My first ride was at what is called the Golden Triangle of Odisha....
The credit for making this tour possible goes to Amrita, a blogger friend, and Odisha Tourism....
Top Places To Visit 23 Spots
The largest brackish water lagoon of Asia, the Chilika Lake is an awesome place to visit when you are in Odisha. It stretches from Bhusandpur in the Puri District till the Ganjan District and comprises of a beautiful wetland. There are a number of islands here and these are places till where you can enjoy boating and also spend a peaceful and exotic weekend on one of these. The islands include the Nalabana, Kalijal, Honeymoon, Breakfast, Somolo and Rajahansa. The wetland is also a bird- watcher's heaven where thousands of migratory birds, especially flamingoes come here and are a visual treat completely. The Kalijai Temple on the Kalijal island is a popular attraction here where the Goddess Kalijai is worshipped. She is a local deity and Makar Sankranti is celebrated here with great pomp.
Konark Sun Temple
he major attraction of the town of Konark, this temple is a stunning example of ancient Odisha Temple architecture. The temple was built in the 13th Century during the reign of King Narasimhavarmana I. Samba, the son of Lord Krishna was cursed by him and this made him a victim of leprosy. After this he started practising strict penace and at the end of this he attained the blessings of the Sun God. Lord Surya is the one who is said to have powers of curing all sorts of sking diseases and so did he cure Samba. As a mark of his gratitude and devotion he built the Konark Sun Temple. Next day when he was taking a bath in the waters of Chandrabhaga, a picture of Lord Surya floated to his hands and he took it as an instruction of the Lord. He immediately placed this image in the temple he had built. The temple is huge and is in the form of a chariot which has 12 wheels and being driven by 7 horses. The idol of the Sun God is in a standing posture and the horses are shown carrying him across the heavens. The temple was also called as the 'Black Pagoda' by the British because it was built completely of black granite.
The Kondhs (also locally known as Kandha or Khonds), are the largest tribal group in Odisha (As per 1970 estimates, numbering more than 7, 00, 000 persons). The Kandhamal district in Odisha (erstwhile a part of Phulbani district), has 55% Kandha population and was named after the tribe. The Kondh is a tribe of people living mainly in the forested mountainous regions of the state of Orissa in India. They are known for their cultural heritage and values which center on respecting nature. They speak Kuvi language. Their religion is interwoven with traditional tribal beliefs and Hinduism. Their religion is animistic, and their pantheon includes eighty-three Gods. Their practices make them mainly dependent on forest resources for survival. The Khonds are subdivided into the plains Khond, who are highly assimilated with the neighboring Oriya and engage in plow farming (they are also divided into castes), and the hill Khond, who have preserved considerable vestiges of the tribal system. The chief occupations of the latter are slash-and-burn farming, hunting, and gathering. They celebrate festivals like Dussehra, Diwali, Sohraj, Sarhul, Jitia, Phagu Karma, Nawakhani and Ramnavami with great joy, honor, and enthusiasm which includes music and dance with the beating of Dhol, Kartal, Thali, Nagara and Flute. The rituals of this tribe are so pious that it can be easily seen in their practices.