As kids and even adults, we have all enjoyed reading the book and lately also watched the movie book adaptation of The Jungle Book, Rudyard Kipling’s unforgettable and evergreen classic book about the life of a young boy growing up in the wild with the wild animals as his family.
It was the jungles and the wildlife of Kanha National Park in Madhya Pradesh that was the writer’s inspiration. Sitting right in the heart of the ‘Tiger Country’, unlike other Tiger Reserves, there is an extremely high chance of you spotting a tiger in this Park, tiger spotting in Kanha is pretty often and regular. Along with the huge expanses of green grass meadows, horseshoe-shaped valley, tall trees, and the Surpan River meandering through, it is one of the most striking and scenic wildlife reserves in Asia.
What to spot in Kanha National Park:
In India, if you want to be closest to spotting a tiger, Kanha National Park is the place. Along with tigers, the park is home to various other wildlife species, you can spot bisons, sambhar, chital, barking deer, black deer, black buck, Chousingha, Nilgai, sloth bear, jackals, porcupine, hyena, python, and leopard as well. Barasinghas here were on the verge of extinction but strong measures have helped save them and now they can be seen in plenty here. Birds of various species can also be found like storks, teals, pond herons, egrets, peacock, peafowl, jungle fowl, kingfishers, woodpeckers, and owls.
Things to know before you visit Kanha:
- Evening shift Jeep Safari remains closed every Wednesday.
- Carry an ID card as proof like Passport, Driving License, PAN Card or Voter.
- Elephant safaris are also available and can be booked once you reach.
Peacock (National Bird of India) found at the middle of the road at Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh.
A 8 year old Royal Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris) walks a dust track at Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh.
Chital stags sparring in Kanha, Central India.
A fully grown Male Barahshinga in wonderful winter coat at Kanha National Park.
Safari Timings at Kanha National Park:
The best way to explore the jungles of Kanha is by the open jeep safari that would take you through the dense green forest accompanied by a guard. Kanha National Park remains open from 16th October to 30th June and safaris can be done in the mornings and evenings.
Jeep Safari timings:
16th October to 15th February: Sunrise to 11:00 AM, 02:00 PM to Sunset
16th February to 15th April: Sunrise to 11:00 AM, 03 PM to Sunset
16th April to 30th June: Sunrise to 10:00 AM, 03:30 PM to Sunset
No need to worry, Kanha is now online and entrance tickets can be booked online or via agents or you could also book at the booking counter at the entrance gate of the park. Book in advance to avoid unavailability of safari seats. The Jeep safaris allow 6 people including the driver and guard and the rates per vehicle are somewhat as below which includes entrance ticket, guide fee, jeep rent, service charge:
Kanha Jeep Safari rates from all zones: Indian National: Rs 6500, Foreign National: Rs 9500
Best time to visit the Kanha National park:
Being tropical Summers are pretty hot & humid ranging from 25 – 40 °C. Winters are cool with 23 °C – 10 °C and the best time to visit. November and February are excellent after the monsoons have rejuvenated the jungle and in flocked by migratory birds.
How to reach: Kanha is situated in the heart of Madhya Pradesh. It is well connected by road, rail, and air from all major cities. Daily flights from Delhi and Mumbai to Jabalpur, Nagpur, Raipur are available which are all at a distance of 3-6 hrs by road from Kanha and one can drive down or take a bus here from these nearby cities.
Featured Image Credit: Rohit Varma