Karnala Bird Sanctuary (Raigad)Take a short break and move towards Panvel, it is a great weekend place especially for kids to experience the wilderness, karnala bird sanctuary is just 12 km from Panvel. It is specifically a bird sanctuary. Dense forest, twisting vines, wild ferns, chirping birds, squirrels, lizards and geckos, flapping butterflies, monkey, and jungle fowl.There are State Transport buses running regularly from Mumbai Central to Karnala.Auto rickshaws and taxis going from Panvel to Pen also drop visitors off at Karnala.
Conservation Site No 4 - Karnala Bird Sanctuary, MaharashtraKarnala is beautiful trail that leads to a peaceful fort a short distance away from Mumbai. Karnala Bird Sanctuary is near Panvel on the old Mumbai - Pune Highway. The sanctuary is divided into two parts, the first is the trail that leads to the Karnala Fort and the second is on the other side of the road which is a dense forest. Both parts are home to beautiful and rare birds as well as wildlife. Make sure you go with a good camera and a lot of patience to spot these birds and run after them to get a good shot. On slightly rarer occasions, spotting of jackals, deer, jungle cats and leopards have been reported. How To Reach- Drive from Mumbai is around 1.5 Hours to 2 Hours. There is no public transport that can take you there.How Many Days - A one day trip is good but it is recommended to go early in the morning or late afternoon to spot birdsWhere To Stay- Stay is not required as such but there are small guests houses around if you like to do an overnight trip and wake up early in the morning for bird photography.
You need special shoes for hiking — and a bit of a special soul as well.Karnala fort history:Karnala fort also called Funnel Hill is a hill fort in Raigad district about 10 km from Panvel city. Currently it is a protected place lying within the Karnala Bird Sanctuary. It was a fort of strategic importance as it overlooked the Bor pass which connected the Konkan coast to the interior of Maharashtra and was the main trade route between these areas.Shivaji conquered it from the Portuguese in 1670 by building breastworks as he advanced. After his death in 1680 it was taken over by Aurangzeb. After this the Mughals occupied it for some time after which it in 1740 with the rise of the Peshwas of Pune it went to them.(https://www.facebook.com/walkingsherpa/)Karnala Site information:Type: Hill fortHeight : 439 m (1,440 ft) ASLOwner Government of IndiaOpen to the public from 06:00 am to 06:00 pmKarnala Bird Sanctuary is great for photographers and nature lovers. It is the house of more than 150 species of birds and butterflies. Very green, clean, and well-maintained. Entry Fee: Rs.20 per Adults, Rs. 15 per Child, Rs. 15 per Two Wheeler & Rs. 50 per Four Wheeler,camera charges are also applicable. There are less birds in the monsoon. There are 2 routes at Karnala. Take the easy one if you wanna find more birds. The difficult one is for trekking all the way to the top.Best time to visit Karnala Fort:If you are well-prepared for the heavy and continuous rains during the monsoon, then this is a fantastic time to visit Karnala fort. The whole bird sanctuary around the fort becomes beautifully green during the monsoon, and if you can manage to get a view from the top of the fort through the clouds, the surrounding area is lush green. Be prepared for heavy rains and a very slippery, muddy trek to the fort - wear shoes with a good grip, and carry a waterproof jacket.If you don't want to visit during the rains, then winter is a good time as well (Nov-mid to Feb). The temperature is not very hot even during the day, and you can get a clear view from the top of the fort.For bird watching : At the onset of rains, one can see the paradise flycatcher, the shama or the magpie robin and the malabar whistling thrush which is one of the most melodious birds. In winter, the migrant birds take over. These include the blue-headed rock-thrush, the bluethroat, the red breasted flycatcher, the ashy minivet, the black headed cuckoo-shrike and a host of others.(https://www.facebook.com/walkingsherpa/)How to Reach Karnala Fort:At a distance of 13 km from Panvel, 53 km from Matheran, 56 km from Lonavala, 66 km from Mumbai Central and 120 km from Pune.From pune : around its 120 Km ,it takes around 2:30 hrs by own vehicle via Bangalore - Mumbai Hwy/Mumbai - Pune Hwy/Mumbai - Pune Expy,this route has tolls.