The anicent royalty used Simlipal Tiger Reserve primarily as a hunting ground.
It was formally designated a tiger reserve in 1956 under Project Tiger in May
1972. It was developed to a national park category in 1979. Located in the Mayurbhanj
district of India.Coastal state of Orissa, Simlipal Tiger Reserve is an ecosystem
complete with forest vegetation (mainly sal trees), fauna and the adjoining
Santhal tribal settlements.
High plateaus and hills, the highest peak being the Mangesheri, surround the forest. At least 12 rivers cut across the plain area. The prominent among them are Burhabalanga, Palpala Bandan, Kahairi and Deo. This sprawling forest also has many waterfalls that are a perpetual attraction to the tourist. It has withstood two cyclones. in 1982 and 1999.
To reach Simlipal Tiger Reserve it is very easy. There are three major airports and rail junctions in the vicinity. These include Jamshedpur (140 km), Bhubaneswar (320 km) and Calcutta (240 km). Road network and highway links in the area are quite efficient.
Bhalukpong is known for picnics on the banks of Kameng river, trekking and hiking, and angling at the Kameng river.
Accommodation is available in the form of forest reserve bungalows in the Simlipal Hills. These bungalows have catering facilities as well. Solar-powered stone lodges at Baripada offer reasonably priced accommodation. The park is open for visitors from November to June.