Belagadia royal palace in Mayurbhanj thrown open to tourists

Baripada: With an aim to preserve and propagate art, culture and tradition, the royal Bhanja Deo family has dedicated its 200-year-old Belagadia palace at Baripada to be used for sustainable tourism.

The palace, which was built in the year 1804 is a mix of Greek and Victorian architecture. Although the palace allowed only guests who came to witness its antique furniture and decor, common public were not allowed inside.

However, the present generation of the Bhanja Deo family, with a motto to promote sustainable tourism, has thrown open the palace for tourists, which will not only allow the people to experience the beautiful architecture, but will give them an opportunity to know the art, handicraft and culture of Mayurbhanj district.

“Our only motto is to promote sustainable tourism. We have ancient Dhokra and stone carvings and different types of handicraft items prepared from Sabai grass. Tourists visiting the palace will get a chance to see and experience the art and culture of Mayurbhanj,” said Mrinalika Manjari Bhanja Deo.

The queen of Mayurbhanj, Rashmi Rajlakshmi Bhanja Deo said “People should know about the history of their royal family. Besides, it is an attempt to provide a platform for promotion of various artisans, Chhau performers and the local handicrafts of Mayurbhanj.”

“We are trying to revive whatever has remained with us and my daughters and wife have started a heritage homestay which allows the public to live inside the palace. This will give an opportunity to the locals as well as foreign tourists to explore the rich culture and tradition of Odisha,” said the royal scion of Mayurbhanj, Praveen Chandra Bhanja Deo.
Meanwhile, the move of Bhanja Deo royal family has received accolades and praises from researchers and intellects.