Bhetnoi is truly a home for the magical blackbucks. Also it is one of the most unique tourist spots in India.
You can see these amazing deer very close here in Bhetnoi. Not only are these magical blackbucks extremely endangered but also rare to spot elsewhere in India.
Bhetnoi is a small village in Ganjam district of Odisha (Orissa). The flocks of blackbucks or Krishnasar Mriga roam without any fear from any hunters or villagers. In fact you will be amazed to see how much the villagers love them. The magical blackbucks come out of the forest and enter the villages and even graze on the crops. Most of all, these villagers have been their protector since more than a hundred years.
Especially relevant, the villagers consider the Blackbucks as holy. Many years ago there was a long drought in this region. Finally as these wonderful creatures were seen here for the first time, the rains poured. Consequently the villagers have remembered them with gratitude.
Blackbucks can run really fast. It is one of the fastest animals on earth and can reach up to 80 km per hour. It is a one time opportunity to see the magical blackbuck so close in nature. Furthermore one becomes so enchanted seeing them that you may forget to click the camera!
How to go
- Nearest airport is Bhubaneshwar.
- Bhetnoi is 71 km away from Berhampur and 165 km from Bhubaneswar. You can take a bus or train to reach Berhampur. Then you have to take a taxi to Bhetnoi which is still 50 km away.
- You can stay at Berhampur or at Aska. Aska is about 12 km from Bhetnoi. You can see the Tara Tarini shaktipeeth which is near to Bhetnoi.
Godwit Eco Cottage
You can plan your trip to Bhetnoi and stay at the Godwit Eco Cottage in Mangalajodi. Mangalajodi village is 70 km away from Bhubaneswar. From Mangaljodi take a one day trip to Bhetnoi/ Bhetnoi is 105 km away from Mangaljodi.
Godwit Eco Cottage is another proud success story of India. This place is made by the Sri Sri Mahavir Pakshi Surakhshya Samiti with the help and maintenance of the people who were once time poachers and hunters. Now these men have been rehabilitated. Today these same men will give their lives to protect the wildlife.
You can stay in the midst of nature with modern facilities at the Godwit Eco Cottage. The cottages are made of bamboo and mud. The roof is thatched and each cottage has room for two people. Every room has an attached bathroom. You can get rooms with or without AC and with TV. Almost all modern facilities are available. The rooms are perfectly eco-friendly, cool and well built. Overall it is the perfect cottage to spend your weekend away.
The place is full of mango and bamboo trees creating an exotic tropical experience. You can sit and breathe in fresh air under the peepal and banyan tree around the cottage. In the morning, you will get a symphony of various kinds of birdsongs. The food is traditional and delicious Oriya food. It is quite similar to Bengali food as in it shares many fish, sweet and other dishes.
Price range per night is from Rs. 2500 – Rs. 3000. Chilka Lake is also very near. After a day trip to Bhetnoi to see the magical blackbucks, you can take a trip to Chilka.
Image credits – happytrips.com, blog.swostiindia.com, tripadvisor.com.ph, odishaecotourism.com