Sambalpur district is located in the western part of Odisha. Its headquarter Sambalpur has been considered as the gateway to western Odisha. It is also considered as the Cultural Capital of Western Odisha. There are 7 nos. of identified tourist spots available in the district. They are;

  • Sambalpur Town
  • Hirakud
  • Gudguda
  • Kandhara
  • Huma
  • Ghanteswari
  • Usakothi (Badram Wildlife Sanctuary


Sambalpur town has good no. of tourist attractions as furnished below;

  • Samaleswari Temple:-

Sambalpur is known for its presiding deity Goddess Samaleswari. The temple of the Goddess has been built in 16th century A.D. by Balaram Dev, the 1st Chouhan ruler of Sambalpur Chouhan dynasty. Even prior to the Chouhan rule Sambalpur has been a pilgrimage centre well know far and wide. In Odia Mahabharata, its poet Adikabi Sarala Das referes to Samaleswari pitha as a famous Shaktipitha in Odisha.

Samaleswari temple has been built in Chouhan style of Temple Architecture. It has resemblances with the temples of Khajurao in Madhya Preadesh. The tapering tower of the temple is its unique feature.

The socio cultural life of Western Odisha has been greatly influenced by the cultural activities that the temple of Samaleswari involves throughout the year. Among the noted festivals of the temple mention may be made of festival like (i) Dhabalabesa in Aswina (ii) Nuakhai in Bhadraba (iii) Pua Juntia and Bhai Juntia in Aswina etc.

The Light & Sound Show regularly held in the evening at the temple complex (7 pm to 7.40 pm) is an added attraction of the place.

  • Budharaja Hill:-

Centrally located in the heart of town Budharaja Hill is an attraction for tourists.

A serpentine road leads to the submit of the hill where the famous Budharaja Temple of 18th century is located. A flying National flag adorns the submit of the hill which is visible from every corner of the township. Near the flag post a watch Tower is in construction stage. Food kiosk sitting gallery are going to be created near the watch tower. Tourist can avail this to have a glimpse of beauty all around the town.

  • Wild Animal Conservation Centre:-

Another hillock brooks hill is also located in the heart of the town. At one end of the hillock near Motijharan a beautiful Wild Animal Conservation Centre has been created in natural surroundings with varieties of flora & fauna. Except Monday it is open to tourist on all other day.

  • Regional Art Gallery:-

The Regional Art Gallery established by Odisha Lalit kala Academy is another attraction at Sambalpur. It is located in Gouri Shankar Sahani Park beside M.G Marg(Ring Road).

Sambalpur market is known for its handloom (Sambalpuri Ikat work). Good number of Govt. & Private shops are available here to have marketing of handloom products.


Hirakud is laocated at a distance of 16 KM from Sambalpur. It is considered as the largest artificial water body in Asia which measures 746 Sq. KM in area. It has nos. of attractions as mentioned below;

  1. Hirakud Main Dam (5 KM)
  2. Dyke road (1-left dyke 2-Right dyke)
  3. Gandhi Minar & Jawahar Minar located each side of the Main Dam
  4. Jawahar Udyan on the bottom of the Main Dam
  5. Ropeway connecting Jawahar Udyan and Gandhi Minar
  6. Boating Complex in between Jawahar Minar and Zero Point.

The APJ Abdul Kalam Planetarium & Science Park located at a distance of 4 KMs at Burla is an added attraction for the tourists visiting Hirakud Dam. The right dyke end point is the entry point to famous Debrigarh Wildlife Sanctuary. Tourist interested to visit Debrigarh wildlife Sanctuary located in the district of Bargarh can approach it conveniently through Right dyke road.


The famous Gudguda Waterfall is located at a distance of 115 KM from district headquarter. The scenic beauty & calmness of the place attract tourists throughout the year. The litchi vegetation all around the place enhances the beauty of the place. If one visits this place in the month of April & May can experience the sweet litchi taste.


Village Kandhara in Rairakhol Sub-division of Sambalpur district is associated with the famous odia saint Poet Bhima Bhoi. It is said that Bhima Bhoi spent his boyhood in this area. It is also said that Bhima Bhoi fell into a well where from he was rescued by Mahima Gosain, the profounder of Mahima cult. The holly well is still existing and it has been an attraction for the followers of Mahima Cult and for tourists as well. It is 80 KM from Sambalpur.

  • HUMA:-

Located at a distance of 26 KM from Sambalpur town, the small village of Huma is known for its Bimbaleswar (Shiva) Temple of 17th century. The temple has been standing with a leaning position. So it is called a Leaning Temple of India. The Kuda fishes which are found in plenty in the nearby Mahanadi river is an added attraction of the place.


Located at a distance of 18 KM from Sambalpur, the place is located on the right bank of the river Mahanadi. It is the place of the Goddess Ghanteswari, who is believed to be a deity of local fisherman. Devotees   come here to offer brass bells for getting blessing from the mother Goddess. One will find hundreds of bells hanging down the branches of the tree under which the Goddess resides. When the air blows these hanging bells make a twinkle sound which charm the heart of the visitors.

Tourist can visit the weaving village of Kardola located at a distance of 2 KM from Chiplima. Live demonstration of weaving in traditional Tanta is the attraction of the place.


Located at a distance of 37 KM from Sambalpur, on the side of NH No.53 Badrama Wildlife Sanctuary popularly known as Usakothi is a major attraction for the Tourist in the district. The Sanctuary has few towers from where visitors can enjoy the beauty of the Jungle and movement of the wild animal. The entry point of the Sanctuary is village Badrama from where one can obtain permission from the Forest Range Officer.




Located at a distance of 35 KM from Sambalpur, Devjharan is a prominent picnic spot of the district. It has beautiful waterfall and a small dam. Three sides of Dam are encircled by dense forest and mountain. It is an ideal picnic spot of the district.


Pitapali is located to the extreme left of Hirakud Dam near Jamadarpali at a distance of 21 KM. The place is located on the shoreline of Hirakud Reservoir and it has deep forest creating environment for picnic.


Zero point in right dyke is an important picnic spot of the district. Basic infrastructure like picnic pindies & plantation all-around the pindies have been developed for smooth picnic arrangement. The place is only 5 KM from main dam. The newly water sports activities of M/s Royal Retreat at Zero Point is an added attraction of the place.


The place is located on the slope of Mahavir Mountain. One perennial stream has its origin here and flowing down the hillock. From Bamra the place is 7 KM and from Sambalpur it is 95 KM.


Located at a distance of 15 KM from Kuchinda and 93 KM from Sambalpur headquarter. Chakdarha has a small deep circular water body. The spot attracts picnickers for its scenic and greenery.


It is located at a distance of 7 KM from Rairakhol, the Sub-divisional headquarter. It is known for stream and greenery.