Bird Watching Locations in Goa

Did you know that Goa has 5% of the world’s bird species and 50% of the species found in India? Goa is best known for its beaches, parties, and food. But it is also a fantastic destination for bird lovers. The many rivers and lakes, mangrove swamps, and the several national parks and nature reserves are the home of thousands of birds. You have the chance to even spot some rare birds like the Great Pied Hornbill, Darter, Indian Skimmer, and the Long-Billed Vulture. Goa’s state bird is the Flame-Throated Bulbul (Rubigula Gularis).


Where Can You See Birds in Goa

The tropical rainforests and the foothills of the Western Ghats are some of the best places for birding tours. In a week, you have the chance to spot even up to 200-250 bird species here. But do not underestimate the potential of the river and the sea islands. Divar Island on the Mandovi River is an unexplored paradise in Goa. It has beautiful old catholic churches, temples, vintage Portuguese-style houses, and evergreen paddy fields. The southern portion of the island has a large mangrove, which is the home of many birds, bats, and even crocodiles.


The Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary

Did you know that Goa has an exclusive nature reserve only for birds? The Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, which is located next to the Divar Island, is a top spot for bird lovers. It is an estuarine mangrove forest that covers an area of 440 acres. It is named after Salim Ali, an eminent ornithologist.

Some species you can see here are the western reef heron, striated heron, black bittern, jack snipe, pied avocet, and the red knot. You can also see fiddler crabs and mudskippers. You will find both local and migratory birds here. Paved walkways meander through the sanctuary.


Bird Watching Tour on a Luxury Yacht

Many places in Goa are best reached by water. Take the Divar Island and the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, for example. There is only one motorable road that cuts the Divar Island by half but there is no bridge that will take you from the mainland to the island. And the Salim Ali sanctuary is entirely cut off from the rest of the world. The only way to reach them is by water.

Imagine arriving in style on your own luxury yacht for rent in Goa. Sail gently on the Mandovi River to arrive in style. We recommend the Fairline Squadron 42 yacht for your birding trip. It has –

  • Air-conditioned cabins
  • An outdoor seating and dining area
  • A huge front deck with sunbeds and pillows
  • Two bathrooms
  • A kitchen with utensils
  • Music system with subwoofers

You can rent the yacht for 3 hours just for bird watching or for the whole day. You can also include a sunset cruise on the river with drinks and food. It will be a romantic and an unforgettable experience. Opposite to the Divar Island, there is a spot where you can also see crocodiles.


5 Other Places for Bird Watching in Goa

There are many other good places for bird watching in Goa.

  1. Curtorim and Maina Villages – Maina is at the confluence of the Zuari River and the Arabian Sea, which you can easily reach on your luxury yacht for rent. Curtorim is slightly inland. It is close to Margao. They are both considered to be birding heavens.
  2. Carambolim Lake – This is a large lake near Velha or Old Goa. You can see hundreds of birds here sitting on the edges of the lake. Sail on a luxury yacht to reach Old Goa and from there we can arrange a car that will take you to Carambolim.
  3. Moira Backwaters – Moira is east of near Mapusa in the Bardez Taluka of North Goa. The Moira River forms a mangrove here with many small channels meandering through. You can see plenty of birds on both the sides.
  4. Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary – You can see many rare birds in the huge Mollem National Park & the Bhagwan Mahavir sanctuary that extends for 107 square kilometers. You can see the emerald dove, drongo, greater Indian hornbill, Malabar pied hornbill, Malabar grey hornbill, golden oriole, fairy bluebird, paradise flycatcher, ruby-throated yellow bulbul, grey jungle fowl, and many more. There are many species that are endemic in India. The sanctuary also has a rich population of mammals, reptiles, and butterflies. Make sure to visit the famous Dudhsagar Falls.
  5. Grand Island – Grand Island, Ilha Grao, or Ilha Grande is a small rocky island just off the coast of Dabolim airport. It is more popular for snorkeling, diving, and dolphin sighting. But you can see many birds too and bats as well. It is sometimes referred to as Bat Island. A trip to this island on the sea on a luxury yacht is surely going to be a memorable experience.

Best Time for Bird Watching

The best time for bird watching in Goa is the early morning. We can pick you up from your hotel or private villa, drive you to the yacht jetty, and finally transfer you to the bird watching site. Along the way, it will be a thoroughly luxurious experience on a private yacht with food and drinks.

A local bird expert will accompany you and introduce you to the many bird and bat species of Goa. You also have the chance to see bats, crocodiles, and dolphins in many places. Protection Status
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