Travel Category

Answer the Call of the Wild with the Best Tiger Safaris in India

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The International Tiger Day on the 29 July is an annual celebration to raise awareness for tiger conservation. And, what better day there could be for learning more about the tigers in India? The Bengal tiger is the most popular species, mainly found in India. Home to nearly 3000 tigers, India is home to almost 70% of the world’s wild tiger count. Spread over 40 different national parks in India, tigers thrive in the country. If you are looking for a tiger safari in India, you ought to choose the best with us. Have the most adventurous and thrilling experience in the Tiger Reserves of India. Here's a guide to the places where you might be lucky enough to spot tigers in the wild.

        1. Bandhavgarh National Park

Central India’s Bandhavgarh National Park has the highest density of tigers. The elusive white tigers were also found here years back. Other animals in the jungle are leopards, sambar, chital, wild boar, wild dog, Indian fox, leopard, bison, blue bull, antelope, nilgai and others.

The ancient Bandhavgarh Fort in the national park hints at its royal past. The ruins of the fortress are now ruled by the tigers and a vantage point to enjoy the view of the sanctuary.

Best Time for Tiger Sighting: October to June but April to June has even better chances. The park remains closed on all Wednesdays.

Safari Timings: 5:30 - 10 AM and 4 - 7 PM

Wildlife resorts in Bandhavgarh: Mahua Kothi, A Taj Safari, The Tiger Den, Kings Lodge, Bandhav Vilas, etc.

Our suggested tours: Tiger Safari, Temples and Tigers, Tiger’s Trail, Tigers of Central India and the Taj Mahal, etc.

        2. Ranthambore National Park

One of the largest tiger sanctuaries in India, Ranthambore National Park has a very high population of tigers, therefore high chances of Sighting tigers. A hunting ground formerly, Ranthambore is a popular tiger reserve. Besides tigers, it is easy to spot jungle cats, Indian fox, crocodiles, leopards, sloth bear, jackals and others.

Ranthambore Fort atop a hill enjoys a scenic view of the jungle. A very interesting resident, the tigress Machli has been the heroine of many wildlife photographers and wildlife enthusiasts. She won lifetime achievement award for being a top tourism attraction and played a grand role in Tiger conservation.

Best Time for Tiger Sighting: October to June is perfect for tiger safaris while April to May is quite popular among wildlife photographers.

Safari Timings: 7 - 10:30 AM and 2:30 - 6 PM

Wildlife resorts in Ranthambore: Nahargarh, Vivanta Sawai Madhopur Lodge, Sher Bagh, The Aman-i-Khas, etc.

Our suggested tours: Golden Triangle with Ranthambore, Royal Rajasthan with Heritage Hotels, India in Style with Ranthambore, etc.

        3. Kanha National Park

The inspiration behind the popular “Jungle Book” of Rudyard Kipling, Kanha National Park is a popular wildlife sanctuary with high chances of tiger sighting. Apart from spotting tigers in the lush meadows, you can find gaur, striped hyena, chinkara, mouse deer, black buck, jackal, porcupine, sambar and others. The wildlife sanctuary in Central India is one of the most popular tiger reserves in India.

Best Time for Tiger Sighting: April to June

Safari Timings: Sunrise to 10 am and from 3:30 pm to sunset

Wildlife resorts in Kanha: Shergarh Resort, Kanha Earth Lodge, Tuli Tiger Resort Kanha, Banjaar Tola, A Taj Safari, etc.

Our suggested tours: Tigers of Central India and Golden Triangle, Tiger Safari, Tiger’s Trail, etc.

        4. Pench National Park

Another treasure in the heart of the country, Pench National Park is a popular haven for tigers. In the lush jungles, especially the lake region, tiger sighting is common. Apart from the royal Bengal tiger, come close to barking deer, hyena, Indian leopard fox, sloth bear, wild boar, wild dog and others.

Best Time for Tiger Sighting: March to June is popular for wildlife photographer while the national park remains close from October to June.

Safari Timings: 7:30 - 10:30 AM and 4 - 6:30 PM (timing changes with season).

Wildlife resorts in Pench: Baghvan, A Taj Safari, Pench Tree Lodge, Pench Jungle Camp, etc.

Our suggested tours: Tiger Safari, Tigers of Central India and Golden Triangle, Tiger’s Trail, Tigers of Central India with Taj Mahal, etc.

        5. Nagarhole National Park

A part of the famous Nilgri Biosphere Reserve, the Nagarahole national park is famous for being a protected habitat for tigers and elephants. The park is also home to leopards, wild boars, sloth bear, bison and more than 250 species of birds.

Best Time for Tiger Sighting: The park remains open from October to June but the best time is from April to June.

Safari Timings: 6 - 8 AM and, from 3 - 5 PM

Wildlife resorts in Nagarhole: The Serai Resorts, Evolve Back, etc.

Our suggested tour: Palaces, Tigers and Beaches of India

        6. Jim Corbett National Park

The oldest national park in India, Jim Corbett National Park is one of the most popular tiger reserves in the country. Located on the mighty foothills of Himalayas, the wildlife sanctuary has a diverse landscape favorable for many wild animals to thrive. The tigers are the star attraction, but there are also sloth bear, goral, fishing cat, leopard, chital, barking deer and others.

Best Time For Tiger Sighting: March to June is favorable for wildlife photographers while the park remains open from October to June.

Safari Timing – 6:30 - 10 AM and, 1:30 - 5:30 PM

Wildlife resorts in Jim Corbett: Infinity Resorts, Corbett The Baagh Spa & Resort, Lemon Tree Premier, Corbett, etc

Our suggested tour: Himalayas and Tigers


Best Places for Jungle Safari in India

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India abounds in jungles and with it the exciting thrill of wildlife safari. The vast and diverse country is home to many wild species of the animal kingdom. Jungle safaris are very popular in India as you enjoy a wide diversity of flora and fauna. While most species of the animal kingdom abound in the landscape, there is a particular fondness for Tigers. Along with spotting the wild species in their natural habitats, get to enjoy at eco-friendly wildlife resorts, campsites, treehouses, etc. Go for jungle treks, bird watching, elephant rides, jeep rides and even boat rides which adds to the fun of the wildlife holiday.
 To enjoy the pleasures of wildlife tours in India, here are the top choices:

1.    Bandhavgarh National Park

The most popular wildlife sanctuary in India, Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh has the highest density of  tigers the country’s national animal. Besides the Royal Bengal Tigers, this park was also famous for white tigers. Other animals inhabiting the jungles are sambar, chital, wild boar, wild dog, Indian fox, leopard, bison, blue bull, antelope, nilgai and others. 
Wildlife safari in Bandhavgarh includes options of jeep or elephant rides, stay at the jungle resorts, visit to the Bandhavgarh Fort and certainly exciting memories. 

2.    Ranthambore National Park

Once the hunting grounds of the royal family of Jaipur, Ranthambore National Park is the most popular option for wildlife safaris in India. The favourite resident of the jungle, tigers bring visitors in huge numbers from all across the globe. The many water sources in the jungle are home to a huge number of crocodiles, nilgai, sambhar, birds and more. Stay at the heritage jungle resorts, the very ones used by the royalty on their hunting trips is particularly exciting as is exploring the 10th century Ranthambore Fort atop a hill overlooking the wilderness. 

3.    Gir National Park

The exclusive home of Asiatic lions in the natural habit, Gir National park in Gujarat is among the most visit places for a wildlife getaway. Besides, the king of the jungle, there are many inhabitants such as leopards, jackals and the Indian fox. Jeep safari brings you close to the lions.  4.    Kanha National Park

Said to be the inspiration of Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book, Kanha National Park lures quite a huge number of wildlife lovers and animal enthusiasts. Apart from spotting tigers, you can find gaur, palm squirrel, striped hyena, chinkara, mouse deer, black buck, jackal, porcupine, sambhar and others. The best way to spot tigers is by taking the early morning elephant safari from Mukki entrance of the park.

5.    Keoladeo Ghana National Park

The bird sanctuary with a status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Keoladeo Ghana National Park, earlier known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is one of the best places to go for jungle safari in India. Bird watching is a pleasure here as the nature reserve is home to more than 450 species of birds including migratory species that fly in for a winter visit as far as from Siberia and other cold countries. Keeping the natural beauty intact and noises at the minimum, safari at the bird paradise is available only on cycle rickshaws.
 
6.    Periyar National Park

Settled in God’s Own Country of Kerala, Periyar National Park is one of the most popular places in for wildlife safari in India. Elephant’s and tigers are the most popular residents but there is the Indian wild dog, sambar, wild pig, barking deer, mouse deer, Nilgiri Langur, Nilgiri Tahr and others.
 
Early morning safaris are known for the decent chance of getting close to the wildlife as is boating in the Periyar Lake where the beasts come to quench their thirst. Eco-lodges and treehouses are popular options to stay while the national park also offers the chance to explore spice plantations of Thekkady.

7.    Jim Corbett National Park

The oldest wildlife sanctuary in India, Jim Corbett National Park is settled on the mighty foothills of Himalayas. The residents of the jungle include tigers, sloth bear, goral, fishing cat, leopard, chital, barking deer and others. The best way to spot tigers is jeep safari in the Bijrani zone while some glimpse of the wildlife is also available from the watchtowers in Dhikala and other regions.


Bask In the Wilderness of Jungles with These Top 10 Safaris in India

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Watching a big cat in real life could be a distant dream for many! However, this dream, in India, is not that tough to be realized as the country is blessed with over 3000 tigers, 99 national parks, 40 tiger reserves, and 450 wildlife sanctuaries. India has made a global mark as it has transformed as home to 75% of the tiger population of the world.

No matter if you are surrounded by the big mountains of Himalayas in Uttarakhand or are in the desert landscape of Rajasthan or in the centre of Gujarat, the rich fauna will be there to enthrall and entice you always. So let's take a quick view of the top 10 national parks in India that are home to diverse wildlife. 

1. The Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan: The royal land of Rajasthan also houses the royal predators. Stretching across the area of 1,334 square kilometres, this Park offers fascinating jungle safaris. You will be delighted to see the cats prancing and pouncing on trees and grounds freely here. The other animals that are spotted here include Sloth Bears, Wild Boars, Sambar, etc. 
 

Ranthambore National Park

Best Time to Visit: The Park is open from October to June. However, the ideal time to spot tigers is March-May. 

2. Jim Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand: Jim Corbett National Park is the oldest established national park housing the most furious member of the cat family, the tigers. Many species such as Fishing Cats, Serow, Goral, Himalayan Tahr, and other fascinating wild species have made their habitat in this park. It was in 1936 when the journey of Jim Corbett started. The Park was declared as Asia's very first National Park in the same year. Later in 1974, it was declared as the first Tiger Reserve under Project Tiger. People from across the globe keep thronging here to catch a quick view of these brilliantly dangerous cats. 

Corbett National Park

Best Time to Visit: The Park is open from October to June. However, the ideal time to spot tigers is March-May. 

3. Bandhavgarh National Park, Madhya Pradesh: The Royal Bengal Tigers! Sounds too royal… isn't it? And if you wish to have the spectacular vista of these tigers, then Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh is the best place for you. Blessed with the presence of striped cats and many other exotic fauna species, Bandhavgarh is one of the best places for wildlife safari in India.

Once upon a time, this place used to be the hunting ground for royal dynasties. However, the scenario changed slowly and Bandhavgarh is a protected area now. 

Bandhavgarh National Park

Best Time to Visit: The national park could be visited between mid-October and June, but March to May is the ideal month to see big cats. 

4. Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh: Do you aware of the Mogli Land exist in India? If not, then you should plan a trip to the Kanha National Park soon. Owing to the existence of the vivid wild creatures, this dense jungle became an inspiration to Rudyard Kipling's forever classic-the Jungle book. The roaring of tigers in the real woods of Kanha jungles is what that attracts thousands of tourists from across the world to this park.

Kanha National Park

Best Time to Visit: The gate remains open from mid-October to June, however, the peak time is March to May if you want to see royal tigers.

5. Kaziranga National Park, Assam: Welcome to Kaziranga National Park, home to world's largest population of one Horned Rhinoceros. Stretching across 429.69 square kilometres, this place is far off from human inhabitance and hence helps in maintaining the rich flora and fauna. This Park also houses Elephants, Bears, Panthers and many pretty birds. As the wildlife flourishes without any limits here, Kaziranga is being titled as one of the renowned World Heritage Sites of UNESCO. 

Kaziranga National Park

Best time to visit: You can explore this park from November to the end of April. 

6. Sunderban National Park, West Bengal: This park could help you in spotting surprising sights. You can see tigers swimming in the water around the Mangroves of the Sunderban National Park. Sunderbans jungles have many credits to its portfolio. It's the largest tiger reserve. Also, it boasts of the tiger populace that has adopted an amphibious lifestyle. It also houses one of the world's largest forest cover of the Mangroves.

Hence, it forms one of the ultimate destinations to enjoy wildlife holidays in India. Owing to its distinguished distinctions, it has been honored as the UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Best Time to Visit: The Park is open throughout the year; however, to see the amphibian tigers, the best time to visit here is from October to April.

7. Gir National Park, Gujarat: Housing the royal Asiatic Lions, the Gir National Park is the treasure trove for those who love to see the rich diversity of wildlife. What makes the USP for the Gir National Park is that it is the only home to the populace of Asiatic Lions, and therefore it contributes significantly to India wildlife tourism. Besides Lions, there are around 32 species of mammals, over 300 species of birds and 26 of reptiles. 

Gir National Park

Best Time to Visit: The best season to visit the park is from October to May end.

8. Pench National Park, Madhya Pradesh: If you want to spot tigers frisking around carefree, then Pench is the place to be. One can listen to the loud rumbles of the big and furious predators in these jungles. This royal kingdom also boasts of other wild beings like Leopard, Wild Boar, Nilgai, and Crimson-breasted Barbet and so on.

Best Time to Visit: Pench remains open from mid-October to June. The best time to sight tigers are months from March to May.

9. Satpura National Park, Madhya Pradesh: The live wild world of the Satpura National Park, Madhya Pradesh is a treat to the eye. Spotted Deer, Leopards, Sloth Bear, Black Buck, Sambar, Four Horned Antelopes, Porcupine, Smooth Otter or Pangolin, all varieties have made their home in Satpura. The terrain is rugged here with the presence of peaks of sandstone, slender gorges, several ravines, and dense jungles, thereby making it a complete adventure zone. 

Best Time to Visit: October to April is the ideal season for visiting this park.

10. Tadoba National Park, Maharashtra: If you want to enjoy deciduous forests and undulating hills while enjoying your wildlife safari holidays, then Tadoba National Park in Maharashtra is the best place. There is a beautiful lake encircled by lush mixed forests in this park. Tigers, Barking Deer, Hyenas, Gaur, Leopards, and many others form the inhabitants of this jungle.

Best Time to Visit: Park is open from October to June. However, the best time to spot tigers is in months of March, April, and May. 

 

Author Bio: Archana Sharma is a freelance writer who is passionate about her profession. Travelling is something that excites her. She has been in the creative field for over 15 years and has been writing for print media and digital media.


Wildlife Tourism in India

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Wildlife tourism is very quickly becoming a very important part of the Indian tourism product. And I would guess rightly so, given the fact that, after Africa, India perhaps has the most species of endangered wildlife that one could see in the wild. The star attraction of India's National parks is, of course, the Royal Bengal tiger, and this majestic animal is certainly the main draw for the wildlife tourism in India.

Tigers in India

India now has almost 40 notified tiger reserves spread across the country, from Kaziranga and Manas in the east to Tadoba in the west, from Corbett in the north to Periyar and Bandipur in the south. The big plus point of having so many Tiger reserves is that one can combine and include the nearest one into an India itinerary easily and even those not coming for a wildlife only focused trip, can easily fit in a few days at one India's many National parks.

Having been in the industry for almost 30 years now, I've been lucky to have had a chance to visit quite a few of the Tiger reserves, as well as interact with several wildlife enthusiasts from across the world. The general consensus is that the Tiger is definitely the most regal and majestic of all mammals, and irrespective of how many times one has seen a Tiger, the thrill of spotting a Tiger in the wild, remains and does not diminish with repeated sightings. After a recent trip to Africa, where we saw lions in the wild, I was actually wondering as to whether the Lion actually deserves its title of "King of the Jungle", in my view, and plenty of people actually agreed with me on this, that, the Tiger actually has a larger presence, and greater karishma.

Tiger tourism in India

The Indian wildlife experience is actually very different from the African safari experience, and it is extremely important for travelers to understand this fact. Africa has an abundance of wildlife, so a tourist traveling to lets say, Kruger, is sort of guaranteed sightings of all the big 5, perhaps within the first few hours of entering the reserve, whereas, even in Bandhavgarh, the National Park with a good Tiger population, it is possible to have done half a dozen safaris and still not having sighted the Tiger !!

In the last couple of months, there had been a lot of uncertainty regarding the opening of the National Parks, which was subject to the decision f the Indian Supreme Court. Fortunately, the Courts did allow the Parks to open, and it is now backing to business as usual. As a consequence of this, there have been some changes in the rules and regulations. The number of vehicles allowed into the Parks has been further curtailed, thereby making advance reservations all the more important, and also, the Central Indian reserves of Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Pench are now completely closed every Wednesday.

One of the other positives in recent times has been the opening of several boutique lodges in the vicinity of the National Parks. Unlike Africa, even the Luxury lodges are not situated within the forests, but are outside, but, there are now a few Jungle lodges and camps in India, that are at par with the finest in the world. In addition to the Taj Safari lodges in Pench, Kanha, and Bandhavgarh, others that stand out are, the Samode Safari Lodge in Bandhavgarh, Singinawa, Flame of the Forest and Shergarh in Kanha, Forsyth’s Lodge in Satpura, and there is, of course, the Sherbagh tented camp in Ranthambhore. 

The author, Kapil Goswamy, is the CEO/Managing Director of Trans India Holidays, in New Delhi, India.


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