Padamdungari Ecotourism Centre is the biggest campsite of Gujarat forest department and first Single use Plastic Free campsite in the state and we take pride in ensuring that it remains single use plastic free and its visitors enjoy nature and its biodiversity while they visit this campsite.
As visitors enter the campsite, the central path leads one through the campsite, from the Prakruti Anubhuti Kendra (interpretation center) at the beginning to the Arogya Van at the back. Near the entrance, the Prakruti Anubhiti Kendra has been developed with a vision to educate the visitors about the forests and the biodiversity of Vyara Division. It showcases models and information boards of native wildlife and culture. It also displays the work and plans of the forest department at Vyara Division.
Following the road, one comes across various accommodations such as cottages, prefabricated huts. The prefabricated huts offer a cozy little place to stay in the jungle while the cottages are just as comfortable with a few more facilities. The dormitories are also present which allow for group accommodations. The canteen serves local tribal food which not only gives the visitors a taste of local culture but also employs and empowers local women.
Padamdungari Ecotourism Center also houses a Cactus House, an Orchid House and Insectarium. The Cactus House showcases a variety of cacti and succulents whereas the Orchid House sports a broad collection of native as well as exotic orchid species. The Orchid House, in particular, is the best place to observe the indigenous orchids of Vyara Division mounted, hung or potted all around – even some ground orchids.
The Ecotourism Center has a Walk-in Insectarium where visitors can roam around inside the Insectarium to see beautiful butterflies, dragonflies, beetles, damselflies, mantises, fireflies and so much more really up close. This kind of immersive experience makes visitors re-evaluate the role of insects in nature and makes them leave with a newfound appreciation for these critters.
The Arogya Van near the back of the campsite offers a chance to learn about various medicinal plants. The Arogya Van has been meticulously planted with selected plants to ensure the maximum biodiversity, practically turning it into a Biodiversity Park. The Pollinator friendly flora here attracts butterflies, bees, beetles and wasps from all around and it really is a treat to observe them about their lives. The campsite is planted with few of the rarest trees. Furthermore, it was made sure that no single species dominates the area – meaning the trees here were selected in a way that ensures the maximum number of different species. Which means one doesn’t need to wander far into the forests to find interesting trees; the tree walk can be done inside the campus itself. This, however, doesn’t mean the forests have to remain a mystery. Padamdungari Ecotourism Center also offers guided and fully equipped tours in surrounding forests on request. This includes bird watching, tree spotting, stargazing, reptiles trails, butterfly watch and more. The campsite has a wide array of adventure activities available such as Zipline, Archery and Tree Walking.