Weather :

Timings : Monday to Sunday: 6:00 AM - 5:30 PM

Entry Fee : INR 50 per Person 
INR 200 per Camera 
INR 500 for Car Parking

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Thol Bird Sanctuary, Vadodara Overview

Thol Bird Sanctuary is an ecologically rich bird reserve located on Thol lake in the Mehsana district of Gujarat. It is nestled amidst dense deciduous vegetation and is one of the most popular places for bird-viewing in the state. The sanctuary welcomes vast varieties of endemic as well as migratory birds such as pelicans, flamingoes and mallards, which inhabit the area every year. The Thol lake augments the serenity of the sanctuary, making it a hotspot for nature lovers.

Declared a sanctuary in 1988, the lake is teeming with biodiversity. It is home to over 150 different species of birds, a mixed flora of aquatic and marshy plants and a few mammalian varieties as well. Interestingly, the Sanctuary was initially established as a shallow water reservoir with a catchment area of about 38,000 acres. The lake has an enormous storage capacity of 84 million cubic meters, spreading over 700 acres of land. It is present in close proximity to the beautiful Thol village which tourists can visit with help of local guides, to experience the rural culture of Gujarat.

Places to Visit in and Around Thol Bird Sanctuary

1. Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kalupur

Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kalupur
A heritage site of great cultural significance, the Shree Swaminarayan Mandir is located in the Kalupur district of Ahmedabad. It is the first temple of the Swaminarayan Sampraday, a hindu sect. The t (Read More)emple is rife with history dating back to the colonial rule and is a stunning example of hindu architecture. The breathtaking carvings of teak and sparkling, aesthetically pleasing colours on the walls of the temple, attracts tourists in great numbers.

2. Shree Camp Hanuman Mandir

Shree Camp Hanuman Mandir
This famous Hanuman temple acquired this name owing to the fact that it is located near a CRPF Army camp nearby. It regularly sees thousands of devotees who visit the temple to acquire the auspicious (Read More)“Raksha Kavaj” from the local priest. The surrounding areas of the temple are concealed from the noisy traffic as there is no room for vehicles to reach the same.

3. Gujarat Science City

Gujarat Science City
The Gujarat Science center is a major tourist attraction built with the premise of drawing more students towards science and technology. The center is home to various entertaining attractions like Ene (Read More)rgy Park, Hall of Science and an IMAX theatre. It also provides residential facilities for students striving in the field of science.

4. Dharoi Dam

Dharoi Dam
The Dharoi Dam is located along the Sabarmati river in the Mehsana district. Constructed in 1978, the dam frequented by tourists looking for a serene picnic spot. What’s more is that there are a (Read More)bsolutely no entry fees to be paid, one can enjoy the beautiful scenes around for free.

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Biodiversity at Thol Bird Sanctuary

The sanctuary provides an excellent habitat for the rich wildlife breeding in it. Out of all the birds, the Sarus Cranes, the tallest of all flying birds are found here in large numbers. Other species include The Indian Skimmer, Dalmatian Pelicans, Bulbuls, Sandpipers and Herons. The vegetation of the area too, is immensely diverse including plants like Acacia Nilotica, A. leucophloea, Zizyphus, Azadirachta indica, and Ficus sp. Wild animals like Bluebulls, Jackals and Blackbucks can, too, be spotted in the area.

History of Thol Bird Sanctuary

The Thol lake was declared as the Thol Bird Sanctuary in 1988. It was built under the leadership of Sayajirao Gayakwad, the then ruler of Baroda. The initial use of the artificial lake was as a water tank, for the purpose of irrigation by the farmers. Today, the sanctuary is maintained by the Forest and Irrigation departments of Gujarat and soon going to be named an Eco-Sensitive Zone as per the Environment Protection Act of 1986.

Things to do at Thol Bird Sanctuary

1. Excursions along the lake: Most tourists love casually strolling around the premises of the sanctuary. One needs to keep their cameras handy, as several exotic varieties of birds can be spotted along the way making this spot especially popular amongst nature lovers and professional photographers. 

2. Exploring Thol Village: Sauntering around the lake one can spend time exploring the nearby village of Thol. There are locals present who can help guide visitors along the way so they don’t get lost. One can even savor Chai and Bhajiya from the local stalls and revel in the rural vibes of Gujarat. 

3. Enjoying Sunrises and Sunsets: Early mornings are ideal for anyone looking to reap maximum pleasure from their trip to the sanctuary. The lake is brimming with birds and the gorgeous sunrise is a spectacle to behold. The sunsets at the sanctuary, come dusk, are just as serene, as the sky is tinted with shades of orange. 

Thol Lake

Best Time to Visit Thol Bird Sanctuary

The best time to visit Thol is from November to February. The temperatures in winter drop to about 8 degrees celsius and the lake sees a massive influx of migratory birds, flocking in to breed around the lake.

How to Reach Thol Bird Sanctuary

By Air
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International airport is the nearest airport located about 40 km away, in the city of Ahmedabad. 

By Rail 
The Maninagar railway station is the closest railway station, connecting Thol to the adjoining cities. 

By Road
One can make use of the excellent transport facilities available in Ahmedabad including private taxis, buses etc. to reach the Maninagar bus terminus in Thol.

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