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Hornbills are spectacular birds and hard to miss. With their large, yellow coloured beaks, hornbills are easy to spot and are a bird photographer’s delight. Dandeli in Karnataka is the most popular place to spot hornbills.
There are about 55 different varieties of hornbills around the world. Besides India’s Western Ghats region, hornbills are also seen in Africa, Philippines etc. India is home to about 9 species of hornbills. Most common ones spotted in Dandeli are the Malabar Pied Hornbill, Malabar Grey Hornbill and Indian Grey Hornbill.
Where to spot Hornbills in Dandeli:
Spotting Hornbills requires lots of patience, a bit of luck and a bit of local knowledge. Old Magazine House at Ganeshgudi and Kali Adventure Camp at Dandeli, both operated by Jungle Lodges & Resorts Ltd conducts treks/bird watching walks during which the probability of spotting a hornbill is high. Staying in a homestay and exploring around with help from your host will also give you a high chance of spotting hornbills.
Haliyal is a town in Uttara Kannada popular for Mallikarjuna Temple and fort, Sri Rama, Dattatreya, Maruti, Pete Basaveshwara and Venkataramana Temples, six mosques, three Durgahs, a Roman Catholic Church and the tomb of Haider Shah. Haliyal is 50 kms from Hubballi and 150 kms from Karwar.
The most awaited hornbill festival is held in February. The festival includes birding walks and many more exciting activities, especially for bird watchers and enthusiasts. Visit events list of MyEcoTrip.com, which gives you the list of all festivals and the dates along with activities and accommodation options.
Dandeli (35 kms), Anshi National Park-Kali Tiger Reserve (79 kms), Sathodi Falls (44 kms), Attiveri Bird Sanctuary (66 kms), Sonda (52 kms) and Syntheri Rocks (55 kms) are some of the interesting places in the region worth visiting along with Lalguli Falls.
How to reach Dandeli:
Dandeli is 460 kms from Bengaluru. Hubballi Airport is the closest airport (65 kms). Londa, Alnavar is the nearest railway station (35 kms). One can reach Hubballi/Alnavar by flight, road or rail and taxi can be availed to visit Dandeli.