Baleswar is the administrative headquarters of Baleswar District
. (Baleswar is sometimes spelt Balasore.) In the medieval times, it was a maritime town along the Budhabalanga River. Some parts of Baleswar were French and Dutch settlements and the ruins of those colonial days still exist within the city limits.
Places of tourist interest in and around Baleswar include Mahadev Baneswar temple,
Chandipur (16 km), Talasari Beach, Balaramgadi and Panchalingeswar.
Nearest airport is at Bhubaneswar (198 km). Baleswar is a prominent railhead under South Eastern Railway. Regular bus services are available to Cuttack (228 km), Bhubaneswar and Kolkata (234 km).