Into the tiger country

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Bandhavgarh National Park lies in the heart of Madhya Pradesh - the traditional tiger country. Once the hunting ground of the Maharajas of Rewa, an alarming number of tigers were hunted down here during the pre-independence era. Area: 448 sq. km.An area of 105 sq. km. in Bandhavgarh was declared a National Park in 1968. The rest of the area was added to the park in 1982. It became a tiger reserve in 1993. It is a compact reserve of sal trees, bamboo, birds and tigers. The park derived its name from an ancient fort in the area and is best viewed from the Bandhavgarh fort. The density of the tiger population in the old park area is the highest in Asia. In the 2004 census, the number of tigers was put at 56. The park is home to several species of mammals, birds and butterflies. Fauna: Wild attractions include tiger, leopard, spotted deer, sambhar, wild boar and fox or jackal. The Indian bison, barking deer, nilgai, common langurs and Rhesus Macaque can also be spotted here.Birds: Little grebe, egret, sarus crane, black Ibis, lesser whistling teal, white-eyed buzzard, crested serpent eagle, black vulture, Egyptian vulture, red jungle fowl and kingfishers. Visitors need a permit to enter the national park. The entry fee is Rs. 25 for Indian nationals and Rs. 500 for foreigners. They can enter it on four wheelers or on an elephant back. A vehicle can be hired for Rs. 150. Best time to visit: Between October and June. The park is closed from July 1 to September 30. The park is green in winter. But the sightings are more in summer.How to get there: Nearest airport, Jabalpur - around 200 km.Nearest railway station, Umaria - 32 km.Nearest bus stands, Umaria, Katni and Jabalpur.For accommodation Limited rooms are available at government guesthouses. But there are lot of private lodges in the locality. For more details, contact Field Director, Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve, Umaria or call 07653-222214




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