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Old 4th November 2010, 12:56   #1
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Default Orissa WLS hopping

Friends, as I recently discovered, Orissa has a wide spectrum of wildlife sanctuaries ranging from Marine to Land to Avian species and have decided that Orissa would be my next destination. Specifically between Berhampur and Kendrapara districts.

These are the places for the worlds largest Ramsar recognized sites (wet marsh land) and also the worlds largest Olive Ridley Turtle nesting sites.

I intend to visit Orissa for 5-6 days between Nov 20 and Dec 30 and destinations that I have mind are:

1) Bhitarkanika WLS - Primary objective Salt water croc's (1Day)
2) Gahirmata Marine WLS (Beach adjacent to Bhitarkanika) - Primary objective Olive ridley nesting (2Days)
3) Chilka Lake WLS - Primary objective migratory birds (1.5Day)

This being my first visit to the state and not much info on www, I need your expert help in the following area's:

1) Please suggest an itenary.
2) Is this doable in 5-6 days by car from Hyderabad. How is the road condition after AP?
3) Any good places to stay near the 3 WLS's
4) Best seasons for each of the primary objective (To spot the Croc's, turtles and migratory birds). Can i club all 3 within the intended 6 days trip?
5) Forest dept. officials numbers (if possible)
6) Any other info will help
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Old 4th November 2010, 17:18   #2
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It would be a nice trip if you manage it properly. You will have to really dig the info as these places have not really developed into tourist spots. AFAIK the info as follows:-

Best time to spot the Birds : August to October
Best time to spot the Crocodiles : November to March
Best time to spot the Olive Riddleys at Gahirmatha & Ekakula : February to April

I found a PDF file while searching on net. See the attachment.

Chapter_1_Bhitarkanika_Overview.pdf

Source : Internet
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Old 4th November 2010, 17:44   #3
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TB, i knew i could count on you. The pdf has quite a bit of info, especially the entry points to Bhitarkanika and Gahirmata, best seasons to visit (Nov-Jan seems to be the best season to visit all 3) and places to stay. Thanks buddy!

Last edited by ExtremeTorque : 4th November 2010 at 17:45.
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Old 5th November 2010, 23:56   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ExtremeTorque View Post
2) Is this doable in 5-6 days by car from Hyderabad. How is the road condition after AP?
p
I have an update for you on the road condition. From Hyd to Vijaywada it is not so good. To be precise, the road surface is good, but the traffic density is terrible till Nandigama.

From there till Icchhapuram on the Orissa border it is quite good---4-laned. And for the first time in 40 years, I've got a feedback from my cousin that the roads across the border are decent now (he travelled from Vizag to Berhampur yesterday). The surface is good till Berhampur, but the only concern is the huge pileup of lorries on the border check post.

I'm told that the roads beyond Berhampur are also better now---they were in a terrible state till Tangi, near Khurda Road all this while.

Wish you a safe journey, and do post a travelogue for our benefit.
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Old 6th November 2010, 08:35   #5
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Venu, thanks much! Yeah, Hyd - Vijayawada seems to be the most treacherous stretch with its traffic pattern, these days. Vizag - Berhampur and beyond, thanks again for the latest on this route. I will surely post my travelogue!
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Old 6th November 2010, 10:56   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vnabhi View Post
I have an update for you on the road condition. From Hyd to Vijaywada it is not so good. To be precise, the road surface is good, but the traffic density is terrible till Nandigama.

From there till Icchhapuram on the Orissa border it is quite good---4-laned. And for the first time in 40 years, I've got a feedback from my cousin that the roads across the border are decent now (he travelled from Vizag to Berhampur yesterday). The surface is good till Berhampur, but the only concern is the huge pileup of lorries on the border check post.

I'm told that the roads beyond Berhampur are also better now---they were in a terrible state till Tangi, near Khurda Road all this while.

Wish you a safe journey, and do post a travelogue for our benefit.


That is good news that the roads beyond AP border is getting better.
I think the ghat section near Chilka would take some more time to complete.
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Old 21st December 2010, 21:17   #7
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Default Re: Orissa WLS hopping

If you are coming from Hyd, you may plan in this order - first, chilka .. then bhitarkanika (gahirmatha is a part of it).

chilka has three entry points - rambha and barkul (after crossing behrampur, you get these two in that order as you approach khurda); these are good for bird watching (the island where they take you by boat for that is named nalaban). the third is satpada which is offtrack (way to puri after you reach bhubaneswar); this is the place to see irrawady dolphins - note that earlier the boats from the former two points could take you there as well, but now it may have stopped due to the boatmen v/s fishermen quarrels in the middle of chilka.
hence, you may drop in either at rambha or barkul.

then you may drive go to bhitarkanika. the entry point would be rajnagar (after crossing bhubaneswar, then cuttack, then diversion to pattamundai). here you get the required permits (including accommodation). most of the travel inside the sanctuary is by boat, and there are mangrove trails at certain places. gahirmatha bookings can also be done at rajnagar (that's my guess though).
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