This story is about a day trip to the Hotapal lake located in the Hotapal village of the Dhama tehsil of Sambalpur district in the state of Odisha. Sambalpur is the nearest town near Hotapal around 43 km away.
Since it is only 43 km away from Sambalpur it is a perfect location for a day trip for the nature lovers. Herein below I am giving you guys all the details regarding how you can travel to the location, the views, and other relevant details.
1. Best Time to Visit :
The best time to visit the lake is as early as 6:00 am, especially in the monsoon season, though it is accessible all through the year with equally amazing views.
2. How to Reach:
One can travel by car, WARNING!! if you are taking your car make sure it has good ground clearance. It is more easily accessible by two wheeler because the road leading to the lake is not that good.
To reach Hotapal, the journey begins from the Dhanupali cross roads towards the Sambalpur- Sonepur road and continue on it for 30-35 km, after crossing the Dhama village keep on left for about another 5 km (approx) to make a left towards Hotapal village. Keep an eye out for an old and abandoned bus shelter on your left (refer the image below), which shall act as a landmark for your turn. After the turn continue for about 600 m, you should reach at an intersection of 2 roads, continue your journey ahead on the left road. Be careful from hereon since the road leading to the lake is very tricky and you are in for a bumpy ride all along. After travelling for about 1.5- 2 km from the intersection you can see the lake on your left in its full might. Carefully park your vehicles at the end of the road alongside the lake and you have finally made it to your destination. CONGRATULATIONS!!
3. Essential items to carry :
> Carry own drinking water and snacks if you wish to stay longer since there are no shops nearby. (Be responsible and do not litter.)
> Carry Cash about Rs. 2,000 (in Rs. 100 & Rs. 500 notes) for emergency purposes.
4. Personal Experience :
I wanted to see the sunrise from behind the mountains and its reflection in the lake, so I reached the location prior to the sunrise. There was not much crowd at those early hours in the morning, which made the setting peaceful and quite, just like I wanted it to be. While taking a walk along the edges of the lake, I was able to hear birds chirping all around. A gentle breeze blowing continuously, smoothly brushing along the face, refreshing the mood. The vibe of the place was itself so meditative and therapeutic.
I was awestruck by the mountain's reflection in the calm waters of the lake. Then I picked a spot on the road side to sit and be mesmerized by the sun peeping from behind the mountains. For me it was the most beautiful thing of this trip. First ray of the sun brought warmth when it touched the body in the winter morning. The trip was definitely worth it, and would recommend everyone to visit this place if feasible.
Below are some other pictures that I found to me mesmerizing.