Karnala Bird Sanctuary is a major attraction to the visitors of Mumbai, Thane and other nearby towns. About one hundred thousand local tourists visit the sanctuary every year. Karnala is a paradise for bird watchers. One can also visit Nature Interpretation Centre and trek down to famous Karnala Fort located amidst sanctuary.
Karnala Pinnacle offers refuge to endangered birds like the peregrine falcon, king vulture and the crested serpent eagle. The four-horned antelope, wild boar, common langur, African monkeys and the muntjak or barking deer are amongst the commonly seen wildlife, while the leopard is spotted rarely.
Apart from being a place of interest to the naturalist, Karnala is redolent of martial history. Karnala Fort or the 'Funnel Hill' as it is called, stands 475 metres high. Its command of the high road between Bhorghat and the rivers of Panvel and Apta, must have from the earliest time, made Karnala a place of strategic importance. Two gateways one at the foot and the other at the top of the rock-hewn steps lead to a dual gateway with a chamber in between. There are two inscriptions in the Fort, one in Marathi and the other in Persian. The Fort has a chequered history of having passed through the hands of Muslim, Portuguese and Maratha rulers.
How to Reach Marine Drive
Karnala Bird Sanctuary is 60 km from Mumbai, on the Mumbai-Goa Highway, NH-17. This is a 2-hour drive via Thane Creek and Panvel. Central Railway trains from VT Station stop at Panvel, 12 km from the sanctuary; from here you can catch autorickshaws, taxis and buses. State Transport buses run from Mumbai Central to Karnala. You can hire an Taxi from Mumbai or Pune and shouldn't be very expensive.
From Vashi (New Mumbai) - 32km. (one Way)
From Panvel regular buses and autorickshaws(6 sitters) going towards Pen will drop you at Karnala, but the frequency is very less after 6.00-7.00 PM. The fare is around Rs.10.00.
Adults - Rs.20/- Child - Rs.15/- Parking Two Wheelers - Rs.15/- Four Wheelers - Rs50/-