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Nesting in the heart of coastal Orissa is India's biggest inland lake. Spread over 1,100 square kms, stretching across the length of three districts -Puri, Khurda and Ganjam, it joins up with the bay of Bengal. Dotted with many emerald green islands, Chilika is home to a rich variety of aquatic fauna. It is also a sanctuary and a winter resort for migratory birds, some coming from as far as Siberia. It is Asia’s largest salt-water lagoon and is separated from the Bay of Bengal by a sandy ridge.
Containing a large variety of fish the lake provides livelihood to thousands of fishermen. Hundreds of boats sail out daily on the lake's blue expanse in search of mackerel, prawn and crabs. Chilika's colour changes with the passing clouds and the shifting sun.
Places to see
Attractions within the lake
Nalabrana (forest of reeds)
For long range migrants in winter
For resident and migratory birds
For cavorting dolphins
A place of scenic beauty
Parikud and Malud
Islands within the lake.
Motor launches of OTDC Ltd. at Barkul and Ramba, and the Revenue department at balugaon. Country boats can be hired from private operators.
By Air - Nearest airport is Bhubaneshwar (120 kms)
By Train - Nearest railway junction is Balugaon (36 kms)
By Road - It is nearly 100 kms from Bhubaneswar
The Kolkatta - Chennai rail route of the South Eastern Railway touches Chilika lake in Balugaon, Chilika, Khallikote and Rambha. The nearest railway station for Barkul is Balugaon (5 kms) and for Satapada, Puri (50 kms).
The Chennai bound NH No 5 linking Kolkatta - Cuttack - Bhubaneshwar - Balugaon - Barkul - Rambha - Behrampur and Vishakapatanam runs along the lake.
The migratory birds also flock the shores of Orissa in winter, the state is well explored any time of the year but summers March to June are hot and humid. The rainy season lasts from July to October, and the state receives heavy rainfall during the period. The Puri Jagannath Rath yatra takes place during the months of June/July. The Konark festivaL takes place in the winter month of December.