Odisha Tourism

Odisha – Food for your soul

Your fascination with history will be met with an abundance of museums and heritage sites. Your palate for good food will be fuelled with delectable dishes. Your yearning for spiritual knowledge will be nourished by exquisite temples. Your thirst for experiences will be acquainted with nature’s many children – lakes, hills, wildlife. Your curiosity for the unknown will be satisfied by numerous fascinating tribes. Those who make the effort to visit Odisha, will be rewarded greatly!

Odisha: A Quick View of the state 
Capital Bhubaneshwar
Official Language Odia
Dial Code Bhubaneshwar - 0674
Population 4.6 crores (as of 2018)
Currency Indian Rupee (INR)
Time Zone UTC+05:30 (IST)
Area 155,707 square km

 

Highlights of Odisha: Fuel your mind, body, and soul


Temples

A giant ornamented chariot dedicated to God Surya; the Sun Temple is a spectacular façade. With 24 carved stone wheels, pulled by 7 majestic horses, the temple looks like its emerging from the blue sea with the sun in its hands. You must drink-in this view during sunrise or sunset.

Shree Jagannath Temple is a part of a complex that spans 400,000 square feet and consists of 120 shrines. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it is an important Hindu pilgrimage destination. Make sure you check out all the grand sections, which include Throne of pearls, Frontal porch, Dancing Hall, and Offerings Hall.

Lingaraj Temple, the largest temple in the capital city, celebrates Lord Shiva. Built with sandstone and laterite, is a fine example of Kalinga architecture. When wandering through the complex you will uncover a sanctum, assembly hall, festival hall, and hall of offerings.


Ruins

Once the site of a great Buddhist monastery, Ratnagiri was perhaps chosen for its immense seclusion and tranquil atmosphere. Archaeology has discovered votive stupas of varying sizes, sculptures, and even a single winged monastery with an airy courtyard. Try not to miss any of these excavated objects, as this is perhaps one of the most profound of all Pushpagiri sites.

Udayagiri is yet another set of excavated ruins from the Pushpagiri sites. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to view remnants of a stone jail embellished with a slithering 3 hooked snake!


Museums

The Museum of Tribal Arts & Artefacts aims to preserve the rich and diverse history of Odisha tribes. In its repertoire is 5 halls - each symbolizing a distinct tribe and its lifestyle. With approximately 2,247 pieces, you can choose to look through photographs, personal belongings, clothing, and art. What better way to get acquainted with history than to gaze at objects that have stood the test of time?

Odisha State Maritime Museum will sail along the seas of your heart. Imagine this. The beautiful-musty smell of 1000 books and journals, 13 galleries filled with maritime vessels, boats, and other nautical paraphernalia.


Wildlife sanctuaries

Take a peaceful boat ride from Khola to Dangmal, at Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary. Spot the graceful Kingfisher and the enchanting saltwater crocodile, at this eco friendly national park.

If you fancy some adrenaline pumping Tiger spotting, head to Satkosia Tiger Sanctuary. You can even boat across the Mahanadi River where you will find other exciting species to satisfy your love for animals.

 

Markets

Ekamra Haat, nestled in the capital city, is a treat for your senses.  It consists of a charming cluster of huts, that pose as shops. You will also discover rustic grass mounds. This quintessential native village boasts of a beguiling collection of handicrafts and hand-looms. If you would like to pick a little something, check out the applique, terracotta work, palm leaf engravings, and art textiles.

Onkadelli Market is synonymous with its Bonda tribal village people. Go there early enough and you will witness the spectacular sight of hundreds of Adivasis arriving to set up their stalls. They carry cane baskets on their heads, filled with colourful goodies to sell!


Cuisine

Odisha’s khichdi also known as khicede is a lovely combination of cooked rice and lentils. But what makes it truly special is the big dollop of ghee that goes on top. Try this lightly spiced dish with fresh yogurt and a crispy papad. If you want to go all out, throw in some pickle. This comforting meal is a staple. We also recommend the Chungdi Malai, a creamy prawn curry served with basmati rice!

 

Interesting facts about Odisha: Grand truths

  • Odisha is home to the world’s largest open-air theatre – Dhanu jatra.  
  • Odisha’s national dance form – Odissi, is one of India’s oldest surviving dance forms. 
  • Shree Jagannath Temple contains the world’s largest kitchen.
  • Bhubaneshwar is blessed with approximately 600 magnificent temples.
  • Mayurbhanj houses rocks that go back 3 billion years.

 

Location: Explorers map

Odisha is situated in Eastern India. The state shares its border with Jharkhand and West Bengal in the north, Andhra Pradesh in the south, and Chhattisgarh in the west.

Click here to view Destination Name on Google Map

 

Timings: Best time to visit

Summers in Odisha can go up to a stinging 37 degrees. This hot weather makes it extremely unpleasant to travel. As such, the winter season is the ideal time to make a trip as temperatures rise to a maximum of 28 degrees. Furthermore, the state is in its natural bloom – a visual treat for the eyes.

 

How to get to Odisha: Happy journey!

By Road – Orissa has an intricate network of state and national highways, rendering it easily accessible to the rest of the nation. In fact, the length of national highways has more than doubled in the last four years. Orissa State Road Transport Corporation consists of inter bus services. But you may also opt for other methods of road travel.

By Rail – Bhubaneshwar Railway Station is one of the most significant stations in the state. It is extremely convenient too! Just to name a few, the station is well connected to Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Kolkata. No matter which state you come from, chances are, it has a direct train to Bhubaneshwar. 

By Air – Odisha’s only airport hails from the capital city. Biju Patnaik International Airport has direct flights to domestic destinations such as Mumbai, New Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Raipur, Varanasi, and Chennai. Furthermore, it offers international flights to and from Thailand and Malaysia.


History: Looking back in retrospect

The discovery of Acheulian tools suggests the existence of the Palaeolithic era during prehistoric times. This was followed by battles, conquests and settlements of several kingdoms such as the  Mauryan Dynasty, Mahameghavahana Dynasty, Somavamsi Dynasty, Eastern Ganga Dynasty, Gajapati Kingdom, Mughal Empire, Bengali Kingdom, and Maratha Empire. By the late 17th century the British had annexed control over the state. Odisha was incorporated into the Madras Presidency, followed by the Bengal Presidency. It was only in 1936 that Bihar and Odisha were split into separate states.

Has this little snippet of history made you eager to visit Odisha? Don’t worry, because we know just the right places to peak your curiosity.

Read on, to find out more!

Language Spoken

Odia

Currency used:

Indian Rupee (INR)

APR-JUN 37oC
NOV-FEB 28oC

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Odisha Tourism Guide

Odisha Tourism has flourished tremendously within the last few years. Most travellers take a tour of this state only to witness its vast culture and experience the joy of adventurous activities like trekking and water sports. Odisha is a state that is chosen by many people for spending an incredible vacation with their friends and family. But, the fun and excitement you want your Odisha vacation to offer will depend a lot on the Odisha Tourism package you choose. There are some amazing things to do in Odisha, be it thrilling adventure sports or exploring the main tourist attraction of the state.

According to Odisha tourism, some of the most famous treks in Odisha are Gandhamardhan Trek, Mahendragiri Trek and Nilgiri Trek. Also, Barkul and Dhabaleswar are the top places to visit for the lovers of water sports. In Barkul, Odisha tourism has developed water sports complex offering canoeing, kayaking, and boating for people. In Dhabaleshwar, tourists get to enjoy water scooter rides and boating.

Make sure that you go for Odisha tourism packages that include all these places along with other major tourist spots like Raghurajpur, Bhubaneshwar, Chandrabhaga Beach and Nandankan Zoological Park. For most people, Odisha is a pilgrimage spot. They opt for Odisha tourism packages just to visit the Jagannath temple and sun temple in Konark.

The state of Odisha has both heritage and adventure waiting to be explored. One of the amazing aspects of Odisha culture is its beautiful art and craft in villages and encounter with the tribal population. According to Odisha Tourism, the best time to visit Odisha is from November to February, in order to enjoy your vacation there. Contact Thomas Cook to get the best deal on Odisha tourism packages. We are focussed on helping our international tourist for their Visa queries along with flight and hotel bookings.

If you haven’t ventured on a trip to Odisha yet, you are missing out on a great tourist destination. Odisha is a mix of natural elements and historical sites. However, holiday packages have gained most publicity because of its amazing beaches that mushroom across the long stretch of coastline of the Bay of Bengal.

One can idle away on the beach in the presence of ample sun, sea and sand. Or, if it suits you, go on the exploration of historical adventures at the various sites scattered across the state. Tourists travel to Odisha in hordes to visit the famed Sun Temple at Konark, the Buddhist structure of Udaygiri, and the holy pilgrimage site of the Jagannath Temple at Puri.

Find immense appeal for their exemplary beaches, like the one at Puri, which is a major tourist attraction round the year. Other secluded beaches like the ones at Gopalpur and Chandipur are coming up on the radar too, with many Odisha tours focusing on them. Go on Odisha vacation packages to visit Asia’s largest lagoon, the Chilika Lake and the numerous national parks peppering the state.

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