Head To These Wildlife Sanctuaries For A Thrilling Monsoon Safari

If you're seeking an unforgettable adventure, here are some of the best monsoon safaris in India that will take you closer to the majestic creatures of the wild
Inside Ranthambore National Park
Inside Ranthambore National Park

Safaris are the best way to reconnect with nature and the world that thrives within a forest. While wildlife enthusiasts prefer winter, the monsoon months imbue the wilderness with magic as well. Washed bright by rain, the forest teems with the music of the birds and calls of the giants. While most of the sanctuaries remain closed during these few months because navigating through the thickets can be challenging, there are few sanctuaries across India where you can enjoy this memorable experience. However, do ensure that you engage responsibly with the surroundings and the wildlife while enjoying an unforgettable monsoon safari across these sanctuaries

Nagarhole National Park, Karnataka

If you're a wildlife enthusiast, Nagarhole National Park (also known as Rajiv Gandhi National Park) is a must-visit. Located in between the Mysore plateau in Karnataka and the Nilgiri Mountains of Tamil Nadu, this park spans over 247 square miles and is home to Bengal tigers, Asiatic elephants, leopards, sloth bears, hyenas, wild gaurs, and a plethora of bird species. Whether you're into nature or bird watching, this park is a true haven for both.

Bandipur National Park, Karnataka 

Bandipur National Park is a captivating destination for wildlife lovers, located along the Mysore-Ooty highway in the Chamarajanagar district of Karnataka. This park, spreading over 872.24 square kilometres, forms an integral part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and shares boundaries with three other national parks.

Bandipur is famous for its tigers, Asiatic elephants, and other endangered species like sloth bears, gaurs, Indian rock pythons, and more. Both van and jeep safaris are available, providing an opportunity to explore the park's diverse wildlife during the monsoon season.

Daroji Sloth Bear Sanctuary, Karnataka

Situated near the historical ruins of Hampi in the Ballari district of Karnataka, the Daroji Sloth Bear Sanctuary was established to protect and conserve Indian sloth bears. The sanctuary covers an area of 82.7 square kilometres and offers a unique opportunity to observe these fascinating creatures in their natural habitat.

Apart from sloth bears, the sanctuary is also home to leopards, wild boars, pangolins, mongoose, hyenas, and various bird species. Visitors can enjoy the sanctuary's offerings during the late afternoon hours, from 4 pm to 6 pm, with the assistance of safaris and guided tours.

Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary, Goa

Nestled in the north of Goa, near Valpoi, lies the Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary. It is one of India's lesser-known sanctuaries, spanning over 208 square kilometers. Wildlife enthusiasts can explore the sanctuary during the monsoon months and discover its diverse range of animals, including black panthers, tigers, sloth bears, Indian gaurs, and various bird species. Along with admiring the enchanting beauty of the sanctuary, visitors can engage in thrilling activities such as white water rafting, trekking, and rock climbing.

Periyar National Park, Kerala

Kerala's sanctuaries become a haven for wildlife lovers with the arrival of the rains. Located in Thekkady and across 777 square kilometres, the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is home to many animals, like tigers and elephants, and avian species who call the Western Ghats their home, like the great Malabar hornbill. Unlike most sanctuaries, Periyar is one of the few where monsoon is considered the best time for keen wildlife lovers to spot diverse members of the wild such as deer, gaurs, Indian wild dogs, and more. 

Jim Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand

Jim Corbett National Park is perhaps India's foremost sanctuary and is hailed as the country's first tiger reserve. Spread over 1318.54 square kilometres of Uttarakhand's picturesque pine-studded valleys the park comes alive with action during the rains. However, while most of the park does remain inaccessible due to muddy paths, the Jhirna and Sitabhani Zones remain open for nature enthusiasts. During the monsoons, you can spot deer, antelopes, boars, and a few interesting bird species like Asian barbets, quail, partridge, owls, raptors, pheasants, and parakeets. 

Tadoba National Park, Maharashtra

Situated in the Chandrapur district of Maharashtra, Tadoba National Park, also known as Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, is a true delight for wildlife enthusiasts. Covering an area of 625.4 square kilometres, this park is divided into three separate forest ranges, each offering its unique charm.

Tigers, panthers, sloth bears, hyenas, jackals, deer, and a variety of reptiles inhabit the lush forests of Tadoba. Even birdwatchers will be thrilled to spot numerous species of birds and butterflies. 

Cover photo credit Shutterstock.com

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