AT the western side of Odisha state, the Sambalpur district is located. The dist HQ is located at the Sambalpur town which is also known as a historic city in Odisha. Right on the basin of River Mahanadi, the Sambalpur district is situated. The total area of this district is 6,702 sq km. near about sixty percent of this area is covered with dense forest. At the east side, this district is bounded by Deogarh district, at the west side Jharsuguda and Bargarh districts are bordering it, at the north Sundergarh is bordering it and at the south Angul and Subarnapur districts are bordering it. It’s the city of Sambalpur which is also considered as the connecting point of Odisha and Chhattisgarh.
This city is also popular as a trading point of diamond. Now days, textiles are exported from this city. Mainly the Sambalpuri Sarees have managed to become very popular across the globe. There are many forests, and amazing spots located around this city. At the surrounding wildlife sanctuaries of this city, many rare animal and bird species are still living. Sambalpur is also famous for its Sambalpuri dance and Sambalpuri songs across the globe. The rich culture and heritage of this region is still maintained and followed by the locals here. As this is a trading center, here you can find people from difference race and religion.
Badarama or known as Ushakothi Wildlife Sanctuary
Badarama or Ushakothi wildlife sanctuary is one of the most picturesque wildlife sanctuaries located in Odisha. This falls under the Bamra Wildlife division. From the Sambalpur town, this place is located at a distance of 45 km. from Rourkela it is 200 km away. As this sanctuary is closely located to Ushakothi, it is also named as Ushakothi Wildlife Sanctuary. This sanctuary is located on an area of 285 sq km. during the year 1962, it was declared as a wildlife sanctuary. Prime inhabitants of this place are the tribal people. There are many different types of animals, plants and denizens of Mother Nature are present here. This is also a smaller sanctuary in Odisha but it is really very popular from tourism perspective. It’s the Hirakud Dam that is located right to the west of this sanctuary.
River Penganga and River Wardha use to flow through this wildlife sanctuary. It’s the River Wardha which is also called as the River Vashishtha. Here you can find dry deciduous forest that comprise of Arjun, Sandalwood, Acacia, Neem, Casuarinas and Sal trees. The prime wild animals of this sanctuary are Royal Bengal Tigers, spotted Panthers, and the Elephants. There are 15 tigers and 35 elephants use to live here. Visitors are assigned with the jeep by the forest dept here so that they can get a good view of these wild animals moving under their natural habitat.
Rengali village is one of the most important places in Sambalpur district. It comes under the Charmali Tehsil of this district. From the sub HQ of Charmali it is located at a distance of 44 km. as per the stats of year 2009, Rengali was declared as a panchayat. The total area of this village is 618 hectares and near about 576 people use to live here. There are 154 homes located in this village. The closest town to this village is Redhakhol. And this town is 44 km away from the Rengali village. There are some amazing temples located at this place and these are Sri Ramakrishna Vivekananda Sava Sang, Maa Durga Temple, Galati Mandir, and the Hanuman Mandir. Presence of these temples is making this place a sacred region in the Sambalpur district.
It’s the Hirakud Dam which is built on River Mahanadi. This dam is located at a distance of 15 km from the town of Sambalpur. This is also the first multipurpose dam project announced in India after its freedom. From the NH 6, this dam is located at a distance of six km. this dam project is supplying water to the 1,08,385 Hects of Rabi and 1,55,635 Hects of Kharif irrigation lands located in Sambalpur, Subarnapur, Bolnagir and Bargarh. At the Mahanadi Delta, this dam is also supplying water for irrigation purpose to 436000 Hects of land. This water is also used for the production of electricity. Here, 307.5 MW of power is generated while using two power houses that are located Burla and Chipilima.
Apart from this such dam is also used to prevent flood like condition on the delta of Mahanadi. Due to this dam, Puri and Cuttack like cities are remaining safe from the flood like condition. There is also a light house located close to this dam. The prime thing associated with this light house is that its top portion can rotate. This is to offer viewers a great and 360 degree view of the dam. From here, you can also have a clear look at the other side of the dam that is located at Burla side.
Maa Ghanteshwari Temple
This is a very popular temple and located in the district of Sambalpur. As the name suggests, there are really many bells hanging in this temple. People use to ring these bells in order to offer their prayers to the Goddess Ghanteshwari. It is also called as the Lighthouse without Light. The sailors in the past use to benefit a lot from these bells as these bells were once used to alert the sailors when heavy winds use to flow. This temple is located at a distance of 33 km from the town of Sambalpur and right on the River Mahanadi’s bank. At the same River’s bank the Chipilima Power Plant is also located close to this temple.
Sambaleswari or known as Samaleswari is presiding deity of Sambalpur city. The name of this city was kept after this Goddess. She is considered as a powerful religious force at the western side of Odisha and also in Chhattisgarh state. This temple is located right at the bank of River Mahanadi. Here the Goddess Sambaleswari is worshiped. This temple is also located at the place that holds a rich cultural background. It’s been believed that praying at this temple can fulfill all your wishes. Devotees from across Odisha, Chhattisgarh and rest of India prefer to come here.
From the main town of Sambalpur, the Chipilima powerhouse is located at a distance of 37 km. it is also considered as the combination of both Huma Temple and Hirakud Dam. This is a very ideal spot for picnickers. There is also a natural waterfall located here that uses to fall from a height of 24.38m. The water coming from this fall is used to harness the power generation house. Chipilima is also known for harboring the Ghanteshwari Temple which is also the presiding deity for this place. It’s the state’s livestock Agricultural Farm and Breeding Farm are also located right at this spot.
This is one of the most amazing waterfalls that you can see in the district of Sambalpur. From the dist HQ it is located at a distance of 100 km. from Deogarh city it is also located at a close proximity. This waterfall is surrounded by some of the most stunning scenic sights. Due to this reason, it appears as one of the most stunning waterfall in this region. This place is great from outing and picnic perspectives. People use to come here during the winter time a lot in order to arrange picnic. This waterfall is all set to offer you some of the rarest natural sights that you have ever seen.
During the year 1670, the Huma temple was constructed. King Ballar Singh who is also the 5th king who belongs to the Chauhan Dynasty built this temple. This temple is also popular as Huma’s leaning temple. When you see this temple for the first time, you can see that this temple is not an upright one. It’s been tilted to one side slightly. And probably this is a reason why, almost everything associated with this temple’s complex appears to be skewed. The Huma temple is located right at the River Mahanadi’s bank. From the town of Sambalpur, it is located at a distance of 23 km. Here, Lord Shiva is worshiped. As far as the construction of this temple is concerned, there is a legend behind such place. As per this saying, a milkman used to worship Lord Shiva while crossing the river. One day when he was pouring milk on the Shiva Linga, it started to absorb the milk. This miracle has crafted the way to build such Huma temple here. The prime festival here is the Maha Shiva Ratri.