Situated amidst the beautiful environs of the Chandaka Forest, along the picturesque Kanjia Lake in Orissa
, Nandankanan is a combination of a botanical garden, zoo and a sanctuary. It got its name from 'Nandan Van' meaning the 'Garden of Heaven'. It was established in the year 1960 and was declared a sanctuary in the year 1979. The zoo is famous for its white tigers. It also houses the very first captive Gharial
Crocodile breeding center of the country. The sanctuary is home to many endangered species such as black panthers, sangai, lion-tailed macaque,
, India pangolin,
, countless birds, and reptiles. Another major attraction is the 34 aquaria, which are home to a large variety of fresh water fishes. Tourist season ranges from July to October.
The sanctuary also offers facilities for boating and white tiger and lion safaris. Featuring a nocturnal animal house, reptile park, aerial ropeway and cable car, it is the place for a person with a penchant for the great outdoors. The region is well connected to the capital city of Bhubaneswar by road.