August 24, 2020 By Swapnil Suryawanshi

Sanjay Gandhi National Park is a 87 km² protected area in Mumbai, Maharashtra State in India. It was established in 1996 with headquarters at Borivali. It is notable as one of the major national parks existing within a metropolis limit and is one of the most visited parks in the world. 

Address: Western Express Hwy, Borivali East, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400066Area: 87 km²Established: 1996

Entrance of Sanjay Gandhi National Park.JPG

Main gate of the park

The Sanjay Gandhi National Park area has a long written history dating back to the 4th century BCE. In ancient India, Sopara and Kalyan were two ports in the vicinity that traded with ancient civilisations such as Greece and Mesopotamia. The 45 km (28 mi) land route between these two ports was partially through this forest.

The Kanheri Caves in the centre of the park were an important Buddhist learning centre and pilgrimage site sculpted by Buddhist monks between the 9th and the 1st centuries BCE. They were chiselled out of a massive basaltic rock outcropping.

Geography :

The park occupies most of the northern suburbs of Mumbai. To the west lie the suburbs of GoregaonMaladKandivaliBorivali and Dahisar. To the east lie the suburbs of Bhandup and Mulund. To the south lies the Aarey Milk Colony and the university campus of IIT Bombay. The northern reaches of this forest lie in Thane city. The park and these areas surrounding it, except Thane city are all part of Mumbai. It is the only protected forest located within the limits of a city.

Leopard in mini zoo at SGNP


Monkeys in SGNPChital (or spotted deer) at SGNPLeopard in mini zoo at SGNP

The forest cover in the park helps provide the ideal habitat for many wild animals. Chital (or spotted deer), rhesus macaque and bonnet macaque are some of the wild mammals often spotted inside the park. Other large mammals found in the park include black-naped or Indian haremuntjac (barking deer), porcupineAsian palm civetchevrotain

7-metre-tall Buddha statue at entrance to the largest Kanheri cave