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Chilika Lake

Chilika Lake

Chilka Lake is spread over Khurda, Ganjam and Puri districts of Odisha, flowing into the Bay of Bengal and covering an area of over 1100 sq km during the monsoon and 900 sq km in summer, on the east coast of India. It is the largest brackish water lagoon in Asia and the second largest lagoon in the world. It is a great attraction for the tourists for fishing, bird watching and boating. In winter (Between October and March) Chilika aflutters with thousands of indigenous and migratory birds of over 160 varieties from as far as the Caspian Sea, Lake Baikal, Aral Sea and other remote parts of Russia, Kirghiz steppes of Mongolia, Central and southeast Asia, Ladakh and Himalayas come here. Chilika is recognized as one of the most important wetlands in the world because it is home to a phenomenal variety of birds.

The lagoon itself can be broadly divided into four ecological sectors based on salinity and depth: the southern zone, central zone, northern zone and the outer channel. There are number of islands in Chilka Lake. Some of the important and interesting spots inside the lake are Kalijai Island, Honeymoon Island, Breakfast Island, Birds Island, Nalabana (Island of Reeds), Parikud Island, etc. The Kalijai Island is one of famous religious worship due to the temple of Goddess Kalijai.

Best time to Visit Chilika Lake

The best time to visit Chilka Lake is during winter (November-February).

Getting there

By Train: Balugaon is the nearest rail stations, on the Howrah-Chennai track. From Balugaon buses are available to the lake.
By Air: Bhubaneshwar International Airport, about 120 km away from where taxis, trains and buses are available to the lake.
By Road: National High Way No. 5 touches Chilika at Balugaon, Barkul and Rambha.
For Getting inside the Lake: To visit the islands as well for cruising inside the lake, visitors can avail of the water transport facilities of the 0. T. D. C. Ltd. at Barkul and Rambha and of the Revenue Department at Balugaon. Country boats can also be hired from private operators at these places.

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