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A Project Tiger reserve located in the Seoni and Chhindwara District is spread about 290 sq kms in area, in Southern Madhya Pradesh.
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Emily Dickenson, a great American poet of her time once said that, "Hope is the thing with feathers that perches and sings the tune without the words and never stops at all." Every time I think of birds or I go for bird watching this quote automatically pops up in my mind. For me birds are a symbol of hope and freedom. Bird watching involves its own pleasures that only acquisitive birders enjoy. But even if you are not an avid birder but you love nature, you can be a part of this happiness.
The Pench Tiger Reserve (Madhya Pradesh) is a 292.85 km2 Project Tiger tiger reserve located in the Seoni District and Chhindwara District of southern Madhya Pradesh in central India.It is contiguous on the south with the 257.23 km2 Pench Tiger Reserve (Maharashtra), both of which are included in the Level 1, 13,223 km2 (5,105 sq mi) Tiger Conservation Unit – 31 (Kanha-Pench TCU). (Source wikipedia)We decided to go to Pench as we had heard of it from a couple of our friends who had been there. It was quite a last minute decision and the long weekend of 26th Jan would have made it slightly challenging.But as luck would have it we did get bus tickets from Hyderabad to Nagpur and could book a one-way atleast.Our go to person was "Chintoo Dwivedi" who made all the arrangements aroudn the logistics of our trip.DAY 1:We were picked up from the Nagpur and dropped off at our hotel "Mahua Vann" which was 100 kms away from Nagpur. A very pleasant ride and we were quite pleasantly surprised with the last minute accomodation arrangements.We managed to rest a bit and catch a night safari with our guide "Imran Khan" who was extremely knowledgable and insanely passionate about the wild.We had very interesting conversations and got some really interesting facts from our guide. The safari lasted about 3 hours and was worth the time spent.DAY 2:Chintu also arranged for the early morning safari for which we had to wake up at 4 30 am.Again totally worth our while and some extremely beautiful moments of silence and soaking ourselves in the randomness of the wild.DAY 3:We took the day easy and went for some cycling and a trek exploring our vicinity which again was very energizing and lovely.
Pench is about 2 hours from nagpur by road, the hotel had sorted our car ride. We reached the Pench Jungle Camp, to be greeted by our great hosts - Agam and Anuradha, this couple lives in the jungle and takes care of the camp property. Very warm and welcoming, they'll make sure you're as comfortable as you can get in the jungle! Pench Jungle Camp is just outside the main Turia Gate of the Pench National Park and thus an excellent location to stay. Post lunch, we left for our first jungle safari to the Khursapar gate. Being the first experience in the jungle, it was exciting and peaceful. The sounds of the jungle is unlike any other, I would call it 'chaotic peace'. This gate, we later realised is not that famous for any sightings, so would strongly not recommend to take it. Safari cost: Rs. 5500/- for small gypsy and Rs. 7500 for jumbo (both can fit in about 4-6 people) The night had a nice tribal performance by the villagers (even if you don't like it, appreciate it as it's the only form of employment for them). Being the 31st, we had a few drinks after which we all passed out as we had a very long day! Day 2: Just a few birdsWe didn't opt for the morning safari, so got up straight for breakfast then relaxed in this beautiful jungle property of merely 24 odd rooms, we had taken the luxury tents which is an experience in its own right. Agam made sure we had the food of our choice, if we didn't like anything from the buffet and also made sure the staff was at our disposal. Agam being a naturist, it was interesting even just to walk around the property with him, as he will give you insights into the plants and birds around. Also his stories of the jungle made us all, all the more excited for the next safari in the afternoon. Post lunch we left for the safari by about 230 and this time agam was nice enough to drive us himself, he gave us deep insights into every bird and animal we sighted. He also helped us sight a beautiful owl sleeping inside the hollow of a tree. Unfortunately we weren't lucky enough to sight a tiger, although we heard many alarm calls from the deer and monkies. We slept early that night as we were scheduled for an early morning safari the next day. Day 3: Paddevwali sighted with her 4 sub-adult cubs! Early morning, 0630am we left for our next jungle adventure, freezing cold due to the windchill in the open jeep. We were with this other couple from Hyderabad which was alot of fun! In the wild everybody is one, just an extra pair of eyes can really help. We heard strong alarm calls but couldn't sight anything.. After about an hour, was our moment, at about 830am we see a line of jeeps near the a small pond on route number 2. We get our first sight of the Paddevwali tigress with her 4 sub-adult cubs! They were playing around the lake and then even crossed our jeep. The mother also sprayed with a squat to mark her territory! It's was an amazing experience, majestic yet gentle, calm yet ferocious, dangerous yet innocent! Evening was chilling with the new friends we made at Kohka wilderness camp. Day 4: Last Safari Again an early morning safari, we left in the chilling cold, as soon as we entered the jungle from the Turia gate, we realised it was dead.. So quite we could barely hear even the birds, there wasn't any alarm call during the entire safari. We weren't as lucky as the day before. The same day evening we left for Nagpur then to Mumbai by the Duronto. Tiger sighting is purely on your luck, the guide can help you but no one can guarantee anything! But the rush to try and find one is amazing. Apart from the tiger, we sighted the jackal, spotted deer, sambhar deer, nilgai, langoor, kingfisher, drongo king crow, blabbers, owl, blue Jay etc etc!
My latest escapade from the busy schedules of city life was Pench-Patalkot trip with my childhood buddies Indrani and Bidisha. It was an old dream of ours to explore new places together . Bidisha works as a PhD scholar at Pench Tiger Reserve and she almost single-handedly chalked out a plan for the three of us.We traveled from Howrah to Nagpur via Geetanjali SF Exp and reached Pench on 30th Dec, 2015.We spend 2 days of absolute peace at the tiger reserve, situated in Seoni district of Madhya Pradesh at the border of Chhindwara district. The dry deciduous forest of Pench mesmerized us with each frame she created from dawn to dusk. We met Cheetal, Sambhar, Langoor , Jackal, Elephant , Bison, Peacocks and various other unknown birds during the safari .It was our misfortune that we couldn't find the Royal Bengal Tiger in the forest. But no regrets on that part because nature was really kind to fill our souls with her never ending opulence. On 1st January, 2016 we started for Patalkot and it took us nearly 4 hours to reach. At first sight Patalkot seemed like the Indian version of Grand canyon, only covered with dense flora .Patalkot is situated in the Chhindwara district near Tamiya village. The hills of mighty Satpura range is home to various tribes, most particularly Bheels. They used to live in the canyons and were hunter-gatherers for a long time. Now they live on the top of the hills and use the land for cultivation. Patalkot is not really known to most travelers and that's what makes it more beautiful. We made a short trek to the bottom of the hills where we found cave like structures and the narrow Dudhi stream. We were tired as hell when we returned to our car after 4 hours. But it was worth the pain. Landforms of Madhya Pradesh was unknown to all of us. From what we saw, I can tell that it is like no other. It is not like the mountain where wide ranges block your view and sky changes all the time. It is not like ocean where blue is the color that soothes your soul. Satpura range is rough yet beautiful piece of nature where you can see as far as your sight goes. There is nothing that interrupt your view. It is dusty and rude and yet not arrogant . It was the first time we visited the table top mountains in the large plateau that we only read about, in our geography book.We traveled back to Kolkata via Nagpur and reached on 3rd January, 2016. Patalkot and Pench trip was , in true sense, a dream-come-true event to us and they are going to stay in my memories for a long time, if not forever.
On that fine morning there was a discussion going on, on the radio about a tigress called Baghin Nala from Pench who had been found dead and it was suspected that poisoning had been the reason for it. It broke my heart to hear it, especially since she had just given birth to 4 cubs. For all things tiger, I call up Adeet Ghosh A.K.A Lala our family’s jungle man and my eldest brother(first cousin on a technicality)He said he was going to Pench in the coming week. That was all I needed to hear. Pench had always been on my list of places to visit since the Jungle book was set in this place! I got to the office, applied for leave and booked my tickets. Best first 30 minutes of the work day ever!!The jungle has it’s own infectious charm and the week went by very slowly. I flew to Nagpur and met my brother there and we drove to Pench which is about 2.5 hours away. We discussed Baghin Nala and the various tigers of Pench on the way. Collarwali was the tigress that got my attention since this was a very unique name. She gets her name from a tracking collar that the forest department placed around her neck as a tracking device. I am pretty certain the device stopped working a while back and now it’s just there.
Our stay in Pench was at this place called as VILLAGE MACHAAN. Gypsies were booked through the hotel for the safaris at Pench. Next day morning, our safari was through the Turia gate. This gate is very popular among the tourists. Raju BharweJi was our guide and we had a driver who was equally enthusiastic as our guide. RajuJi was as good as Nain SinghJi in Kanha. We soon came to know about the well known tigers/tigress' here in Pench. "Baghinnala Wali female", "Collar Wali female", and 2 male tigers. On further questioning we found out that these were the first litter of a very bold tigress called as "Badi Maa". "Badi maa" as fondly called by the Pench locals is sadly no more now. But she has a legacy of her own and had a record territory of approximately 44 sq.km. , the largest ever by a female tigress in India. The "Collar Wali female" also had a very rare feature, it is the only tigress to have given birth to 5 cubs at a time of which all have survived and now are fully grown. Pench as a forest is very different from Tadoba or Kanha. It is an open jungle with dense overgrowth of bushes all around, and some lovely places which are very dense and could be called as a "green tunnel". A nice effort made but no sighting even after such efforts was the only disheartening thing till then. Then came the most exciting part of the entire trip, the afternoon safari. You will come to know why I'm suddenly calling this the most exciting part of the trip. We began the afternoon safari on a very positive note because even after 4 safaris we were not able to sight a single tiger. The guide for our Turia zone safari was Sukhram DhurweJi. He was a perfect example for a positive man. Right from the start of this safari DhurweJi was extremely confident of a sighting and kept saying that even he wanted to see a tiger since it was a holiday the next day, and he did not have a shift the day after that. Hearing something like this from a man who sees the Tiger everyday was indeed a surprise. He told us many stories about the tigers of that region. He told us many stories about his previous job that was of a "Khalasi" in the steep hilly meadows of the forest at Pench. By a khalasi, I mean that he is a keeper of the local power stations at that region. Also this man kept on saying that he was just speaking but words cannot be enough to satisfy a tourist and his main aim was to spot a tiger. We spotted almost all the animals at Pench except the sloth bear which is a nocturnal animal, and usually wanders only in the night. In a sequence we saw spotted deer, a group of jackals, a whole herd of wild dogs, a fully grown male sambhar deer,a female neelgaay and some bison and sambhar deer quenching their thirst at baghinnala. The only animal left was the tiger, and we wanted to see it. Just minutes after seeing the last jackal we came across a chaurasta(a place where 4 roads converge) where there were almost 11-12 vehicles waiting. Suddenly DhurweJi rose up from his seat and pointed his finger into the dense overgrowth where we could see the face off the tiger. Initially we mistook this for the famous "Collar Wali female" but later DhurweJi recognised it as a male tiger which turned out to be a 4 year old child of the "Collar Wali female". There are points about this tigerThis is the first time that the tiger which we saw was to be sighted alone and in the territory of its mother. This tiger was sighted for the first time after it had seperated from its mother. It gave us an excellent sighting and an experience of a lifetime, I will reveal the reason soon.There was a forest ranger and some forest officials on two motorcycles and about 12 gypsies enjoying the lovely sighting of this beauty. To be very honest a we saw a tiger royally resting in its habitat. We loved the tiger and were by its side in proximity for about 45 minutes before all the vehicles started reversing and making their way towards the exit point as the clock was inching towards 6.00 pm (The vehicles and the guide are fined if they dont make it to the exit checkpost before 6.00 pm) . At half past 5, we were not yet ready to make the move out of this place and wanted to wait for the tiger to cross the road and go into the dense jungle. By then we were the only vehicle near the animal. No forest ranger was close by and we could stay on. At exactly 5.35 pm, the tiger rose up and started moving towards the other side of the road, but coming as a surprise it settled at the boundary of the road towards our right side. We were really worried as we cannot speed past the animal when it is just at the boundary of the road (It is a risk of the animal attacking). We waited, but the tiger was totally unaware of its surroundings and what was happening around it as it continued to peacefully rest just beside the road. After another 5 minutes it started crossing the road, and we felt relieved as the tiger was advancing towards the denser part of the forest, but the twist in the tale comes now, this tiger just crossed the road and now settled at the left boundary of the road. DhurweJi's reaction to this scene is epic and i have recorded the same on video. After a couple of minutes the tiger rose again and this time to our relief it really started moving towards the jungle. Now the most awaited part of my entire purpose of this excerpt starts, and indeed it is the most memorable experience that I will remember throughout my life. As the tiger royally walked towards the jungle, our driver Pawan JaiswalJi revved up the accelerator and to our sudden surprise the tiger stopped its movement and turned back. It was staring and looking into our eyes, it was clearly disturbed. DhurweJi asked the driver to slow down the vehicle to avert any attack by the tiger as it seemed very fierce and scared. The dangerous thing about it was that it was only 4-5 years old and still not fully mature. So he could attack anytime and I doubted he had an intention to attack. And my doubt turned into a reality, he slowly advanced towards the vehicle. At this time he was precisely about 4-5 metres away from the vehicle, which is randomly a pounce away in a tiger's terms. He quickly paced his steps and moved towards the vehicle, there was no movement either from the guide and driver or from us. We were glued to the seat and holding the handle tightly. In about 2-3 seconds time, he had stopped moving and continued his way into the jungle. Things were back to normal and we had just experienced something that no one might have even thought of. We were in a state of surprise for about 10 minutes and the driver had already consistently clocked a speed of 60 kmph, as compared to the permitted 20 kmph to reach the exit checkpost faster. At exactly 6.01 pm we had reached the exit point and had just experienced a very unique sighting of "THE ROYAL BENGAL TIGER". The ferocious look of the tiger still hovers in my mind whenever i think of it. This still gives me goosebumps and indeed it was a lifetime experience.
In India, jungles are full of stories. On the 150th anniversary of The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, Travel and Leisure goes on Mowgli’s trail to discover these.
Summer has already begun in southern part of India. The best thing to do now is, to be at home and sip some cool drinks. But then a travel enthusiast always have a better plan to begin the summers. If you are staying in Hyderabad for a long time, you will also be in search of some awesome weekend getaways like me. Then here it is – Pench National Park! Pench is a Tiger Reserve situated about 600 kms from Hyderabad in Seoni district of Madhya Pradesh on the banks of Pench river.How To Get There ?We took a train from Hyderabad to Nagpur on friday night. It takes about 8 hours by train. From Nagpur to Pench (Turia Gate) we drove, which took around 2-3 hours. The other options will be fly till Nagpur Airport and then drive to Pench or a complete road trip to Pench. However, the road conditions are not so good to drive so long.Things To Do ?Madhya Pradesh Tourism organizes Jungle Safari here. There are three different timings for the safari and the bookings have to be made in advance. Only 20-30 vehicles (open jeeps) with a registered guide is allowed to enter during each time slot. The safari timings are :Morning : 6:30 am to 10:30 amEvening : 3:00 pm to 6:00 pmNight : 6:00 pm to 9:00 pmEach safari costs around Rs 4000/- for Indian citizens. We took the evening and night safari. The morning and evening safari are conducted within the core forest and night safari is conducted in the buffer zone. I will suggest to avoid the night safari unless you want to experience the jungle in night. The reason being the night safari is conducted in buffer zone and chances of animal sighting are very less.We were very lucky to spot one tiger, a tigress, elephants. lots of spotted dear , peacocks, rabbits, langoor, kingfisher bird, nilgai, jackals, bison, snake, fishes in the river and many more species of birds and butterflies.Where To Stay ?Luckily there are many resorts around the park which provide you luxurious staying options near the park. We stayed in Pench Jungle Camp which was 1-2 kms away from Turia Gate (Park Entrance Gate). It’s a beautiful 3 -star resort which provides food and stay package at a very nominal rate( Rs 6500 for stay in deluxe tent – 2 persons. Breakfast, Lunch, Evening tea and Dinner included. The food was awesome here :-) ). We had booked our safari, nagpur to pench drive and drop through them only. It was very convenient and hassle free. The prices are almost same everywhere and it was one of the best found and recommended.This was a short break from the monotonous city life and a rich experience of staying and exploring the nature from so close. Experiencing wildlife in their natural habitat and wandering in lush green forest is an experience you will always remember and cherish.Some Pictures from the trip :
Village Machaan Resort Pench SeoniWhy stay at Village Machaan Resort: Situated on the edge of the buffer and core zone of Pench National Park, the resort provides cottages with a personal "machan" or a rooftop sit-out to present a view of the wild to every visitor. The property is spread across 15 acres of wilderness close to the Pench National Park. To make your stay an enriching experience, the resort provides wildlife experts to accompany you on outdoor tours, tiger safari and bird watching.Perfect for: The resort is perfect for bird watchers and photographers who wish to be in the middle of the wilderness to experience it all. Village Machaan Resort also has expertise in organising tours for business travellers.
Pench Jungle CampWhy stay at Pench Jungle Camp: The campsite gives every visitor an opportunity to explore Pench National Park. Guests are provided with a packed breakfast served in the park and the evening drives through the forest area are followed by high tea. To enrich your experience, the campsite also organises hot air balloon safaris.Perfect for: This glamping site accommodates two in each tent and serves as the perfect choice for couples. The wide range of tents, cottages and family cottages make it a perfect spot for solo adventurers and families with kids.
The story of Mowgli is the story of a feral child brought up by the animals of Pench area in Seoni. The first set of Jungle Book stories date back to 1893, after which came the widely popular The Second Jungle Book in 1895.The Pench area, which Kipling talks about had not even gained the status of a national park when the first Mowgli stories were published.
Next morning we were back in the jungle looking for Collarwali. We drove around with no luck. A jeep crossed us with a very excited Maharashtrian family telling everyone they saw, “Kiti sundar wagh!”(Such a beautiful tiger)Now as much as I want everyone who visits the jungle to see tigers, it shouldn’t come at the expense of me not seeing one(Yes I can be petty). I returned their excitement to them with a frown. After a while we decided to stop for breakfast.
A few hours’ drive from Nagpur is Pench Tiger Reserve in Seoni district. This Reserve or Mowgli Land, as the park is famously called is the original setting of Rudyard Kipling's most famous work, The Jungle Book. The Jungle Book and its character Mowgli is based on Pench National Park. So as soon as you enter the Seoni area, you will see familiar names like Bagheera resort, Mowgli Jungle homes etc. Amazingly many places described in this book are actual locations in Seoni district, like the Waingunga river with its gorge where Sher Khan was killed, Kanhiwara village and the Seoni hills.We spent the evening at Jungle Homes where we are told that we need to be at the Turia gate of Pench by 6:00 AM at least, to finish the formalities. That means we would be leaving at 5:45 AM max which means by 5:30 AM, I got to be out of my room, which means I need to be up by 5:00 AM at the max! Wake up at 5:00 AM in the cold just to see a bunch of Tigers.Not happening. Skeptically I decided to give it just one shot.5:30 AMAfter layering myself warm, I groggily made it out of my room. In the dark I could see the open gypsy waiting for us. It was more open than I had expected and wondered how would this be of any protection against any animal attack?It was a bit was too early in the morning to think, anything anyways.Soon we were at Turia gate of Pench, waiting our turn to get in.6:30AMThe sun is just about rising and we drive around and park ourselves on the trail waiting for the guide to figure out the path of the Tiger.We spend the next hour or so listening to the ‘call of the wild’, basically listening to the bark of chitals and monkeys to figure out the location of the Tiger.7:30AMBy now I am not only hungry, sleepy and cold but impatient too. Suddenly, everyone jumps in excitement. There is something beyond the high grass in the midst of the thick trees.We crawl our gypsy a little ahead and then we see a spotted orange creature. Ok that wasn’t a Tiger but a beautiful Leopard crossing the trail ahead of us! I had never seen a wild predator this beautiful so up close and just to watch it for those few seconds was really exciting.We followed it for a while till we lost it in the thick jungle again.By now, I was awake in all senses and had forgotten all about the hunger or cold.We just had a Leopard sighting, which is way rarer than even a Tiger sighting!8:30 AMTo say the least, we were very pleased. Now we drove around with a sense of satisfaction and watched the birds, deer, and langurs at peace. Soon we stopped for our packed breakfast, soaked up more of the warm sun and drove around the reserve in search of the Tiger.10:00 AM
Hike through the jungle where it all began
Named after the Pench River that flows through the forest, Pench National Park is located in the areas of Seoni and Chhindwara districts. The tiger reserve is also known for offering rafting adventures that are offered within. You can even stay inside the Pench National Park, as there are some really stunning properties and tree houses that offer accommodation at decent prices.
This summer last week, I was finally lucky enough to go for a trip to Pench national park in Madhya Pradesh. I had heard a lot about it’s beauty, it’s inspiration for the Jungle Book, it’s amazing management (being in M.P) and thanks to Mumbai Travellers who organized this trip, my dream was finally coming true! The journey to Pench was extremely comfortable – the roads in the last hour passing through the Tiger corridor with tall bamboo and saag trees lining up on either sides of the highway. Our resort in Pench, Tiger n Woods was a beautiful simple and extremely comfortable place with a nice sit out area, a lovely machaan with neatly kept rooms. We felt at home in an instant. Outside the Pench forest, I saw a pleasantly surprising sight. That of smartly dressed women guides arriving on bikes. In my limited 4 safaris to other national parks, this had not happened before. Also, unlike other national parks, Pench forest I learnt, is extremely well maintained and like other M.P forests, has a strict identity check for gypsies. The forests in M.P are ancient and hence extremely grand in nature. So we discovered as we entered the Turia gate in M.P region. Pench also has a gate from Maharashtra side which leads one into the greener sides of the forests. Overall the forest is said to have more than 35 tigers and a host of other wildlife like wolves, fox, jackals, leopards etc. And the name Pench is derived from the river Pench which passes through the jungle. We were mesmerized seeing the mighty river bed which was dry in this summer but nevertheless a stunning sight to behold. I could totally visualize the scene of the river overflowing in the rains from the movie Jungle Book! (click on pictures to view in full screen) Pench is also home to a number of beautiful birds, from the beautifully blue Indian roller, to the eagles, vultures, kingfishers, Indian pitta, woodpeckers, mottled owls, drongo, night jar among many others. In our quest to look for Tigers, we spent a decent amount of time stopping to click these feathered beauties! Many birds kept fluttering around like they were media shy but the rest posed for us with a calm demeanor. Especially the mottled owl which like a true fashionista gave some awesome attitude filled poses. (click on pictures to view in full screen) Apart from birds, we also had the pleasure of seeing wild dogs! Most of us never really knew what they looked like. And of course the elusive jackal – about which we’ve only heard of in kids stories! During our night safari (oh yes! we did one!) we spotted the jungle cat and the palm cevet cat in the eerie silence and darkness of that mighty jungle. Among the other animals we spotted were spotted deer, sambar deer, lots and lots of monkeys etc. It is amazing how relaxed and at home these animals look in their natural habitat. It’s one reason why I love wildlife safaris. You get to understand the language of the animals! (Click on pictures to view in full screen) And of course, coming to the climax of this entire trip – the tigers! And this is an interesting story. We were finishing our third safari – without much luck so far. In the past two safaris we did spot tigers, but very briefly and definitely not at photo worthy moments. In the third safari, with just half and hour to go – we gave up hope and decided to give one last shot – as we were in the territory of Collarwali – the tigress who has a tracking collar (and hence the name!). The earlier tigers we had briefly spotted walking were Langadi and male tiger BMW (interesting how these names are given to tigers no? That’s a story for another article altogether). Within a few moments of wandering around, we arrived at a congregation of 8 gypsies silently clicking. We couldn’t have guessed till we reached the exact spot – but there she was. The cub daughter of Collarwali – lurking around the tree a few feet away from our jeep. We were stunned and it took us moments before we could start clicking this delightful scene. And a few seconds later we saw the mother herself, perched lazily on the ground behind the daughter. The daughter walked behind a rock and settled down there occasionally glancing at the collection of gypsies with a lazy look. The mother looked comfortable with all the attention. Almost like a diva. After a few intense moments of clicking and waiting, the daughter playfully walked up to the mother – cuddling and playing with her. This was a first time watch for me. And I was amazed. Emotions have a universal language after all! By this time our guide realized that the tigresses may have wanted to cross the road which was littered and packed with gypsies. So he requested our driver to take the gypsy in reverse to make space. As soon as we did that, both the tigresses came and settled in our direction. Head on! And there went another round of clicks – this time with a lot more attention since the tigers were facing us, up close! After a few more moments, the other gypsies on the road aligned to make space for the crossing. And within 2 minutes, both tigresses crossed the road – the mother walking back calmly and the daughter sprinting across the road probably fearing the wild creatures in the gypsies around her! And those 20 minutes! yep! 20 minutes were etched as most memorable in my memory and the memories of many others who had witnessed a tiger sighting first time in their lives! Everything about a tiger is so majestic! Their yawn, their catwalk, their aura which is so powerful, their affection! For those who’ve seen tigers, it’s an addiction many will never understand. (Click on pictures to view in full screen) c7 c10 c2 c4 t1 bmw c3 c5 c1 c9 talk c21 c8 The safaris ended with this absolute treat! What more could we ever want! The excitement of seeing a tiger ran like a energy booster drug in our blood that day! We couldn’t stop smiling and raving! The only two words I remember saying were ‘oh shit! ‘ and ‘oh god!’. This was way beyond my expectations. Pench was definitely my favourite forest from now on! It had brought the mighty sher khan alive! Trip facts: Pench is accessible from Nagpur. You can reach Nagpur by flight or by Duronto (12 hours journey) if you stay in Mumbai. Seoni is 2 hours drive from Nagpur and you’ll find the drive to be a scenic one. Seoni has many many resorts to host tourists – most of them being economical. My recommendation is don’t stay at an expensive exotic one – because all you’ll really do on a safari trip is sleep for a couple of hours and eat there. Rest of the time will be spent in safaris exploring the forests in morning and evening Don’t do one safari and expect magic to happen. Go for atleast four safaris to do justice to your efforts. Enjoy the forests. Don’t go expecting tigers everywhere. And when you least expect it, is when you’ll find most of them. Hoping to see you in the wild soon!!
Pench reserve forest around 85 kms from Nagpur comes in Madhya Pradesh State, one of the most visited Reserve forest in India. The area is especially famous for large herds of Gaur (Indian Bison), Cheetal, Sambar, Nilgai, Wild Dog and Wild Pig. The key predator is the Tiger followed by Leopard, Wild Dog and Wolf. Other animals include Sloth Bear, Chousingha, Chinkara, Barking Deer, Jackal, Fox, Palm Civet, Small Indian Civet, Jungle Cat, Hyena, Porcupine etc. Pench Tiger Reserve is also among the best areas for bird watching, there are over 285 species of resident and migratory birds. You can find many hotels and resorts, from Luxury to Budget, a perfect weekend getaway.
The national animal of India.♥
The birthplace of Mowgli and hence the Jungle Book. The forest is simply amazing and the chances of spotting a Tiger are really high. Besides Tiger there are much more wildlife to explore like leopard, wild dogs, spotted deer, sambar deer, vulture, jackal and many more. There is guest house at the entrance of the core area and during my stay I was able to spot wild dogs right in front of the guest house. Locals are very friendly and I got a chance to try homemade liquor which is locally known as mahua. Trust me it hits you hard, very hard :P
Pench is one of the underrated Tiger Reserves in our beautiful country. It is a beautiful serene place if you are looking for a dive into the wild .