There are 51 National Parks in India which claim to have natural wild Bengal tigers in them. From mine and my wife’s experience over the last 8 years of travelling on wildlife holidays to India, Bandhavgarh in the central state of Madhya Pradesh is consistently the best in terms of accessibility, location and actual tigers sightings.
The best times to go will vary according to area, between October to April; with the monsoon season starting around June time when all the NPs are closed. We have just returned from a round trip of 17 days, to include the Asiatic lions of Sasan Gir, in Gujurat, another reserve in Maharastra, plus two separate places in Madhya Pradesh. We always book a bespoke holiday based around our photographic requirements; primarily exclusive use of jeeps for the two of us on the game drives /safaris; essential if you want to stop to see the wide variety of wildlife other than the elusive tiger. Also, we travel by internal flights and private taxis at very reasonable cost. It gives us ultimate flexibility and saves time over the arduous and generally unpleasant train journeys that many travellers use.
Apart from the fleeting glimpses of tigers at a great distance, which is exciting in itself, we did get some wonderful close encounters this time. Even though we have seen many tigers now, it still takes one’s breathe away every time you see one of these gorgeous creatures. It really is a privilege to share their home. Sloth bears, leopards are occasionally seen, plus an abundance of bird life including eagles, hawks and vultures.
This type of holiday is not for the faint-hearted; it can be quite tiring bumping along dust roads in a jeep. But to see real wildlife, that is true wild animals not behind bars behaving normally, is something to that will be indelibly printed in your treasured memories.
There are many companies to travel with, but we always use the same one, who not only take great care to ensure a seamless experience, but also have an unrivalled knowledge of Indian wildlife. The Tiger’s Den resort is the place to stay in Tala, and “naturesafariindia.com”:http://naturesafariindia.com/ is the company to arrange your holiday. Have a look at their respective websites; we highly recommend both.
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