Situated in remote forests of Central India a kingdom hitherto forgotten sprung back to life with the advent of peripatetic travelers, addicted explorers and eccentric tiger lovers. But there is much more to this dense jungle of Sal trees, bamboo and mixed assemblage of floral species. Amidst the ruins that date back two thousand years, the tiger roams free full of energy and vigor for it is experiencing a renaissance after the conservation efforts in India that assures the beleaguered animal flocks a promised existence for eternity
Sandwiched Between History And Jungle A Tiger Heaven
Read about a tiger heaven that boasts of amazing wilderness overgrown over priceless edifices and artifacts that create an esoteric aura. The destination is Bandhavgarh Park.
Meadow At Bandhvgarh
Land of White Tiger
Rare Wonder Animal
It was near the forests of Bandhavgarh at Sidhi that the eponymous white tiger was discovered amidst a carnage that was common in the hunting era. It was the erstwhile Maharajah of Rewa who provided sanctuary to the rarest of the predator cub. It was the first and the last occurrence of a white tiger discovered in the wilds of India and the World.
The Maharajah nurtured the animal with care and concern as a royal guardian and the efforts bore fruit, the white cub survived to spread his progeny all over the World. He was named Mohun which translate to one that enchants. Today tigers are found in great abundance all over the National Park but none white. This rare animal has found place in zoos all over the World but none in the wild.
The proximity to the Sidhi reserve a contiguous patch at that time brought fame to Bandhavgarh as well and the reserve is one of the most popular among the wildlife lovers all over the globe.
Dominent Male Tiger
Dominent Male Tiger
Kingdom of Gond Tribe
Ancient Lands of India - Bandhavgarh
The two thousand years old fort is mentioned in the Vedic scriptures and the Hindu pantheon as "Bandhavgarh" an edifice gifted by the legendary King Lord Ram revered by a billion in India and the World all over. The gift was given to his beloved brother Laxman.
A temple dedicated to the Legendary King, his wife Sita and brother Laxman stands proud on the edge of the table top mountain. Erect on the edge is another Hindu God Vishnu the preserver in the holy trinity. Lord Ram was an avatar of Lord Vishnu and the forests commemorates his descent on Earth. Lord Ram incarnate is the Central figure in the holy Ramayana an epic that guides the spirit of believers all over the World.
Lord Vishnu personified our planet in many incarnations at this destination he is depicted in the zoomorphic forms. The vivid portrayal of the preserver at this tiger heaven is striking and work of creative genius the Gond Tribes of Central India. Another much popular statue is that of Lord Vishnu at the ascent to the fort. The reclining Vishnu is carved out of igneous rock a structure that lies beside an esoteric pool created by a mountain stream covered with moss, lichens and ferns. The spectacle is simply enchanting and the place was meant for worship as well as a shelter for the tired soldiers after ravages of continuous battles. The warring dynasties won and lost this hidden kingdom, a perpetual saga of internecine wars that was part and parcel of the ancient times.
The last to rule over the paradise were the Baghel Kings who eventually shifted their capital to nearby estate of Rewa. The fort was losing its sheen and glory as a neglect after the relocation. Nevertheless the Maharajahs of Rewa tended to the faltering ruins as best as possible and could manage to preserve a large number of edifices and artifacts.
In post independence India the place is under the care of the MP State Government but unfortunately visit to the top of the mountain is prohibited for the tourists.
At the top, zoomorphic forms of Lord are intriguing. They are in form of fish, turtle and wild boar. There are around twelve man made reservoirs and numerous shelters and courts on ascent. The entrance to the fort is a stone arch made imposingly with chattris for shelter. This is now inhabited by bats in large number. A lock hangs on the door which is still operational managed by the priest appointed by the Maharjah of Rewa. The priest trudges eleven kilometres to the temple on the mountain and has company of tigers and other wild denizens. He is an equal intrigue like the big cats are.
Tiger in The Pool
Big Cat Bathing
Wildlife of Bandhavgarh
Wildlife in the tiger reserve flourishes and is subject to tourism yearly. The park is closed during the monsoon whence most of the mammals are breeding. The other animals that survive are the leopard, sloth bear, bison, wild dog, Nilgai, Sambar, chital, fox, jackal, langur monkey, wild boar, rhesus macaque, barking deer, Indian gazelle and nocturnal animals which are less seen.
The park is home to more than two hundred and fifty avian species and hence attracts many birders for watching them. In winters migratory birds arrive in impressive numbers but anytime, any season birding in this destination is very interesting.
In the buffer zone that is outside the park night safaris are conducted hence you get an opportunity to see the nocturnal animals and birds.
Exursions at BTR
National Park Bandhavgarh
Permits are required for safaris in the park. These are permissions for the tourism zone in the critical tiger habitat and buffer. For excursions at Bandhavgarh Tiger Park one needs advance permits. Although permits are usually booked on-line at MP Online Website they are available at the gate too sometimes. It is better to book on line much in advance.
The safari timings are in early morning and then one in the evening. But the park also conducts full day safaris with early entry and late exit, but the permits are costlier hence preferred by filmmakers and photographers. Permits are usually available for buffer zone safaris outside of the National Park.
Reaching The Destination
How To Reach Bandhavgarh?
The best way to reach the destination is to drive from Jabalpur Airport at a distance of 175 kilometres. The city lies in the State of Madhya Pradesh. There are many overnight trains plying between New Delhi and Jabalpur some via Agra to facilitate a visit to the Taj Mahal.
An overnight rail from New Delhi reaches Umaria Station which is 32 kilometres from the park. From here the visitors can taxi down to the park.
The drive from Kanha National Park is about 200 kilometres through the interiors.