Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary

Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary

Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in North-eastern Goa, India covering an area of eight square km. The Sanctuary is just eight sq. km. in area and is located among hills at the junction of three Talukas viz. Ponda, Sanguem and Sattari. The Bondla wildlife sanctuary is approximately 50 Kms from Panaji and 38 Kms from Margao and twenty kms east of Ponda.

The Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary, located 38kms from Margao is the smallest of all the three bird sanctuaries in Goa. It boasts of a Mini Zoo, Deer Safari Park, Rose Gardens, Botanic Gardens and Eco-Tourism Cottages. The best time to visit the sanctuary is from October to December. The sanctuary supports diverse life forms and is noted for its animal and plant biodiversity. It is a popular destination for both travellers and college going kids and is a popular destination for college picnics.

One can encounter a wide range of animals including: Sambar deer, Indian bison, peacocks and numerous species of snakes. One can also find giant Malayam Squirrels in this bird sanctuary.

Bondla provides sanctuary to leopards whoever have been injured after venturing too close to human habitation. Dancing bears and Cobras along with their trainers are also provided sanctuary as the profession of snake charming has now been made illegal by the government. However, elephants and their handlers are more fortunate as tourists often desire to go for elephant rides at the sanctuary. Astonishment at Bondla, are the Hindu carvings. These were explored as shortly as the sanctuary gardens were being constructed. Had it not been for archaeologists, these carvings would have remained in obscurity. They were purposely hidden for defence from Portuguese Catholic Inquisitors.

More than a sanctuary, it is an ideal jungle hotel, a major attraction for institute going children and nature lovers. It is akin to a jungle hotel with tourist cottages available on demand that are operated by the Forest Department. The ordinary animals that live in the sanctuary are the Gaur and the Sambar deer. The sanctuary is closed onto Thursdays. There are tour buses that make a stop at Bondla from Margao and Panaji.