Friday, 4 March 2011

Karnala Birds Sanctuary

The Karnala Bird Sanctuary is located in Panvel Taluka of Raigad District, outside Mumbai, India near Matheran and Karjat. The sanctuary is quite small with an area of 12.11 square kilometres but along with the Sanjay Gandhi National Park and Tungareshwar sanctuary is one of the few sanctuaries to be within reach of the city of Mumbai.

The sanctuary lies just off the Mumbai-Pune National highway to Goa. It is 12 km from the Panvel. It is home to over 150 species of resident and 37 species of migratory birds who visit the sanctuary during winter. Three rare birds i.e. Ashy Minivet, three toed kingfisher and Malabar Trogon have been sighted here. It is one of the more popular destination for avid bird-watchers and hikers in the Mumbai area. Karnala Bird Sanctuary is centered around the historic Karnala Fort which stands 475 metres high.

The sanctuary is open to visitors throughout the year. The resident bird and animal population can be seen at any time of the year, especially the monsoons, while the best time to see migratory birds is from October to April. Four nature trails exist in the sanctuary - the Hariyal nature trail (1 km), the Mortaka Nature trail (6 km), the Garmal Nature trail (3 km) and the Karnala pradakshina trail (10 km). The nature trails pass through various habitats of the sanctuary. It is better to hire a youth from the neighbouring Kalhe village for the long trails. Karnala is a tiny sanctuary, barely 4.8 sq km, home to over 150 resident bird species and about 37 types of avian migrants.

How to Reach :
Karnala Bird Sanctuary is 60 km from Mumbai, on the Mumbai-Goa Highway, NH-17. This is a 2-hour drive via Thane Creek and Panvel. Central Railway trains from VT Station stop at Panvel, 12 km from the sanctuary; from here you can catch autorickshaws, taxis and buses. State Transport buses run from Mumbai Central to Karnala. You can hire an Taxi from Mumbai or Pune and shouldn't be very expensive.
From Vashi (New Mumbai) - 32km. (one Way)
From Panvel regular buses and autorickshaws(6 sitters) going towards Pen will drop you at Karnala, but the frequency is very less after 6.00-7.00 PM. The fare is around Rs.10.00.

Other Sanctuaries :

Do Visit