Tiger Safari in Bandhavgarh

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Tiger Safari in Bandhavgarh

Tiger Safari in Bandhavgarh:

An adrenaline pumping tiger safari can transport you to a whole new world of adventure. Spotting the Royal Bengal Tiger in the wild is an experience parallel to none. The regal strides, the gracious demeanour, the royal stripes blending in the wilderness; make it an exclusive experience to cherish for a life time to come. India with the highest population of wild Tigers and 50 Tiger reserves is the best place to see tigers in the wild. India is now home to over 3000 wild tigers, which is more than 2/3rd of the total world population.

About Bandhavgarh National Park

Bandhavgarh is a unique paradise in Central India; where history and wildlife come together in a perfect communion of sorts.
Landscape: Spread across a sprawling area of 1150 sq. kms. Bandhavgarh National Park is known as one of the best places to spot tigers in India; and also one with the highest density of tigers in the world. Bandhavgarh is located in the Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh, in Central India, nestled in the Vindhya hills and an expansive spread of grasslands, with rich flourishing flora.

History: Bandhavgarh celebrates a rich historical past. Mythologically, Bandhav-garh translates to “the brother’s fort” and is believed to have been gifted by Lord Rama, to his devoted brother (bandhav) Laxmana, when they returned victorious from Lanka. The Bandhavgarh National park has twelve natural waterholes, several historical monuments, and remains of ancient caves that are witness to the two-thousand years of history.

Project Tiger: Declared a National Park in 1968 and a Tiger Reserve in 1972 under the Project Tiger and Wildlife Protection Act, Bandhavagrh National park was a Shikargah, or game preserve for the Maharajas of Rewa and their guests. Bandhavgarh is the original home to Mohan, the father of all white tigers in captivity today.

Well-known for it’s outstanding biodiversity, Bandhavgarh national park is every wild life enthusiasts dream come true. Bustling with flora and fauna the park is spread across a modest area of 446 Sq km, boasting of the highest density of tigers in the world.
The grasslands are flanked by Sal forests in the valleys and lower slopes that gradually merge to mixed deciduous forests in the hills. The forests also comprise Dhobim, Saja and Salai, and Bamboo thickets. With the tiger at the apex of the food chain, Bandhavgarh is gifted with 37 species of mammals, more than 250 species of birds, about 75 species of butterflies and a large number of reptiles.
Though tigers always happen to be the prime wildlife attraction in all national parks, Bandhavgarh offers a wide array of fauna, including: jackal, sloth bear, striped hyena, leopard, jungle cat, civets, palm squirrel, nilgai, sambar, spotted Deer and many more.
The reptile population is varied with cobra, viper, python, turtle, monitor lizard etc.

Bandhavgarh is home to a number of migratory, as well as resident species of birds like Sarus crane, Indian Pond Heron, Lesser Adjutant Stork, Indian Roller, Racket Tailed Drongo, Asian Paradise Fly Catcher, White Breasted Kingfisher, Great Cormorant, Jungle Fowl, Crested Serpent Eagle and plenty of others.

Top 5 things to do in Bandhavgarh

The picturesque Bandhavgarh offers a host of activities to engage, enthral and excite you. These activities are a must-do to experience the uniqueness of this mythological land.

One of the most exciting experiences is an open jeep jungle safari . This one-of-its kind bewitching experience, takes a whole new meaning when it comes to spotting tigers and other elusive beings of the jungle, like leopards.
But having said that, it is no less exciting to chance upon herds of spotted deers, sambhar, or the lone jackal or fox. Catching a sight of the various exotic species of birds also lends a charm to the ride on the wheels, with a naturalist explaining the various nuances of the wild.

Full day safaris in Bandhavgarh - This permit allows the interested traveler to go to any zone and any route for a full day. Though one may have to pay much more, this is an excellent option for wildlife photographers . This also allows access 15 minutes before regular time and also exit 15 minutes later.

Explore the serene countryside on a cycling jaunt or a walking adventure. Take a leisurely tour through the villages, and the forest buffer zone. Explore the pristine jungles and the rural settings of Bandhavgarh, while pedalling, and walking through the glorious countryside.
Explore the wilderness around the periphery of the park. Immerse in a fascinating experience learning about the rich and diverse flora-fauna and biodiversity, while on foot or while pedalling. This intimate experience lends a unique charm, and throws open new vistas of learning and adventure.

Explore the local hamlets and villages, and carry back memories of the bountiful culture, tradition and the lives of the indigenous tribes of the region.
Interact with the local Baiga community , and learn how they continue to live a sustainable life. The Baiga adivasis are a forest-dwelling, indigenous tribal community of Central India . They live in close intimacy to nature and were erstwhile nomadic hunter-gatherers. Extremely knowledgeable about the medicinal and healing properties of the various local flora, the Baigas also posses a keen knowledge of their environment and biodiversity. They pass this knowledge on from one generation to the next.
Interact with the local Baiga tribes and carry back home lessons in co-exiting with nature and lending a hand to conservation.

Believed to have been constructed in the 10th century A.D., Shesh Shaiyais is an 11 meter long Lord Vishnu’s reclining posture, with a canopy of seven hooded serpent called Sheshnag. The statue is located at the source of the Charanganga, a perennial river that waters the beautiful meadows below. Charanganga merges with the Sone River, a tributary of the holy Ganges and is the lifeline of Bandhavgarh.
The sandstone Shesh Shaiya statue of Lord Vishnu, is much revered.
There are also statues of Bramha and Shiva here. Sheshaiya is open for guests to visit during Tala zone safari.

Ban Sagar Dam is a multipurpose river valley Project, on Sone River situated in the Ganges Basin, 85 kms from Bandhavgarh . It is equipped with both irrigation and hydroelectric power generation. The Bansagar Dam was constructed near the Deolond village, in the Shahdol district. The project was called “Bansagar” after Bana Bhatt , the renowned Sanskrit scholar of the 7th century, who is believed to have hailed from this region, in India.

The dam is an hour and thirty minutes drive from Bandhavgarh, and is a good sight seeing option for travellers keen to explore places in and around Bandhavgarh.

Zones in Bandhavgarh National Park

Known as the land of tigers, Bandhavgarh is the ideal tiger country that offers some of the best sightings in the country.
Most tourists visiting Bandhavgarh go for jungle safaris. The forests are divided into two major zones: Core Zone and Buffer Zone .
Core zone is the central part of the tiger reserve and it shares its boundary with the buffer zone.
Core zone is basically an important area where the conservation of wildlife and natural resources is strictly protected by the forest department.
Buffer Zone is the area that surrounds or adjoins the core areas where nature is conserved alongside compatible human uses of the land or water.
The Core Zones of Bandhavgarh are: Khitauli, Magdhi, and Tala
Buffer Zones of Bandhavgarh are: Dhamokar, Panpatha (Pachpedi) and Johila (Kalwa)
The three core zones:
Tala is the park's main zone, where Bandhavgarh fort is situated.
Magdhi is located adjoining to Tala, on the fringe of the park and excellent for tiger sightings.
Khitauli separated by a road, is extremely scenic and less-visited, although tiger sightings do occur here as well.

How to get to Bandhavgarh

Located in the heart of Central India , Bandhavgarh is well connected and easily accessible from major towns like Jabalpur, Satna, Khajuraho and Rewa.

Distances from important towns to Bandhavgarh:

From Kms
Delhi 880 Kms (approx.21 hours)
Khajurao 280 Kms (approx.6 hours)
Satna 112 Kms (approx.3 hours)
Katni 95 Kms (approx.2 hours)
Kanha National Park 240 Kms (approx.5 hours)
Jabalpur 220 Kms (approx.4 hours)
Varanasi 475 Kms (approx.9 hours)
Allahabad 345 Kms (approx. 7 hours)
Rewa 160 Kms (approx. 2 hours)
Umaria 34 Kms (approx. 1 hour)

Delhi to Khajuraho (daily flights) by Vistara and Air India. (5-6 hours drive from Khajuraho)
Delhi to Jabalpur: Spice Jet, Indigo and Air India (4 hours drive from Jabalpur)
Delhi and Mumbai to Jabalpur by Spice Jet. (4 hour drive from Jabalpur)

Bandhavgarh is well connected by train.
Umaria, Katni, Satna and Jabalpur are convenient rail heads and there are many other trains that connect there from different parts of the country.
Complete information and bookings can be done on www.indianrail.gov.in and www.irctc.co.in

Accommodation in Bandhavgarh National Park

Bandhavgarh offers a variety of accommodation options, from budget to luxury, to high end. Pugdundee Safaris offers travellers two exclusively distinct luxury get-aways.
King’s Lodge and Tree House Hideaway from Pugdundee Safaris are exclusive eco-tourism and luxury get-away options. Located in natural forested estates in the heart of tiger country these lodges offer the best of the natural world combined with luxury in the lap of pristine nature.

King’s Lodge: Is a gorgeous estate that lies nestled between the Sal forested hills of Bandhavgarh , and a small tribal village. This eco-lodge lies in the midst of tiger country and is just a ten minutes drive from the Tala gate. Kings Lodge operates on the best green practises, working closely with conservation and sustainability, and offering it’s guests an ultimate experience in luxury.
Eighteen modern Cottages including eight stilt cottages , alfresco bush dinner venues, ayurvedic spa-treatments, tailor made bird watching and photography tours, organic kitchen; are just a few of the exclusive attractions of King’s Lodge.

Tree House Hideaway: Tree House Hideaway provides an off beat holiday in the lap of nature with elegant trees like Palash, Mahua, Banyan, Tendu, Peepal, and a lush expanse of natural landscape to unwind in. Made by the local staff from recycled wood, these luxurious tree houses, have resident species of flora and abundant fauna homing alongside.
The Tree house offers it’s guests the very best of dining and outdoor experiences, including an interface with the local communities; while staying true to its promise of being eco-friendly.

How to Book a Safari in Bandhavgarh

Safari ticket bookings can be done through the government site www.mponline.gov.in or from the lodge where you are staying at.
The entry tickets can also be collected from the booking window at the entrance gate of the National Park.
Additional expenses such as booking charges, park rates, guide fees etc are termed under the additional expenses other than the entry tickets.
Trespassing different routes is not allowed.
Like all the other parks of M.P., Bandhavgarh allows a total of six guests in a jeep plus a park guide & a driver are mandatory. 8 people in a jeep can be very crowded, it is best suited to have 4 guests + 2 and for photographers it is best to be just 2 guests in a jeep.
Safari Bookings
• Bookings open 120 days in advance, since the park tickets are limited they get sold out almost immediately for weekends, long holidays and for peak season.
•Safari ticket booking is for jeeps and the tickets are per jeep basis •A limited number of tickets are also available on per seat basis.
• Limited canter seats are also available at the park gate on current basis.
•It is mandatory to carry the ID proofs, used at the time of booking, in original, during entry into the safari gate.

Safari Timings:
There are 4 different zones of the Bandhavgarh national park where the tourists can experience enchanting jeep safaris.
These zones include: Khitauli, Magdhi, Tala, Panpatha
Bandhavgarh National park like other major national parks of Central India remains open from 1st October to 30th June . The park is closed on Wednesday evenings . Morning and afternoon safaris remain closed on Holi festival , in the month of March.
The timings of the jeep safaris are as follows and slightly vary according to the changing seasons.

Park Safari Timings 15 October to 15 February 16 February to 1 March 1st April to 30 June
Morning Safari 06:30 Hrs to 11:00 Hrs 06:00 Hrs to 11:00 Hrs 05:30 Hrs to 10:00 Hrs
Afternoon Safari 14:30 Hrs to 17:30 Hrs 15:00 Hrs to 18:00 Hrs 16:00 Hrs to 19:00 Hrs
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How to book a Tiger Safari in Bandhavgarh:

Pugdundee Safaris is recognized as one of India's leading responsible safari comopanies. With six intimate jungle lodges in Central India and many bespoke wilderness experiences it presents teh very best of the indian subcontinent wildlife & hospitality, between 2009 and 2019, we have been awarded for our excellence in eco-tourism, our commitment to green architecture, our experienced naturalists and our pioneering.