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Rourkela Tourism And Travel Guide
11.8° C / 53.3° F
October to March
2 to 3 Days
Birsa Munda Airport, Ranchi (170 kms)
Rourkela Railway Station
Rourkela is a splendid city situated in the northern regions of the Indian state of Orissa. It is a part of the beautiful Sundergarh district and is dotted with dense green forests, rivers and waterfalls; even the name of the city can be translated to ‘Our Village’. Rourkela is also home to the Raulia tribe, who are known to have been the original inhabitants of the town.
Historically, Rourkela is most famous for having India’s first public sector steel plant that was established in the year 1955. The city has only grown since then into a commercially successful industrial township that also boasts numerous local attractions, helping the tourism sector in the city to rise exponentially. Here is a quick travel guide to help you plan out a fun trip to Rourkela.
How to Reach
While Rourkela has its own private airport, it is mainly reserved for the officials of SAIL (Steel Authority of India Ltd) and other VIPs. For regular commercial travellers, the closest airport from Rourkela is the Birsa Munda Airport located in the city of Ranchi, Jharkhand, which is 170 km away.
Travellers who wish to reach Rourkela via the rail route can use the services of trains like Garib Rath, Rajdhani Express, and Jammu Tawi Express etc. to reach the Rourkela Railway Station, which is situated on the Howrah – Mumbai and Ranchi – Bhubaneswar railway line.
Road travel to reach Rourkela can be accomplished via public and private buses that ply regularly from cities nearby like Bhubaneswar, Puri, Kolkata, Ranchi and Raipur. Private cabs can also be hired to cover the same journey in a more convenient fashion. The State Highway 10 and National Highway 23 connect Rourkela to various cities in Orissa.
Weather & Best Time to Visit
Winter (October - February):
The most ideal time to visit Rourkela is during winters when the temperature dips down to an average that ranges between 9⁰C - 24⁰C, and the climate remains pleasantly cool throughout the season that makes it the perfect time to enjoy the city’s attractions.
Monsoon (July - September):
Rourkela falls under the influence of the south west monsoons, and receives heavy rainfall during these months. The rain helps in bringing down the intense temperature of the summers, but the city still remains quite humid to enjoy much of outdoor activities.
Summer (March - June):
Summers in Rourkela are very hot and humid, and are not a good time to visit the city. The average temperature falls in the range of 20⁰C - 38⁰C; the city experiences extreme climatic conditions through most of the season, which makes this time unfit for enjoying Rourkela’s attractions.
Things to Do
Visit the Temples:
The religious monuments of Rourkela are some of the finest architecture seen in the region. Temples like the Vaishno Devi and Jagannath are modelled after the ones seen in Jammu and Puri respectively, and witness heavy footfall from Hindu devotees. The Rani Sati temple boasts a spectacular structural appearance that is made entirely in white marble, with the Vedvyas temple being dedicated to the historical figure and famous sage Vedvyas, who is credited with penning down the Hindu epic, Mahabharata.
Enjoy a Picnic:
There are numerous spots in and around Rourkela that are perfect for enjoying short excursions and picnics with family and friends. The most famous areas are Darjing and Deoghar, with the Madira Dam and Pitamahal Dam areas also being great locations for a quiet and peaceful day out. A number of parks like the Indira Gandhi Park, Ispat Nehru Park and Deer park offer various attractions that will prove to be a fun experience for all, especially kids.
Hike to Khandadhar Falls:
The Khandadhar Falls are probably Rourkela’s chief attraction, with tourists and locals alike flocking to the spot to enjoy its natural beauty and serenity. The waterfall is located around 100 km away from the city, and a lot of travellers choose to hike to the falls while combining it with a splendid sightseeing trip.
One of the best places to shop in Rourkela is the Ambagan Market, locally also known as Ispat Nagar, which features numerous shops where travellers can purchase brilliant pieces of local handicraft items and handloom textiles. The VIP market is also a fine collection of more than 60 shops, where shoppers can find almost all big brands to choose from.
What to Eat
Rourkela experiences a lot of tourist footfall, and visitors will find ample options with eateries and restaurants that offer a wide range of cuisines that will cater to most taste buds, especially the local Odia delicacies. The Madhuban Restaurant is one of the highest rated places to eat here.
Visitors can also enjoy the numerous street stalls here that sell a number of items ranging from Pani Puri to Chowmein and various varieties of Manchurian.