If you want to live the wildlife adventure that lives in India’s rich and diverse forests, national parks and sanctuaries, you have but one choice – trek the less-familiar trails along with someone who not only knows the lay of the land but can read its many moods and can coax it to share with you its deepest secrets.
At Questrails, we don’t just have hands-on knowledge of the parks and the accommodation facilities they offer. Thanks to the local members of our staff who have grown up amidst these wilds, our guests have always gone back with adventure experiences that were unique to their trip.
Speaking of trips, we carefully select and put together the itinerary, the accommodation and the game park visits to give you a memorable and the widest range possible of wildlife sighting from within India’s 1200 species of birds and 350 mammals within 59 National Parks and 372 sanctuaries. You will accompany experienced naturalists on early morning walks, while the afternoons will be mostly reserved for game park rides on open jeeps, and elephant-backs and forest walks. Be prepared. You might also be taken on a cruise along the river on bamboo rafts or boats and be treated to anecdotes and glimpses of the natural biodiversity of India’s forests that are unforgettable.
Corbett National Park
Established in 1936, named after the legendary hunter-naturalist and one of India’s first conservationist – Jim Corbett, this park is India’s oldest national park. Unlike the African forests, here the forest is dense and the game more spread out; hence, animal-spotting is literally like going on a hunting safari.
Ranthambhore National Park
It is set against the majestic Ranthambhore Fort in the Aravalli hills of Rajasthan and the 400 sq km Sawai Madhopur reserve spread is amongst the 11 tiger reserves of the country. Just 4 hours from Jaipur, the wildlife mix is interesting here – from tigers to Grey Francolins.
Keoladeo Ghana National Park – Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
The Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary, 1 hour away from Agra, is one of the world’s finest heronries. It is also home to rich aquatic plant and animal life that thrives in the fresh water shallow marsh along with its resident and migratory birds. This is a World Heritage site and the birds are viewed through cycle rickshaw rides and walks.
Kanha National Park
It is easy to see why Rudyard Kipling drew inspiration from here for his famous ‘Jungle Book’. With lush sal and bamboo forests, grassy meadows and ravines spread across 1945 sq kms, Kanha is one of the largest parks of the subcontinent and a gorgeous one as well. It is also a good place to spot the endangered tiger in the wild and the rare hard-ground swamp deer.
Bandhavgarh National Park
Perched on the Vindhyas in Madhya Pradesh, this 105 sq km Bandhavgarh National Park has the highest density of tiger population in the country. Interestingly, before it turned into a National Park, the forest was the Shikargah, or the game preserve cared for by the Maharajahs of Rewa.
Sunderbans National Park
At the mouth of the Ganges across West Bengal lies The Sundarbans – the largest halophytic mangrove forest. It is seasonally flooded and covers 4000 sq kms, lying inland. However, what this fresh water swamp is most famous for is the Royal Bengal Tiger, apart from species of birds, crocodiles and snakes. A World heritage site especially known for the Royal Bengal Tiger, it is estimated that there are 500 Bengal tigers here. At the Sundarbans, wildlife viewing is strictly through powered country crafts.
Kaziranga National Park
Welcome to the land of the the great one-horned rhinoceroses – the Kaziranga National Park, Assam. This vast expanse of tall elephant grass, marshland and dense tropical moist broadleaf forests is also known for its conservation of avifaunal species, elephants, wild water buffalo and swamp deer. Known for the highest density of tigers, the best way to view wildlife and the bird species here is on elephant back.
Namdapha National Park
On the border of Myanmar and Arunachal Pradesh in the northeast, the Namdapha National Park is a riot of habitats, flora and fauna. You will find the majestic Takin, Himalayan black bear, the wild goat, musk deer, slow Loris, red panda, clouded leopard and the snow leopard here. What’s more, this park terain itself is challenging – covers a wide range of altitudes from 200 m – 4500 m.
Manas National Park
A World Heritage site, a Project Tiger reserve, an Elephant Reserve and a Biosphere Reserve all at once, the Manas Wildlife Sanctuary lies in Assam at the Himalayan foothills reaching out to Bhutan. The park is famous for the smooth Indian otter, Gangetic dolphin, Hispid hare, Sloth bear and Pygmy hog apart from the clouded leopard, panther and the Asiatic elephant.