Another similarly beautiful small town I’ve visited, taking advantage of my uncle’s posting, is the town of Sambalpur. It is situated in the north-west part of Odisha, beside the river Mahanadi. The river actually has separated Sambalpur and Hirakud from Burla.
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271 Kms from Sambalpur
The district headquarters of the Puri District, the City of Puri lies on the western side of the state capital of Bhubaneshwar and is right on the banks of the Bay of Bengal. Puri is known to be one of the most important pilgrimage places for the Hindus and a seat of Lord Vishnu in the form of Lord Jagannatha. The Jagannatha Temple is the most important attraction here and the Lord here resides with his brother Balaram and sister Subhadra.Other than this, the sea is what attracts tourists from all over the world. The historically rich city has a moderate climate and heritage places which dates back to the 3rd century as well. There is also the Math of Sankaracharya which finds great popularity with peace seekers. Apart from that shopping is what you can enjoy here. You get all sorts of traditional items to bring back home.
232 Kms from Sambalpur
Best time to visit - January,February,October,November,December
Named after Tribhuvan Eshwar or the 'lord of the three worlds' is the capital of Odisha, Bhubaneswar. It is set on the Mahanadi Delta but is not restricted to only coastal areas. Caves, hills, zoological parks, museums, art galleries, temples, amusement parks – you'll find all this and more at Bhubaneswar. The 180 ft tall, majestic Lingaraja Temple is the most popular in the locality. It is a sculptural feat featuring gods, goddesses, kings, queens, hunters and musicians. Lord Harihara, a union of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu is the presiding deity. The Mukteshwar Temple is smaller in comparison to others, but is famed for its beautiful ceiling of an eight petalled lotus and a glorious archway. The other prominent temples are Brahmeswar and Rajarani. The captivating natural beauty of the Udayagiri and Khandagiri caves will compel you to lose yourself in historical wonder. However, be prepared to deal with numerous langoors jumping all over the place. The dense and tranquil forests of Nandankanan will welcome you on your way to its national park. Apart from the wildlife and the white tiger safaris, you can also spend some quiet time in the gardens and indulge in an exciting ride on the ropeway. Another wonderful site to visit is the Dhauligiri Shanti Stupa. Situated on Dhauli hills, it is a well-maintained edifice where you can visit for beautiful views and solitude. If you want to be enlightened about the tribes of Orissa make sure you visit the tribal villages, markets and the Museum of Tribal Arts & Artifacts. Among places to stay, the Mayfair Lagoon or Trident are great options, but there are also other hotels that are light on the pocket.
281 Kms from Sambalpur
Best time to visit - November- March
A small town in the state of Odisha, this place is mainly known for the 13th Century Sun Temple. This place was built by Samba who was the son of Lord Krishna. He built the temple here as a mark of his devotion and thankfulness towards the Sun God. Apart from this temple, the Chandrabhaga beach is another attraction here. Konark is not very far away from the Puri City and so is also easily accesible for everyone. This is also an UNESCO World Heritage Site and is looked after by the Archeological Survey of India. The place started hiding away from the eyes of the tourists but is now again reviving its importance among all.
228 Kms from Sambalpur
Best time to visit - January,February,March,November,December
Cuttack is one of the oldest cities in Odisha. It is also called the 'Millennium City', owing to its history of about a 1,000 years. The former capital of Odisha, Cuttack has seen the rise and fall of various empires over the years. Ranging from the magnificent Keshari dynasty to pre-independence struggles, the city has always been a centre of attention. Cuttack is a major commercial hub, sitting at the delta formed by Mahanadi and Kathjori. Cuttack is best known for its internationally acclaimed silver-filigree work called Tarakasi. Cuttack is home to the once magnificent, Barabati Fort on the banks of Mahanadi. Barabati Fort hosts multiple cultural and sports events today. The temple Katak Chandi lies at a walking distance from the fort. Qadm Rasool, a holy site for followers of Islam, is said to have the footprints of Prophet Mohamed embedded on a circular rock. The shrine is acclaimed by both Hindus and Muslims. Another attraction in the holy shrine is an 18th century music gallery in the middle of the compound. Qadm Rasool makes for a very enriching visit! Other tourist attractions include Paradeep Beach, Dhabaleshwar Island and the Odisha Maritime Museum.
253 Kms from Sambalpur
Best time to visit - January,February,March,July,August,September,October,November,December
Ranchi, the capital of Jharkhand, is known for its gushing waterfalls and umpteen temples. Another place that attracts tourists is the unique Muta Crocodile Breeding Farm – a rare existence in India. Perfect for a leisurely holiday, this rapidly growing city overlooks the Chhota Nagpur plateau. If you are interested in learning about the various tribes here and their culture, the Tribal Research Institute and Museum will help you understand and explore their rituals, customs and way of life while also offering intriguing souvenirs to take back home! The mighty Hundru Falls, Jonha Falls, Panchghagh Falls and Dassam Falls must definitely be on your list for an adventurous, action packed holiday. For the spiritually inclined, the Jagannath Temple, Angrabari and Pahari Mandir are worth exploring for their architectural brilliance and faith.
272 Kms from Sambalpur
Best time to visit - January,February,July,August,September,October,November,December
Jamshedpur is the largest city in Jharkhand and is situated on the Chota Nagpur Plateau in the East Singhbhum District. Also known as the 'steel city' for its number of established steel factories, the city was founded by the late Jamshedji Nusserwanji Tata and is also called Tata Nagar. The planned industrial city is enclosed by Dalma Hills with the rivers Subarnarekha and Kharkai winding through the cityscape. Major attractions of the city include the Tata Steel Zoological Park, Dalma Hills, Hudco Lake and Pardih Kali Mandir. The Jubilee Park offers a wildlife safari, giving travellers a closer experience of wildlife. The annual flower show held in December at the Sir Dorabji Tata Park attracts countless numbers of tourists and locals. The Dalma Hills, famous for spotting wild elephants, offers great opportunities for adventure trekking and mountain climbing. The confluence of the rivers Kharkai and Subarnarekha is another attraction Jamshedpur is popular for. A holiday experience here will remind you of any other metro, though there are spots that will surprise the traveller in you!
262 Kms from Sambalpur
Best time to visit - N/A
Located in the South Western Part of Maharashtra, this is a small city on the coast of the Arabian Sea and is surrounded by the beautiful Sahyadri Hills. This place was once the administrative capital of the Bijapur Kingdom who also built a fort here in 1670. this fort was later strengthened by Chhatrapati Shivaji before the city was taken over by the British East India Company in the year 1818. This beautiful fort is the only one here and is known to be the destination where the last king of Burma, Thibaw and Veer Savarkar were confined. There are also a number of tourist attractions in and around this region including the Parashuram Temple, Pavas and caves of Chiplun, Khed, Dabhol, Sangameshwar, Gauhani Velgaum and Vade Padel. The Ganapatipule is a little away from the city and a very famous tourist attraction too. according to Indian mythology, during the Mahabharata, the Pandavas also visited this place during their 13th year and the king of this region accompanied both Pandavas and Kauravas to the battleground of Kurukshetra.
243 Kms from Sambalpur
After I crossed Raipur, drive became interesting. Forests on both sides of the road provided views of natural beauty. Various water bodies in the forests provided picturesquare view. After about 3 hours of isolated driving