The temple cities of Puri , Bhubaneswar and Konark may be topmost in the itinerary of the visitor to Orissa but it is the quiet waterfalls, the rock caves, the Buddhist and Jain relics, the beach resorts and the lesser known temples which offer secluded, unspoilt beauty to the traveler weary of civilization.
Although the headquarters of a newly-formed sub-division, Malkangiri, 641ft above sea level, it is still a village through sporting a revelers’ bungalow in a luxuriant grove of teak trees. It is on the fringe of the Dandakaranya. Malkangiri is believed to be the Malayavantagiri of the Ramayana, the resort of Rama from where the Vanaras were launched in search of Sita. and not far from Malkangiri flows the shy Tamasa, entrancingly on her bed of pebbles, as she did thousands of years ago when Lava and Kusha,Sita forsaken by Rama, lived in the sage’s Ashram.
One of the numerous mountains skirting Malkangiri bears the name Ramagiri. Some believe that it was this Ramagiri which had sheltered the Yaksha of Kalidasa’s meghadoot.
At once a million flames reduced the kingdom of Dandaka to a vast expanse of cash
Long ago, this region was ruled by a young king, Dandaka. there was then no river, but a lake. one evening the king saw a beautiful dasmel emerging from from its waters. He tried to take her away, but the girl escaped to her father, none other than the sage Sukryacharya, and told him of her humiliation. The furious sage left the region with his daughter and cursed the place. At once a million flames reduced the kingdom of Dandaka to a vast expanse of cash.
What was once Dandaka’s kingdom became a forest bearing his name -Dandakaranya.
By and by the wind swept away the ash. The monsoons stretched the little lake and turned it into the river Tanasa. On its banks grew a forest. What was once Dandaka’s kingdom became a forest bearing his name -Dandakaranya.
It was an eerie night, pitch-black and rain -soaked, when we rushed through the forest back to Jeypore, scaring away rabbits and just avoiding hitting a petrified deer.