While jeeps are usually a preferred mode of transport for jungle safaris, a boat has a lot to offer as well. As most animals visit water bodies to quench their thirst, you can hop on a boat and access the inaccessible areas of the jungle. Say hello to water or boat safaris! Here are 5 national parks and sanctuaries in India that offer a thrilling water safari for adventure junkies, who seek an unconventional jungle experience.
1. Kabini Forest In Karnataka
Kabini Forest, situated around 200 km from Bangalore offers a unique water safari ride in the Kabini river. The boat safari on the Kabini river is famous as one can spot the largest congregation of Asian elephants here. Apart from elephants, marsh crocodiles, purple herons, egrets, gaurs and smooth-coated otters are other visitors to the river. Go on a 2-hour boat ride and explore the thickets of the dense forest that has a mysterious aura to it.
2. Sunderbans National Park In West Bengal
The largest mangrove forest in the world, Sunderbans is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, spread across 54 islands and 2 countries. West Bengal is home to the Sunderbans National Park, the habitat of the Royal Bengal Tiger. When in Sunderbans, go on an extensive water safari that lasts for four days. Commencing from Khulna, a small town in Bangladesh, the boat takes you across narrow tide channels, where you can come across jellyfish, starfish, prawn seeds, monitor lizard and more. The months from October to Februrary is the best time to go on a river safari.
3. Periyar National Park In Kerala
The next time you visit Kerala, go on a boat safari at the Periyar Lake in the Periyar National Park. The lake is known for its unique aqua ecosystem that attracts eager tourists from across the country. Wildlife lovers can spot animals like gaurs, sambars and wild boars in their most natural habitat. If you’re lucky, you can also say hello to the Smooth Indian Otter. The 2-hour boating at Periyar Lake is a quiet, adventurous safari that will pique wildlife enthusiasts in you.
4. Zuari River In Goa
A trip to Goa would usually mean going beach hopping, gorging on local cuisine and partying at chilled shacks. But we say Goa has a unique adventure that’s quite unexplored. And that’s taking a boat safari along the River Zuari. This water safari is a super exciting one where you can spot endangered species like the Collared Kingfisher and Ospreys. The mangrove-lined canal of Cumbhar jua Canal is often frequented by rare bird species like Greater Crested Terns, Bellied Sea Eagle and marsh crocodiles.
5. Chambal Wildlife Sanctuary In Madhya Pradesh
Chambal Wildlife Sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh offers boat safaris to tourists who wish to explore the rugged terrain up close. Home to endangered dolphins, marsh crocodiles, turtles and otters, this sanctuary also boasts 316 specifies of birds. So, one of the best ways of bird watching is by going on a river safari. This exhilarating river safari will also help visitors catch a glimpse of large nesting colonies of migratory birds like the Lapwings, Small Pratincole and Indian Skimmer.
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So, travel enthusiasts, these are some of the wildlife sanctuaries and national parks that offer exciting boat safaris to spot rare species of flora and fauna.