Another 30km drive, crossing a patch of Melghat Tiger Reserve and there you are at Chikaldhara, another hill station but in Maharashtra territory. It is a natural serene place with mythological connection. The hill station is believed to have been named after a demon Keechaka, who was killed by Bheema, one of the Pandavas in the epic, Mahabharata. Other than this, the present phase of the hill station has different shades to display in its every fold. The hill station has view points that offer a panoramic view of the valley down below, but are also famous for trekking. Besides this there is tribal museum, Gavilgad fort, Narnala fort and Pandit Nehru Botanical Museum. The hill station has a good population of tigers, panthers, sambars, wild boars, sloth bears and wild dogs living in the conserved area of Melghat Tiger Reserve.
It took us an hour to reach the forest office for reservations. We booked a safari jeep with an open top. We had a talkative and informative guide with us who knew his way around the place. The Safari started at 5 pm and we weaved through the forests filled with dry vegetation and tall trees. The first wildlife we had a glimpse of the regal Sambar stag and then a group of white Langoors as well.