(Last Updated on : 11/06/2014)
Malvan Marine Sanctuary, located in the Malvan
Taluka of Sindhudurg district
in the Indian state Maharashtra
, is the refuge to a rich assemblage of coral and marine life. It is the only marine sanctuary of the state. It was declared as a wildlife sanctuary on 13th April 1987. The spectacular coast of Malvan adorned with golden sands and Casuarinas
is a visual treat. The place also offers a delightful experience of watching the traditional life of fishermen. The sanctuary area also hosts the famed Sindhdurg fort constructed by Shivaji
, the Emperor of Maratha Empire
Geography of Malvan Marine Sanctuary
Malvan Marine Sanctuary encompasses an area of 29.22 square kilometres. The core zone covers an area of 3.182 square kilometres whereas the buffer zone consists of 25.94 square kilometres. Padamged Island and Sindhudurg fort along with other submerged rocky structures are included in the core zone. The north eastern border of the buffer zone is located at a distance of 50 metres from the seashore near Malvan port. Towards the east of the sanctuary, there is a semi-circular sandy beach which lies parallel to the shore of Malvan. The southern part of the sanctuary is near Mandel rock while its western end touches the Malvan rock.
Flora and Fauna of Malvan Marine Sanctuary
Malvan Marine Sanctuary exhibits a great diversity of flora and fauna. In fact Malvan is considered to be the biologically richest coastal regions of Maharashtra. The main flora of the sanctuary includes mangrove
vegetation. The marine flora and fauna of the place comprise Seaweed, Corals
Oyster, Polychaetes, Molluscs, Sea Anemones
, Egrets, Plovers, Black- Headed Gulls and many more. More than 30 species and sub species of fishes dwell in the sanctuary in various water bodies. Prominent commercial varieties include Mystus seenghala, Tor putitora, Labeo calbasu, Labeo dero, Labeo rohita
and others. The terrestrial region around the sanctuary shelters animals like Nilgai
, Wild Boar
, Barking Deer
, Sambars etc. Migratory wetland birds form one of the major attractions of the sanctuary which arrive during winters from Siberian lands. In the lake between Pongdam
and Shahnahar barrage, the ducks swimming in the swamps create a mesmerizing view.
The sanctuary can be visited all round the year to experience the vibrant nature. The nearest airport to reach Malvan Marine Sanctuary is situated at Goa
, at a distance of 145 kilometres. Kudal, 28 kilometres away, serves as the nearest railway station. From cities like Mumbai
, government and private buses can also be availed. Rest houses in the sanctuary provide comfortable accommodation to the visitors. Nearby tourist attractions of the place include magnificent golden sand beaches of Vengurala
and Tondavali. Scrumptious aquatic food can also be savoured at Malvan Marine Sanctuary.