Known for its thick forest cover, Purna Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in Dang district of Gujarat. Just 60 km away from Saputara, the lone hill station in Gujarat, Purna receives the highest average rainfall in the state.
The landscape is completely lush green along with thick forests, interspersed with rivers and small tribal villages leaving visitors absolutely enchanted. The sanctuary gets its name from the Purna river which flows through it.
Notified as a sanctuary in July 1990, the reserved forest covers an area of 160 sq km. It is one of the last remaining patches of moist deciduous forest in Gujarat and marks the global distributional limits for several forest birds. Purna Sanctuary is a part of the Western Ghat in Gujarat.
The leopard is the top predator in the sanctuary and its population continues to increase. Wildbulls, elephants and sloth bears are among the other animals found in the forest. About 700 identified plant species amongst which grasses and broad-leaved plants in high density and diversity are found in the sanctuary.
A very old forest rest house in the center of the sanctuary; is the site for nature education camps. The Vansda National Park along with Purna Wildlife Sanctuary is at the forefront of reviving and preserving wild animals.
Purna and Vansda together are the only protected forest areas in south Gujarat. Both the wildlife parks have pristine forests, which happens to be an extension of the Western Ghats.
The sanctuary is also home to many species of birds. Birds like the grey junglefowl, crimson sunbird, rufous woodpecker are common in the sanctuary.
Around the evenings the music and drums of the Dangi tribes that populate the vicinity begin to reverberate. The rich tribal culture is represented by Bhils, Warlis, Konkanas, Dubdas, and Kolchas. The houses, dresses, jewelry, agriculture, fishing, musical instruments and dances of the tribals are worth watching.
There aren’t many accommodation options at the sanctuary. The Mahal Eco Campsite offers limited rooms. So it is better to look for accommodations at Saputara as it has many hotels, cottages and log huts.
There are no places to eat in the sanctuary. It is advisable to carry food. Saputara has restaurants that offer good north Indian food, standard Punjabi and Chinese food and also south Indian options.
The best time to visit the sanctuary is post monsoon to winter (November to March).
BEST TIME TO VISIT SAPUTARA
The average minimum and maximum temperature of Saputara is as given below. The best time to visit Saputara is also specified.