An ideal day trip from Bangalore to visit the largest bird sanctuary in Karnataka. A great place to see a variety of migratory birds and marsh crocodiles.
On our drive to Mysore, we were reminiscing about our trip to the Ranganthittu bird sanctuary, home to crocs and migratory birds. Listening in on our conversation, our son coaxed us to make a stop at the sanctuary; he wanted to be part of the excitement too, being merely exposed to crocs footwear. We happily agreed and all we had to do was take a small detour to satisfy his newfound curiosity. We were glad that we took the decision, since it turned out to be great fun for all of us!
Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary
Ranganthittu, a peaceful and unspoiled spot on the banks of River Cauvery is the largest bird sanctuary in Karnataka. Home to migratory birds, it is an acclaimed nesting place for birds and a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and shutterbugs. The travel time from Bangalore is about 2.5 hours, even if you do take a short break en route. Plan your day trip such that you leave early to avoid any traffic hiccups while exiting Bangalore.
On the way we stopped at Kamat restaurant on the Bangalore-Mysore highway to relish their famous “Kadubu (steamed idlis wrapped in plantain leaves)“. A clean and hygienic place, Kamat serves fresh and tasty food. The restrooms are well maintained and clean. A convenience store next to the restaurant stocks up on mineral water and snacks.
From Bangalore it’s a great destination for a day trip and an opportunity for the little nature enthusiast to see various species of migratory birds like darters, partridge, heron, egret, white ibis, little cormorants, and marsh crocodiles.
We visited Rangantittu in July but it is recommended to visit the sanctuary between June and October.
Why we liked it
What a sanctuary! Set amid serene surroundings – ponds adorned with lotus, lush green parks, and guided path ways, it was quite a pleasant walk. For a closer look at the crocodiles and migratory birds, we decided to take a guided boat tour. We bought tickets and waited for some time until the boat was fully occupied. We were provided life jackets and given a safety briefing, “Do not put your hands in the water, you don’t want to get bitten by the crocs, they are not very friendly!”
The boat ride was fun. The boatman was a well-informed guide and shared insights about the migratory birds and the crocs. My son was absolutely thrilled to see the crocs so close and also get an up close view of birds of different colors, size and shapes. We spotted pelicans, kingfisher, painted storks, black ibis, and crocs sunbathing on the rocks and special sighting of a 100-year-old croc as well. One of the crocs had his mouth wide open and looked like a statue. We were told that because they are cold blooded, they derive their body temperature from the surrounding air and can stay still for a long time.
- Entry Charge: Rs 50 for adults and Rs 25 for kids
- Boat Ride: Rs 50 for adults and Rs 25 for kids
- Carry a floppy hat or an umbrella especially for the kids
- Best time to visit the park is between 9.00 am – 11.00 am or early evenings, especially during the summer months
- Carry snacks and water with you as there is only one restaurant that serves basic food.
- Whether you’re a shutterbug or not, take a good camera, as there are several photo opportunities. A good pair of binoculars would be an added advantage.
- While driving from Bangalore, there are a lot of places to stop for lunch. We liked the Indraprastha restaurant in particular. There are other choices around this complex – KFC and Cafe Coffee Day. An adjoining toy store sells wooden toys made in Channapatna, we always shop here as my son and I love the toys.
Do visit this magnificent sanctuary. If you’ve been to a similar place, share your experience with us here, we would love to hear from you!