India’s National Parks and wildlife sanctuaries attract visitors from around the world throughout the year. Each of these parks and sanctuaries is truly unique in its representation of India’s natural environment, geography and wildlife.
The National Parks system in India was created to protect wildlife, their habitat and the precious ecosystem which is responsible for sustaining all of us. These parks are located in each state and union territory in India and vary greatly in size and landscape.
Jim Corbett National Park
Situated along the Ramganga river, at the foot of the Kumaon hills, the Corbett National Park is one of India’s best known and oldest wildlife sanctuaries. The park is situated in the Nainital and Pauri Districts of Uttarakhand. Spread over an area of 10 acres, Jim Corbett national park is one of the most preserved wildlife sanctuaries in India. It is named after Jim Corbett, the famous naturalist and the legendary hunter of the man- eaters of Kumaon.
The Park is situated in the surroundings of thick forests, mango grove, reserve, beautiful rivers, widespread grasslands and wonderful flora and fauna. Corbett National Park, primarily, is known for Corbett Tiger reserve. The park boasts of a wide range of plant and animal species. Ranging from leopards, tigers, Himalayan Black bears Indian Grey Mongoose, Crocodiles, sloth etc. Also it has more than 600 species of trees, herbs, shrubs, bamboos etc. which makes this wildlife heritage a must visit. The Bengal Tiger and Asiatic Elephant are the center of attraction here. Elephant safari, Jeep Safari and Canter safari are provided to tour the national. The Park is home to varied vegetation that ranges from dense Mixed, Sal and Sheesham forests. Some of the commonly found trees are rohini, karipak, ber, dhak, simal, grewia, bael, kurha, jhingan, marorphali, khair, bakli, tendu, pula, sain etc.
Jim Corbett National Park is a complete package of fun, knowledge and adventure. People from around the world come and visit this place attracted by its breathtaking beauty.
Best time to visit Corbett: Mid-November to Mid-June.
Bandipur National Park
Built under the Project Tiger for the preservation of the tigers in their natural habitat, Bandipur National Park is situated in the Chamarajanagar district in Karnataka. Established in 1931, it is one of the oldest wildlife sanctuaries in India and a protected reserve for tigers. Stretched over an area of 874 sq. km, it was once the personal hunting grounds of Mysore maharajas.
The Bandipur National Park is famous for its tigers and leopards in this tiger reserve of Karnataka. Apart from tigers and leopards this place also has Asian Elephant, Dholes (wild dogs), Gaur, Chital, Sambar and Sloth Bears, Giant Squirrel, Nocturnal Porcupine and Blacknaped Hare.
Because of its breathtaking beauty of nature and to enjoy a quiet vacation far from the hustle and bustle of the city, this place makes for an excellent tourist spot and is a must-visit for those want to soak in the beauty of nature.
Best time to visit: Best time to visit Bandipur National Park is between May to June and September to November.
Sundarban National Park
Located in the state of West Bengal, the Sundarban National Park is a Tiger Reserve, and a Biosphere Reserve. Sundarban is renowned for an enchanting preserve for the Royal Bengal Tigers. The Sundarban National Park is located in a spectacular natural setting of Sundarbans delta which is formed by the Ganges River together with the Brahmaputra and filled with lush vegetation, islands of salt-tolerant mangrove forests that make it the largest single block of tidal halophytic mangrove forest in the world. Apart from the Royal Bengal Tigers, the Sundarban National Park is home to wide range of fauna, including 260 species of birds, aquatic mammals and other endangered species such as the estuarine crocodile and the Indian python. It has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. The other fact about the Sundarban National Park is that two-third of the Sundarbans is in Bangladesh and the remaining third in West Bengal, India.
Best time to visit: Best time to visit Sundarban National Park is between November to February.
Gir Forest National Park
Located in the state of Gujarat, Gir Forest National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, also known as Sasangir, is an entrancing preserve for the Asiatic Lions. Established in 1965, it is the sole home of the Asiatic Lions (Panthera leo persica) and is considered to be one of the most important protected areas in Asia due to its supported species. The ecosystem of Gir, with its diverse flora and fauna, is protected as a result of the efforts of the government forest department, wildlife activists and NGOs. The forest area of Gir and its lions were declared as “protected” in the early 1900s by the then Nawab of the princely state of Junagadh. The seven rivers of the forest create a landscape filled with evergreen vegetation along the riversides, dry deciduous and tropical thorn forests. The forest is also home to 38 species of mammals, 37 species of reptiles and more than 300 species of birds.
Best time to visit: Best time to visit Gir Forest National Park is between November to March.
Kanha National Park
Kanha National Park, which forms the core of the Kanha Tiger Reserve created in 1974 under Project Tiger, is a beautiful land that is home to large number of varieties of flora and fauna in the beautiful forests. Stretched over an area of 940 sq km, Kanha National Park, which inspired Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book and its memorable characters Mowgli and Baghheera is a wildlife enthusiast’s delight. Kanha has some 22 species of mammals. Those most easily spotted are the Striped Palm Squirrel, Common Langur, Jackal, Wild Pig, Chital or Spotted Deer, Barasingha or Swamp Deer, Sambar and Black Buck. A great holiday destination, away from the hectic pressures of city life, Kanha National Park is a beautiful place to unwind with nature by your side and indeed a wonderful experience in itself. Barasingha, or the swamp deer, is the signature animal of Kanha National Park.
Best season: Best season February to June, although the cool season is much more comfortable and still very good for wildlife. The park is closed from July 1 to September 30 because of the monsoon.
Timings: Morning Visiting Hours: 6:30 am to 12:00 noon
Evening Visiting Hours: 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Closed: 1 July to 15 October
Bandhavgarh National Park
The Bandhavgarh National Park, which is located in Shahdol and Jabalpur districts of Madhya Pradesh, falls in the heart of the Vindhya Mountain Range and the eastern flank of Satpura Hill Range in Central India. It is a small and compact National Park, which is named after the highest hill Bandhavgarh (807 m) in the centre of it.
The Bandhavgarh National Park is the original home of all the white tigers alive today. Bandhavgarh was the hunting preserve of the Maharajas of Rewa. The density of the tiger population at Bandhavgarh is the highest known in India.
A chain of smaller hills, forming a number of valleys and spurs interspersed with low lying areas. The Sal & bamboo covers plain tract and degenerates in growth and quality as it ascends the hill slopes, further giving place to mixed forest on upper slopes, mainly due to edaphic factors.
Best Season: The best time to visit Bandhavgarh National Park is between November and March