Day tour : Bharatpur Bird Sanctuarysmriti saxena
Background: The Keoladeo National Park or Keoladeo Ghana National Park formerly known as the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary in Bharatpur, Rajasthan, India is a famous avifauna sanctuary that hosts thousands of birds, especially during the winter season. With over 265 species of birds are known to be resident. Declared as a protected sanctuary in 1971, it’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Reaching here: Located between two of India’s most historic cities, Agra and Jaipur, this place could even be your mid-way stop over if you are covering the golden triangle (i.e. Delhi, Jaipur and Agra). It’s actually situated on the Agra – Jaipur highway.
- Nearest airports: Delhi and Jaipur
- Nearest Railway station: Bharatpur Junction (5 km). Many trains from New Delhi (New Delhi – Mumbai and Agra – Jaipur route) stop at Bharatpur.
- Road connectivity: You can easily do a road trip by either a self-driven car, a taxi or you could even take a bus. There are regular bus services from Delhi (180 km), Agra(55 km), Mathura (35 km), Jaipur (178 km), Alwar (117 km) and adjoining areas.
Tour inside the park: The total area is 29 sq km. There are well-defined treks which can easily be covered by a walking tour, on a bicycle or you can take a rickshaw. The rickshaw pullers have been trained by the park management in bird watching and are quite knowledgeable. You could also take a boat ride to explore the area. An early morning or a late evening boat ride could be quite a rewarding experience. Approximate visit duration: 120 mins
Best Time to Visit :Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuary is open throughout the year; still the ideal visiting months are from August-November for resident breeding birds and October- February for migrant birds.
Entry fee: Indian citizen : 25 per person, Foreigner: 200 per person, Video Camera Fee: 200
Staying here: Usually tourists do a one day visit as the place is quite compact, however should you wish to spend a night then you can book yourself at Shanti Kutir also known as the Bharatpur Forest Lodge. It is the sole accommodation available inside the precincts of the reserve forest. It is a government property operated by the ITDC.
Things to do around: You can visit the Bharatpur Palace, the Lohagarh Fort, Deeg Palace, Ganga Mandir and Kaman. There is also Band Baretha another old wildlife reserve of the rulers of Bharatpur which claims to have over 200 species of birds, including the elusive Black Bittern.
- Visitors are advised to reach the gate half an hour in advance to complete the formalities for entry into the park.
- Do not forget to carry a binocular for watching the birds.
- Sunglasses, sunscreen, hats and water bottles are a must.
Photo – album : Take a quick look of what to expect : pictures shared by fellow travellers – Madhurima & Arkoo Bose here.
For further information: Click here