Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam

Assam is a state that is rich in exceptional culture, tradition, flora and fauna. Different rare varieties of animals, birds and plants give Assam attractive charm that is adored by tourists or any nature lover. Government of Assam controls several natural or wild life sanctuaries that indeed have declaration as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. Among many wild life sanctuaries Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary is the comparatively smaller sanctuary in its area coverage. It situates in Morigaon district in Assam and very nearest, about 40km by road to Guwahati. Though small in the area, it is one of the highly dense one horn Indian rhino breeding area. The increased population of Indian rhinos in this smaller area made the authorities to translocate the Rhinos to the Manas Wild life sanctuary in the year 2008, 2010 and 2011. According to the official accounts there sanctuary falls in 38.8km Sq where about 15- 16 km Sq are Rhino breeding area in natural habitat.  It was declared as Reserve Forest in the year 1971 and as Wildlife sanctuary in 1987. Pobitora also serve as a temporary hangout for the visitors to Kaziranga National park. Apart from rhinos other species seen are Jackal, Asian elephant, wild buffalo, wild boar, leopard, barking deer and bird varieties including migratory birds. According to the survey conducted in 2012, the species of birds found the sanctuary are 7000 birds including about 100 cranes, 5000 migratory birds and other 375 different species of birds.

Being a swamp marshy land it includes different varieties of reptiles and amphibians. It is covered by villages and farmlands where most of the villagers are farmers depending their lively hood in farming. Some of the natives are employed as official guides to the visitors. Unofficial local guides are also available in the area. Choice of guides purely depends on the visitors.

Visitors to this sanctuary have limited yet exciting opportunities of ride and exploration of wild animals. Jeep ride, elephant ride and walking are the best ways to enjoy the beauty of the sanctuary. Near the Haduk hanging bridge space are provided as picnic spots for children. Among the rides the trained elephant rides are the best option to watch the guaranteed rhino sights. The sound of the motors or jeep in low level might disturb the rhinos. An elephant ride can bring the visitors closer to the rhinos without creating any disturbance to them. Herd of rhinos of more than 10-15 numbers can be watched closely on an elephant ride. The jeep ride is scheduled between 7 am and 3 pm and the elephant ride is at 6.30 am, 7.30 am and 2.30 pm. The elephant ride is fixed at Rs 550 per person where four people can be accommodated on one tamed elephant with mahout and 1350 for jeep ride for one hour and additional trip hours is also available with 50% extra cost of the normal jeep ride. The walk through the hanging bridge in the mahout village is a memorable experience for any visitor who chooses the elephant ride. Pre booking ride before reaching the Sanctuary is not necessary as the visitors can book the ride of their choice at their arrival. During weekends and holidays the sanctuary is crowded with tourists as Pobitora has become one of the notable tourist spots in India and on these days immediate booking of the rides need to be done at the time of arrival. The days are shorter in this region as the sun sets earlier giving an impact of 7pm at 5pm.

Earlier the place of stay in the resort was Kunki resort run by the Assam tourism department but due to the recent shut down of this resort by the end of 2012 was Hotel Maibang. It has comfortable 3 bathroom attached bedrooms and the facility of home cooked food is also available as per the requirement of the visitors.

The nature and the natural habitat of this sanctuary give a pleasurable experience to any visitor.