Gir National Park, also known as Sasan Gir, is one of the renowned national parks in India, and among the best places of among the best places to visit in Gujarat. It is situated about 156 km from Rajkot, and 372 km from Ahmedabad.
Established as a sanctuary in 1965, Gir National Park is the most popular national parks in Gujarat as it is the royal kingdom of Asiatic lions and essentially the only place besides Africa on earth where these majestic beasts roam freely. Besides Asiatic lions, one can see Asiatic lion, Indian leopard, jungle cat, striped hyena, Golden jackal, Indian and Ruddy mongoose, honey badger, chital, nilgai, sambar, four-horned antelope, chinkara, and wild boar here as part of Gir tour packages.
The entrance gate to the park is located at Sasan Gir village beside Sinh Sadan. Jungle Safari is one of the best things to do in Gir National Park. Besides, there is also a Gir Interpretation Zone, also known as Devalia Safari Park at Devalia, and was established to reduce the excess of tourists at the Gir National Park.
The park remains open every year from mid-October to mid-June and closed during the monsoon season from July to September. While Devalia Safari Park is open throughout the year.
At a distance of 45 km from Bhavnagar, Blackbuck National Park is a national park located at Velavadar in the Bhavnagar district of Gujarat. Also known as Velavadar Blackbuck National Park, it is one of the famous places of wildlife in Gujarat, and among the must include places in Bhavnagar holiday packages.
Velavadar National Park was formerly the private hunting ground for the Maharajas of the princely state of Bhavnagar. With an area of about 18 sq. km, it was declared as a reserve forest and later notified as a National Park in 1976 CE. In 1980 the area was extended to cover about 34 Sq. km of grassland. The park has been classified as Gujarat-Rajwada biotic province of the semi-arid bio-geographical zone due to its unique ecosystem which consists of exclusive grassland habitat, shrublands, saline plains, and mudflats. The park lies between two rivers namely Parvalia and Alang, which drain into the Gulf of Cambay.
Among the major Bhavnagar tourist places, the park has been established for the protection of the blackbucks and has the highest number of blackbucks in India. More than 3, 000 blackbucks exist on the open grasslands of Velavadar. The sanctuary is also home to other animals like nilgai, jackal, wolf, jungle cat, and fox. Besides, one can also spot many bird species which include ...
At a distance of 41 km from Sanand and 69 km from Ahmedabad, Nalsarovar Bird Sanctuary is a protected bird sanctuary situated at Nalsarovar village in Gujarat. Nalsarovar is one of the largest wetland bird sanctuaries in India, and among the prime attractions of Ahmedabad sightseeing packages.
The Nalsarovar Lake and the wetlands around it were declared as a bird sanctuary in 1969. Covering an area of 120.82 Sq.km, it is a serene marshland with shallow waters which contains 36 small islands. It has been identified as one of the 15 important wetlands of India by the National Committee on Wetlands for intensive conservation. Lying in an area between Central Gujarat and East Saurashtra, it represents a sea link that once existed between the Little Rann and the Gulf of Khambat. The lake gets filled with water that drains from the adjoining Surendranagar and Ahmedabad districts in the monsoon.
Mainly inhabited by migratory birds as their wintering ground, Nalsarovar wetland is the largest wetland bird sanctuary in Gujarat, and one of the largest in India. Besides being one of the largest bird sanctuaries, Nalsarovar harbors one of the highest populations of waterfowl anywhere in India. One can find rosy pelicans, lesser and greater flamingos, crakes, brahminy ducks, purple moorhen, herons, white storks, various species of bitterns, grebes, etc. in the lake.
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Wildlife | Pilgrimage
At a distance of 116 km from Great Rann of Kutch and 160 km from Bhuj, Narayan Sarovar or Narayansar is a village in Lakhpat taluk of Kutch district in Gujarat. Situated near Koteshwar Mahadev Temple, it is considered as one of the places of pilgrimage for Hindus in India and among the must visit places in Kutch.
The village got its name from the holy Narayan Sarovar Lake. Narayan Sarovar Lake is one of the 5 holy lakes of Hinduism, along with Mansarovar in Tibet, Pampa in Karnataka, Bindu Sarovar in Gujarat and Pushkar in Rajasthan. According to the Hindu mythology, the lake is associated with a time of drought in the Puranic area, when Lord Vishnu appeared in response to the avid prayers of sages and touched the land with his toe, creating the lake, now revered as holy to bathe in.
There are seven stone temples surrounded by the lake namely Sri Trikamraiji, Lakshminarayan, Govardhannathji, Dwarkanath, Adinarayan, Ranchodraiji and Laxmiji, built by the wife of Maharao Desalji. Accordingly, in 1734, she first built the temples of Lakshminarayan and Trikamray in the same style as the Dwarka temples while the other five temples built by Vagheli Mahakunvar form, along with the more lately built temple of Kalyanray. Collectively called as Narayan Sarovar Temples, these temples are surrounded by a fortified wall and are approached from the lake by flights of stone steps. The lake attracts huge crowds during the annual fair held in November or December. One can also visit ...
At a distance of 5 km from Fulay village, 30 km from Nakhtrana and 61 km from Rann of Kutch, Chhari Dhand Bird Sanctuary is a wetland conservation reserve situated near Fulay village in Kutch district of Gujarat State in India. Located on the edge of arid Banni Grasslands and the marshy salt flats of the Rann of Kutch, it is one of the popular wetlands in Gujarat and among the best places to visit in Kutch.
The Chhari Dhand is a seasonal desert wetland and only gets swampy during a good monsoon, receiving water from the north flowing rivers as well as from the huge catchment areas of many surrounding big hills. Chhari means salt affected and Dhand means shallow wetland in local Kutchi language. The wetland was originally spread over 227 Sq. km, out of which 80 Sq. km was the water filled area. This place is a paradise for bird watchers and ornithologists as this seasonal desert wetland attracts nearly 200 species of migratory birds every year in the monsoon and winter seasons. Due to this rich biodiversity, the protected area of Chhari Dhand and some of its adjoining wetlands are under serious consideration for inclusion in the Ramsar Convention.
More than 50,000 waterfowls, 250 species of birds and 55 distinct species of animals have been recorded in and around Chhari Dhand. More than 30,000 common cranes have been reported during winter. Endangered species like Dalmatian Pelican, Oriental Darter, Black necked Stork and Indian Skimmer migrate through these wetlands ...
At a distance of 25 km from Rapar, and 124 km from Bhuj, Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary is sanctuary located in the north eastern part of Kutch district in Gujarat. Situated in the Great Rann of Kutch, it is one of the famous places of wildlife in Gujarat, and among the popular places to visit as part of Rann of Kutch packages.
Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary was established in February 1986. Covering an area of about 7505 sq. km, this is the largest Wildlife Sanctuary in India area wise and one of the largest seasonal saline wetlands of Gujarat having an average water depth between 0.5 to 1.5 meters. But, after October-November, water dries up and the entire area turns into a saline desert where thousands of Flamingoes nest and breed. The sanctuary has four hilly and rocky islands ('bets') such as Pachchham, Khadir, Bela, and Chorar along with Kalo Dungar and Goro Dungar hills.
Considered among the most popular Rann of Kutch tourist places the sanctuary is mainly established to preserve the nesting ground of the flamingo or Greater Flamingo. The world-famous 'Flamingo City' is located in the mudflats of the Rann, at a distance of around 10 km from the Nir outpost on Kalo Dungar. Hundreds of greater flamingoes breed here, particularly ...
At a distance of 50 km from Surendranagar, 100 km from Ahmedabad, 238 km from Bhuj, and 320 km from Great Rann of Kutch, the Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary is a protected sanctuary located in the Little Rann of Kutch, Gujarat. Also known as the Wild Ass Wildlife Sanctuary, it is the largest wildlife sanctuary in Gujarat, and among the best places to visit near Ahmedabad for wildlife enthusiasts.
Spread over an area of 4954 sq. km, the Indian Wild Ass Sanctuary was established in 1972 and came under the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972. The Wild Ass Sanctuary of the Little Rann of Kutch is the only place on earth where the endangered Indian Wild Ass, known locally as the ghudkhar, still lives. One of the three surviving species of the Wild Ass in the world-the other two being found in Central Asia and in and around Tibet, the Khur is high on the list of endangered species. Known for its speed, the wild ass lives in herds led by stallions and survived by migrating between the grassy 'bets' through the season, in search of food. There are around 3000 wild asses in the sanctuary and can be best seen in and around October and November.
Apart from wild ass, the sanctuary is also home to 32 other species of mammals such as chinkara, two types of desert fox, jackals, caracals, nilgais, Indian wolves, blackbucks, and striped hyenas along with 350 different species of birds, including ...
At a distance of 80 km from Mandvi, 109 km from Bhuj and 173 km from Gateway of Rann, Kutch Bustard Sanctuary or Kachchh Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary is a protected area located near Jakhau village in Kutch district of Gujarat. Also known as Lala-Parjan Sanctuary, it is one of the two great Indian Bustard sanctuaries in Gujarat, and among the must-include places in Mandvi tour packages.
Kutch Bustard Sanctuary was declared as a sanctuary in July 1992 to safeguard the Great Indian Bustard from hunting and poaching. Home to the endangered Great Indian bustard, this is the smallest sanctuary in the country spread over just 2 sq. km. Several suggestions have been made to vastly increase the size of this sanctuary as it is a breeding ground of the endangered Great Indian Bustard, the heaviest flying bird belonging to the avian family of Otididae.
Varied vegetation, semi-arid grasslands, and marshy swamps make Kutch Bustard Sanctuary an ideal home for Great Indian Bustard. It has the largest concentration of bustards, second only to the Desert National Park of Rajasthan. Regarded as among the best Mandvi sightseeing places, the Kutch Bustard Sanctuary is home to three species of Bustards - the Great Indian bustard, lesser floricans, and the MacQueen Bustard. Among the three, the population of Great ...
At a distance of 42 km from Rajkot Junction, the Rampara Wildlife Sanctuary is a dense woodland situated near Khijadiya village near Rajkot, Gujarat. It is one of the major places of wildlife in Gujarat, and among the best places to visit as part of Rajkot packages. It has been selected as an alternate place for the Asiatic lion breeding center in Gujarat.
A former shooting reserve owned by the erstwhile princely state of Wankaner, Rampara was acquired by the government in 1975, declared as a reserve forest in 1983, and notified as a Sanctuary in 1988 to protect the natural vegetation and the wildlife of the area. Covers over an area of around 15 sq. km, the sanctuary is located near the river of Machchhu, which is drained by two streams named Pat a gala vonklo and Vaghrigalo vonklo.
Among the best wildlife sanctuaries near Rajkot, the sanctuary has plain terrain in the middle with hillocks at the periphery and undulating terrain in between. The shrubby land spread with patches of grasses harbors a large number of species of plants, birds, and mammals. The Rampara Wildlife Sanctuary in Rajkot is renowned for housing an entire troop of mammoth antelopes, regarded as the Indian Blue Bulls, popularly addressed by the name 'Nilgai'. Other animals like wolf, jackal, hyena, common fox, and ...
At a distance of 70 km from Vadodara, Jambughoda is a wildlife sanctuary located in the Panchmahal district of Central Gujarat. Situated near Jambughoda, it is one of the best wildlife sanctuaries in Gujarat, and among the top places to visit as part of Vadodara tour packages.
Jambughoda Sanctuary was a part of the princely state of Jambughoda before independence. The sanctuary was established in 1990 at the behest of the late Prime Minister of India, Mr. Rajiv Gandhi. Sprawling over an area of 130 sq. km, Jambughoda is a magnificent forest of teak, bamboos, and other miscellaneous species. The area has two water reservoirs- one at Kada and the other at Targol. The most striking feature of the area is the undulating hills having a good forest cover, with the valleys having small tribal hamlets.
Among the prominent wildife sanctuaries near Ahmedabad, the sanctuary harbors several wild animals, birds, and flora, including plants and herbs of medicinal value. Leopard is the top predator here whose population has been increasing. The habitat is shared by other animals such as sloth bear, jackal, blue bull, wild boar, and four-horned antelopes. In addition, the sanctuary is also home to a wide variety of snakes including cobra, rat snake, Russell's viper, and python, and interesting ...
At a distance of 16 km from Jamnagar Railway Station, Khijadiya is a bird sanctuary located at Khijadiya Village in the Jamnagar district of Gujarat. Situated off the coast of Kutch, it is one of the popular bird sanctuaries in Gujarat, and among the must include places in Jamnagar sightseeing packages.
Covering an area of about 6 Sq.km, the Khijadiya Bird Sanctuary is unique having both freshwater lakes, salt, and freshwater marshlands. It was officially declared as a sanctuary in 1982. However, it became a natural habitat for local and migratory birds before India's independence when the then rulers constructed a small check dam on Ruparel River for storing the waters. This dam created a unique ecosphere with the freshwater lakes on one side and the salty water of the sea forming marshes on the other to support not only a variety of fauna but also flora. The main sanctuary covers the area around the Ruparel and Kalindi rivers towards the northeast of Jamnagar.
Among the major Jamnagar tourist places, the sanctuary is a true heaven for all bird lovers as it is home to more than 250 species of resident and migratory birds, including globally threatened species such as Dalmatian pelican, Asian openbill stork, Black-necked stork, Darter, Black-headed ibis, Eurasian spoonbill, and Indian skimmer. ...
At a distance of 56 km from Jamnagar Railway Station, Narara Marine National Park is a marine wildlife sanctuary in the Gulf of Kutch near Jamnagar. Situated next to Vadinar Village, it is the first Marine national park in India, and among the top places of sightseeing in Jamnagar.
The Narara Marine National Park is one of the rare places in the world where one can look at corals without having to dive down into the water. About an area of 458 sq. km from Okha to Jodiya was declared as a Marine Sanctuary in 1980. Later, in 1982, about 163 Sq. km of core area was declared as a Marine National Park under the provisions of the Wildlife Act, 1972 of India.
There are 42 tropical islands on the Jamnagar coast in the Marine National Park, most of them surrounded by reefs. Out of which 33 islands have coral reefs. Some of the best-known islands are Pirotan, Karubhar, Narara, and Poshitra. There are islands with sandy beaches and mangrove swamps. Major ecosystem types available are coral reefs, mangroves, mudflats, creeks, Seagrass, & Seaweeds, estuaries, sandy strands to saline grasslands, marshy areas, and rocky shores. All ecosystems support rich marine life & birdlife in the marine park.
The sanctuary lies in the intertidal zone, so especially in low tide, visitors get to observe the rich diversity of marine life. One has to just walk in the ...
At a distance of 10 km from Jamnagar Railway Station, Pirotan Island is an island situated in the Gulf of Kutch near Jamnagar. It is one of the beautiful islands in Gujarat and among the top places to visit in Jamnagar.
Spreads over an area of 3 Sq. km, Pirotan Island is one of the 42 islands which compose the first Marine National Park in India. It is one of the two islands in the Marine National Park opened for tourists, other one being Narara Island. Pirotan Island is a gem for the people who love nature and adventure as it gives an opportunity to witness the colourful coral reefs, mangroves, and incredible aquatic creatures like jelly fish, octopus, star fish, sea snakes, hermit crabs, sea horse, sea slugs, green sea turtles and dolphins. One can also spot some beautiful birds such as pelicans, herring gull, sea gull, and black-headed gull in the unruffled setting of nature.
Pirotan was originally known as 'Pir jo thaan' signifying the sacred place of Saint Khwaja Khizer Rahmatullahialaih. The holy shrine of the saint is also located on the island. The island also houses a lighthouse. The island is uninhabited except for the workers at Pirotan Island's lighthouse, the forest guard, and the Mujhavar (Server) at the Holy Saint Khwaja Khizer shrine. Most visitors come in the morning with the high tide and leave by evening. So, one can spend hours walking around the tidal flats at low tide, observing the fascinating marine life in solitude.
Pirotan Island ...
At a distance of 42 km from Waghai and 68 km from Saputara Bus Station, Purna Wildlife Sanctuary is a wildlife sanctuary in the Western Ghats between the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra, India. It is one of the most popular hotspots for bird watchers and among the best places to visit near Saputara.
Situated in the predominantly tribal district of Dangs, Purna Wildlife Sanctuary was declared as a sanctuary in July 1990 which spread over an area of 160 Sq. km. The sanctuary derives its name from the Purna River, which flows through it. Managed by the North Dangs Forest Division, Purna is one of the last remaining patches of moist deciduous forest in Gujarat which supports huge range of flora and fauna. Purna, along with Vansda National Park, is the only Protected Area in South Gujarat for conserving diverse biological resources.
Known for its thick forest cover, Purna receives the highest average rainfall in the state. The landscape is completely lush green along with thick forests, interspersed with rivers and small tribal villages leaving visitors absolutely enchanted. There are about 700 species of plants and trees in Purna Wildlife Sanctuary. Leopard is the top predator here whose population has been increasing. Wild bulls, elephants, rhesus macaque, bonnet macaque, common mongoose, Indian civet cat, Indian porcupine, four-horned antelope, barking deer, sambar, chital, hyena, and jungle cat are among the other prominent animals found in the forest. The forest ...
At a distance of 3 km from Waghai and 52 km from Saputara Bus Station, Vansda National Park is a protected area located near Waghai in the Navsari district of Gujarat. Situated on the Vansda-Waghai State Highway, Vansda is one of the major places of wildlife in Gujarat, and among the popular places to visit as part of Saputara sightseeing tour.
Spread over an area of 24 sq. km, the area was established as a National park in the year of 1979. The park got its name as Vansda because it was once privately owned by the Maharaja of Vansda. As per the official records, not a single tree has been cut since 1952. Owing to this, in some places, the canopies are so thick that sunlight does not pass through. Maintained by the South Dangs Forest Division, the landscape of the park is breathtaking with beautiful rolling hills, sweeping valleys and the beautiful river Ambika flows through the northeastern boundary of the park. The park also has a fairly large number of tribes living in and around such as the Bhil, Gamit, Warli, Kokni, Kunbi, and Dangi tribes.
Nestled in the Western Ghats of the Sahyadri range, it has a unique flavor of flora and fauna population. The vegetation includes 440 species of plants out of which the most prominent ones are the moist and dry deciduous forest cover, bamboos, tall teak trees, orchids, mango groves, and gigantic creepers. This national park ...
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