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Exotic Wildlife Sanctuaries & National Parks
Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary
07 Days 06 Nights

Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary

  • Location :Bhagalpur, Bihar

  • Coverage area :

  • Main attraction : Gangetic dolphins

  • Best time to visit : June and October

  • Nearby excursions : Sultanganj Tourism

  • Nearby cities :Patna

The main dolphin tourism spot in India - Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary

Dolphins are mainly found in water that is at least 1.5-2.4 metres in depth. They are usually found in water where there is ample fish to sustain their living. Gangetic dolphins have been known to prefer deep water with adjoining shallow water and they are most commonly spotted where there is little or no current. Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary is famous for Gangetic dolphins. The Sanctuary was established to protect the endangered Gangetic dolphins and is one-of-its-kind in the entire Asia. Stretching from Sultanganj to Kahalgaon, the sanctuary is about 50km long and as the name suggests is famous particularly for the Gangetic Dolphins. In fact, it is one of the few dolphin tourism spots in the country.

The sanctuary is located in

Climatic conditions

This Dolphin Sanctuary experiences warm weather during the summers and the temperature is at an average of 32 degree Celsius during the month of May. It is recorded to be the hottest month in the year. Winters are slightly cooler and definitely comfortable to roam about. The average temperature around the day remains around 17 degree Centigrade. July brings in a change in the weather and also a rise in water level as the area receives an average of 249 millimeters of rainfall.

Best time to visitVikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary

The sanctuary remains open throughout the year but the ideal time is between June and October. Not just for the weather but most number of dolphins can be spotted at this time along with the other types of marine life and birds.

Animals that inhabit the sanctuary

There is plenty of wildlife in Vikramshila Sanctuary apart from Gangetic dolphins. The other known species include Gharial, Indian Smooth Coated Otter and Turtles. Different types of migratory and residential birds can also be spotted in the region along with freshwater shrimps, fish and crustaceans.

Distance of Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary from major cities:

  • Patna, 235 km

  • Kolkata, 408 km

  • Dispur, 688 km

  • Bhubaneswar, 731 km

  • Lucknow, 754 km

  • Nagpur, 1230 km

  • Delhi, 1242 km

  • Rishikesh, 1259 km

  • Chennai, 1951 km

  • Mumbai, 1979 km

How to reach the National park ?

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  • Patna has connecting flights from all across the nation. It is the capital of Bihar and also the closest airport which is located at an approximate distance of 235 kilometers. Taxis and buses connect the place and there are plenty of transfers available from the airport.


Bhagalpur is the nearest railway station to Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary. The entrance to the Sanctuary is around 15km from the railway station and can be easily connected through rail roads.


Located 15 kilometers away from the sanctuary is the closest bus terminal that has bus links from various parts of the neighboring cities in the state as well as interstate connection.

Accommodation facilities

Several hotels and guest houses are available in the close by towns which are reasonably priced and also comfortable. Meals, refreshments and entertainment facilities are available within close proximity.

Latest update

A survey conducted in December 2017 by Vikramshila Biodiversity Research and Education Centre (VBREC), revealed that the number of dolphins in the sanctuary had declined to 154 from 207 in 2015. Experts are still analyzing the exact reasons what led to the decline of the population but the movement of big cargo vessels in the river is most certainly one of the main reasons. In the past few years, dredging activity in the area has increased manifold.


The major reasons what has been a concern for the environmentalists include :

  • Multiple dams and barriers has been created which disrupts the free movement of the dolphins

  • Pollution by fertilizers, pesticides and industrial and domestic effluents are responsible for the death of the aquatic species

  • Killing of the animals for their meat or oil (such as the ones used as catfish bait)

  • Accidental entanglement in fishing nets


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