Odisha Tourism

3.5 / 5

Beaches | Religious 


Ideal duration: 4 - 8 days

Best time: November to May (Read More)

Major Airports: Bhubaneswar

Read in detail about Airports in Odisha

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"The Soul of Incredible India"

Odisha, India

Odisha- the land of paddy fields and palm-fringed silver beaches, temples, rivers, waterfalls and tribal people, is filled with major attractions such as the temples of Bhubaneshwar and Puri, miles of clean beaches and the magnificent Sun Temple of Konark.

Odisha, the state with a glorious history, is filled with nature and adventure. Inhabited by tribal people, the not-so-developed state of Odisha must be visited to have the experience of the myriad wonders it has in store for everybody. Also known as the soul of India, Odisha is a place where you can relax on the beaches, visit the famous temples and explore the beauty and bounty of nature and wildlife. You can also find various monuments which gloriously stand to remind you of the history of the land. Odisha's art and culture, fairs and festivals, dances and music are a treat for the tourists who love to see colours and wish to enjoy life to the fullest. Visit the soul state of India and come back with a bag full of memories that will remain etched in your mind for a long time.

What's Great?

Abundant natural beauty. Serene beaches. Fascinating architecture. Kind-hearted Odiya people.

What's not so Great?

Prone to cyclones. Scorching summers. Incessant rains and humid weather in monsoons.

For Whom

Perfect place for religious people and peace seekers. Nature and architecture lovers can find Odisha to be a magnificent place.

More on Odisha


Women love to sport different types of saris, especially during festivals. Salwaar Kameez is preferred by females on regular days. The state is famous for Kataki Sari and Sambalpuri Sari. Western attire is also becoming popular among the newer generation. For men, dhoti-kurta or gumcha is most common during festivals. When it comes to jewellery, Tarakasi is a type of silver Filigree work from Cuttack, a city in eastern Odisha. This art form is more than 500 years old, and the jewellery items that are made from this are necklaces, nose pins, anklets, bangles and many others.

All the forms of dances are rich in culture and heritage of Odisha. Odissi is a typical dance form which has its origin in the temples. The postures in the dance convey different messages. Odissi dance deals mostly with the love theme of Radha and Krishna. Chhau Dance is a form of tribal martial dance. There are three subtypes of the dance, based on the original places where the subtypes were developed. Seraikella Chau was developed in Seraikella, Jharkhand and Purulia Chau in Purulia district of West Bengal and Mayurbhanj Chau in Mayurbhanj district of Odisha. Dalkhai dance is most common as it is performed at festivals like Bhaijiuntia, Phagun Puni and Nuakha. Young girls mostly perform it while men beat drums and play music. The one dance form which is performed by a single young boy is called as the Gotipua Dance. Karma Naach is a dance executed for worshipping the god of fate since Karma means fate in Kosli Oriya.

The festivals celebrated in Odisha have a blend of history, traditions and the rich culture. Some of the famous festivals of the state are- Kalinga Mahotsav which is held in January on the outskirts of Bhubaneshwar, at Dhauli Shanti Stupa. It is celebrated to pay tribute to Kalinga, a significant part of modern Odisha. Several audacious martial acts are performed on this day which is worth witnessing. Chandan Yatra, a twenty-one-day festival, takes place at Puri. Deities are taken out in the water on beautifully decorated boats. Many devotees come together to worship their lords. Durga Puja takes place in September-October with great pomp. Huge pandals are decorated, and Durga Maa is taken all around. During the processions, mantras are chanted, and loud music is played. Finally, the goddess is immersed in the waters. Konark Dance Festival calls together the eminent classical dancers from all over the country. To witness them performing traditional dance forms of Odisha is truly a feast for the eyes. Puri Rath Yatra, held in June-July is celebrated in the honour of Lord Jagannath. The huge deities of Krishna, Balaram and Subhadra are taken for a religious yatra on the chariots. Puri Beach Festival is held at Sea Beach in Puri. You can enjoy the sand art, fashion and rock shows, delectable food and adventure sports.

The art forms and crafts of the state highlight the beauty and refined skills of artisans. Some of these are- Stone Carvings- In all the temples and monuments, the art of carving in stone has helped Odisha to attract tourists from all over the world. Intricate designs and patterns carved on various types of stone can be seen in the monuments of Odisha. Pattachitra- It is one of the traditional art forms of Odisha. Paintings based on Hindu mythology are made on handmade sheets, and natural colours are used. Raghurajpur Artists village in Puri is highly renowned for this art-form. Sand Art or carving of sculptors on sand is widely popular in the state. Silver filigree or Tarakasi is another art form through which not only jewellery items are made, but handicrafts are also designed. Applique work originated as a temple art. The artisans of Pipli have their mastery in applique art. Coloured clothes are stitched in various shapes. Other art forms and crafts include brass and dhokra works, paper mache, tassar patta and coir craft.

Odisha was earlier known as Kalinga. Kalinga is related to the greatest Mauryan empire ruler Ashoka, who embraced Buddhism and abandoned warfare on seeing the loss to people because of the Kalinga War that was fought in 261 B.C. In the second century AD, Kharavela established a firm rule over this region. The Guptas dominated in about the 4th century AD. Till the 10th century, Odisha witnessed the rule of the Bhaumakara dynasty, followed by the Soma dynasty.

The Muslims Sultanate had their influence on Odisha during the 13th and 14th centuries, which continued until 1568. This was followed by the rule of the Mughals, which lasted until the death of Aurangzeb. After this, the Nawab of Hyderabad and then Marathas ruled the land until they ceded this territory to the East India Company in 1803 AD.

Odisha is a state, situated in the eastern part of India. It shares its borders with West Bengal, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh. With a blend of several physiographical features in Orissa, the state is divided into five morphological units which are mountainous and highlands region, coastal plains, western rolling uplands, central plateaus and flood plains. Some of the rivers which have their mouth in the Bay of Bengal flow through the region like the Brahmani and Mahanadi. Chilika Lake also runs through Odisha which is home to some endangered and rare species of aquatic plants and animals. Bhubaneshwar is the capital of the state located in the eastern part. The other main cities are Puri, Cuttack, Sambalpur, Rourkela, Jeypore, and Brahmapur.


Oriya is the primary language spoken in this state, though the people also use Munda and Dravidian languages. Hindi and English are also understood and spoken in the bigger towns of the state. While the majority of the population here follows Hinduism, there are practitioners of Islam as well. Orissa doesn't lag when it comes to art and craft as the state's murals, cloth and palm leaf paintings are very popular along with the ancient sculptures. Odissi is the traditional dance form of Orissa while other dance forms include Chhau Dance, Danda Dance, Ghoomra Dance, Animal Mask Dance, Kathi Dance, Kedu Dance, Ranapa Dance, Paika Dance, and various Tribal Dances. There are also several theatrical performances like Daskathia, Pala, and the circus-like Baunsa Rani that form an intrinsic part of rural/tribal Orissa. Silver filigree, locally called Tarakasi is the unique and the finest of all the handicrafts of Orissa while Dhokra or brass & bell metal craft is perhaps the most critical craft. Sambalpur, Berhampur, Cuttack, Nuapatna and Mayurbhanj are some of the essential handloom centres as Orissa produces a wide variety of fabrics.

Odisha, the land of Lord Jagannath, has food which is somewhat simple in taste and style and is similar to the cuisines of the areas around it with regard to its styles, elements, preparations and flavours. Rice, Coconut and Curd are the staple items of the platters here.
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