Birding trip to Nal Sarovar
The Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary is 1.5hrs drive west of Ahmedabad. Spread over 120 sq.kms, it is the largest wetland bird sanctuary in Gujarat. The huge lake and the extensive reed beds and marshes support rich aquatic life and plants, and thus provide the perfect habitat for birds. Over 225 species of birds have been spotted here, of which 140 are water birds.
The best time to visit Nal Sarovar is in winter when migrant birds appear from various parts of the world. Thousands of migratory waterfowl flock to the shallow areas of the lake and the ponds on the outer fringes of the lake.
Birding is usually done on foot as well as by small hand-punted boats. Popular waterbirds include flamingoes, cranes, ducks, gulls, terns, kingfishers, shovellers, cormorants, egrets, herons, ibis, etc. Apart from waterbirds, you can also see birds of prey, bee-eaters, rollers, doves, lapwings, coucals, parakeets, fly catchers, starlings, mynahs, bulbuls, sunbirds, wagtails etc.
Oct-March (i.e, after the monsoon and before summer). The arrival and departure of migratory birds varies based on the water levels in the lake, extent of winter, food sources in their other habitats and many others factors.
Field guide, binoculars, sunscreen, insect repellent, sensible shoes. Breakfast can be had at a small local restaurant at Nal Sarovar, but it is basic. Please bring fruits and snacks to keep you going.
From your hotel at 4:30 a.m.
At your hotel; end-time varies depending on sighting and your interests. Typically you spend about 3-4 hours at Nal Sarovar and return by lunch time to the city.
INR 11500 using Tata Indigo (can take 2 adults + guide + driver)
INR 12500 using Toyota Innova (can take 4 adults + guide + driver)
INR 20500 using Tempo Traveller (can take 6 adults + guide + driver)
AC transport, driver with cell phone, fuel, parking charges, boat ride and entrances, tolls, bottled water and all taxes. Please note, the boatmen work as bird guides. They don’t have formal training, but over time have become familiar with the English names of bird species. They cannot converse in English. They speak Gujarati and some Hindi.
Meals/refreshment, guide, tips, entrances.