Top 15 Bird Sanctuaries in India for Bird Lovers
There are very few sights that delight the senses as much as birds. They are one of the many gifts that nature has bestowed upon us. The bird sanctuaries in India house a wide variety of exotic bird species. From ornithologists to laymen, they attract everybody. It’s estimated that India is home to over 1200 species of birds, and most of them can be viewed in these wildlife sanctuaries, especially known for the feathery species.
From the Great Indian Hornbill to the Great Indian Bustard, a thriving population of birds call India home. Check out the list of the amazing bird sanctuaries to go bird-watching in India.
1. Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, Rajasthan
If you are an avid bird lover, then Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is where you need to be. Also known as Keoladeo Ghana National Park, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visiting this bird sanctuary lets you come across almost 360 bird species. Among the various kinds of bird species found here, the most famous ones are geese, pelicans, crane, ducks, eagles, hawks, shanks, stints and wagtails, among others. Apart from the birds, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is also home to several kinds of wildlife like nilgai, sambar, chital and boar.
2. Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary, Haryana
Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary, spread over an area of 1.43sq.km, is another bird reserve located in Haryana. One of the most popular bird sanctuaries in India, its home to more than 250 species of resident and migratory birds. The bird reserve in India receives a large number of migratory birds from Siberia, Russia, Turkey and Eastern Europe during the winters. The various kinds of birds housed here range from red collared dove, rock pigeon, white-throated kingfisher and great egret, among others.
Timings: 6am – 4:30pm
3. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, Goa
Happen to be a bird lover? Then a visit to the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary must definitely be on your bucketlist. Named after the famous ornithologist Salim Moizuddin Abdul Ali, this narrow stretch of mangrove forest lies along the estuarine part of Mandovi River and the western tip of Chorao Island in Goa.
The bird sanctuary in Goa is accessible by a regular ferry service. There is a bird watching tower which allows visitors to observe a different variety of birds like woodpeckers, sandpipers, kingfishers and white egrets, besides others. Besides birding, birdwatching, you can easily enjoy a visit to various kinds of animals. In addition to the avians, the inhabitants include marsh crocodiles, cormorants, drongos, and jackals, among others.
Timings: 6am – 6pm
4. Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Kerala
Kumarakom in Kerala is famous for many things, and one of them is Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary. Located on the banks of the Vembanad Lake, its spread over an area of 14 acres of lush dense greenery. Counted among the famous bird sanctuaries in India, it attracts bird lovers in large numbers. One can spot numerous species of resident and seasonal birds here. The pristine Pathiramanal Island on the lake is a perfect spot for migratory birds coming from Siberia and Russia. The other kinds of birds found here range from woodpeckers, parrots and teals to owls and kingfishers.
Birdwatching in Kumarakom is made special, above all by the amazing opportunity to enjoy backwater rides.
Timings: 6am – 6 pm
5. Kaundinya Bird Sanctuary, Andhra Pradesh
Kaundinya Bird Sanctuary is one of the must visit places for birdwatching in India, and visiting here is a delight for nature lovers. Located about 86km from Horsley Hills and stretching over 358sq. km, this sanctuary is renowned for its rich biodiversity. The various types of birds which can be found here include rosy pelicans, pumas, jungle cats and monitor lizards, apart from others. In addition, the wildlife reserve is also home to a wide variety of wildlife such as porcupines, sloth bears, tigers and pumas, to name a few. Read more…
6. Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary, Tamil Nadu
The “hamlet of the hunters” translates to Vedanthangal, in local language . Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary in Tamil Nadu is located in Kanchipuram and is counted amongst the oldest bird sanctuaries in India. The sanctuary is spread over 30 acres of land and is visited by almost 40,000 migratory birds every year. The best time to visit the sanctuary is between the months of October to January. On visiting this sanctuary, the various kinds of birds you will come across are pintails, common sandpipers, spoonbills and grey wagtails, apart from many others.
7. Chilika Lake Bird Sanctuary, Orissa
Chilika Lake Bird Sanctuary lays claim to being the largest brackish water lake in Asia. Apart from its natural beauty which is a spectacular sight to come across, its also visited by a wide variety of birds. Chilika Lake is visited by over 160 species of birds, especially in the peak season, which is between November and February. The various kinds of birds which you have a chance of spotting here are gulls, flamingoes, white bellied sea eagles and ospreys, apart from others. Many migratory birds from Central Asia, Iran and Siberia also visit the lake.
Timings: 6am – 7pm
8. Kutch Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary, Gujarat
Another beautiful bird sanctuary in India is the Kutch Great Indian Bustard in Gujarat. Its popularity, as is quite evident, is due to the fact that its home to a significant population of Great Indian Bustard – a neutral colored ground dwelling bird species with a long neck and ostrich-legs long legs. Apart from the Great Indian Bustard, the other kinds of birds found in Kutch Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary include Houbara Bustards, florican Bustard and Macqueen’s Bustards, among others. Nilagais, chinkaras, jungle cats and desert cats are also found here.
Timings: 6am – 6pm
Find some Gujarat tour packages to explore its adorable places:
9. Mayani Bird Sanctuary, Maharashtra
Mayani Bird Sanctuary, located in close proximity to Vaduj town of Maharashtra, is a favorable tourist destination for those who love bird watching. It’s a wetland ecosystem very rich in biodiversity that helps the growth of scattered forests and cactus. Mayani Bird Sanctuary is home to almost 400 migratory birds which can be spotted during the winter season between the months of November to January. Some of the birds found here include painted storks, black ibis, kingfishers and brahminy ducks, besides others.
Timings: 7am to 7pm
10. Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary, Gujarat
Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary in Gujarat is one of the largest and also among the most famous bird sanctuaries in India. The wetland vegetation spread over an area of 120sq. km, makes a great place for spotting various kinds of bird species. Geese, spoonbills, pelicans and eagles, among others are easily spotted.
Records state that there are more than 210 species of birds in the sanctuary. While, thousands of visitors fly in winters and early spring.
11. Samaspur Bird Sanctuary in Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh
Uttar Pradesh, one of the largest states in India, is home to several attractions which attract the tourists. One among them is Samaspur Bird Sanctaury . If you happen to be a bird lover, then you should definitely visit. This bird sanctuary is home to more than 200 species of birds. Some popular names include spot bill, kingfisher, common teel and whistling teel, besides others. Additionally, the natural reserve has a lake which consists of various fishes. November to March is the best time for spotting the exotic birds in this sanctuary.
12. Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary is another bird sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh. Situated around a freshwater lake, its home to more 250 species of birds. Some of the birds found here include pintail, red crested pochard, white ibis and purple moorhen, apart from others. Moreover, migratory spices are seen in huge numbers in the winters
In fact, Nawabganj receives visitors from Siberia in winters. In addition to spotting birds, there are options of relaxing as well as clicking pictures from the birdwatching towers. Also, boat rides and deer park are fun.
13. Bakhira Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
Next, we have Bakhira Bird Sanctuary. Located on a large natural floodplain and wetland, the natural reserve is a beautiful place to view some unique species of birds. Established in 1980, the sanctuary gets its name from a lake that surrounds a village which also goes by the same name. Some of the birds which you can find here include purple moorhen, kaima and swamphen. Besides, Bakhira is also a habitat for mongooses, jungle cats and golden jackals, apart from others.
14. Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, Karnataka
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, near Mysore is simply one of the best places for bird-watching in India. It is one of the largest bird sanctuaries of Karnataka and also India. Located in close proximity to Mysore, the reserve comprises of six small islands along the river Cauvery. Some of the varieties of birds, the sanctuary is home to include stork billed kingfishers, Indian shags, oriental darters and streak throated swallows, among others.
Apart from the wide variety of avifauna found here, this sanctuary is also home to various kinds of animal species. The most popular names include mugger crocodile, monitor lizard, flying fox and Indian grey mongoose, besides others.
15. Chintamani Kar Bird Sanctuary, West Bengal
Next on our list, we have Chintamani Kar Bird Sanctuary. It is located on the rural areas of Kolkata outskirts. great place to spend some quality time watching the exotic quality of birds. The popular names are black headed bulbul, little spider hunter and fish eagle, besides others.
Timings: 7 AM – 4 PM
So, here are the most famous bird sanctuaries in India. Make your plans for a visit to these sanctuaries to enjoy the experience of bird-watching in India.