Historic Balijatra begins today in Cuttack of Odisha
Cuttack: Assumed as the largest fair of Asia, the historic Balijatra commenced in Cuttack today. Like every year the big show started on the day of Kartika Purnima. The week-long carnival is a foodie’s and shopper’s delight. The fair will shut down at 10 pm every day.
This festival is held at Gadagadia Ghata of the Mahanadi river in Cuttack. It is observed to mark the day when the ancient maritime trade of erstwhile Odishan people. Back then traders from Odisha, known as Sadhabas, would set sail to distant lands of Bali, as well as Java, Sumatra, Borneo, and Sri Lanka for trade and cultural expansion.
The seven-day long festival is being celebrated in an area spread over 45 acres. There are several attractions including the toy stalls, giant wheels, food kiosks selling Odia delicacies like Cuttack Dahibara- Aludum, Thunka puri, Kulfi, Gupchup, Mathura Cake, Banarasi Paan.
Also read: Bamboo Queen At Baliyatra
An interesting element in this year’s Balijatra is an artificial river. It has been recreated to provide a memory of the old days. The river will take you back in time when Baliyatra was primarily a trade fair.
One can also take a ride in the Mahanadi River. You can either choose a traditional rowing boat or opt for a powerful jet from morning through the evening on all days.
Keeping in mind the comfort factor of the visitors and in a move to go eco-friendly, this year rickshaws and bicycles are waiting for the pedestrians. After parking your vehicles, you can hire a rickshaw from the Baliyatra entrance gate or simply opt for a bicycle to roam around in the fair.