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ORISSA GUIDE

 
Orissa, boasts a rich and cultural heritage. Orissa lies on the eastern coast of India, with the water of bay of bengal. It have a magical impact of green valleys, blue hills, lush green forests, and golden beaches. Modern Orissa is now one of the most popular with tourists. The hill forests of central Orissa are a tribal area and the home of wild animals. Orissa is famous for its traditional and religious temples. Orissa has a chequered history of the Buddhist, Jain and Hindu cultures.

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  ORISSA INFORMATION

 
Orissa has a long coastline of over 480 km on the Bay of Bengal interspersed by a couple of lovely beaches. Added to their seductive beauty is a vast hinter land of antiquities and holy shrines.Backed up by musical sway of Casuarina trees and creepered sanddunes, Chandipur is one such beach, but with a unique distinction of its own. Unlike other beaches, the sea water here recedes away from the line about five km twice a day, an unusual phenomenon, rarely found anywhere. You can see the sea literally vanishing before your eyes and also watch it coming back rhythmically at regular intervals, as if playing hide and seek.Elsewhere, the waves come and go dashing on the shore like madcap but here they are like a musical fountain, soothing to the eyes and ears. Elsewhere, the waters wait for the visitors but here the visitors have to wait for the waters. Elsewhere, the waves go wild and the visitors calm but here the ecstasy of visitors will go wild while the waves remain calm.This marvel of Nature gives the bathers an unexpected pleasure of fearlessly walking into the sea and happily playing with the waves. When the waters disappear, you can even take jeep ride on the widest beach. The beauty of the exposed bosom of the beach is further enhanced by the small red crabs. If a beach comber, you will, be delighted with its abundant wealth of sea shells and drift wood.
 
   

  ORISSA FACTS AND FIGURES

 

Orissa at a Glance ...

   

  Area:    

155,707 sq km

  Capital:

Bhubaneswar

  Languages: 

   Oria, Hindi, English
   Per Capita Income:    6,520
   Religion:    Hindu
   Main Income:    Tourism, Agriculture, Industry
   Total Districts:    30
   Forest Land:    58,13,547
   Best Time to visit:    October to March
 
   

  ORISSA HISTORY

 
The history of Orissa makes an interesting case-study in that it's history is in many ways typical from that of the northern plains and many of the common generalizations that are made about Indian history do not seem to apply to the Oriya region. The word Oriya is an anglicised version of Odia which itself is a modern name for the Odra or Udra tribes that inhabited the central belt of modern Orissa. Orissa has also been the home of the Kalinga and Utkal tribes that played a particularly prominent role in the region's history, and one of the earliest references to the ancient Kalingas appears in the writings of Vedic chroniclers. In the 6th BC, Vedic Sutrakara Baudhayana mentions Kalinga as being beyond the Vedic fold, indicating that Brahminical influences had not yet touched the land. Unlike some other parts of India, tribal customs and traditions played a significant role in shaping political structures and cultural practices right up to the 15th C. when Brahminical influences triumphed over competing traditions and caste differentiation began to inhibit social mobility and erode what had survived of the ancient republican tradition.
 
   

  ORISSA TOURIST ATTRACTIONS

 
Jagannath Temple (Puri) » Barabati Fort (Cuttack) » Konark Temple (Konark) » Lingaraja Temple (Bhubaneshwar) » Sun Crafts Museum (Puri) » Konark Beach (Konark) » Mayadevi Temple (Konark) » State Museum (Bhubaneshwar) » Konarak(Puri)
 
   

  ORISSA FAIRS AND FESTIVALS

 
Orissa being a land of ancient and sacred temples, and a state where three religions flourished, is thronged by pilgrims throughout the year. There are a large number of fairs and festivals celebrated in the state. There are festivals relating to each religion, tribal festivals, festivals relating to Lord Jagannath, the presiding deity of the Puri Temple, and many seasonal exhibitions and fairs as well as special festivals such as the Konark Dance Festival, the Rajarani Music Festival, the Puri Beach Festival etc.
Durga Puja : Durga Puja (September-October) symbolises the commemoration of good over evil. Life comes to a stand-still in the city of Cuttack as crowds pour over the Puja Mandaps to enjoy the festivities. On the day succeeding 'Vijaya Dasami', the last day of Dussera, the images are taken in a spectacular procession for immersion in the river Kathajodi.
Rath Yatra : The most famous Orissan festival is of course the Ratha Yatra or Car Festival (June-July) which attracts pilgrims and visitors from all over the world. On the full moon day of the month of Jyestha known as snana Purnima, the idols of Jagannath, Balabhadra slid Subhadra are brought out and bathed on a pendal known as the snarlamandap according to religious rites.
Dola Purnima ( Holi ) : Dolapwnima or Holi is the most famous spring festival of India. Usually celebrated in March. It has special properties in its celebration in Orissa where it is a five day affair, especially in the rural areas. The images of Krishna are worshipped form Dashami (10th day of the bright fortnight) to the full moon day.
 
   

  HOW TO REACH

 

By Air :
Chandipur is well connected by an excellent all-weather road. 16 km from Balasore on N.H. 5, 230 km from Bhubaneswar and 314 km from Kolkata. Regular bus services are available. Taxis and Auto rickshaws are also available from Balasore.

By Rail :
Nearest railhead is Balasore (16 km) on the S. E. Railway served by a number of fast trains from Kolkata, New Delhi, Chennai, Puri, Tirupati, Bhubaneswar etc.

By Road : Nearest airport is Bhubaneswar (230 km) and Kolkata (314 km).

 
   

  ORISSA MAJOR CITIES

 
Bhubaneswar » Puri » konark » Cuttack » Baripada » Phulbani » Sambalpur » Cilika
 
   

  ORISSA WILDLIFE AND BIRDS

 
The state of Orissa has a geographical area of 155,707 sq. km.. The recorded forest area is 52,472 sq. km. but the actual forest cover is 47,033 sq. km. as per the State of Forest Report (SFR 1999) of Forest Survey of India. In order to provide proper protection to the wildlife and their habitat, a total of 18 sanctuaries (Protected Areas) including Gahirmatha (Marine) Wildlife Sanctuary, one National Park (Bhitarkanikaj, one proposed National Park have been notified under the provisions of Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.These Protected Areas constitute 10.37% of the total forest area and 4.1% of the total geographical area of the state. Besides, one Tiger Reserve (Similipal), one Biosphere Reserve (Similipal), one closed area (Chilika), one Game/Wildlife Reserve (Bppadar - Bhetnoi), one Zoological Park and 8 deer parks (mini zoos) have been notified for both in-situ and ex-situ conservation and management of wildlife.The state has the singular distinction of having 3 mass nesting beaches of endangered olive ridley sea turtles including world's largest nesting ground of olive ridley sea turtle, Lepidochelys olivacea. Itches many natural wetlands including largest wetland of Asia (Chilika) now designated as a Ramsar site.A total of 19 species of amphibians, 110 species of reptiles including three crocodilian species, 473 species of birds and 86 species of mammals have so far been recorded in the state which include 54 species of threatened animals (17 species of reptiles, 15 species of birds and 22 species of mammals) as per the definition of IUCN Red Data Book.The state is implementing several research and conservation projects viz; thp Project Tiger (1972-73), Integrated Crocodile and Sea Turtle Project (1975-76), Project Elephant (1991-92), Aquatic Bird Project (1992-93) and Blackbuck Project (1994-95).
 
   

  ORISSA ARTS AND CRAFTS

 
Age has not withered the beauty and dynamic diversity of Orissa's traditional arts and crafts Stemming from centuries of exquisite craftsmanship, they are a colourful testimony to the nterred life force amongst an ancient people.Cross-cultural influences in religion and tilitarian trades have produced a range of gorgeous crafts that add colour and creativity to their lives.Orissa's religious heritage has played one of the most dynamic roles in fashioning the infinite variety of crafts available in the numerous stores lining the city streets and the artists' villages.uddhism, Jainism, Shaivism and Vaishnavism movements have left their imprints on Orissa's ancient arts and crafts, as have its strong tribal traditions. Its sea-faring history has brought in influences from Indonesia and China.