The Dhauli Hills or Dhavalgiri on the banks of River Daya which is considered as sacred has been a site for pilgrimage over centuries, and is a halt station frequented by both Hindu and Buddhist pilgrims. It is only 10 kms from Bhubaneshwar, and was the famous battlefield of Kalinga War which proved to be the turning point in the life of Emperor Ashoka. The hills are marked with a number of rock cut caves and ancient Hindu temples. The numerous pillars, stupas and monasteries are also worth exploring. The rock cut elephant carving located at the base of Dhauli Hills is one of the earliest Buddhist themed carvings in Orissa. The most famous among them are the set of rock edicts left by the Emperor Ashoka in about 260 B.C. Dhauli or Dhaulagiri is mostly visited by the tourists on a day tour from Puri or Bhubaneshwar and hence they miss the joy of experiencing the true beauty of Dhauli. A night spend will make you feel the actual serenity of this pristine place of Dhauli. You must enjoy the experience of the magnificent sunset and sunrise over the endless sea of paddy fields. You can also take a walk along the Daya River on the same road which is ornamented by the footsteps of the greatest kings of history – King Ashoka.
Places to see at Dhauli: The Japanese Peace Pagoda, set amidst a number of ancient monasteries and stupas is truly marvellous. This wondrous structure is truly worth visiting. It is a notable Buddhist structure built jointly by the Japan Buddha Sangh and the Kalinga Nippon Buddha Sangh in the year 1972. Beyond the Stupa, there is an ancient Hindu temple devoted to Lord Dhavaleshwar.
You can savour a magnificent view of the surroundings from the top of the Dhauli Hill. The green stretch of paddy fields along with cashew eyes trees offer visual splendour. You will also admire the beauty of the winding and sparkling Daya River. You can also see inscriptions and engravings in Dhauli, which can be traced back to the Ashokan era. The place is a popular pilgrimage site for both Hindus and Buddhists. Dhauli is admired with many stupas, which were once built by Emperor Ashoka himself.
Nearby attractions of Dhauli: You can also visit Bhubaneswar, the capital city of Orissa and the temple town of Puri from Dhauli. The handicraft town of Pipli (famous for its appliqué work) and the temple of Konark are also located nearby.
Things to do at Dhauli: Apart from visiting the Dhavaleshwar Temple and Stupa, you can hike along the Daya River and take long walks around the ruins of various structures of Dhauli Hills. Also, take a stroll along the forest track of Dhauli hills, which is truly an exciting outdoor activity.
Best time to visit Dhauli: You can experience the true essence of Dhauli, if you are visiting the destination during the winter months, starting from October and extending up to March. Summer is extremely hot in Dhauli, hence, it is better to avoid the summer season.
How to go ?
The town of Dhauli is easily accessible by buses from the neighbouring regions of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar. The nearest airport of Dhauli is in Bhubaneswar, which is well connected from Kolkata. There are no direct trains to Dhauli, so you need to drop down at Bhubaneswar railway station.
Where to stay ?
The Govt. Tourist Lodge at Dhauli is the only well-equipped accommodation here. The lodge is located very near to the famous stupa and overlooks the Daya River and miles of paddy fields. This tourist lodge has a dining hall and nice well-equipped double bedrooms with attached bathrooms. We arrange booking for Tourist Lodge at Dhauli directly from Kolkata. Dining facilities are excellent here, which mainly comprises ethnic Indian cuisine. However, Western styled food is also offered here. While visiting Dhauli, do not miss the chance of savouring the Oriya cuisines, which are delicately spiced. Relish seafood like shrimp or crab and other fish preparations, which are quite popular in the region. For booking details you may contact:
OTDC Central Reservation Counter : 1800 208 1414 (Toll free)
Official website: www.panthanivas.com
Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.