This National Wildlife Day, get to know the lesser known wildlife sanctuaries in India
India is home to exquisite wildlife that is recognised across the globe. Ranging from the Himalayas to the southern plateau, the country opens its heart to a diverse 90,000 species. Exploring wildlife has been fun for all age groups and is definitely something travellers have been missing during the lockdown. Booking.com, one of the world’s leading digital travel platforms has put together a list of relatively unexplored wildlife destinations in India for travellers to admire the wildlife in their natural habitats. Take a trip on the wildside, as it becomes safe to do so.
Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary, Andhra Pradesh
Situated near Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh, Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary is the second largest stretch of mangrove forests in India. The sanctuary is situated merely 22 km from the Kakinada Beach and is home to critically endangered white-backed vulture and long-billed vulture and other rare birds. The sanctuary also allows visitors a chance to see otters, jackals, and estuarine crocodiles in their natural habitats. Coringa is known to be one of the favourites among eco-tourists, who can also enjoy the scenic beauty of estuary. So get your binoculars ready for when it’s safe to travel again!
Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary, Himachal Pradesh
At an altitude ranging from 3600m to 6700 m, Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary is the only cold desert wildlife sanctuary in India. Spread across 2200 sq km area, this sanctuary is located in Kibber which is one of the highest villages of Spiti. One of the lesser known sanctuaries in India, Kibber is home to rare and endangered medicinal plant species and animals like the snow leopard, tibetian wolf, ibex, blue sheep. Offering magnificent views of the snow-clad mountains and the sandy basin of Spiti river flowing in the valley, Kibber is a must visit for wildlife enthusiasts for when it's safe to travel again.
Bhimgad Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka
Set in the rich vegetation of Western Ghats, a not so known Bhimgad Wildlife Sanctuary awaits all animal lovers and photographers who will be lucky to spot Gaur, Sloth bear, spotted deer, wild dogs, Leopard and Fox. This sanctuary is also famous for Barapede Caves, the only breeding area of Wroughton’s free-tailed bat. As it becomes safe to travel again, travellers can look forward to a calm and serene environment this sanctuary offers. This sanctuary located in the city of Belgaum is within a two-hour drive from Goa, Kolhapur and Hubli.
Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary, Maharashtra
Adjoining the Bhandara and Gondia district of Maharashtra is the quaint Nagzira Reserve. Adorned with luscious landscapes, this southern tropical deciduous forest is a green oasis home to over 34 species of mammals. A paradise for bird watchers, this region is blessed with 166 species of homebound and migratory birds. Tigers, bisons, chitals, Indian gaurs and multiple species of deers are among the many creatures likely to be spotted here. One of the more informative sanctuaries, it stations a museum and an interpretation centre exhibiting wildlife orientation films
Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary, Rajasthan
Spread across an area of 578 square km, Kumbhalgarh Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a variety of animals including some endangered species. While enjoying a wildlife safari or horse riding, travellers can spot Leopard, Wolf, Sloth bear, Sambar, Nilgai, Chinkara, Jackal and jungle cat. Surrounded by the Kumbhalgarh Fort, this sanctuary is a picturesque location for travellers interested in wildlife photography. This sanctuary also stands out as it covers four hill and mountain ranges of the Aravallis – Kumbhalgarh Range; Sadri Range; Desuri Range and the Bokhada Range.
Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary, Goa
Located in the North Goa district, Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary covers a vast area of 208 sq. km. and ensures the protection of the immense biodiversity found in the animal and plant life that resides in the Western Ghats. This comparatively new wildlife sanctuary is home to rare black panthers, endangered slender loris, flying squirrel and small Indian civet. The camp is also home to more than 255 species of birds and over a thousand species of flowering plants and rare endemic orchids. Known for its semi green and evergreen forests, this protected wildlife region of Goa is an adventurous place to pay a visit
Bornadi Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam
Bornadi Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Darrang district of Assam at foothills of Himalayas. Named after river Bornadi which flows on its western border, the sanctuary was established with the main objective of protecting the endangered species of Hispid Hare and Pygmy Hog in Assam. Other wild animals found in the sanctuary include capped langur, pangolin, tiger, Asiatic elephant, leopard, jungle Cat, Himalayan black bear amongst others. A must visit to see the critically endangered species.