Home to ancient temples, pristine beaches, rolling landscapes, and a rich tribal culture, Odisha is soon to add 13 new eco-tourism spots to its list.
Odisha is touted as one of India’s best kept secrets, and rightly so. Dare to stray off the beaten track, and the state will gift you everything from architectural wonders, abundant natural beauty, and fascinating culture. Now taking it a notch higher for its guests, Odisha government is all set to introduce 13 new eco-tourism destinations.
The list will include 10 eco-retreats and three nature camps. The idea is to preserve nature while supporting the livelihoods of the local communities. While the eco-retreats will offer overnight accommodation facilities for visitors, nature camps are being developed for day visitors.
The destinations of these eco-retreats are being set up include Koraput’s Deomali and Kotia, Kalahandi’s Jakam, Similipal’s Nawana, Phulbani’s Silviculture, Puri’s Astaranga, Rairangpur’s Khadakhai Dam, Behrampur’s Mahendragiri, and Keonjhar’s Kanjipani Ghat and Hadagarh Dam. For nature camps, Koraput’s Rani Duduma, Cuttack’s Dhaltangarh, and Nayagarh’s Bhandarpahar have been picked.
Travellers will be able to book these new eco-retreats online. With the new additions, the count of such eco-friendly accommodation options in Odisha has reached to 63, making it one of the most sought-after destinations in the country.
Under the new eco-tourism project, locals will receive expert training in hospitality and property management, while in return, they will share their traditional culture and knowledge with the guests, offering a truly enriching travel experience.
The chosen destinations in Odisha have garnered popularity among conscious travellers over the past few years. In 2021-2022, these destinations were visited by an impressive number of conscious tourists from all over India and beyond.
13 new eco-tourism destinations in Odisha
Deomali Hilltop, Koratpur
The highest peak of Odisha, Deomali is always flocked by nature lovers for its lush greenery, blissful solitude, and spectacular bird’s eye view of the Eastern Ghats on offer.
A small village on the Odisha-Andhra border, Kotia is known for its rugged, unspoiled hills dotted with small hamlets, swaying fields, and thatched huts.
Far from the madding crowds, Jakam is a little hamlet in Kalahandi. Arrive here to explore hidden waterfalls, ancient architecture, and the nearby Karlapat Wildlife Sanctuary.
Nawana valley falls on your way to Similipal National Park from the unforgettable Mayurbhanj. Expect pastoral landscapes, brimming brooks, cascading falls, and forest trails.
Silviculture Garden, Phulbani
The route to the Kalinga Ghati takes you through rocky hills filled with serpentine roads and hair-pin bends. Silviculture Garden here is populated with thick bamboo trees and medicinal plants.
Astaranga Beach, Puri
Lying on the Bay of Bengal coast, Astaranga is blessed with pristine waters, great sunset views, turtles’ nests, and birdwatching spots.
Khadakhai Dam, Rairangpur
Popularly known as Suleipat Dam, this is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Rairangpur. It is built on the Khadakhai River and is surrounded by tiny islands.
With many fascinating mythological stories attached to it, Mahedragiri is a beautiful hill covered with thick green forest covers, and is famous for its red sandalwood.
Kanjipani Ghati, Kendujhar
Kanjipani Ghati is a picturesque natural panoramic spot with magnificent up-rolling mountain ranges that takes your breath away in first look.
Hadagarh Reservoir, Kendujhar
Hadagarh majestically stands over Salandi River and is a famous spot for picnics and day-trips for the locals and travellers alike.
Rani Duduma, Koratpur
Rani Duduma waterfall is located on the top of the Nandapur Hill, cascading down like a dream amidst a verdurous setting.
Dhaltangarh is a beautiful, quiet forest cover in the lap of nature located in the Jagatsinghpur district and waiting to be explored.
Bhandar Pahar, Nayagarh
An erstwhile princely state, Nayagarh is home to Bhandar Pahar. And sitting atop this giant hill, is the Amarnath Shiv Mandir.
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