Bhagwan Mahavir Sanctuary, Molem


With an area of 240 square kilometres, this sanctuary is Goa's largest wildlife preserve. Located close to the Molem village at the foot of the Western Ghats, this sanctuary lies on the eastern border of the state. It is 53 kilometres away from the state capital, Panaji. The sanctuary is situated amidst nature's splendour; evergreen forests and deciduous trees encompass this preserve.
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In the heart of the sanctuary is the Molem National Park. Herds of deer and gaurs (Indian bison), clusters of monkeys, Malayan giant squirrels, cobras and pythons are a common sight. And if you get lucky, you might even spot elephants and tigers. The sanctuary is also home to a few black panthers but spotting them is not an easy task. The best time to visit the sanctuary is either early in the morning or late in the evening.

The forest department has made arrangements for jeeps that take you on your excursion through the sanctuary. To avail of this facility, do contact the Range Forest Officer. But to be able to get a glimpse of the wildlife, you might have to spend a couple of days here.

The closest accommodation available is the Tourist Complex that is run by the Goa Tourism Development Corporation. Not a very fancy place but clean and comfortable enough to spend a few days. And while you are there, do take the time out to visit the Dudhsagar waterfalls close by. The13th century Mahadev Temple at Tambdi,Surla, just 12 kilometres away, is worth visiting.