Roadtrip Alert: Flock To India's Oldest Bird Sanctuary For The Weekend
The Vendanthangal Bird Sanctuary is the oldest bird sanctuary in India, and is the perfect place for a spot of bird-watching and sightseeing over weekends. This protected area, located in the Kancheepuram district, lies at about 50 kilometres from city centre. During peak season, more than 40,000 birds, from all over the world, migrate to this sanctuary.
What Makes It Awesome
Although the sanctuary is the oldest, it is also among one of the smallest, covering an area of about 80 acres. Once a hunting ground, Vedanthangal, which literally translates to the hamlet of the hunter in Tamil, was developed into a sanctuary because of its unique water bodies and ecosystems as early as the 18th century.
This sanctuary sees some of the most exquisite and unique birds from across the globe. Expect to spot birds like blue-winged teals and pintails, and many endangered species, which come here to breed and nest. Spotting birds like the Snakebird, Painted Storks, Dabchick, Sand Piper, Black-Headed Ibis, Black-Winged Stilt and Asian Open Bill, among many, is quite a common site. Birds from lands as far away as Canada, Australia, Siberia and Burma flock here during peak season. You could even find jackals and wild boars here. Even though the bird sanctuary is open throughout the year, November to March is one of the best times for tourists to visit, specifically during the late monsoon weather. Although Chennai city is close to the sanctuary, the closest town is Mahabalipuram. Drive down there or take one of the many buses which go to the sanctuary from the city. Also, don't forget to carry binoculars.
So what are you waiting for? Get your squad together for a road trip this weekend to the Kingdom of Birds, Vedanthangal. The best time to visit is between November and March
Price: INR 25 for entry