India

Kabini Adventure: Nature Walk with Bird Watching

By Vacation India
4 road Kabini and Nagarhole National Park
On the road to Kabini and Nagarhole National Park. A bright umbrella on a cloudy day amid the trees. © Vivek BR / Shutterstock

Experience beautiful nature near your Kabini resort every morning!

There’s something magical about rising with the sun and seeing your glorious natural surroundings bathed with the new light of the day. The light shimmers and shines across the peaceful ripples on the Kabini River just outside. Join an expert naturalist on a walking tour of the resort’s outer edge to experience how wonderful the natural world can be even through it is close at hand. Starting at 7 AM, this walk follows the Kabini shoreline to popular spots for viewing multiple bird varieties. Another option is to take a quick trip to the Nagarhole Sanctuary up the river to see the other early risers of the animal kingdom.

Common birds to see in the area include the lovely Eurasian Collared Dove pecking about for her breakfast, the Western Reef Egret with its sharp call, the Cormorant, Grey Heron, and Asian Koel if the season and conditions are right. This simple walk just a short distance from the resort will thrill bird watchers with its variety and impressive avian rollcall. There is little to get in the way of your view as the birds drink and search for food in the glass-like waters of the Kabini. The land stretches flat on either side and provides excellent views of the landscape.

indian farmer Kabini and Nagarhole National Park

An Indian farmer in Kabini using oxen to plough the field. © Joe Ravi / Shutterstock


Stroll farther down the side of the river until you reach other early morning risers. Fishermen cast lines out into the sparkling waters while farmers herd cattle down to the water to drink and graze on the nearby grass. In the dry seasons, the Kabini river remains the only good source of fresh water in the area. The land needs rain to nourish the crops and the animals that grow here, and, also, the people who make their home near its banks.
two uniformed school girls nature walk kabini

Two uniformed school girls with pretty braids getting ready for the morning nature walk in Kabini, Southern India. © Barbara Barbour / Shutterstock


Explore the land away from the river to see how the locals live and work every day. You will find small fields of various crops for food and sales such as vegetables, millet, corn, groundnuts, ginger, and sugarcane. One of the more prominent crops is cotton, which grows here abundantly in the rich black soil. Viewing the agricultural plots and the local farmers is like looking back in time. They still use the artisanal methods passed down through the generations rather than new technology and machines. Watching the bullocks pull the plows and heavy rollers used to mill the corn and other grains gives you great appreciation of where the food you eat comes from.

Besides the lovely birds and the intriguing old-time farming practices, the area around the Kabini River is quite diverse and beautiful due to its plant life. The trees that tower overhead include tamarind trees (Tamarindus indica), ancient pipal trees (Ficus religiosa), and great banyan trees (Ficus benghalensis).Various types of bushes, shrubbery, and thorns fill the understory along the road past the farmland. These trees symbolize the entirety of life in this region of India. They are strong, vibrant, and provide life and shelter for many other species of bird and insect.

Indian roller in kabini national park

Indian roller or Blue jay © teekayu / Shutterstock


The experienced naturalist guide who takes you on the morning walk will describe the types of trees as you pass and share how some are 100 to 150 years old. They stand as examples of the serenity and steadfastness of this location. Take a moment to sit and rest beneath their arching branches and talk with a local person for a while. This experience can open up an entire new wealth of knowledge for you. The naturalist guide can translate their local dialect for you.

This is your opportunity to learn and immerse yourself in the culture of Kabini. As about how they farm, their families and children, and what they think about living in this beautiful region of India. As long as you are respectful and polite, you will both walk away better for the experience.

As the leaves of the trees move in the breezes overhead, you can enjoy the tranquility of the scene. Right nearby, however, there are some creatures going about their busy lives. See the wide selection of insects scurrying up and down the trunk and along the branches. Pause to watch a spider spin a silken web. Exotic butterflies flit through the air while beetles much leaves on bushes nearby. You can being to understand the importance of the Bodhi or banyan tree’s symbolism and how the Buddha is said to have sat underneath one to gain enlightenment.

After pausing to marvel at the trees busy with life, continue on past local temples. The local people come together here in the morning to conduct rituals and prayers as a matter of habit for their belief systems. The temple properties are graced with rich Plumeria trees that have yellow and white flowers that smell exceedingly sweet. During the right time of year, these blossoms decorate both the branches and the ground surrounding each tree.

Continue past the temples and reach more farmland on both sides of the road. Watered by rains, and tended by hand and animal labor. they present a peaceful scene in the morning. The last part of your morning jaunt turns back to the resort past a hero stone. On its weathered face is inscribed some long-ago tale of courage and valor. The stone appears to have been in this location for centuries.

The plentiful farmland and these vast trees showcase the best in bountiful life. They are truly magnificent specimens of the ability for one organism to sustain so many more. The nature walk around the Kabini River area focuses on this abundance and purpose in every living thing that you pass. After the trees, birds, and river have taught you everything they can in a short morning walk, your group will stroll back to the resort property for a delicious breakfast.

local man in nature kabni park

A local Indian man doing his daily work with branches on his head during guided Nature walk in Kabini © Juraj Kamenicky / Shutterstock


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