Time Required : 1 day
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Located at a distance of 5 km from Panjim, Chorao Island is the largest of the 17 islands present in Goa. Boasting of old world charm, dainty cottages and narrow muddy pathways, the island is a slice of heaven tucked away in time. The island has a very prominent Portuguese air about it which reflects in the architecture of its ancient white washed churches, solitary graveyards, picturesque Portuguese villas and dilapidated buildings. Chorao Island is reached through a ferry tours provided by both government and private operators.
The highlight of Chorao island is the very grand and notable Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary that accounts for major tourism boost in the region. Also known as Chodan or Choddnnem, Chorao Island also has a flourishing vegetation of the mangroves forest and boast of a rich wildlife with diverse species of flora and fauna. Besides, the island also holds significant historical importance and is home to a number of Hindu Temples. However, it can only be reached through a ferry or a boat ride from the village of Ribandar as there are no roads leading to the place.
Entry Ticket- INR 50
Guide- INR 1000
Sprawling over 178 hectares of land area, Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is not only the highlight of the island but is also the largest bird sanctuary in all of Goa. The sanctuary is inhabited with over 400 avifauna species, both local and migratory which include osprey, striated heron, red knot, pied avocet, brahmini kite and black bittern etc. Besides, it is infested with the very gorgeous mangrove forests that are a delight to the eyes. You can also spot other aquatic inhabitants here like crocodiles etc. The best time to visit the sanctuary is a few hours before sunset or in the very early morning, when the birds are the most active.