Satkosia spreads along the magnificent gorge over the mighty river Mahanadi in Odisha. Established in 1976 as a wildlife sanctuary, Satkosia is a paradise of immense scenic charm. It is one of the best ecosystems in the country, representing a diverse floral and faunal extravaganza.
The name Satkosia originates from two words; sat meaning seven and kos meaning two miles, indicating the length of the gorge as 14 miles or 22 km. The area was declared as Satkosia Tiger Reserve in 2007, comprising two adjoining wildlife sanctuaries; the Satkosia Gorge sanctuary and Baisipalli sanctuary. The Reserve is spread over 4 districts like; Angul, Cuttack, Nayagarh and Boudh.
The reserve has an area of 963.87sq km with 523.61sq km as core area. The area is also a part of the Mahanadi elephant reserve. Satkosia is the meeting point of two bio-geographic regions of India; the Deccan Peninsula and the Eastern Ghats, contributing immense biodiversity.
The wildlife sanctuary was established in 1976 for preserving a wide variety of endangered flora and fauna, which is also counted among the best ecosystems of the country. The name of the sanctuary Satkosia is a combination of two words, in which ‘sat’ means seven and ‘kosk’ means two miles. The combination of these two words indicates the length of the gorge, which is 14 miles or 22 km.
In 2007, the area was declared as a Tiger Reserve and is known as Satkosia Tiger Reserve. The reserve is obtained by adjoining two wildlife sanctuaries namely, Baisipalli Sanctuary and Satkosia-Gorge-Sanctuary. At present, the reserve is spread over four districts including Cuttack, Angul, Boudh and Nayagarh. The sanctuary is situated at the meeting point of the Eastern Ghats and the Deccan Peninsula, thus having a rich biodiversity.
Covered with dry deciduous forests and moist peninsular Sal forests, the sanctuary also provides habitat to leopard, spotted deer, sloth bear, elephant, nilgai and wild dogs. Besides various species of resident and migratory birds, the reserve also has reptiles such as mugger crocodile, fresh water turtle, poisonous and non-poisonous snakes. The most prominent activities are wildlife exploration and birdwatching.
Travellers can reach the sanctuary by buses operated by the Orissa Tourism Development Corporation (OTDC) from Athagarh. The nearest airport is Bhubaneswar Airport in Orissa, which is located at a distance of around 125 km. Angul Railway Station is the nearest railway station, situated at a distance of around 113 km.
Satkosia-Gorge-Sanctuary is best visited during the months of October to June, when the weather is pleasant and favourable for exploring the sanctuary.