Odisha is haven for nature lovers. With several rivers traipsing down forested slopes in its vast heartland, Odisha is home to some of the country’s most gorgeous and highest waterfalls. Then there are some spectacular falls that are barely known to the outside world, a secret if you please. And there are plenty of interesting tales and folklore attached to many of these falls. When you visit Odisha, make sure to keep these magnificent waterfalls on your bucket list:
Duduma waterfalls are located near the state’s border with Andhra Pradesh. Flowing through the tribal belt of Koraput district, the Machkund River plunges down 175m to create this magnificent wonder. It is also the lifeline of the Machkund Hydro Electric Project. The dam and power house at Onukudeli may be visited after obtaining permission from the Machkund police station. Every Thursdays, a local ‘haat’ (market) nearby gives visitors a glimpse into the lives of the Bonda tribe.
The nearest road and rail hub is Jeypore, about 63km by road from Duduma.
It can be confusing to have two waterfalls sharing the same name in the same hill range! Here we are talking about the Khandadhar waterfalls that originate from the Korapani Nala and travels down 248m across a barren rock face. Did you know it is the 12th highest waterfall in India apart from being the second-highest in the state? Though the cascades can be seen from far, visitors walk up to a hill top nearby to soak in the panoramic view.
Best reached through Bonaigarh town, less than 100km by road from Rourkela, in Sundergarh district.
Imagine standing and staring at Odisha’s highest waterfall which is also the second-highest in the whole country. Located in the northern part of the Simlipal Biosphere Reserve, one of India’s most popular tiger reserves, this waterfall is inaccessible to visitors and can only be gazed at from designated spots. The Budhabalang River flowing through the Meghashuni hill cascades through a height of almost 400m, over multiple tiers of rock face surrounded by thick forests.
The nearest railhead and important town is Baripada, about 100km by road from Jashipur, the most convenient gateway.
Bhima from Mahabharata is said to have created a pool here into which the rapids from the waterfall flows into. The river Baitarani gushes down a rocky bed forming impressive rapids on the border of Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar. Green sal trees on the banks make this place picture perfect!
The nearest town and railhead is Keonjhar.
See odishatourism.gov.in for more.
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