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You are here : home > Travel > Wildlife and Nature > Sundarbans

Sundarbans


If you like nature in its wildest forms then do not miss an opportunity to visit Sundarbans. Sundarbans has the world's largest mangrove forest and is a treasure island of biodiversity.


The delta and mangrove swamp is formed by the merging of three rivers: Ganga, Brahmaputra and Meghna. The wildlife sanctuary is so huge (2,585 square kilometers) that it extends into Bangladesh. Sundarbans (of which a major area comprises the Sundarbans National Park) is also home to the Royal Bengal Tiger and other interesting wildlife like the spotted deer, wild pigs, herons, kingfishers, white bellied eagles, etc. Even some endangered species of flora and fauna can be found here.


Major wildlife attractions

Sundarbans is a beautiful forest with unique wildlife. You will see thousands of streams, rivers and creeks. While the Royal Bengal Tiger is the main attraction, there are other animals that can be found in this natural habitat. Crocodiles, wild boars, spotted deer and a variety of beautiful birds can be viewed here. The migratory Siberian ducks also make a stop here. A number of rare or endangered species of wildlife live here including aquatic mammals, birds and reptiles. Sundarbans is also home to sharks, poisonous snakes, swimming man-eating tigers, etc. and visitors have to stay away from such areas.


Attractions at Sundarbans

  • The Sajnekhali Sanctuary is regarded as part of the Sundarbans National Park, and is a bird watchers' delight. Birds like the white bellied Sea Eagle, Plovers, Lap-Wings, Curfews, Whimbrels, Sandpipers and the occasional Pelican can be found here.

  • Bhagabatpur is popular for its hatchery of the largest estuarine crocodiles in the world.

  • At Netidhopani, you will find a 400-year-old temple that is in ruins. The legends connected with this temple lend mystery to the surroundings.

  • Kanak is the nesting place for the Olive Ridley Turtles.

  • Piyali is a small river that flows through paddy fields and mingles with the river Matla. As the gateway to Sundarbans, Piyali is accessible from Sajnekhali, Sudhanyakhali and Netidhopani through waterways. There is a beautiful tourist complex here with accommodation and recreation facilities. Piyali also makes for an ideal romantic holiday destination.

  • The Kaikhali Island is located on the way to Sundarbans. It is an ideal picnic spot with colorful and lively surroundings.

  • Visit the Hiron Point (Nilkamal) to spot tigers, deer, monkey, crocodiles, birds and nature. At Katka, there are tigers, deer, crocodiles, varieties of birds and monkeys clubbed with the morning and evening symphony of wild fowls. For those interested in wildlife tracking, the vast expanse of grassy meadows running from Katka to Kachikhali (Tiger Point) is an ideal route. At Tin Kona Island tigers and deer can be viewed. DubJar Char (Island), mainly for fishermen, is a beautiful island where you can come across herds of spotted deer.


What you can do at Sundarbans

  • Take a guided tour of Sundarbans instead of venturing out on their own.

  • Sundarbans is a haven for wildlife photography. There is an abundance of wildlife along with scenic surroundings.

  • Boating facilities are available within the forest.

  • Hire a cruise covering different stretches of Sundarbans. Business conferences and seminars can be organized on the cruise.


How to get here

Sundarbans is accessible from Kolkata (around 100 kilometers from Sundarbans) and the nearest airport is also located here. The nearest railway station is at Canning, 48 kilometers from Sundarbans and from here buses connect to Sonakhali, Raidighi, Najat and Namkhana. The nearest town from Sundarbans National Park is Gosaba, at a distance of 50 kilometers. The tourist has to use a combination of roadways and waterways to reach Sundarbans and it takes around 5 to 6 hours from Kolkata.

The most popular route to Sundarbans is the South Eastern route where tourists take an 86 kilometer drive through wetlands and agricultural lands to reach Sonakhali. Tourists can simply opt for a guided tour and enjoy nature instead of trying to figure out the way on their own. Getting to Sundarbans might seem like a treasure hunt, but it offers an amazing travel experience the tourist cannot get anywhere. The best time to visit Sundarbans is from November to March.


Where to stay

Many forest rest houses and jungle resorts are located close to the Sajnekhali Sanctuary. More luxurious accommodations are available at Kolkata. Hiron Point and Katka have government rest houses.


Info for you!

  • The only means of transportation inside the forest is by boat. There is no road or no trail path here.

  • Do carry drinking water as the water available here is saline.
  • Cholera vaccine must be taken in advance.

  • Remember to include anti-malarial, anti-diarrhea and insect repellent creams in your first-aid kit.

  • Thick rubber soled boots are a must.

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