odisha day utkal divas

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Utkal Divas or Odisha Day is a celebration of the state’s formation in 1936. It is also to commemorate the sacrifices made by its people for three decades that led to the formation of the Odisha province. If you are in Odisha today, you can see people decorate their houses, shops and streets with colorful jhankis to mark Utkala Dibasa on April 1. But Odisha is a state worth visiting on any other day too for the unique things it offers. We list five reasons it should be on your travel wishlist this year. Also Read - Fighting Covid-19: Odisha College Comes to the Rescue of Migrant Workers, Provides Help With Govt Aid



1. It has some of the best beaches in India

puri-beach

Photograph courtesy: Rita Willaert/Creative Commons

Being on the east coast of India, Odisha is home to some of the best beaches in the country. While Puri Beach is the most popular one, there are many virgin beaches too that are secluded and untouched. Feel the soft sand under your feet, the cool breeze in your hair as the waves play touch-and-go with you. Here are 9 most mesmerizing beaches of Odisha. Also Read - Coronavirus: 40% of Odisha, Including Capital Bhubaneswar, to be on Week-Long Shutdown From March 22



2. It is home to some of the most beautiful temples

Jagannath-temple-Puri Also Read - ‘Tax Dijiye, Dua Lijiye’: Odisha Civic Body Recruits Transgenders to Collect Pending Taxes From Defaulters

If you love admiring the architectural beauty of temples, Odisha is home to some of the most famous ones in the country. The Konark Sun Temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site today and is worth seeing this structure built in black granite that took 12 years to be completed. Another gem is the Jagannath Temple which hosts the annual Rath Yatra and is part of the religious Char Dham Yatra. Odisha’s capital Bhubaneswar is also called the city of temples. While here, you can also visit these 5 temples in Odisha.

3. It is famed for its arts and crafts                                   

Raghurajpur

Photograph courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

There are several arts and crafts techniques that Odisha excels in and are unique to the state. When here, you can visit small villages where people’s livelihood depends on these ancient handicraft. Pipli which specializes in appliqué work to Raghurajpur Crafts Village which is popular for its pattachitra paintings on dried palm leaves, there’s a lot you can take back home. Odisha is also known for its filigree silver jewelry that you can buy in Cuttack.

ALSO SEE 5 things you should definitely do when in Puri

4. Its natural beauty will floor you

olive ridley turtles

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Apart from its lush greenery, Odisha is also home to Chilika Lake which is a brakish water lagoon and is home to many migratory birds and threatened species of flora and fauna. A visit to this largest coastal lagoon in the country is a must when in Odisha. Another experience you shouldn’t miss is seeing the Olive Ridley turtles at Gahirmatha Beach. This is the world’s largest rookery for these sea turtles.

ALSO SEE Did you know these amazing facts about the Konark Sun Temple?

5. It hosts some of the best cultural festivals

International Sand Art Festival, Chandrabhaga Beach

Photograph courtesy: PL Tandon/Creative Commons

Odisha is popular for many cultural festivals that take place throughout the year. It hosts the Konark Dance and Music Festival that is held against the backdrop of the Konark Sun Temple. An international festival, it will host its 30th edition this year. Another famed festival of the state is the International Sand Art Festival on the beach where you can see the works of Sudarsan Pattanaik. Since the past few years, Odisha is also hosting the India Surf Festival which attracts people from all over the world to its beaches.

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