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Monday, January 24, 2022

Chhattisgarh not on your winter travel wishlist? Here’s what you are missing out on

Chhattisgarh is a cornucopia of natural, religious, and cultural surprises.

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi |
December 16, 2021 9:40:57 pm
chhattisgarh, tourism, travelThe lush green forests of Dalli Rajhara in the Balod district of Chhattisgarh. (Photo: Pixabay)

Chhattisgarh might just be one of the least explored regions of India, and that is surprising given the fact that the state is a cornucopia of natural, religious, and cultural surprises. It borders seven states, has a 44 per cent forest cover, and 34 per cent of its population is from tribal communities. Chhattisgarh has three national parks, 11 wildlife sanctuaries, 1 bio-sphere reserve; in fact, uncountable more reasons for you to explore it.

From mysterious caves to majestic waterfalls, stunning architecture to a cultural heritage that will leave you inspired, here are some of the reasons why Chhattisgarh should be on your travel checklist this winter.

Chitrakote Falls

 

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The ‘Niagra Falls of India’ –Chitrakote Falls — is located in Chhattisgarh’s Bastar district. Its unique horse-shoe shape makes it the widest waterfall in the country with a plunge of 95 ft. on the Indravati river. It can be seen in its crowning glory during the peak monsoon months of July to October when rainbows become a common sight here. Its surroundings, dense forested, are populated by an exciting number of bird species.

Bhoramdeo Temple

 

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What is often referred to as the ‘Khajuraho of Chhattisgarh’, the Bhoramdeo temple was built sometime between the 7th and 11th Century. Intricately sculptured, Bhoramdeo is a part of a group of four temples, the oldest of which is made in bricks while the main temple, Bhoramdeo, is built in stone. It is situated at the foothills of the Maikal and is surrounded by thick, lush forests while also commanding a fantastic view of the Kawardha town.

Kanger Valley National Park

The Kanger Valley National Park has been declared as one of the Asian Biosphere Reserves which houses a variety of flora and fauna along with the majestic Tirathgarh falls. With a height of 300 ft., Tirathgarh falls is one of the must-visit places when in Chhattisgarh. The national park is populated by barking deer, jackals, hyenas, wild boars, bucks, drongos, and a rare mouse deer, among other species.

Kailash and Kotumsar Cave

Hidden amongst the dense forests near the Kangar Valley National Park are the Kailash and Kotumsar caves which are the second largest natural caves in the world. While the Kailash cave is known for producing musical sounds upon striking its hollow walls, the 2km deep Kotumsar caves aren’t accessible all the way due to lack of oxygen.

Sirpur Group of Monuments

 

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The Sirpur Group of Monuments, located in Mahasamund district, exemplifies the historic and architectural gold mine that Chhattisgarh is. It’s history dates back to the South Kosala Kingdom wherein it was considered a settlement of importance for Jains, Buddhists, and Hindus between 5th and 12th century C.E. Excavations have uncovered Buddhist and Jain viharas, monolithic status of Buddha and Mahavira, Shiva and Vishnu as well as Shakti and Tantric temples and even an underground granary market and a bath house dating back to the 6th century.

Bastar Royal Palace

Built when the kings of Bastar moved their capital to Jagdalpur, the Bastar Royal Palace is an architectural delight. The palace now houses a small museum by the state government to showcase the artefacts and portraits of the rulers to preserve its history and heritage.

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