Chilika Lake is located to the south of Puri in Odisha. The lake, which
measures around 1100 square kilometers, is the largest coastal lagoon in the
country and the second largest in the world. The lake, which is a popular
tourist destination, is home to a huge variety of birds, reptiles and aquatic
animals. The lake is situated at the mouth of the Daya River and the sea water
that flows into it makes the water brackish.
Lake has played an important role in India’s history. It was an important
harbor and commercial centre during the reign of the Kalinga kings. Ships
sailed out from the Chilika Lake to other parts of Asia including China and
to See and Do at Chilika
Chilika Lake is famous for its bird life and around 160 species of migratory
birds wing their way to the islands during the winter season. These birds
arrive from faraway lands like Siberia and Iran. During the winter months, the
lake surface and its numerous islands are inundated with birds and the sight is
truly memorable. This is among the best moneths tobook Orissa tour packages in India.
not just birds that have shown an affinity for the lagoon. Its shallow waters
teem with aquatic life. Fish, prawns, crabs, reptiles and mollusks love the
brackish waters and the wetlands surrounding the Chilika Lake. One of the rare
sightings at the Chilika Lake is the limbless skink. A part of the lizard
family, its discovery in the sands surrounding the Chilika Lake brought much
cheer to environmentalists. The Irawadi Dolphins playfully cavorting in the
waters near Satpada islands present a wonderful sight.
surface of the lake is dotted with several islands. The main islands include
Nalabana, Malud, Honeymoon, Birds, Kalijai and Rijhansa. The Nalabana is 8 km
in circumference and attracts the most number of migratory birds. The Kalijai
Island is also an interesting place. The temple of the Goddess Kalijai, located
in the island, is revered by the locals. A huge festival is organized at the
temple on the auspicious occasion of Makar Sankranti. A visit during this time
will familiarize you with the charming local customs and traditions. The Rijhansa
Island is located close to the confluence of the lake and the sea and has a
truly spectacular beach and is a popular place to take up honeymoon tours.
is plenty to do at Chilika Lake including bird and wild-life spotting. You can
hire a boat and go on a cruise around the islands. Most visitors also indulge
in a bit of fishing.
Best Time to Visit Chilika
has a moderately warm climate. However, it’s best not to visit the islands during
the monsoon season which lasts from June to September. Though the summer months
are good to visit, the ideal time is winter when the maximum number of birds
can be spotted. This is the time when the migratory birds arrive and thus the
lake is truly busy at this time of the year. Another attraction is the Makar
Sankranti festival held in January. A visit around this time will give you the
chance to absorb the local flavor. In short, the best time to visit Chilika
would be between October and March.
to Reach Chilika
nearest airport to Chilika is Bhubaneswar, which is at a distance of 120
kilometers. There are also good road links from Chilika to Puri and Cuttack.
The nearest railway stations are Rambha and Balugaon.