Nestled in the village of Goa Raja, within the Keonjhar district of Odisha, India, the Goa Raja Waterfall is a cascading wonder that has enchanted tourists with its natural beauty and rejuvenating waters.
The waterfall is a product of the Goa Raja River, which originates from nearby hills and flows over rocky ledges, creating a picturesque cascade that descends into a deep pool. Surrounding the waterfall is lush vegetation, making it a serene spot to unwind and immerse in nature’s splendor.
This waterfall is a favored destination for swimming, bathing, and picnicking, allowing visitors to take a boat ride on the pool beneath the waterfall. For trekking and hiking enthusiasts, several trails lead to the waterfall’s summit.
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The Goa Raja Waterfall has held tourist appeal for centuries, with mentions in ancient texts like the Mahabharata and the Ramayana. It is believed to have been a preferred bathing spot for the Pandavas, the heroes of the Mahabharata.
In the 18th century, British traveler James Forbes visited the waterfall and, captivated by its beauty, documented it in his book “Oriental Memoirs.” Forbes’ writings contributed to popularizing the waterfall among European tourists.
In the 19th century, notable British officials, including the Governor-General of India, Lord Dalhousie, were drawn to the waterfall. Impressed by its charm, Lord Dalhousie ordered the construction of a road leading to the waterfall, completed in 1862, making it more accessible to tourists.
The Goa Raja Waterfall is a product of the Goa Raja River, which flows over rocky ledges into a deep pool. It’s in the Eastern Ghats, a mountain range along India’s east coast. The area contains various rocks, including granite, gneiss, and khondalite, a metamorphic rock rich in quartz and mica. The khondalite’s susceptibility to erosion by water has formed the waterfall.
Flora and Fauna
The lush green surroundings of the Goa Raja Waterfall host a variety of plants such as Sal, Teak, Bamboo, Mahua, and Neem. The area is also home to diverse wildlife, including monkeys, langurs, squirrels, birds, snakes, and insects.
Easily accessible by road and located near Keonjhar, the Goa Raja Waterfall is a favored destination for swimming, bathing, and picnicking. Visitors can take boat rides in the pool below and explore well-maintained trekking and hiking trails that offer captivating views of the nearby countryside.
The waterfall is a serene place to relax and bask in the natural beauty of Odisha. Though a popular tourist attraction, it maintains its charm and is seldom overcrowded.
How To Get There
The waterfall is about 100 kilometers from Bhubaneswar and can be reached by car or bus. The nearest airport is Biju Patnaik International Airport in Bhubaneswar, and the nearest railway station is Keonjhar Railway Station.
Best Time to Visit
The optimal time to visit is during the monsoon season, from June to September, when the waterfall is most magnificent, and the surroundings are lush and green.
Visitors can indulge in various activities, including swimming, bathing, picnicking, boating, trekking, hiking, birdwatching, and photography.
* Exercise caution as the waterfall area can be slippery.
* Be prepared as no changing rooms or toilets are available at the site.
* Expect crowds on weekends and holidays.
* If planning to trek to the waterfall’s summit, wear sturdy footwear and carry sufficient water.