Saturday, November 20, 2010

Ranthambore National Park Rajasthan, India

Tiger image india
I just got back from a rather hectic but wonderful trip!
We had a very packed schedule; we wanted to pack in as much as possible in a week. We were traveling almost every night!

Our first stop was Delhi. North India is much more easily accessible from Delhi, in the sense that the distances are less, overnight journeys by train can get you to Rajasthan and Punjab easily. We saved a lot of time that way.

Our first destination was Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan. Ranthambore National Park is in Sawai Madhopur District of Rajasthan state. By road One can get to Jaipur within less than 4 hours, the usual route is from Jaipur to Tonk and then Sawai Madhopur. The distance by rail from Delhi is around 362 kms. We boarded an overnight train to Sawai Madhopur. The park is at the junction of the Aravalli and Vindhya hill range. It covers an area of Approximately 400 sq Km. Rantambore was a wildlife sanctuary in 1957 and 1974. It earned the status of a National park in 1981.

We had organised for a car to pick us up from the station, We checked into to our hotel (Vinyak) very early. Vinayak is very conveniently located just around 4 kms from the railway station. After quickly freshening up, we decided to hurry up 'cause there was no time to waste; the morning safari starts at around 6.30am. I have always loved the jungles and Ranthambore does not disappoint. The Park is beautiful. Rathambore is a wonderful mix of nature and history. The park gets its name from the Fort that is situated amidst the Park, overlooking the jungle. The Fort is well strengthened by massive fortification provided by seven gateways. The water bodies, jungle, hills and ruins leaves you feeling intoxicated.

The safari ride is really lovely. Sighting a tiger was of course what we were hoping for...we were into around 40 mins of the jungle safari when one of the safari jeep drivers informed us that a tiger had been sighted! Our pulses started racing in anticipation, with fingers ready on the camera shutter button, we were almost holding our breath!

And soon enough, there it was. We caught our first glimpse of this absolutely magnificent animal. Can't quite describe the feeling...every time i see a tiger, it is a wonderful experience. I believe one can see tigers in Rathambore are not afraid of human presence in vehicles. This was great for us as we got to see the tiger from very close quarters. I am sharing some of the pictures I captured of the tiger, I will upload the tiger video in my next post.

Tiger Ranthambore India

Tiger Ranthambore India

Tiger India
Tiger Ranthambore India

Ranthambore Fort was equally impressive. It is believed to be one of the strongest Forts of Inida which formed a significant part of the Chahamana Kingdom of Shakanbhari. It was constructed by Maharaja Jayanta in the Fifth century AD. Hammir Deo (1282-1301 A.D) was the most powerful riler of Ranthambore who patronized Art and Literature and fought bravely against All-Ud-Din Khilji during a seize in 1301 A.D. Subsequently, it was occupied by Sultans of Delhi and later on, it came under the contol of Rana Sanga (1509-1527 A.D) and the Mughals.

Ranthambore Fort

Inside the Ranthambore FOrt
On the way to the Rantambore Fort, the inside of the Fort

Talab in the Fort

Battees Khamba Ranthambore Fort
A Talab in the Fort and Battis Khamba

We did take two more trips to the jungle but the cat decided to keep away from us:( I believe we were very lucky to have sighted it on out very first visit.

saw some beautiful birds too...Ranthambore is home to around 320 species of birds. I was accompanied by two of my cousins (who are serious bird watchers) and my husband (who enjoys bird watching too!) .Over time I have got interested too, but I am not into serious bird watching. I love seeing new birds and learning to identify them but perhaps I will not go out of my way just to do bird watching.

And we fitted in some shopping as well.. I brought a nice warm jacket from the shop in the hotel.The food in Rajasthan is delicious. Each time we had a meal, we overate. I just love the Rajasthani food.

Our day two at Ranthambore ended without another sighting of the tiger. But we were not complaining, the bird watchers were happy and so was I. We had a wonderful time at Ranthambore. If nature and history interests you, then Ranthambore is a must see place for you. Even if you do not sight a tiger, the place leaves you feeling wonderfully enriched.

1 comment:

Parag said...

For the wildlife savvy, Ranthambore national park Rajasthan wildlife sanctuary today offers an intense diversity of flora and fauna. Tigers, the park’s pride makes it one of the best places in the country to observe them. Apart from that a large numbers of Sambar, Chital, Nilgai, Gazzelle, Boars, Mongoose, Indian Hare, Monitor Lizards and a large number of birds.