India is blessed with not only rich culture, festivals, sea, Himalayas, and historical monuments, it also boasts a rich diversity of flora and fauna. If there is any way one can explore the distinct rare and endangered species of plants as well as the animals, resort to Wildlife Sanctuaries and National Parks of India. They make a perfect place for nature lovers and wildlife shutterbugs. Having the pleasure to witness the most thrilling life forms on earth roaming wide open in their territory is unparalleled.
Best Wildlife Sanctuaries of India
So, all the wildlife enthusiasts should be ready to quench the thirst for discovering wildlife and nature at its best, here is brief information about some famous wildlife sanctuaries of India. So, get ready to enjoy the best of jungle tourism.
1. Jim Corbett National Park: Uttarakhand
Founded by Jim Corbett in 1936, this national park was established due to the need felt to protect India’s wildlife from extinction. Jim Corbett National Park located in the Nainital of Uttaranchal is the most sought after ecotourism destination in the whole Asian region. It has beautiful surroundings encompassing an amazing blend of high hills, swamps, riverine belts, and green meadows is a conserved wildlife area. It has some amazing wildlife adventures such as rock climbing, rappelling, elephant safaris, fishing, bird watching, and an open jeep safari. Animal species like a bull elephant, spotted deer, leopard cat, barking sambar, Himalayan black bear, Indian pangolin, great mongoose, and numerous others are worth watching.
2. Gir National Park: Gujarat
Gir National Park is one of the most intriguing wildlife sanctuaries in India that never fails to fascinate you. Famed for its Asiatic Lions and other members of the cat family, this park is the pride of the Junagadh district of Gujarat. One can find more than 200 lions and 400 tiger species in this park. Apart from tigers and lions, it has over 450 plant species, 350 varieties of birds, 35 mammal species, and about 20 varieties of reptiles. Animals such as four-horned antelope, small Indian mongoose, Indian flying foe, wild boar, chinkara, hedgehog, Chital, Sambhar, and Nilgai, are prevalent here. While it also houses some rare species such as Python, Indian Star Tortoises, Monitor Lizards, Crocodiles, Porcupine, and Hare.
3. Periyar National Park: Kerala
Periyar National Park is a distinguished nature and tiger reserve located in Kerala. The wildlife sanctuary is well known for its Bengal tigers. Apart from tigers, it has about 62 different kinds of mammals, 320 different species of birds or avifauna and 45 different species of reptiles. Visitors thrive here for Indian elephants, horse deer, mouse deer, barking deer, Indian wild dogs, foxes, mongoose, leopards, panthers, langurs, monkeys, Nilgiri langur, Nilgiri tahr, etc. It is not only known for the wildlife but is also an excellent destination for ecotourism, being rich in its flora and fauna. It has a 100-year-old artificial lake, Periyar Lake inside the premises which adds exceptional beauty to this sanctuary. One can cruise through a boat and relish the beautiful backdrop of dense forest.
4. Ranthambore National Park: Rajasthan
Ranthambore National Park nestles amidst the serene surroundings of the Ranthambore Fort in the Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan. It is a haven for wildlife abundance and is one of the biggest dwellings for Tigers of different varieties including the most endangered ones. The park has six man-made lakes complemented by lush greenery and the sweet music of nature. The soulful surrounding, serene peace, and many perennial streams meandering through the park will simply mesmerise you. Besides tigers, many animal species like Striped Hyenas, Leopards, Chital, blue bull, wild bear, sambar, etc., also form an important part of wildlife in the park. The park also houses above 300 bird species.
5. Bandhavgarh National Park: Madhya Pradesh
Bandhavgarh wildlife sanctuary, recognized as a Tiger Reserve is famous for its dense population of tigers. It is also popular as the White Tiger Jungle as a white tiger was first discovered here. Located in Madhya Pradesh, this national park is sprawling over an area of 437 sq km. It is also a breeding ground for the ferocious leopard and several other wildlife species. Home to diverse flora and fauna, it is surrounded by the Vindhya mountains ranges and beautiful wooded hills making it the most enchanting wildlife sanctuaries of India to leave you completely mesmerized. The flora of the sanctuary mainly consists of Sal trees and Bamboo. The fauna includes nilgai, bison, chinkara, chital, langur, monkey, wild boar, chausingha, muntjac, and jackals. The Park also boasts of above 250 bird species, including some migratory birds too.
6. Kaziranga National Park and wildlife sanctuary: Assam
Kaziranga National Park is one of the finest tiger reserves, wildlife sanctuaries, as well as national parks in India. Also, it is a UNESCO world heritage site incorporating incredible natural beauty and rich flora and fauna. Located in Assam, Kaziranga national park is worldwide famous for a wide variety of unique and rare species. It has two-thirds of the world’s one-horned Rhinoceroses, the highest density of tigers, a great number of avifaunal species, and large breeding populations of elephants, wild water buffalo, and swamp deer. Among its huge variety of flora and fauna, it has elephants, sambhar, hot deer, wild boar, jungle cat, golden jackal, Bengal fox, Indian muntjac, Indian small mongoose, small Indian civets, gaur, hog badger, hispid hare, etc. One can enjoy the wildlife through elephant safari which adds up to a thrilling adventure.
7. Sundarbans National Park: West Bengal
Situated in West Bengal, Sundarbans National Park is a site of the tiger preservation project. It is named Sundarbans because it has the world’s largest forests of mangroves, also known as Sundari. It is also a UNESCO heritage site having lots of natural sights, different species, and tourist activities. This park is considered the largest delta in the world, having been surrounded by three rivers, the Meghanna River, the Ganges River, and the Brahmaputra River. The wildlife sanctuary is the home to tigers and wild animals, birds, aquatic animals, and reptiles. It boasts around 30,000 deer and 400 royal Bengal tiger species. The flora in this park has about 64 plant species.
8. Keoladeo Ghana National Park: Bharatpur
Keoladeo National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage site that nestles in the Bharatpur district of Rajasthan. Formerly called Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, it was a duck-hunting ground for maharajas in the 19th century. Not just this, it is one of the man-made wetlands in India that became a bird sanctuary in 1976. It was later declared a National Park in 1982. It protects migratory birds under a Bird campaign, the aim of National Geographic’s 2018 Year. This park hosts a large number of avifauna during the summers and happens to be one of the best national parks to observe exotic migratory birds and other birds of India. Keoladeo sees many migratory birds such as waterfowl from China, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, and Siberia.
9. Kanha national park: Madhya Pradesh
Kanha National Park is one of the most sought-after national parks in India established in the year 1955. This park in Madhya Pradesh has gained a lot of attention due to its efforts in saving rare and almost extinct species. It is the protector of the Swamp Deer, also known as ‘Barasingha’. This park has grassy fields, bamboo forests, lush meadows and deep ravines making up for eye-catching views. It has a beautiful sunset point, Bamni Dadar that provide a view of the entire park and the animals in their natural habitat. The beauty of the Kanha National Park is the only inspiration behind Rudyard Kipling’s popular write up ‘The Jungle Book’. So, one can get lucky and be able to spot hyenas, peacocks, mongooses, tigers, panthers, sloths, jungle fowls, and langurs.
10. Bandipur national park: Karnataka
Bandipur National Park, situated in Karnataka is one of the oldest wildlife parks in the Bandipur Wildlife Sanctuary. It is among the biggest wildlife reserves of India. This park is home to around 70 Royal Bengal Tigers, above 300 Asian elephants, Leopards and Bears. This park is also an integral part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve. It offers the ideal natural environment not only for elephants and several endangered species, but also to nature that blossoms in different forms. Hence, this park is one of the most beautiful parks having a lush forest of the Deccan Plateau and the Western Ghats as its surroundings. The Bandipur Tiger Reserve is popular for its rich avian population as well.
Well, these wildlife sanctuaries are an ultimate package that summons wildlife, nature, adventure, and jungle life. Also, it conjures up a truly enjoyable and exciting travel experience for wildlife buffs as well as nature lovers. Travellers from several parts of the globe visit these marvels for an unmatched experience.