Tigerland – Jungles Of India
The word Jungle conjures up images of dense tropical forest with torrential rainfall, huge trees, infested with dangerous animals, snakes and insects. In Sanskrit it means any wild country, untamed land, a wilderness. In this itinerary we have captured for you the Indian Jungles in their true essence. The desert thorn forest of Ranthambhor, the dry deciduous forests of Madhya Pradesh Kanha and Bandhavgarh and the most famous Tiger Reserve The Corbett National Park in the Gangetic Himalayas. Together they have about 1200 species of birds and 350 species of mammals. Though Tiger remains the main attraction in each of them.
Day 1: Arrival in Delhi. Meet and Greet at airport and transfer to your hotel.
Day 2: Delhi
Full day a guided tour of Old Delhi which shall include: the 17th century walled city of Shah Jahanabad, visiting the great Jama Masjid, the principal mosque of Old Delhi. Built in the year 1656 AD by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, it is the largest & best known mosque in India. Later take a rickshaw ride through Chandni Chowk, the old marketplace of Shah Jahanabad now a picturesque bazaar to reach Red Fort, built in the year 1648 by Shah Jahan.
In New Delhi, visit Raj Ghat, memorial to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. It is a simple black marble platform that marks the spot of his cremation on 31 January 1948. Further we drive past India Gate, memorial built in the year 1931 to commemorate the Indian soldiers who died in World War I & the Afghan Wars. The names of the soldiers who died in these wars are inscribed on the walls. President’s House, the official residence of the President of India, built in the year 1931. Until 1950 it was known as Viceroy’s House & served as the residence of the Governor-General of British India. We will also visit Humayun’s Tomb, memorial of Mughal Emperor Humayun, built in the year 1562. The complex is a World Heritage Site & the first example of this type of Mughal architecture in India. Qutub Minar, built in the year 1206 by Qutub-ud-din Aibek. It is the tallest (72m) brick minaret in the world, an important example of Indo-Islamic Architecture.
Day 3: Delhi – Corbett National Park (250 km / 6hrs)
After breakfast drive to the world renowned Corbett Tiger Reserve. The Corbett Tiger Reserve is one of the most beautiful and famous tiger reserves of India. Apart from tigers some of the wildlife found in the reserve are Blue Bull, Sambar, Hog Deer, Wild Boar, Mugar and Langur. The tiger reserve is also famous for the colorful flora and fauna. The lower Himalayan ranges forming the background of the park makes the location exceptionally beautiful.
The varied topography comprises hilly and riverine areas, temporary marshy depressions, plateaus and ravines. The lower areas are almost completely populated by Sal trees. 110 tree species, 50 mammals species, 580 bird species and 25 reptile species are found here.
Corbett is a haven for Tigers as well as its prey, which include four kinds of Deer, Wild Boar and some lesser-known animals. Leopards are mostly found in the hilly areas of the park. Some nocturnal cats found here are the Leopard Cat, Jungle Cat and Fishing Cat. Sloth Bear is found in the lower regions of the park while the Himalayan Black Bear is seen in the higher hills only. The Dole or Wild Dog, can be seen in the southern areas of the park along with the Jackal.
Some of the smaller residents of the park are Himalayan Palm Civet, Indian Gray Mongoose, Common Otter, Blacknaped Hare and Porcupine. Elephants are among one of the main attractions of Jim Corbett Park. Along the Ramganga River shores, one can spot the long-snouted, fish-eating Gharial Crocodile and the ‘Mugger’ Crocodile. Also seen on the rocky hillsides is the Ghoral or Goat Antelopes. The Langur and Rhesus Monkeys are well distributed throughout the park, warning the whole Jungle with alarm calls when they see either a Tiger or Leopard from tree-top perches.
On arrival, check into hotel. In the evening relax at the resort.
Day 4: Corbett Tiger Reserve
Morning and afternoon Jeep Safari or afternoon elephant safari subject to availability.
Day 5: Corbett – Delhi
Morning Jeep Safari & afternoon drive back to Delhi. Overnight.
Day 6: Delhi – Kanha
Fly to Jabalpur IT 4375 dep. 0710 hrs / arr. 0900 hrs. On arrival drive to Kanha (169 Kms / 4 hrs). Arrive for lunch. Late afternoon we take a safari into the park. Overnight Kanha Jungle Lodge.
There are numerous Tiger reserves in India, that are preserving the Tiger but nowhere can you see them as often, and as regularly as in Kanha National Park.
Located in the Mandla district of Madhya Pradesh, Kanha national park and Project Tiger reserve extends over an area of over 1,940-sq-kms. The major feature of this region’s interesting topography is the horseshoe shape valley which is surrounded by the spurs of the Mekal. The Surpan River meanders through Kanha’s central Maidans, grasslands that cover the extensive plateau. Steep rocky escrapments along the edges offer breathtaking views of the valley.
The terrain inside the park is varied, nonetheless enjoyable. Bamboo forests flow into Sal forests and meadows. There are herds of spotted deer to be seen with smaller herds of beautiful Antelope, the Black Buck. With a little luck, you could also spot the timorous Barking Deer. It’s snapping warns other denizens of the forest that a predator is around. There is also a very strong possibility that you will see the Rare Barasingha, the Swamp Deer. Once there were only 66 of these in Kanha, but careful conservation and management raised their population to over 400.
Spotting wild animals is always a matter of luck but Kanha is so rich in wildlife that the odds are tilted in your favor. There are 175 varieties of birds in Kanha. One can easily catch glimpses of all the grazers, a Porcupine, many Gray Langurs, Mongoose, Hyena, Jungle Cat, even a Leopard. Other wild attractions in this Tiger country include varieties of Deer – the Barasingha, Chital or Spotted Deer, Chousingha, Nilgai, as well as the majestic Gaur or Indian Bison and wild Pig.
Day 7: Kanna National Park.
Morning and afternoon safaris. (Elephent safari subject to availabilty).
Day 8: Drive to Bandhavgarh (265 Km / 6 Hrs). Evening rest. Overnight at the Bandhavgarh Jungle Lodge.
Bandhavgarh was an ancient stronghold of many kings, a land with history dating back to roughly 4000 years ago. This area had many dynasties ruling over it and finds mention in the Ramayan. This park once the private game reserve of the ruling family of Rewa also holds the distinction of being the home of the last White Tiger in the wild. The park is dotted with many caves with ancient rock paintings and carvings. The majestic Bandhavgarh Fort dominates center of the park with its own history dating back thousands of years. Various temples with statues depicting incarnations of Lord Vishnu dot the fort.
The chances of seeing a Tiger in Bandhavgarh is greater than in any of India’s other forests. In summer months Tiger can quite often be seen at couple of major waterholes in the park like Chakradhara, Gopalpur, Jurmani and Barwanala. Other important cats in Bandhavgarh are Leopard and the jungle cat. As many as 37 species have been listed for this park including 3 types of antelopes – Blue Bull, Chinkara and the Chausingha. Deer species like Chital, Sambar, Barking Deer, 4 species of bats, 2 types of squirrels, Indian Pangolin, Indian Porcupine, Palm Civet , Rare Indian Wolf, Indian Wild Dog, Ruddy and Common Mongoose, Honey Badger, Jackal, Wild Boar, Indian Hare, Common Langur and Rhesus Macaque.
The park also has over 70 species of butterflies and around 255 species of birds. It provides ideal habitat for various species of Stork ( White-necked & lesser Adjutant), Hornbill (Malabar Pied & Common Grey), herons, cranes and birds of prey like Crested Hawk, Crested Serpant Eagle, Honey Buzzard, Shikra, Lesser Kestrel. In winter Bandhavgarh attracts large number of migratory birds such as Nakta, Lesser Whistling Teal and Ruddy Shelduck. One can also see smaller birds like Gery Tit, Baya Weaver bird, Spotted Munia, the Green and Bearded Bee-eater, flycatchers and three species of parakeet- Alexandrine, Plum Headed and Rosering.
Day 9: In Bandhavgarh.
Morning and afternoon jungle safaries.
Day 10: Bandhavgarh – Katni (100 kms / 2 hrs) Katni – overnight train to Agra.
Morning jungle safari. Afternoon transfer to Katni railway station for overnight train to Agra dep. 1930hrs.
Day 11: Arrive Agra at 0815 hrs &
transfer to hotel. Morning relaxed. Afternoon visit the Tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah which too is known for its wonderful architecture. Built in memory of her father by Empress Noor Jehan, the tomb is considered an architectural marvel and often called the Mini Taj, afterwards visit Agra Fort and sunset visit to Taj Mahal.
Day 12: Agra – Fatehpur Sikri – Bharatpur (Keoladeo Ghana National Park)
Optional sunrise visit to Taj Mahal. After breakfast drive to Bharatpur (60 km) en route visit Fatehpur Sikri built in 1571, one of the world’s most perfect ghost cities and a marvel of design and construction. It is a synthesis of the flourishing styles of the Persian courts and the prevailing Hindu-Islamic trends. Fatehpur (town of victory) Sikri was built by Akbar, the third and greatest of the Great Mughals. It is over 400 years old and today its pristine red sandstone buildings are as perfect as when they were first chiseled.
The town was erected after a holy man, Sheikh Salim Chisti, decreed the births of three sons to Akbar after all his children had died in infancy. There are three sections to the City: The Royal Palace (notable for the Emperor’s throne), the outside of the Royal Palace and the Jami Masjid (the location of the Tomb of Sheikh Salim Chishti, a masterpiece in brilliant white marble). The centerpiece of this remarkable monument is the Jewel House of the Diwan I Khas. Architecturally extraordinary, the four doorways lead into a single-story room where a huge central pillar supports a seat reached by mid-air walkways.
Continue drive Bharatpur & check into hotel.
In the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary there are more than 300 species of waterside birds and migratory birds. Other wildlife attraction in the bird sanctuary are the Siberian Cranes, Pelicans, Geese, Ducks, Eagles, Hawks, Shanks, Stints, Wagtails, Warblers, Wheatears, Flycatchers, Buntings and Larks.
Afternoon riksha ride to Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary and experience the rich flora and fauna of the region.
Day 13: Bharatpur – Ranthambore Tiger Reserve (by Jan Shatabdi Express)
Early morning riksha ride to Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. Afternoon transfer to railway station for Jan Shatabdi Express Train. dep. 1545 hrs arr. 1800 hrs to Sawai Madhopur Railway Station. Upon arrival you are transfer to Ranthambore National Park (15 kms, 30 minutes drive). Overnight at hotel.
Day 14: Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
Situated in Eastern Rajasthan, where the Aravali Hill ranges and the Vindhyan plateau meet, the Ranthambhore National Park was once the hunting preserve of the Maharajas of Jaipur. The rivers Chambal in the South and Banas in the North bound the Ranthambore National Park. Six man made lakes are the central focus of the park and many perennial streams criss-cross the entire park.
The landscape is dotted with ancient Banyan Trees, Dhok & Pipal trees, clusters of mango trees and crisscrossed with evergreen belts. The terrain is made up of massive rock formations, steep scarps, perennial lakes and streams and forest suddenly opening up into large areas of Savannah. The terrain of Ranthambore Wildlife Sanctuary fluctuates between impregnable forests and open bush land. The forest is the typically dry deciduous type, with Dhok, being the most prominent tree.
Ranthambore National Park is famous for its Tigers. For a relatively small area, the park has a rich diversity of fauna and flora – species list includes 300 trees, 50 aquatic plants, 272 birds, 12 reptiles including the Marsh Crocodile & amphibians and 30 mammals.
For the wildlife savvy, Ranthambore wildlife sanctuary today offers an intense diversity of flora and fauna. Apart from the Tiger it has a large numbers of Sambar, Chital, Nilgai, Gazzelle, Boars, Mongoose, Indian Hare, Monitor Lizards and a variety of birds.
Enjoy two safaris at the Ranthambore Tiger Reserve.
Day 15: Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
Morning & afternoon jungle safaries.
Day 16: Ranthambore – Delhi (by Train)
Transfer to Sawai Madhopur railway station for train to Delhi dep. 0710 hrs / arr. 1230 hrs. On arrival transfer to airport hotel for wash and change. Late night transfer to International airport for flight to home.