Weather :

Timings : 6:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Time Required : 1-2 hrs

Entry Fee : No entry fee

Salim Ali Lake, Aurangabad Overview

Located in the heart of Aurangabad, standing opposite the Himayat Bagh near Delhi Gate, is the pristine Salim Ali Lake. Also known as the Salim Ali Sarovar, this lake is a beautiful bird-watching spot, nesting a wide variety and number of migratory birds. There is also a well-stocked bird sanctuary at the lake which is a humble abode to a number of local and foreign exotic species of birds. Salim Ali Lake is an ideal place to be visited with family and friends. It is a must-visit for photographers, nature lovers and bird watchers.

The lake has been named after a renowned Ornithologist. There is a 60 feet watchtower at the lake which is a perfect spot to click pictures and revel in the panoramic view of the entire city. The best time to visit Salim Ali Lake would be during dawn when one gets to hear the chirping sounds of the birds in addition to watching the sunrise. Even though the lake lies in the middle of the city, its beauty is not shadowed and the city dwellers are often found relaxing away from their weary and mundane lifestyle.

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Things to Do at Salim Ali Lake

Bird watching - It is an excellent spot for bird watching, filled with the flutter of colourful resident and migratory birds. 
Boating - One can go boating in the shifting calm waters of the lake and admire the lush greenery all around. Boating facilities can be availed when the lake is full, that is during rainy and winter seasons. 
Picnic - One can go for a small picnic on the lakeside and admire the lush foliage site, in the lap of nature. 
Viewpoint and Photography - The watchtower is a perfect point to view the lake and the garden and take some excellent pictures in the natural backdrop. 

Biodiversity

Salim Ali Lake is a biodiversity hotspot with rich surroundings hosting about 16 species of trees, 11 different kinds of shrubs, as much as 8 climbers, 32 terrestrial herbaceous plants, 10 varieties of algae, 12 of aquatic herbs, 16 of aquatic insects, 102 of other insects, molluscs and crustaceans, 9 of fishes, 15 of reptiles, 7 types of rodents and mammals.

The garden adorning the lake is marked by trees, climbers and shrubs and the water body abound in marine life. There are varieties of ducks, doves, coots, moorhens, waterhens and ergates in the area. The activists have protested to shut down the lake for the public for conservation and declare it as a biodiversity hotspot. Efforts are being taken by the government regarding the same. 

History

The history of Salim Ali Lake dates back to the Mughal era. During the rule of Aurangzeb, the area sprawling from the present day Salim Ali Lake to Begumpura was nothing but a large marshy tank. Due to excessive dampness, Aurangzeb had a large section of land reclaimed. The portion in front of his palace was converted to fields and the reclaimed portion of land made into the Mughal Garden, now known as Himayat Bagh. The rest of the land is the lake that we know today.

The site was officially revamped and developed into a public and recreational place in 2014 and named after Dr Salim Ali, the ‘Birdman of India’ who apart from being a legendary ornithologist contributed tonnes for the Indian ecology and made people aware of what bird-watching is. It is because of him that bird watching today is one of the most sought after hobbies. He contributed a lot towards wildlife conservation and performed extensive bird surveys.

How To Reach Salim Ali Lake

Since it is located in the middle of city suburbs, one can commute via buses, autos and taxis. Another good option is the special tourism buses that takes one exploring around the city.

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