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Located at the South-West of Odisha, the district covers a total geographical area of 5294.5 sq.km, with a vast area of 1583.4 sq km covered by forests. The district extends in the West upto Bastar district of Chattisgarh, in the East upto Kalahandi district, in the North upto Raipur district of Chattisgarh and in the South to Koraput district. Nabarangpur district is situated at 19° 14′ latitude and 82° 32′ longitude. As clear from its demographic profile, the district is predominantly inhabited by tribals, who mostly depend on cultivation and forest products for their livelihood. It is one of the backward districts of the State, with a relatively low literacy rate, with 55.58% tribals and 73% of the rural families living below poverty line (BPL).
The district is situated among lush green forests and is famous for its unique culture and history.
The district previously a sub-division of Koraput district of Odisha, was created on October 2, 1992. Until then Koraput district had been the second largest district in the country, next to Bastar district in the former State of Madhya Pradesh. The language, style of living, heritage, geographical location, flora and fauna and even the climate of the district is also similar to that of Koraput district.
How to reach there?
The nearest airport to reach Nabarangpur is located at a distance of 300 km at Visakhapatnam. From there, a good road will take you to the district. If you want to take a rail route then you can reach Nabarangpur through Koraput (66 km away) or Rayagada (175 km away). From the State capital, one can go to Nabarangpur district either through Phulbani and Bhawanipatna or through Berhampur and Ganjam.
Fairs and Festivals
Mondei is one of the prominent tribal festivals observed in interior Nabarangpur district of Odisha. This festival is usually celebrated after the harvesting of crops. It is supposed to be derived from the word Mandi, which means a small market in Hindi language. Tribals from ancient age celebrate this festival on the harvesting season at different location of Nabarangpur district. Also, it has significance in some places of other Orissa districts and Chhattisgarh State.
Mainly, tribes like Gond, Paraja, Bhotoda, Gadoba and Kandha get together on a particular day to exchange their agricultural productions. Near their village deity they worship their first harvest and then go for selling paddy, maize and vegetables. It’s a huge gathering of people from all nearby villages. Some cultural dance programmes also organized by the convenors.
Places to visit
Located at a distance of 42 km from the district headquarter Nabarangpur, Kelia is a Shiva shrine known for its spirituality and location. The Linga of Lord Mahadev is 5 feet in height. A large number of tourists gather here every year, during Sivaratri, Kartika Punima & Srabana Purnima.
Located at a distance of 42 km from the district headquarter Nabarangpur, Umerkote is famous for the temple of Goddesses Pendrani. Goddesses Pendrani is the presiding deity of Umerkote locality and believed one among the seven sister Goddess of undivided Koraput district.
Podagada, (The Burnt Fort) is a place of historical importance located at a distance of 52 km from the district headquarter Nabarangpur. Here one can find the Brahmin inscriptions of Nala dynasty. One can also find the historical remains of the forts, soldier camps and many other rare historical remains. The place still awaits exploration by the researchers and academicians. Apart from this, the ruined Queen Palace, the statues of the Sun God and the Moon God and the mysterious caves add to the immense potentiality for tourism to this place.