Sambalpur is the gateway to the bewitching western zone of Orissa abounding in lush green forests, colourful wild life, captivating waterfalls; rich tribal culture, folk songs and dances and a variety of monuments.
It is said that Sambalpur is mentioned in the book of Ptolemy (2nd century AD) as Sambalaka on the river Manada (the Mahanadi river). This gateway to the exotic charms of the western region of Orissa was the cradle of an ancient civilization and is an important landmark in India's cultural history.
Lying 321 km from Bhubaneswar, this ancient centre for the diamond trade is famous for its internationally renowned textiles (Sambalpuri textiles), rich tribal heritage and fabulous forestlands. Samaleswari, the presiding deity of this region is enshrined at 'Samalai Gudi' on the bank of Mahanadi river. The other temple of importance is the Budharaja Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva and is perched atop the Budharaja hill. Sambalpur is easily accessible by rail and road.
Sambalpur has earned a place in the cultural history of India. Here, one can visit the temples of Samaleswari, Patneswari, Budha Raja, Brahmapura and the Gopaljee monastery.
Handicrafts of the region:
Center of internationally famous Handloom Textiles popularly known as "Sambalpuri Textiles".
The best shop in town is "Harjit's - the fashion shop".
|Dhanuyatra||December - January|
|Maha Sivaratri||February - March|
|Nrusimha Chaturdashi||May - June|
|Sitalasasthi||May - June|
Hirakud Dam (16km):
One of the longest Dam in the world. This dam is the longest dam in Asia and also features in the old Rs.100 currency note of India. This is one of the main tourist attraction of the city.
Huma (32 km):
Famous as the abode of Lord Siva, Huma contains the lone Leaning Temple of the World and also famous as a scenic spot of great excellence.
The place has gained prominence as the second Hydro-Electric Project of the Hirakud Dam. This place also has the temple of Mother Ghanteshwari. This temple is surrounded by tree and thousands of bells hung on the trees.
The famed wildlife sanctuary at Badrama. It is covered with natural forests and abundant wildlife.
The temple of Vidala-Nrusimha stands at the foot of the picturesque Gandhamardan hills. Thers is a gorgeous waterfall and the place is profound with excellent scenic beauty.
Vikramkhol (88 km):
It is a cave containing Pictographic Inscription (1,500 B.C. or even earlier) of great antiquity.
Pradhanpat (96 km):
The Pradhanpat hill with its picturesque waterfalls offers a rare scenic beauty.