How many of you have seen a tiger before? Most of the answers will be ambiguous because everyone wants to see a tiger. Then where can one spot a tiger? Well, even if there are circuses and zoo’s all over India, there’s some kind of a thrill you experiences when all of a sudden you came across a Tiger roaming freely in the wilderness of its natural habitat: the fields and forests of India. There are numerous Tiger reserves in India, that are preserving this ferocious beast, 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 cum 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 and the whole park area 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.
Flora & Fauna:
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.
Major Wildlife Attractions:
Spotting wild animals is always a matter of luck but Kanha is so rich in wildlife that the odds are titled in your favour. First time visitors are often so keen to spot the larger animals that they overlook the smaller ones. There are 175 varieties of birds in Kanha. So if you happen to be bird watcher, look forward to a full bird show. Most people are keener to meet Kanha’s major attraction, the Tiger; still one has to be patient to spot one.
But while on a mission to find a tiger, 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.
Elephant Safari: The animals at Kanha are best observed from the elephant back and the open country makes the chance of sightings reasonably good.
Kanha Museum: There is a museum at Kanha national park, depicting attributes and activities of the park and the tribal culture of the state of Madhya Pradesh.
Best Time to Visit:
The visiting season to Kanha national park is within the months of April to June and November to January. The park is closed from July to Mid-November that is during the monsoon season.
How to Get there:
Air: Nagpur at 266-kms is the nearest Airport to visit Kanha National Park and is connected by various domestic airline services with Mumbai.
Rail: Jabalpur at 169-kms is the convenient rail head to visit Kanha.
Road: Kanha National Park is connected by road with Jabalpur 175-kms, Khajuraho 445-kms, Nagpur 266-kms, Mukki 25-kms, Raipur 219-kms. Within the park: Koshi – Kanha (9-kms), Kishi – Katia (4-kms), Kishi – Mukki (32-kms). There are regular to and fro bus service available from Jabalpur to Kanha.
Local Transport: The Madhya Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation (MPSTDC) operates a Jeep Service for visitors to go around in the park. Advance bookings can be made through the Manager, MPSTDC, Log huts, Kisli. Wild Chalet Resorts at Village Mocha, Kanha can also arrange for local sightseeing.
Park Visitation Timings:
15 November to 15 February – Sunrise to 12.00 noon and 3.00 pm to Sunset
16 February to 30 April – Sunrise to 1200 noon and 4.00 pm to Sunset
1 May to 30 June – Sunrise to 11.00 am and 5.00 pm to Sunset
General Info / Tips:
Note : Visitors are advised to reach the gate half an hour in advance to complete the formalities for entry into the park.
Tourist Information Centres:
The Manager, Madhya Pradesh State Tourism Development Corporation Ltd., Log Hut, Kisli, Bhopal.
The Field Director, Project Tiger, Kanha Tiger Reserve, Mandla – 481661.
Madhya Pradesh, India
Tigers, Leopards, Bears