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Things To Do In Berhampur
Berhampur, previously known as Brahmapur, is the ‘land of Lord Brahma’; a religiously significant ancient city located in the Ganjam district of eastern Orissa. One of the largest cities in the state, Berhampur offers visitors the opportunity to mingle with the crowds of religious devotees who flock to the numerous temples spread all over the city.
Berhampur is a city packed with spirituality, sandy beaches, and amazing food options that are testament to its diverse attractions. Shopping enthusiasts will find themselves falling in love with the city as well with its rich silk textile collections, jewellery shops and handicraft items. Here is a list of some of the best things to do when in Berhampur.
Enjoy Water Sports at Gopalpur Beach
Gopalpur Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Orissa, which is best known for being the mating and nesting site for the rare Olive Ridley Turtles. While it is a great place to enjoy a stroll among the casuarina trees and the clean sandy beach, adventure seekers will be pleased to know that there are a variety of water sports on offer at the beach as well. Paddle boats, speed boats and scooter boats, along with swimming and windsurfing are some of the thrilling activities to enjoy on Gopalpur Beach.
Trekking on Bankeshwari Hills
Bankeshwari Hills are located around 10 km away from Berhampur in the Kerandimala hill range on the Eastern Ghats; a breathtakingly scenic spot that is popular among visitors and local tourists for picnics and excursions. The hills are covered in dense forests and surrounded by beautiful streams, and a lot of visitors to the area choose to hike here to enjoy the scenic environment in its true essence. The best time to visit the hills is during the dawn hours, which offers the best opportunity to enjoy the beautiful sunrise.
Shopping for Silk
The silk textiles of Berhampur are famous nationwide, which has earned it the moniker of Silk City. Intricately patterned silk sarees, especially the Berhampuri Patta and Bomokai Patta sarees, will prove to be one of the best buys in the city; while they make amazing gifts, it is also a great way to support the local weavers as well whose expert craft should receive its due appreciation.
Bathe in Taptapani Hot Spring
Taptapani is a naturally occurring hot spring situated around 50 km outside Berhampur. With very few of these hot springs on earth that are actually accessible, Taptapani is a major tourist spot that drives a lot of crowd to the region. The spring is believed to have medicinal and healing properties due to its high sulphur content, and people from all over visit this place to bathe and benefit from the water of the spring. There are also temples here dedicated to Lord Shiva and a tribal goddess, Kandi Mata - places worth checking out on your trip to the spring.
Watch a Movie
Berhampur can be credited with having the first movie theatre in Orissa; the Sri Sitaram Vilas Talkies was built in 1927 and is the first cinema theatre in the state. Today, this small city has around six movie halls that show films from Bollywood, Odia cinema, and even South Indian cinema that brings in the film-loving locals in big crowds.
Enjoy Delicious Food
Berhampur has a variety of food joints where visitors can enjoy scrumptious eats that are a favourite of the locals as well. The combination of achaar-papad-badi is a unique specialty of Berhampur, and is a humble dish that is enjoyed by all communities of Orissa. Girija Pakoda is famous for its delectable chicken pakoda (fritters made with chicken) that brings in huge crowds at all times of the day. Pidha Hotel is known for upholding the traditional eating customs; the guests are required to sit on the floor on a wooden pidha (short-legged stool) while eating. Even the food is served on leaf plates – an experience that brings in tourists and locals in large numbers.