• Birdwatching - National Parks - Sanctuaries - Tiger Reserve - Wildlife

    Bandhavgarh: Through the Dominions of Sita and Charger

    It was as if we were listening to the history of empires in the past—son killing/maiming father, then his son doing the same, and so on. With the apt background noise of an unexpected thunderstorm, Mandar (of Nature India) was talking to us about the history of current tigers in the Bandhavgarh forest, a bunch of us listening as eagerly as we were for the next day’s jungle safari. But our comparison of tigers with bloody empires is not right. These majestic kings of forests act not out of malice but by instinct. They don’t make cunning plans to satisfy…

  • Birdwatching - Flora - Nature's Wonders - People - Places

    The Primates and Other Surprises of Hoolongappar Gibbon Sanctuary

    Our five-day trip to Kaziranga (by Nature India) had a day set aside for Hoolongappar Gibbon sanctuary. With so much being written and spoken about Kaziranga, the wildlife sanctuary remained the hero and we didn’t care too much about the Gibbon sanctuary near Jorhat, Assam. So very unlike of us, we didn’t do much research or reading on the Gibbon sanctuary. But nature has its own way of throwing surprises. ‘Pleasant’ is not the adjective. Enticing. Fascinating. Exciting. Surprising. What was originally a part of the vast forest ranges in the north east state of Assam and extending till Nagaland,…

  • Fun - Sanctuaries

    Who Can Assure You a Tiger ?

    On our second safari at Tadoba, a few kilometers inside from the starting point, this  board welcomed us.  As if to temper our expectations. This was at the border of Tadoba range and Moharli range where there is a small settlement.  Soon after this however we did spot a tiger.

  • Places - Sanctuaries

    The Real Land of Tiger – Tadoba

    The year 2010, hopefully augurs well for us in travel. After the good start in the new year week, one of us had a solo trip to Bangkok, while the other had a solo to Coimbatore and Kerala. But the most awaited trip of January was to Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR) in Chandrapur district, Maharashtra. The planning had started in November itself. The tourism/forest department calls Tadoba the real land of tiger. Perhaps rightfully so. For the first time, we spotted the big cat. Albeit for a short while without giving us enough time for clicking. With multitudes of…

  • Birdwatching - Nature's Wonders - Places - Sanctuaries

    Where Mowgli Roamed – Pench National Park

    As the dawn was breaking the Sambhur belled Once, twice and again! And a doe leaped up and a doe leaped up From the pond in the wood where the wild deer sup. – The Jungle Books, Rudyard Kipling Every morning, Mowgly and his friends perhaps would have woken up to this scene. We too were hoping for the same. The early morning drive from the Maharashtra side of Pench Tiger Reserve to the Madhya Pradesh side of Pench was filled with expectations. Never mind the rattling of the old Toyota Qualis and the chilly wind. We had to cover…

  • Places

    Smallest Wildlife Sanctuary

    Where is the world’s smallest wildlife sanctuary? It is right here in India, in Maharashtra. At 5.15 sq km, Mayureshwar sanctuary is the smallest WLS (that we know of). Once while returning from a road trip to Ajanta-Ellora, somewhere between the Pune – Ahmednagar road, we took to the country roads. With a vague idea of its location, we kept searching for Mayureshwar, unsuccessfully checking the map and asking almost anyone and everyone on the road. Finally, at a place that one would never imagine as a wild life sanctuary, we asked a few more villagers. Not a chance! Since…