beautiful pictures of the area.

Toursim potential of Cuttack: two articles and a picture from Samaja

Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Cuttack, Mahanadi tourism, Nature spots, River Cruise, Sites in and around Bhubaneswar, Temples Comments Off on Toursim potential of Cuttack: two articles and a picture from Samaja has a good collection of articles on Orissa spots

Chandipur, Chilika, Circuit: Bhubaneswar-Chilika-Puri, Gopalpur-on-Sea, Heritage sites, Hills and hill stations, Historical places, Konark, Mahanadi tourism, National Parks and Sanctuaries, Nature spots, Puri, Similpal, Sites in and around Bhubaneswar, Temples, TOURISM, ENTERTAINMENT and SHOPPING, Tourist promotion, Travelogue 1 Comment »

Their page on Orissa is at The list of sites in Orissa that they cover are:

Travel tales of Orissa: a beautiful blog of travels to various scenic places and temples in Orissa

Ecotourism, Hills and hill stations, Lakes, Mahanadi tourism, Nature spots, Puri, Travelogue, Waterfalls 2 Comments »

Following are the links as of today:

Natural beauty of Laxmipur in western Orissa: Telegraph

Koraput, Nature spots, Rayagada, TOURISM, ENTERTAINMENT and SHOPPING 3 Comments »

Telegraph (kolkata) reported the following.

Laxmipur is a hamlet in the hills in the wild western part of Orissa. It was unheard of by tourists even a decade back. The launch of the 160 km-plus Koraput-Rayagada line put it on the map of those willing to go off the beaten track.

The new line branches off the Kirandul-Visakhapatnam route through the Araku Valley, covering Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and Chhattisgarh. The tracks were laid mainly for transportation of minerals mined in the region and development of tribals who populate the stretch.

The route, with numerous waterfalls and over 40 tunnels, is one of the most picturesque in the country. The 1.5-km tunnel near Tikri is the longest on broad gauge tracks in India. There are also more than 50 bridges.

At an altitude of 3,000 ft, Laxmipur is surrounded by thickly forested hills. The forest envelops even the station, which is 3 km from the village. It is deserted after evening, when wild animals often drop by.

According to the station master, a stray dog that lived in the compound was carried away by a leopard in front of his eyes. Bear, hyena, wild boar, neelgai, sambar and peacock are some of the other inhabitants of the forest.

Several streams gurgle through mango, jackfruit, mahogany, tamarind, sirish and akashmoni trees to merge with rivers like the Marbeguda, Apreboda and Godlam. There are several water bodies which are frequented by animals. Tribals constitute the only human presence.

Clouds stretching several kilometres hang over the hilltops from monsoon to winter. This has earned Laxmipur the epithet of Darjeeling of Orissa. Nights can be cold even in August-September.

Damonjodi, Kakrigumma, Tikri, Rauli, Lilligumma, Bhalamaska and Kentuguda are some of the stations near Laxmipur that are also known for their wild natural beauty.

The largest bauxite mine in India is at Damonjodi. Bhalamaska was named after bears that overrun the forest.

There are many places of tourist interest in the vicinity. Koraput, Kolaba, Gupteswar, Duduma and Chitrakoot and Tiratgarh falls are worth a visit.


Howrah-Koraput Express touches Laxmipur. If you are staying at Rayagada, get off there. Cars are available on hire for the 60 km-plus journey to Laxmipur.


Rayagada and Koraput have plenty of hotels. Contact the divisional forest officers at Rayagada and Koraput for government-run accommodation. There are also a few lodges at Laxmipur, along the Rayagada-Koraput road.

NOTE: This region needs more advertisment, it has all the ingredients to be one of the best tourist distinations for nature, water fall and wild life lovers. Aditionally, the region is also popular for tribal tourism.

Harishankar waterfalls in Balangir: Samaja

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Swosti travel introduces Jungle Safari in Bhitarakanika and Simlipal

Bhadrakh, Bhitarakanika, Mayurbhanj, Nature spots, Safari, Similpal 2 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in

Swosti Travels,…, recently introduced jungle safaris at Bhitarkanika and Simlipal sanctuaries in Orissa. According to S Patnaik, General Manager, Swosti Group, the seven-day-package includes stay at diverse locations, interaction with local artisans, forest explorations, animal rides, etc.

"We have roped in private players running eco camps, forest cottages and cruise liners for the project, as we wanted it to be on par with its international counterparts. To begin with, we had to get the requisite clearance from the forest and the tourism departments of the state in terms of the safety and security measures," said Patnaik, as he went on to add that the packages were already being promoted at international fairs and festivals.

Bhitarkanika is the second largest mangrove ecosystem in India, whereas the Simlipal National Park boasts of several scenic spots such as Barehipani and Joranda waterfalls.

Mahendragiri and Daringibari to be included in the “Destination Tourism” list: Samaja

Gajapati, Hills and hill stations, Kandhamala, Nature spots Comments Off on Mahendragiri and Daringibari to be included in the “Destination Tourism” list: Samaja


Progress on ecotourism in Chandaka

Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Chandaka, Cuttack, Khordha, Nature spots 2 Comments »

We earlier wrote about this in  and Following is from a news report in New Indian Express.

As part of its major activity on the silver jubilee year, Chandaka Dampara Sancturay authorities have geared up on the eco-tourism front with more community involvement plans.

The sanctuary has seven tourist routes through which the nature lovers can have a glimpse of some of the 600 plant species, conduct floristic studies and watch the animals including elephants and leopards. The tourist routes of 20 and 30 km length are permitted with vehicles and guides so that the visitors can discover the charm of the wild world.

The routes touch places like Godibari, Kumarkhunti, Kheluachua, Mahuriabadi, Pitagadia, Deras, Ambilo, Saurabila, Mantu hilltop, Chandinimundia, Kuasara and Bhimakhal. But plans are on to develop five ‘nature trails’ in the sanctuary involving Deras bamboo hut-Chandinimundia and back, Deras- Gadhari-Jhumka and back, Jumka- Kheluachua-Dantaria foothills and back, Jhumka-Gadhari and Deras along the reservoir and Chulimundia-Bhimakhal-Kuasara and back, says DFO Akshaya Pattanaik. The trekking inside the sanctuary, including eco-walk, cycling and nature education trips for schoolchildren, would be taken up commercially this year. Also the WWF-India will help in getting literature on select species of flora and fauna of the sanctuary which would be supplied to the children free of cost, he added.

Watch towers with two suits each would be arranged at Kumarkhunti and Ambilo for the trekkers who want to stay put in the sanctuary to enjoy nature from close quarters. The watch towers at Kochilaberena, Mantu hilltop and Pitagadia are also being spruced up for the purpose, the DFO said.

All the eco-development activities are being executed with the active support of ‘‘Bhagabatipur- Manee Sahi Eco-Development Committee’’ at Deras. The ecodevelopment committee is also involved in keeping the environment of the sanctuary clean, especially at tourist spots and it would also get a share of the money earned through these eco-development activities so that the members can continue their good work, Pattnaik adds.

Besides, there are three revamped picnic points near Deras forest rest house which can be used for recreation, amusement and relaxation along with the nature education and to ease off stress in the lap of nature.

Nirmaljhar: Samaja weekend article

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Tender call for establishing tent camps in Chilika Islands: Samaja

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Potential tourism spots in Rayagada district: From Dharitri

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Ministry of tourism sanctions some projects in Orissa

Ecotourism, Nature spots, Satkosia gorge and tiger reserve, Village Tourism Comments Off on Ministry of tourism sanctions some projects in Orissa

Following are excerpts from the PIB

During the current financial year the Ministry has sanctioned so far Rs.323.00 crore for various projects throughout the country. This is an all time record and will facilitate timely execution of projects during the working season.

Some of the important infrastructure projects which have been sanctioned in the current financial year are:

A. Heritage Destinations/Circuits

III. The project of Development of Mahanadi Central Heritage (Rs.3.94 crore) has been sanctioned. In this project Jetties, River Bank, Nature Trail, picnic area, etc. will be developed at various places along the river to enhance the experience of visitors to these destinations.

C. Rural Tourism

[Note: Its not clear if the “Mahanadi Central Heritage” project covers parts of Orissa or not.]

The Ministry has launched the redesigned website which is very visitor friendly. 36 sites are being developed in collaboration with UNDP for Rural Tourism in various States. 15 sites have been completed and these places are ready for marketing from 31st October, 2007. These projects will facilitate revival of art & craft, encouragement to local skills and pride in diversity.

The list of 36 is given at It has two locations from Orissa: Pipli and Raghurapur. The above document also has a larger list of 77 locations which has 6 locations from Orissa. Those six are: Raghurajpur, Pipli, Khiching, Barpali, Hirapur and Padmanavpur.

E. Eco tourism

II. The project of development of Satkosia in Orissa (Rs. 4.25 crore) has been sanctioned in which Interpretation Centre, Landscaping, Elephant camps, Trekking park, Watch Towers and parking facilities, etc. are proposed to be developed.

Serene Kandhamala

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Following is an article and a photo from Dharitri on this.



Oyster park in Puri

Beaches, Chilika, Ecotourism, Nature spots, Puri, Puri, TOURISM, ENTERTAINMENT and SHOPPING Comments Off on Oyster park in Puri

Pioneer reports that an oyster park will be created in Puri.


The Puri coast will soon have an international oyster development project covering about 3,000 acres of the sea beach to attract more and more tourists from abroad. 31 corporate giants and industrial houses both from India and abroad, for which the State Government received applications recently, will fund this ambitious project.Announcing this to the Press, State Tourism Minister Debi Prasad Mishra said that in addition to this, global quotations would be invited for the establishment of a new ‘Conference and Golf Tourism’ in the same belt in Puri district as the State has vast potential for such type of ventures for tourism development .

The Government has also decided to go ahead with a new project named ‘Camp Tourism’ in the vast coastline connecting Puri, Rajahansa in Chilika, Sanaparikuda and Harachandi Temple to attract tourist traffic to various spots.

For this, the Government has introduced a Mega Circuit Area Development Project to operate in the area.

The Minister further said that the Government is hopeful of at least 20 per cent increase in tourist flow to the State this year. He said special attention would be given for heritage tourism, cultural tourism, eco tourism, beach tourism, Buddhist — Jain temple tourism and tribal and rural tourism.

Dolphin Theme park in Satpada, Chilika – Orissa

Chilika, Nature spots, TOURISM, ENTERTAINMENT and SHOPPING, Tourist promotion, Wild life 1 Comment »

(a picture of Dolphins in Satapada from the Orissa government photo gallery)
Dolphins in Satpada

New Indian express reports that an ecological park will be setup in Satpada. Satpada is famous for Irrawady dolphins in the area. Following are excerpts from the New Indian Express article.

Satpada, the approach to the home of Irrawady dolphins in Chilika, will soon have a distinct feel and look about it. Almost everything about this tourist spot would now connect either to the brackish water lagoon or to its rare aquatic species.

A theme-based park and illumination based on dolphins will be the highlight of the face-lift that the State Government is planning for this tourist site.

The tourist arrival in Chilika through Satpada is on the rise – from 76,000 in 2005 to 96,000 in 2006 and the Government is keen to leverage from it.

The Centre for Environment Education (CEE), Ahmedabad, has been roped in by Chilika Development Authority (CDA) to conceptualise and design an eco-park at Satpada over a 4.5 acre land near the latter’s visiting centre.

Estimated at a budget of Rs 15 lakh, the park’s central theme will revolve around Chilika itself. “The park will give tourists a feel of the ambience of the lagoon. Special sections on avian and aquatic species of Chilika will find place in the park,” CDA Chief Executive Dr Sudarshan Panda said.

Besides, CDA has also tied up with a private sector electrical major which has designed what it terms ‘dolphin-lights’ for the first time. Panda said, the lights are designed in dolphin shape and are going to be launched at Satpada where streetlights will be installed over a stretch of 400 metres.

Apart from disseminating information about the lagoon, these measures will also put up a strong case for conservation needs of the lagoon. The Orissa Government has already banned use of polythene bags in the lagoon and CDA has been authorised to implement it.

Panda said a local development committee is also being constituted to look after maintenance of the new installations. The committee will have power to collect parking fees from tourists and maintain streetlights in days to come.”

Grangu Kuti: nature spot in Kandhamala

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Following are excerpts from a Pioneer report by Pradipta Mishra.

Orissa is a real treasure hunt for nature lovers and off-beat tourists. ..

One such hidden spot is Grangu Kuti or Ganga Kuti in tribals-dominated Kandhamal district. Thirteen km from Raikia, a small town above Kalinga Ghat in Kandhamal district, Grangu Kuti is about 260 km from Bhubaneswar. Along the way one comes across beautiful tribal villages and dense forests along with ancient townships like Bhanjanagar, famous for its enchanting lake, and Ghumusar Udayagiri. A drive to Grangu Kuti is like a good appetiser before a lavish lunch.

In local Kui language, Grangu means dangerous and Kuti connotes gorge. Wordsworth, however, would have called it a heavenly gorge. Such is the beauty of the place that it would turn a hardcore criminal a poet!

Grangu Kuti is a deep gorge surrounded by cloud-capped tall and densely-forested mountains. Local tourists and picnickers go down to the bottom of the gorge to listen to the breathing of nature goddess. Sound of the waterfall nearby and that of the small fountain flowing close to your leg with its crystal clear water is a lifetime experience.

The gorge is about one and a half km long and its width nearly one km. One can go either side of it and go deep as well. The whole area is a lavish feast to one’s eyes. But for one’s belly, he has to travel three km, even for a packet of biscuits. Lunch is 13 km away at Raikia. And accommodation! Forget about a hotel; the only nearest place to stay is a PWD bungalow at Raikia. Here too, one has to do a three-km walk for his morning tea.

… Moreover, the place is only about 50 km from a better-known tourist destination, Daringibadi. …

In fact, Gangru Kutis and Daringibadis have all the potential to emerge as international tourism hubs as they possess tall hills, virgin forests, perennial fountains and charming flora and fauna.

Wildlife rescue center in Kapilas

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Statesman reports that the central government is planing to establish one of three animal rescue centers in Orissa. Following are excerpts of that report.

Kapilas is chosen only to house the wild lives rescued from different places for protection of wild animals. …

Kapilas is chosen for various reasons such as suitable infrastructure, water flows, habitable environment for wild animals, natural forest growth, an existing deer park and communication for proper management and other facilities. Divisional forest division has already communicated to government about existing facilities and amenities available in Kapilas.

The purpose of the centre is to bring those wild animals being wounded or troubling villagers in human habitation to be brought to the rescue centre from different places. Thus animals including elephants will be protected and villagers be tension free. After primary care they will be sent back to forest. Union ministry will take a decision in the last week of this month to approach the Supreme Court for final approval. If approved, Kapilas will be first rescue centre in Orissa.

Kapilas is 16 kms from Dhenkanal and considered a tourist spot.

A Nayagarh village mango orchard becomes a gathering place for Siberian birds

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Samaja has the following story on this.