Maharana Pratap Sagar Sanctuary is a famous sanctuary in the beautiful Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. It is one of the few lake sanctuaries in India. It is also known as the national wetland which was the result of a dam built over the River Beas in 1975. The area was declared as wildlife sanctuary in the year 1983.
Maharana Pratap Sagar
Maharana Pratap Sagar Sanctuary is perched in the beautiful snow clad mountains of the Himalayas. Himachal Pradesh is blessed with consummate natural beauty which attracts thousands of tourists from different parts of the world throughout the year. The Sanctuary has contributed a lot in elevating the status of the state as a tourist attraction. Every year, thousands of birds from far off places like Siberia flock in the Sanctuary during winter and thus the place becomes a paragon for bird watching. The geological structure of the place is quite characteristic and the sanctuary enjoys a complete ecosystem replete with valuable flora and fauna. The forests here offer a safe habitat to the various species of animals.
What is special here?
The sanctuary is nestled amidst the thick Alpine Forests and the snow clad mountain peaks form a grand backdrop here. The place has always been a source of inspiration to a number of writers, poets, painters and artists. The lake near the Sanctuary is a famous spot on account of its pristine beauty. You can explore the sprawling existence of greenery and scenery and can get a delightful glimpse of the migratory Siberian ducks. The swamp area between Shahnahar Barrage and Pong Dam is the most favorite place for the birds flocked from all over. The sanctuary offers a picturesque and fascinating location as it is nestled amidst the lush green valleys and the snowy Dhauladhar Range of the Himalayas in the background.
The Ramsar Island amidst the Lake in Maharana Pratap Sagar Sanctuary too is a sheer beauty. You find the rich and the rare variety of the Himalayan flora and fauna here on the island and you find yourself in an altogether different world. This island is the home of Cheetals and the Black Buck. You can also get to see Pintails, Surkhab, Cranes and other variety of water birds in this area.
Main Attraction: Birds
Maharana Pratap Sagar Sanctuary which grew around a lake is actually a reservoir. It plays host to over 200 species belonging to 54 families of avian army. To name a few important ones, Black-headed gulls, plovers, terns, Red neck grebes, water-fowl egrets and ducks can be mentioned. However it is also a safe habitat for barking deer, leopards and wild boars.
The shallow water level of the lake makes boating possible and a pleasure here. This is the destination where you can also indulge in some exciting water sports.
How to Reach?
- By Air: The nearest airport from the sanctuary is Gaggal Airport.
- By Rail: The nearest railhead from here is Mukerian.
- By Road: Good network of roads connects the Sanctuary to all the important places in Himachal Pradesh. Regular buses to the sanctuary are available from many points here. You can also hire private vehicles and reach the sanctuary with ease.
When you set out on your "Mission Exploration of India", forget you not the Maharana Pratap sagar Wildlife Sanctuary. It will be an exhilarating tour indeed!