I love animals, especially wild animals and always try to incorporate something associated with them into any trip. Andy on the other hand isn't fussed, but on this occassion he'd agreed to come on a tiger safari with me in Nagarahole National Park in Karnataka state in South India.
A tiger safari was something I'd had my heart set on from the minute we decided we were going to India. So much so I'd done all the research and booked the accomodation and safari long before we left the UK. I like to think this wasn't me getting over zealous with the planning.There are 49 tiger reserves India, however the majority of them close during monsoon, re-opening at the beginning of October. This was really bad timing for us as we're heading to Bangladesh on 1st October, so some organisation was required to ensure I got my safari fix.
After many an hour on google I finally discovered there were only a few tiger reserves that would be open at the right time and in the right part of India for our safari. Nagarahole and Bandipur National Parks were two of those. After asking lots of questions and reading many reviews I decided to opt for Nagarahole which seemed to have the edge on tiger spotting at the end of monsoon season.
The next thing to decide on was how to get to Nagarahole National Park and then onto our next destination of Kerala afterwards. There were several options of train, bus, and car or a combination; given our short timescales we decided to get a driver. Not the cheapest option for sure, but it saved us wasting too much of our precious travel time getting from A to B. I booked everything, transport, accomodation at Kabini River Lodge and safari through Skywater Tours. They were extremely patient given the numerous questions I sent via email and did a great job of organising everything for us.
Safari day arrived and we woke up early in our hotel in Mysore ready for our driver to collect us. I was as to be expected, ridiculously excited. Two or so hours later we arrived at Kabini River Lodge, located on the southern edge of Nagarahole National Park on the banks of it's namesake the Kabini River. An eco-safari resort, it's a colonial estate sprawling over 54 acres and was once the hunting lodge of the Maharaja of Mysore. Colonel John Felix Wakefield founded the eco-resort in the late 70's with his passion for conservation and wildlife and nearly six years after his death, the legend of 'Papa John' lives on.