Located 75KM from Bhubaneswar along the Bhubaneswar Chennai NH5 highway, this small fishing village of Tangi, is the northwestern edge of the Chilika Lagoon. Unlike its famed counterpart Manglajodi is still relatively quiet and unknown amongst the general tourists; it’s a paradise for bird lovers. What makes the eco system of Manglajodi special is that the entire village turned from poachers to bird conservationists.
It was all due to the effort of one man Nandkishore Bhujbal whose concerted efforts from 1997 to protect the ecosystem and creating awareness about the ecosystem amongst the villagers has preserved the delicate ecosystem. Today Manglajodi is a tribute to his perseverance. The conservation and protection of the ecosystem now lies with Manglajodi Tourism and Conservation Trust, a organization formed by the villagers and is now headed by Madhu Behera- a redoubtable individual who is the most sought after guide and expert of the wet marshlands.
The wet marshlands are best explored by boat; there are around 200 migratory and native avian species along with fishing cats, water monitor lizards and snakes amongst others which reside in the marshlands.
The marshlands are best explored by boats available on hire at the jetty. The three hour boat rides offers a mesmrising experience if you are nature and animal lover. Make sure you hire a guide to explain the marshlands and the avian species that you come across.
Manglajodi is an ecologically sensitive area ,be kind to nature and avoid spilling trash around the area
Madhu Behera- is an important contact point of the area.
If you plan to visit the marshlands, better to contact Madhu Behera (contact details given below) and pre book your boat, especially in the tourist season i.e. winters. Make sure you reach the place by 7 am.
However it’s best to visit the place during the weekdays as the rush is less and the birds are not disturbed by your presence.
The place doesn’t have breakfast or food stalls. So either you pack your breakfast or while booking the boat inform the boat operator, they can arrange snacks at extra cost.
The market just ahead of the jetty has a range of shops offering snacks and breakfast. A beer bar is also located just adjacent to the market.
Though part of Chilika, the Manglajodi marshlands are essentially sweet water wetlands for most of the year save from March till rainy season when the water is brackish.
Card payment facilities aren’t available. Though there are ATM’s located on the NH5.
Where to stay
Normally people stay in Bubaneswar or in Rambha or Barkul and make a day visit to Manglajodi. However one can stay at the Godwit Cottages located just a couple of KM from the Manglajodi Jetty. The rooms are made of bamboo, mud and mud thatched roof. They offer comfortable stay and is your best option. They also conduct village walls through the forest for their guests. For reservations and bookings, please the details below.
Check in – 8 am
Check out -8 pm
There are home stays options available also. Madhu Behera your guide to the area can be contacted to arrange for the same. Please find below his contact details
Contact Madhu Behera- +91-9777553283
Maa Ugratara Temple- Located 9 KM ahead of Manglajodi, just off the NH5, this famous temple is a favoured picnic destination. The presiding deity Maa Tara is called Ugratara because of her temper and the deity is seen holding four weapons in her four hands. She is revered by the fishermen, who pray to her for safe journey and a good catch.
Bhetnai- Though located 115KM from Manglajodi in Ganjam district. The place is famous for black bucks- they the highest concentration of the species in India. There are approximately 1600 of them and they roam around freely in the grasslands located on the foothills of the Eastern Ghats. There are peacocks and tortoises also. However one needs a guide to tour the area.
Bhetnai doesn’t have options for night stay. The Odisha ecotourism guest house at Chermaria on the foothills of the Pakidi range has two rooms with basic facilities can be an option for a small group. The guest house is just 15Km from Bhetnai.
For booking the ecotourism guest house at Chermaria visit the website – www.ecotourodisha.com – click on Chermaria Nature Camp
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org / Mgrkl.email@example.com
Ph- 0674-2531891 / (M) - +91-7539821046 / +91- 9437279340
The Google map doesn’t recognise Chermaria but instead fix your destination as Pakidi Hill.
The Chermaria guest house is just on the state highway road opposite the Chermaria village, so don’t get confused by the village sign board “Chermaria”.
The Chermaria eco tour cottages have two rooms at the moment. The newly built cottages are comfortable and clean, so it’s good for a group of four to five people.
If you are staying in Chermaria, don’t forget to get a print out of the booking confirmation, otherwise one has to go to Aska to get the same and hand it to the staff at the time of checking out.
Direction to Chermaria eco tour cottages – Khallikote- Aska- from Aska travel to the Berhampur route for 6 KM’s, the cottages are on the state highway just after the Forest Range Office barrier.
The best time to spot the black bucks is the morning and noon time. During July to November end they are visible in large numbers in Bhetnai along the foothills of Gadgadia Forest range. During the winters i.e. December onward most of them move two kilometres ahead to a village Kanchan Devi.
Pakidi Hills is famous for its large population of peacocks which are easily visible.
Aska the nearest town which is located just 15 KM from Bhetnai. There are lodges available in the town.
Alternatively once can opt to stay at Berhampore which is 50KM from Bhetnai. Berhampore is a major city and one can find better options as far as hotels and services are concerned.
Berhampore has regular bus services to Aska as well as Bhetnai.
The nearest railway station is Berhampore and the nearest airport is Bhubaneswar.
However tourist you would be best advised to combine Manglajodi and Bhetnai. If have a cab or you own car, both the destinations can be covered in a day.
The cab from Manglajodi to Bhetanai would cost approximately between Rs.2000-Rs.2200/-
Card payment facilities aren’t available; make sure you carry enough cash for the tour.
Bhetnai being an eco sensitive zone, tourist are advised to be sensitive towards the environment and refrain from littering the place with plastic or any other ecologically hazardous substance.