What Every Indian Should Know about Odisha

Disclaimer: The post is an answer by Ananya Parida in response to a question asked by a member in Quora.com. Ananya’s fabulous answer has earned her (and all proud Odias for that matter) over 800 upvotes by the Quora members. This is quite a feat in itself, if nothing else. You can find her answer here.

Our beautiful state, Odisha( formerly Orissa):

I would start by saying, presently I stay in Delhi and the way northerners perceive Oriya people is utterly disappointing. They think our language is funny. They think our cuisine does not stand a chance in front of their rich food. To quote some “Oh! You are from south India”, “Which place is this Odisha again?”. So, for the last time, let me tell you people about the rich Oriya heritage.

Our geography:

Odisha  is situated in the eastern part of the country. It is surrounded by West Bengal to the north-east and in the east, Jharkhand to the north,Chhattisgarh to the west and north-west and Andhra Pradesh to the south. The state has an area of 155,707 km2 and extends for 800 kilometres from north to south and 500 kilometers from east to west. Its coastline is 480 kilometre long. The state is divided into 30 districts which are further subdivided into 314 blocks.



(P.S: The star is where my home is.)

Our State Symbols:

State Animal: Sambar deer3-deer

State Bird: Indian Roller

4-indian rolller

State Flower: Asoka flower


These are some things that even some Odia people might not know.

Our Food:

Out of many specialties of Odisha, I would list down a few which are my absolute favorite.

Chenna Poda: That quintessential cheese dessert

6-chenna  poda

Malpua: Sweetest pancake ever


Arisa Pitha: Crispy outer layer with soft insides



Poda Pitha: Every oriya’s favorite



Khiri: Rice pudding that can blow away your mind. Mine does.


Khaja: Lord Jagannath’s favorite



Mahaprasad: A lunch fit for a king



Pakhala Bhata: A blessing in the summers


Odissi Dance: The oldest surviving dance form of India

560 Indian Odissi dancers preform to try


Must visit places:

Puri Jagannath: One of our four dhams.



Chilika Lake: India’s migratory birds paradise


Udaygiri caves: An archeologists’ paradise

Udayagiri Caves

Bhitarkanika Ntional Park:


Nandankanan Zoo:


Chandipur Beach: Visit for the awesome sunset views

20-Chandipur-Chandipur beach

Konark SunTemple: A Fascinating tale behind the majestic structure


The Barabati Stadium in Cuttack: You should visit during one of the matches as the stadium breathes and reverberates to the cheers.


Sambalpuri Sarees that we are famous for: Ladies love it


Arts & Handicrafts: You would want it all, won’t you?


Applique craft:

25-Applique craft

Stone(dhokra) Craft:

25-Stone(dhokra) Craft

Silver Filigree: My favorite

26-silver work

Metal Work: So beautiful

27-metal work

Pattachitra Painting:


Another interesting fact of Odisha:

The Olive Ridley Turtles: The majority of Olive Ridleys nest in two or three large groups near Gahirmatha in Odisha.In 1991, over 600,000 turtles nested along the coast of Odisha in one week.


Sand Art: Sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik single handedly bought Odisha to the international attention.He was awarded the Padma Shri by Government of India in 2014. Below is one of his beautiful sand art.

30-Sand art

Some famous personalities of Odisha:

Dilip Tirkey: He is a former Indian hockey player and best known for his penalty corner hit. Dilip was one of the most difficult defenders to beat in the world.


Nandita Das(film actress and director): Nandita Das was the first Indian to be inducted into their International Women’s Forum‘s hall of fame for her contributions to arts.


Sona Mohapatra: Indian singer, music composer and lyricist



Paradip Port: The fully automated coal handling plant can handle up to 20 million tons of coal imports per annum.


SAIL-Rourkela Steel Plant: The first integrated steel plant in the public sector in India, was set up with German collaboration with an installed capacity of 1 million tonnes in th 1960s. Subsequently, its capacity was enhanced to 2 million tonnes. The RSP has many firsts to its credit. It is the first plant in Asia to adopt the energy-efficient LD process of steel making and the first integrated steel plant of SAIL which adopted the cost-effective and quality-centered continuous casting route to process 100% of steel produced. The plant has also, for the first time in India, had adopted external desulphurisation of hot metal by calcium carbide injection process. RSP is one of the unique units under the SAIL umbrella with a wide variety of special purpose steels.


Talcher Coalfield: According to Geological Survey of India, the Talcher Coalfield has reserves of 38.65 billion tonnes, the highest in India.




AIIMS in Bhubaneswar:




IIT, Bhubaneswar:



Finally, the Grand Rath Yatra: This is just as mesmerizing as it looks. Maybe even more. Notice the crowd behind.


If you are interested and want to know more, you can always PM me. Thanks for appreciating my beautiful home state.

NB: Authored and Compiled by Ananya Parida

*Source- mybhubaneswar.com

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