Hirakud Dam - Odisha was one of the major river valley project taken up in India after its independence. It is built on the Mahanadi River and has 2 observation towers atop it, namely 'Gandhi Minar' and 'Nehru Minar'.
With a great 27 kilometers in length, Hirakud is the longest dam in the world. Built in 1957, this dam is of major historical importance, as it was the first multipurpose river valley project undertaken by India post independence. Hence, it is also the oldest Indian dam.It is built across the Mahanadi river and Odisha tourism is incomplete without a visit to the longest dam in the world. It is fully commercial with shops selling chips and biscuits inside the complex. It also has two Minars: the Gandhi Minar and the Nehru Minar. The Gandhi Minar rotates and it provides the most eye-soothing view to a tourist. Visit this amazingThe best part about Hirakud dam as a tourist attraction is that it can be visited throughout the year, as each season brings out a different side of it, and each side will charm you. During the Monsoon, Mahanadi river is at its peak and you will be assured of a picturesque view. During the Winter, you can spot a number of migratory birds coming to the reservoir, and the rich in biodiversity: the Debrigarh Wildlife Sanctuary. And during the Summer, you could spot the remains of ancient temples that get submerged during the rains.Trust the longest dam in world to engage with the history lover within you. More than 200 temples have submerged due to the construction of Hirakud. Most have perished, but some resurface during the summers. Also, the Archaeological Survey of India started gaining interest in Hirakud after remains of what was called the Padmaseni temple were recovered. This was supposed to have been belonging to the Padmapur village, which was the oldest and the most populous region prior to the construction of Hirakud.How to reach: Sambalpur is the nearest town to the dam and can easily be visited by road. You could also trust the longest dam in the world to introduce you to the one-of-its-kind "Cattle Island", an island that is inhabited by nothing but wild, huge, untamed cattle. Though photography is strictly restricted in the dam area, this view will forever be etched in your memory of visiting one of the largest dam in the world.So, you must visit this historical and engineering marvel of India this season. Just don't forget to make it a day trip as there are no places to stay around one of the largest dam in the world.
Sambalpur also boasts of the Hirakud dam, the world’s longest dam across the Mahanadi river. There is minaret called Gandi Minar atop which one can enjoy the vast expanse of Hirakud dam with the calm, serene nature all around. It provides a wonderful view and, you can feel oneness with the nature.Both the cities, Rourkela and Sambalpur have retained their natural aura in spite of being industrial towns. You can experience a perfect symbiosis of nature and industry here.