Orissa in East India has a lot of tourist attractions - wildlife sanctuaries and parks being an integral part of those. Many sanctuaries and national parks have been established to provide shelter to the animal and bird kingdom, especially those which are endangered and rare species. Nandan kanan sanctuary, Bhitarkanika National park, Ambapani sanctuary, Padmatala Sanctuary, Satkosia Basipalli sanctuary, etc- all these have been able to create a natural surrounding perfect for the survival of the endangered species.
As a result oodles of tourist visit these places to spend some quality time with the animal kingdom. The natural habitat created maintains the ecological balance in the nature. Satkosia Basipalli sanctuary is a comparatively lesser-known sanctuary in Orissa which has hit the headlines because of its Gharial breeding project.
This sanctuary was established in the year 1976. It is visited by nature and animal lovers. A lot of adventure trekkers and scientists also come here. The latter come as a part of their research on the above-mentioned project. Many well-known scientists are associated with the Gharial Research and Conservation Unit at Tikarapada.
Area and location:
This is a large sanctuary covering an area of 1330 sq. km. It covers areas from the four districts of Angul, Nayagarh, Cuttack and Budh. The Angul sub-division consists of the mountainous parts of this sanctuary. It is located in the northern area of Phulboni District.
Flora and fauna:
The flora of the park consists of moist and dry deciduous forests. You would also find here moist peninsular Sal forests. Other than the forests some truly beautiful flowers bloom and contribute to the beauty of the sanctuary. Flowers like the flaming red Genwa and the crab like red Khalsi just heightens the beauty of the surroundings.
The Satkosia Basipalli Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a large number of animals and reptiles. Many types of reptiles like Gharials, mugger crocodile, fresh water turtle and poisonous and non-poisonous snakes are found in the park. Animals like sloth bear, tiger, four-horned antelope, leopard, spotted dear, red panda, wild goat, mouse deer, gaur, elephant, nilagi, Asamese macaque, pig-tailed macaque, the hoolock gibbon etc. are also important attractions of the sanctuary.
Best time to visit:
The moderate weather of the place allows the visitors to come here at any time of the year. Yet September and March remains to be the best time.
For accommodation hotels in Angul like Hotel Prashanti, Bikram Lodge, Hotel Santi, Hotel Ganapati, Airbat Guest House can be the best option.
How to reach the park?
You can travel to the park by air, rail or road. Angul is the nearest railway station which is 60 km away from the sanctuary. The nearest airport is at Bhubaneswar, the capital city that is approx. 210 km away. As Angul is well connected with roadways, you can reach the park from any part of the state easily.
Trekking and boating:
You will be excited to know that unlike many other parks and sanctuaries, this sanctuary has something special for your entertainment. A 22 km long George named Satkosia George has been cut by the River Mahanadi across the Eastern Ghats. The undulating topography of the sanctuary becomes perfect for the trekkers. This rising and falling landscape poses threat to the adventures and they find it quite enjoyable to trek here.
You can also enjoy boating in the sanctuary. Tikkapara that is located in the middle of the Satkosia George is ideal for the nature-lovers. Admire the beauty of Mother Nature, embrace her graces, experience the sizzling views of the surrounding landscapes and enjoy the wildlife of this sanctuary.
There are a lot of attractions in Angul, the 11th largest district of Orissa in terms of area. You can visit Rengali, Khuludi, Bhimkund, Maa Mahaswari Temple, Binikei Tepmple, Sri Saila Khetra, etc.
Watching the Animal Planet on television can never satisfy your thirst for wildlife. So take a chance to experience the unusual feel of watching the animal kingdom from close quarters at the Satkosia Basipalli sanctuary.