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Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary in Bharuch

If you are a fan of wildlife and travelling in Bharuch, then this place is a must visit place in Bhrauch.It is situated around 80kms from Bharuch city in Palcchi. This sanctuary has vast terrain with greenery spread all around. It has some thrillingly beautiful landscapes with deep valleys, waterfalls and small water streams. All these streams ends up at the merger of Vindhyan-Satpura hill ranges. This place provides the serenity and calmness needed in today's life with chirping of birds, some fresh air and clamor of the streams flowing around all the time.

History of Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary in Bharuch

The sanctuary was first developed in 1982 in an area of about 150.87 sq. km. which was known as  "Dumkhal Sanctuary". However, in 1987 and 1989, there was an expansion in the area of the sanctuary to about 607.70sq. Km. The sanctuary was then renamed as "Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary". This name came from a old temple of Lord Shiva, which once prevailed in this region.

Overview of Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary

Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary in Bharuch

The sanctuary is spread across the salty water reserve of Gujarat, thus making it easier for the wildlife to survive. A vast number of migratory birds are attracted to this sanctuary due to the presence of wetlands in this sanctuary .

The area of this sanctuary  is quite hilly and this region along the Narmada comprises of  dense forests. The forest area is one of the best and thickest in the state with the Rajpipla hills as its background. It  is covered mainly with Rajpipla trees due to which this sanctuary becomes even more beautiful and scenic. The sanctuary gets its water from the watershed which is also the source of water supply  to the Sardar Sarovar and the Kanjan reservoirs. The thick vegetative ground cover provides boundless greenery and is a habitat for variety of life forms. It also helps in conserving soil and water.

Large flying squirrel is a nocturnal forest animal which is rare and found in this sanctuary. It is a deciduous forest with more than 575 species of flowering plants and 32 species of mammals which includes several species of reptiles, 198 species of birds and myriad of insects. Other vegetation in the area includes the dry deciduous forests, dry bamboo brakes, the dry deciduous scrub, the dry tropical riverine forests, and moist teak forests.

However some distinct animals seen here includes Sloth bear, tortoise , leopard, common mongoose, Indian porcupine, rhesus macaque. Also four-horned antelope, python, chital , barking deer and pangolin can be sited.  Indian civet cat, snakes, lizards etc can be seen rarely in this sanctuary. The sanctuary has the rare distinction of having flying squirrels as well. The sanctuary also has small tribal communities settled in this area and the most conspicuous tribe in this area are the Vasavas.

Reach Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary

Deputy Conservator of Forests
Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary,
Bharuch. Gujarat.
Phone: (O) 02640 220013

There are a number of options available to reach this place. The options available are as follows

By Road

The Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary can be reached by buses which are available from Bharuch, Chanod, Dabhoi and Rajpipla . The nearest bus stand is at a distance of 60kms in  Ankleshwar . The Sardar Sarovar Dam can also be accessed by a private car.

By Rail

The nearest railway station to the Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary is in Ankleshwar located a distance of  60Km from Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary and Bharuch station is about 80Km away from the sanctuary.

By Air

Vadodara is the closest domestic airport to the Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary which is  about 90Km away from Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary in Bharuch and Ahmadabad is the nearest international airport  about 260Km away.

Best Time to Visit Sanctuary

The best time to visit Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary in Bharuch is after the monsoon season from November to March as during the summer, the weather is extremely hot and is not convenient enough to explore the place.  Post monsoon, the weather becomes much cooler and wildlife exploration becomes much easier. Make sure you bring in your cameras and lenses to capture the golden shots. Also please  follow the instructions of not roaming around the area alone and refrain from hunting animals.

Attractions around Shoolpaneshwar

While you are in Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary in Bharuch,  you have few options to explore which includes
  • Interpretation Centre at Kevadia
  • Shoolpaneshwar temple at Rajpipla.
  • Rupgadh Fort
  • Ninai Waterfall
  • Wadia Palace at Rajpipla
  • Sardar Sarovar dam

Accomodation in Shoolpaneshwar Sanctuary in Bharuch

There are options of several guesthouses around the sanctuary where you can stay. They provide good  luxury facilities to the visitors. There are rest houses in  Dediapada, Rajpipla, Sagai and Kewadia as well.

All nature lovers and animal lovers, the Shoolpaneshwar Wildlife Sanctuary is an marvelous place to visit. It will drench you in its beauty and scenery.

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