Odisha (formerly Orissa) is a unique state in India, filled with centuries of history, culture, and natural beauty. Here are 17 things to know before travelling to Odisha:
1. Destination Overview of Odisha:
Odisha is located in the eastern part of India and is known to be the birthplace of the Hindu god, Lord Jagannath. It is renowned for its stunning ancient temples, stunning beaches, exotic wildlife, and traditional culture. Popular places to visit include Konark Sun Temple, Hirakud Dam, Chilika Lake, Jagannath Temple, etc.
2. Top Activities to do in Odisha:
• Visiting the famous Jagannath Temple and Konark Sun Temple
• Exploring the majestic architecture of the Lingaraj Temple and Mukteshwar Temple
• Enjoying the beauty and serenity of Chilika Lake and Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary
• Experiencing the thrill of water sports and beach activities in Puri
• Indulging in the unique shopping experience of Odisha’s traditional handicrafts and art
• Trekking in the beautiful hills of Deomali, Mahendragiri and Daringbadi
3. Best Places To Stay in Odisha:
• Luxury Places: Mayfair Lagoon, The New Marrion, The Hans Coco Palms
• Mid Range: LemonTree Hotel, Mayfair Waves, Trident Bhubaneswar
• Budget Friendly: Hotel Pushpak, Hotel Sishmo, Hotel Pushpanjali
4. How to Travel to Odisha?
Odisha is well-connected by air, rail and road. The nearest airport is Bhubaneswar airport, which is well-connected to major airports in India. There are regular trains from major cities of India to Bhubaneswar. You can also take a bus or a taxi from the airport or railway station to the destination of your choice.
5. Must Try Local Food and Drink in Odisha:
• Pahala Rasagola
• Chhena Gaja
• Chenna Poda
• Gajar Jhili
• Dahi vada
• Machha Jhola
• Chakuli Pitha
• Chitau Pitha
• Chenna Jhilli
6. Best Places to Eat in Odisha:
• Hotel Annapurna, Bhubaneswar
• Olive Bar & Kitchen, Bhubaneswar
• The Tandoori Orchid, Bhubaneswar
• Mayfair Lagoon, Bhubaneswar
• Ekamra Kanan, Bhubaneswar
7. Weather and Climate:
Odisha has a tropical climate with hot summers and mild winters. The summers start from April to June and the temperatures can get as high as 45°C. The monsoon season lasts from July to September and the winters are from October to March. The best time to visit Odisha is from October to February when the weather is pleasant.
8. Local Customs and Etiquette in Odisha:
When travelling to Odisha, it is important to respect local customs and etiquette. It is important to cover your arms and legs when visiting religious sites. It is also important to remove your shoes when entering temples or religious places. It is advised to avoid public displays of affection and take care of your belongings.
9. Popular Scams in Odisha:
• Currency exchange scam – Be sure to exchange currency at authorised banks and not on the street.
• Overcharging taxi drivers – Be aware of the regular fares before taking a taxi.
• Fake tour guides – Be sure to book tours through registered tour operators.
• Street vendors overcharging – Be aware of the regular prices of items before making a purchase.
10. Suggested Trip Duration:
The ideal duration for a trip to Odisha is 5-7 days.
11. Total Estimated Budget Per Person:
• Stay: INR 3,000 – INR 5,000 per night
• Food: INR 300 – INR 500 per day
• Activities: INR 500 – INR 1,000 per activity
• Tickets: INR 500 – INR 1,000 per ticket
12. NearBy Cities:
• Cuttack – 30 km
• Konark – 60 km
• Puri – 65 km
• Chilika – 140 km
• Bhubaneswar – 150 km
13. Local Language and Communication in Odisha:
Odia is the official language of Odisha. However, most locals understand and speak English. English-speaking guides are available at the tourist destinations.
14. Accepted Currency and Money:
The Indian Rupee is the accepted currency in Odisha. ATMs are available in major cities and towns. Credit and debit cards are accepted at most establishments. Tipping is not common in Odisha.
15. Health and Medical Information:
No vaccinations are required to visit Odisha. However, it is advised to stay up to date with vaccinations recommended by your doctor. Medical facilities are available in major cities and towns.
16. Packing Tips for Odisha:
It is advised to pack light and comfortable clothing. Sun protection, hats and sunglasses are recommended. It is also important to pack comfortable footwear for trekking and exploring.
17. To Sum Up:
Odisha is a unique destination in India, renowned for its ancient temples, stunning beaches, exotic wildlife, and traditional culture. It is the perfect destination for travellers looking to experience a unique and unforgettable getaway.