India is a country having immense possibilities—not just in terms of the progress, but what a traveller might come across. Among these million possibilities in its 29 states and varied landscapes is its unique wildlife population. For those of you who didn’t know, India is home to dolphins, and that too an interesting sub-species of that. Although they are not as commonly visible as deer in any jungle, a glimpse of this amphibian species can bring about a feeling of excitement in wildlife enthusiasts, travellers and photographers alike.
There are very few places in India wherein you can actually come across dolphins—Gangetic Dolphins, Irrawaddy Dolphins and Ocean Dolphins being the most predominant species of them all. Interestingly, dolphins are spread so far and wide under the Indian waters that they have crossed boundaries of states and regions, and are found in different destinations from the northern to the southern part of the country. At the same time, these dolphins have evolved in various shapes and sizes as per the prevailing conditions.
In case you are wondering which are these places in India where you can enjoy dolphin sightings, I have just the list for you to set your travel plans in motion. Here are the best Indian destinations to experience dolphin sightings.
National Chambal Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
The land whose ravines have been the stuff of Paan Singh Tomar and Phoolan Devi’s legends, the National Chambal Sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh now remains as one of the most lesser-known wildlife destinations in the country. I am sure even you didn’t know that this sanctuary lies just a two-hour drive away from Agra and it’s a place where you can catch sightings of not just Gangetic Dolphins, but also alligators, crocodiles, and even migratory birds. The best thing is that you can enjoy these sightings by going on a river safari on the Chambal River. Picture it: when was the last time you saw a dolphin taking a dive right next to you? Or even, when was the last time you had spotted a migratory bird while being on a boat ride? All of these experiences are guaranteed when you visit the National Chambal Sanctuary. Interested to visit this place? Know more about it here.
Chilika Lake, Odisha
Never heard of Chilika Lake? But did you know that it has been recently announced as the single largest habitat of Irrawaddy Dolphins in the world? I understand that this comes across as a huge surprise for you, but I am happy to help you with enough information to ensure that you make a trip to this place at the earliest. Asia’s largest brackish-water lagoon with an estuarine character, Chilika straddles across three districts of Odisha, namely Puri, Khurda and Ganjam. Apart from the dolphins, a boat ride on this lake can bring you in close encounters with close to a million birds, including the migratory species, in the months of winter. Keeping this exclusive experience apart, in case you are looking to spend a night at the beautiful beach town of Puri, make sure you pay a visit to V Resorts D2 Holiday Inn Puri.
North Button Island National Park, Andaman & Nicobar Islands
After you read about this, I am sure you will consider visiting to the amazing Andaman & Nicobar Islands not just for its pristine beaches, azure skies and the breathtaking sea. Established in 1979, the North Button Island National Park is a natural habitat of ocean dolphins. While catching glimpses of this beautiful amphibian species is a near certainty in this place, it is also a good place to enjoy sightings of rare species dugongs and monitor lizards as well. Apart from all this, another huge tourist attraction of this wildlife destination in Andamans is the Cerulean Whale. The best time to visit the North Button Island National Park is from December to March.
Dolphins in Goa? Oh yes! But I am sure you had never even imagined that dolphin sighting as something that you could experience in this beach haven. In case you are wondering where, let us tell you that the Sinquerim Beach, Candolim Beach, Calangute Beach and Palolem Beach are all good places for catching sightings of ocean dolphins. And if you are looking for interesting places to stay in Goa close to beaches, check out some cool resorts that we have in the coolest beach destination of the country.
Cherai Beach, Kerala
I am sure Kerala is yet another destination you never thought would feature in this list. Cherai Beach in Kochi is one of the best places in India to catch sightings of the Humpback Dolphins. The best way to catch sightings of these dolphins at Kerala’s Cherai Beach is to go on a boat ride in the early hours of the morning and wait for one of these aquatic beings to leap out of the water to say hello. Excited to plan your trip to Kerala after reading this? Click here for some exciting deals.