Global BirdFair 2022 will feature Antara Cruises’ – ‘Secrets of the Sundarbans’
Kolkata: Renowned wildlife authority and author of the must-have books – ‘A Birdwatcher’s Guide to India’ and ‘Mammals of the Indian Subcontinent’, Raj Singh was invited to speak on ‘The Secrets of Sundarbans’ at Global BirdFair 2022, scheduled for will take place at Rutland Showground, UK this month.
As a wildlife expert and a pioneer in the Indian river cruise industry, Singh has showcased India’s avian narrative on numerous national and international platforms. He also organized river trips in the Sunderbans to better showcase the abundance and variety of flora and fauna.
At the fair, Singh represents the Indian subcontinent as a guest speaker from the region and will share his in-depth knowledge of the birdwatching ecosystem in the Sundarbans. The national park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest mangrove forest in the world. Besides presenting the exquisite wilderness offerings for wildlife lovers; conservation efforts and challenges will also be highlighted.
“As the title suggests, the Sundarbans is a hidden and secret haven of nature. This delta region, spread over 40,000 km2 of protected biosphere reserve – the Sundarbans National Park, the Tiger Reserve and many small hamlets – has the most unique ecosystem; providing the perfect habitat for rich mangrove jungles, abundant birdlife, reptiles, dolphins and other mammals.We have over 300 species of birds, 40 mammals and 35 species of reptiles. It is quite common to spot at least 6 of the 8 species of kingfishers, black-necked stork, spoon-billed sandpiper and more. I have endeavored to highlight the gems of this treasure – with the Rutland Global BirdFair being a suitable platform to connect with birdwatching enthusiasts around the world.The Sundarbans are one of the main focuses of Antara Cruises’ 2022-2024 itineraries where every detail of sailing and experiencing is meticulous ment planned, highlighting the conservation efforts of local villagers, NGOs and authorities to maintain the sanctity of nature here.
Singh is the founding chairman of Antara Luxury River Cruises which cruises along the Ganges and Brahmaputra, among 25 other rivers across 5 states and 2 countries.
Elaborating on these exclusive crossings of the Sundarbans, Singh added, “Antara offers rejuvenating river journeys of joy and transformation that change perspectives of people and places. Embarking in Kolkata, the cruise will explore the Sundarbans Delta, also showcasing the delta’s traditional culture and art. With resident naturalists on board, passengers will enjoy biodiversity interactions as well as guided excursions into this unique ecosystem. Anchoring at various locations, guests will climb different watchtowers to observe endangered crocodiles, terrapins and many species of migratory birds, wild boar, axis deer and other mammals. While cruising the cruising coves, guests will keep a keen eye out for Irrawaddy dolphins and other marine life; enjoy village walks and interactions with locals engaged in traditional agriculture; and witness the traditional Bon Bibi drama of South Bengal. There will be freshly caught seafood and locally inspired dishes on the menu, providing guests with an all-encompassing immersive experience.
Currently, two of Antara Cruises’ luxury boutique ships, built in a colonial architectural style – Ganges Voyageur I and Ganges Voyageur II, cruise the Sundarbans on smaller and larger itineraries that also include heritage, wildlife, gastronomy and rich mythologies and monuments across Bengal in the mangroves. Desiring to enhance and protect the thriving wilderness found in
the delta, four exclusive Sundarbans routes have been scheduled this sailing season – a first in the region’s tourism landscape. All sailings are carried out in a sustainable manner with great responsibility towards the environment and support for the well-being of local communities through various initiatives.
The first exclusive sailing in the Sundarbans this coming season is scheduled from October 2022.