Chilika Lake is a stunning destination that attracts visitors with its natural beauty, wildlife diversity, and cultural heritage. Chilika Lake is the largest brackish water lagoon in Asia and the second largest in the world, covering an area of over 1,100 square kilometers (420 sq mi) It is located on the east coast of India, in the state of Odisha, and spans across three districts: Puri, Khordha, and Ganjam.
Best Time to Visit in Chilika Lake:
Winter Wonderland (November to February): Chilika Lake transforms into a serene paradise as the winter chill sets in. The months from November to February mark the best time to visit, with the weather at its most pleasant. The cool breeze off the lake and the clear skies create an ideal setting for exploration and outdoor activities.
Migratory Marvels (October to March): Nature enthusiasts, rejoice! Chilika becomes a haven for migratory birds during these months. Witness the spectacular sight of flocks of flamingos, pelicans, and other avian wonders as they make Chilika their temporary abode. Birdwatching reaches its peak, offering an unparalleled experience for wildlife enthusiasts and photographers
Things to Do in Chilika Lake:
Boat Safari to Satapada: Embark on a boat safari to Satapada, the entry point to the lagoon. The journey itself is a feast for the eyes, surrounded by panoramic lake views. Satapada is not only renowned for its dolphins but also for its picturesque landscapes and mangrove ecosystems.
Chilika Island Hopping: Explore the numerous islands that dot Chilika Lake, each with its unique charm. From the serene Breakfast Island to the sacred Kalijai Temple Island, indulge in island hopping to discover the cultural, spiritual, and natural treasures that lie within the lake’s embrace.
Birdwatching at Nalabana Island: For bird enthusiasts, Nalabana Island is a must-visit destination. Traverse the wetlands and witness a symphony of colors as migratory birds find refuge in Chilika’s ecosystem. Capture breathtaking moments as flamingos and herons gracefully navigate the waters, creating a living canvas of nature’s wonders.
Relaxation at Rambha Bay: Unwind at Rambha Bay, where golden sands meet the gentle waves of Chilika. This is the perfect spot for a leisurely swim or a tranquil picnic. The lush green surroundings and the soothing ambiance make Rambha Bay an ideal retreat for those seeking relaxation amidst nature.
Dolphin watching: One of the main attractions of Chilika Lake is the dolphin watching tours, where you can see the rare and endangered Irrawaddy dolphins in their natural habitat. These dolphins are known for their playful and friendly behavior and can be seen swimming, jumping, and splashing in the water.
The best place to see the dolphins is at Satapada, a small town on the eastern shore of the lake, Take a boat ride and spot the dolphins. Visit the nearby islands, such as Honeymoon Island, Beacon Island, Birds’ Island, Breakfast Island, and Somolo Island, where you can see various birds, plants, and animals
Temple visit: Chilika Lake is also a sacred place for the local people, who worship the deity Jagannath, the lord of the universe, and his consort, Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity. The lake has many temples, shrines, and monuments, such as the Kalijai Temple, the Nirmaljhar Temple, the Narayani Temple, and the Chilika Museum.
The most famous temple is the Kalijai Temple, which is dedicated to Goddess Kalijai, who is believed to be an incarnation of Lakshmi. The temple is located on an island in the southern part of the lake and is accessible by boat from Balugaon or Rambha. The temple is visited by thousands of devotees, especially during the Makar Sankranti festival in January, when a large fair is held on the island.
Water sports: If you are looking for some adventure and fun, you can also enjoy some water sports at Chilika Lake, such as jet skiing, speed boating, and banana boating. Try fishing, crab catching, or kayaking, and taste the fresh seafood from the lake. Camp on the islands or the shore, and enjoy the night sky and the sound of the waves. Find many operators and facilities for these activities at Satapada, Balugaon, or Rambha.
These are some of the best places to visit in Chilika Lake in summer, plan your trip to this amazing destination. Chilika Lake is a place where can experience the divine and the adventurous, the natural and the cultural, and the serene and the lively. It is a place where can create memories that will last a lifetime.