India’s Top 10 Places for Wildlife Safari Holidays
On April 30th, 2018
So March is here again, with the heat, the exams and the vacations trailing right behind it! Summer time is back! You would have started planning your holiday destinations already. But wait; have you considered a wildlife getaway with your family and friends this year to beat the heat? Summer breaks are the best time to spend quality time with children! India has an amazing variety of flora and fauna throughout its length and breadth. As varied is the climate and weather in different parts of the country, so is the diversity of plants, animals, birds and insects found in the country. There are the Himalayan mountain ranges in the north, vast desert in the west, marshy lands in the east and tropical forests in the south; India sure is a unique peninsula and you should not be surprised at the plethora of wildlife stored in here for you! The country boasts of a number of conserved forest reserves and national parks and wildlife resorts are available in all jungles that are must-visit! Here is our list of the top 10 places in the country for wildlife safari holidays!
1. Jim Corbett National Park
Jim Corbett National Park is located in Uttarakhand and is rich in diverse wildlife set in the backdrop of beautiful landscape! It is home to many wildlife species of mammals, birds and vegetation. Head north in summer to catch a glimpse of the majestic tiger and huge tuskers! The national park is a pleasant visit in the summers where the forest cover gives a cool respite to the burning sun! There are many interesting species like the Himalayan Tahr, Goral, Serow, etc. to also look forward too.
2. Ranthambore National Park
Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan boasts of a huge 1,334 sq.km of forest area and is also home to the majestic Royal Bengal Tigers. This forest has unique vegetation including grasslands and dry deciduous forest cover and is home to many wild species. It is the most renowned national park in India and finds heavy safari bookings throughout its open period.
3. Pench National Park
Visit Pench National Park in Central India that is very well connected to major cities like Nagpur and Jabalpur and throughout India actually. Getting there is easy and staying there, even easier. Pench National Park is known for its charismatic forest cover, which is a mix of grasslands and dry, deciduous forest. It is popular as a tiger reserve and sightings are known to increase in summers as the animals gather near the lake to access water. A number of wild animals like leopards, sloth bears, hyenas etc. too call Pench home and overall sightings are great as the forest cover is not dense in summer and the heat brings them to water. Pench National Park is an easy getaway if you really mean business with spotting wildlife!
4. Kaziranga National Park
Famous for being home to 2/3rd of world’s Great Single-horned Rhinoceros population, Kaziranga National Park in Assam has earned UNESCO’s world heritage site status and definitely is worth a visit! Known for its breezy weather and vast diversity of wildlife, Kaziranga National Park is inviting any time of the year and especially the summers. The weather is cool and pleasant and the views are spectacular. You can witness amazing wildlife moments as you catch the exotic one-horned rhinoceros, elephants, swamp deer, tigers and wild buffaloes in action! It is a world heritage site and is also an amazing spot for birdwatching. The tall grasses and vast plains give a different kind of view and experience!
5. Sasan-Gir Wildlife Sanctuary
One of the finest wildlife reserves in India, Gir forests in Gujrat is the only home to the resplendent Asiatic Lion. It is here that you can catch a glimpse of the big cat in all its glory in addition to a number of other varieties of wild animals. Gir National Park boasts of about 35 different species of mammals like chinkaras, Nilgai, antelopes etc. and more than 200 species of birds! 6. Bandhavgarh National Park
When it comes to actually spotting a tiger during a safari, Bandhavgarh National Park has the best probability! It was once famous for being home to white tigers too, but there aren’t any anymore. Bandhavgarh National Park has a great tiger density in addition to being home to Golden jackals, Hyenas, wild boar, sloth bear amongst others. There are over 250 species of birds too!
7. Sunderbans National Park
Again a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sunderbans are synonymous with mangrove forest and is the largest in the world. The park is home to a large number of Royal Bengal Tigers, which are famous for being maneaters and swimmers. The safari at Sunderbans is a river cruise which is the best way to explore this national park. You can catch a sight of fishing cats, leopards, flying foxes, pangolins, macaques, wild boars and a lot more in addition to several endangered species like Olive Ridley Turtle, Gangetic Dolphin, River Terrapin and Mangrove Horseshoe Crab.
8. Bandipur National Park
This national park is a part of World Heritage Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and is located in Karnataka. It is a popular wildlife destination in southern India and houses more than 100 species of mammals and 350 species of birds. Rich in diversity of flora and fauna, Bandipur is the best places to be if you want to catch a glimpse of a variety of wild animals including the tiger and different birds.
9. Periyar National Park
If you want to experience Amazonian-like forests in India, Periyar National Park in Kerala is the place to be. It is both an elephant and tiger reserve. These forests are thick and green and are one of the most biodiverse national parks in India. Periyar hosts very high number of reptiles, amphibians and birds in addition to different species of mammals especially primates. There are some unique species of animals in this jungle like Lion-tailed macaques, giant red squirrels etc., which you may not see elsewhere. So, again, Periyar National Park is a must-visit!
10. Khangchendzonga National Park
One of the lesser known, but extremely beautiful national park as well as biosphere reserve set amongst the mighty Himalayan ranges is the Khangchendzonga National Park. Unlike thick forest cover in other national parks, Khangchendzonga is surrounded by mountains and glaciers and is home to rare mammal species like the snow leopards, Himalayan Tahr, musk deer and Clouded Leopard. Additionally there are Asiatic black bear, red panda, blue sheep, and many more. The bird variety too is enviable! Vegetation here mostly consists of oaks, birches, fir, maple, willow, etc. The national park is a delight to the eyes!
Sightings are generally higher in summers as the animals are forced to venture out to quench their thirsts! Also, the vegetation gets drier and sparse to allow for easier viewing of the animals. Summers are a great time for experience and learning from the jungle. Also, national parks like Pench National Park are very well managed and have a great number of resorts to welcome you in summer. Village Machaan Resort in Pench buffer area is one such resort which has amenities and arrangements so that you enjoy with your family during children’s summer break with ease. It has a lovely swimming pool to chill, with water games facilities in addition to a well-equipped recreation centre for kids and adults alike! They also have a bunch of outdoor activities arranged for when asked so that you enjoy your trip to the fullest! So, hurry up and make your summer bookings in advance, now!
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