Berhampur also known as Brahmapur is situated on the eastern coastline of Ganjam District, in the state of Orissa. It lies south of Chilika Lake, and has an agriculturally fertile land comprising dense forests. The city is popular as the â€˜Silk Cityâ€™, as it is the centre of the hand-woven Ikat silk. It is one of the largest and oldest cities of Orissa and lies 160 km from the state capital, Bhubaneshwar.
The city was a part of the Madras Presidency and a part of its territory had been under the rule of Emperor Asoka. Berhampur is a major education centre of Orissa, which is reflected in its large number of schools and universities, out of which some are among the oldest schools of India. One of the first courts of India also existed in this city, right from the beginning of the British Judiciary System.
HOW TO REACH
Brahmapur is well-connected by rail. Brahmapur station is part of East Coast Railways, and is 2.5 hours from the capital city of Bhubaneswar. Brahmapur is a stop on the line from Kolkata to Chennai, making it a convenient stop along the way, with many trains running every day.
There are fewer direct trains from Puri to Brahmapur. However, you can catch a train to Khurda Road Junction, and switch there.
Bhubaneswar Airport is well-connected to major Indian cities through Indian airlines (Indian Airlines, Goindigo and Kingfisher Airlines.) You can fly to Bhubaneswar, and take one of the more than 25 trains connecting Bhubaneswar and Brahmapur daily.
There are a number of buses that go and from Brahmapur. They tend to be cheaper than the train, though less comfortable because of the road conditions. Buses arrive in the New Bus Terminal, located some distance outside the city center. You will need an auto-rickshaw or cycle rickshaw to reach the center.
WHAT TO SEE:-
Grameswara Temple is a well-known Shiva temple situated at Berhampur in Prachi valley near Bhubaneswar. This ancient temple is also a landmark destination of Berhampur and lies at a distance of 37 km from the capital city.
Apart from Lord Shiva, who is the principal deity of the shrine, you can find idols of other gods like Lord Ganesh, Narasimha, Lord Vishnu, Astikajaradkaru, Kartikeya, Parvati, Trivikrama Vishnu and Varaha.
At about a distance of 16 km from Berhampur, the small beach town of Gopalpur is on the Bay of Bengal. This town is known to have unspoiled beaches in the state. Like in the old days, the lighthouse still exists and blinks at night to guide the ships in middle of the deep sea with directions to safety. The coconut trees and casuarinas add charm to the beaches, which are separated from the blue waters by the sand dunes. Seafood and the tender coconut water can be enjoyed at the beach. The best time to visit Gopalpur is from September to March.
Maa Bhairavi Temple:-
In the district of Gamjam, close to the city of Berhampur, the Maa Bhairavi Temple is located in the remote village of Mantridi. The diety has been carved in a crude fashion with one leg and four arms. This shrine was discovered while ploughing the land, where the idol was hidden underneath. After this discovery, the idol was enshrined into this newly constructed temple in 1937.
Taratarini Temple is located in the Southern part of Orissa. It is a renowned religious place, which is presided over by Goddess Tara and Tarini – the twin sisters. It is perched atop a hill surrounded by the sacred Rushikulya River. Reaching the shrines of the temple is an interesting and exciting, as it requires climbing more than 999 steps from the base of the hill to its top.
At a distance of 30 km from Berhampur is the Aryapalli Beach. Swimming, surfing and sun bathing are some of the activities that can be enjoyed at the beach. Plantations of casuarinas surround the beach. Sunrise and sunset can be enjoyed as well.
The ideal time to visit this beach is between October and June. The beach can be accessed from Chatrapur Railway Station which is only 8 km away. Tourists can also reach Aryapalli by driving or be taking the bus service.
Biranchi Narayan Temple:-
From Palasara Chowk, towards southwest direction is the Biranchi Narayan Temple located in Badadanda Sahi, which is a part of Buguda, a small town. This temple was constructed around 1790 AD during the period when Bhanja dynasty ruled the area.
The temple has the shrine of the two-armed Sun God or Surya on his chariot in a standing position placed on a platform. Throughout the temple there are exquisite wall paintings and wood carving depicting stories from Krishna Lila, Ramayana, Bali Vadha, Sita-Vivaha, Ramaâ€“Ravana, Setubandhaâ€“ Nirmana and Mayamirga-Vadha.
Durga Narayani Temple:-
Durga Narayani Temple is an ancient temple located at Khalikote in Berhampore. This primeval shrine is dedicated to the ten-armed goddess Narayani, who is commonly called Durga. Set amidst picturesque surroundings of Sal and Mango trees atop Bhalleri Hills, the temple is visited by thousands of devotees every year.
The Durga Narayani Temple is famous for celebrating Durga Puja as well as for holding a fair in the month of Chaitra, as per Hindu calendar. This shrine enjoyed continuous patronage of the zamindars and rulers of Khalikote until the 18th century.
at Berhampur, on your tour to Berhampur with Tourism of Orissa, is a delightful experience. Besides the world famous silk and silk items, shops in Berhampur also keep stocks of handicrafts from neighboring areas in the district. You can purchase Ganjam brass work, Gopalpur coirmats and Paralakhemundi horn work as souvenirs from your tour of Berhampur. Chandragiri carpets are also famous with the tourists for their creators are refugees from Tibet.
Brahmapur is famous in India for its papad (popadum), aachard (pickles), and badis. Additionally, there are many food options, ranging from street stall to fancy hotel restaurant. Not all of the street stalls are sanitary, so be sure to observe the proceedings, and eat only at stalls that get a lot of business.
Some things worth trying:
Chicken Pakoda (fried chicken) or chicken tandoori at Girija Restaurant, near Ramlinga Tank
Cashew and Coconut Lassi at the stall in front of ‘Girija Restaurant’
Mutton curry from Pidha Hotel.
Chicken and egg rolls from Calcutta Roll Counter, in front of Ramlinga Tank.
Fried chicken legs from Merydine Restaurant.
Biryani from New Biryani Centre.
Chicken Tikka from Hotel Moti.
Italian-style ice cream from Softy Zone.
Fruit salad from Murty Cool Sip.
Fresh fruit juices from Vizag Fruit Juice Centre.