Sunday, October 12, 2014

Ranthambhore - A Trip To Remember.. Forever. Oct-2011

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It was October of 2011 and the Diwali vacations were fast approaching. I had not finalized any vacation travel plans in advance due to work exigencies. About one week prior to the vacations, my planning finally started.

Even though beaches were my favourite holiday destination, I wanted a different kind of holiday experience. 

Beach? …. No
Bagha Beach - Goa

Hill station? …. No
Thoseghar Waterfalls
Historical site? …. No
Taj Mahal, Agra

Wildlife Safari? ….. YES! 

Inspite of watching endless hours of National Geographic and Discovery channels, I had personally never been on a wildlife safari. Therefore, Tiger safaris definitely seemed to be a great idea.

The next couple of days were spent in searching the Net, reading blogs and travel guides in order to finalise the Wildlife park to visit. Bandhavgarh, Ranthambhore and Bandipur were the top three in my short list. These parks appeared to be professionally managed and had a good success rate for tiger sightings.

I finally decided to visit Ranthambhore NP as my first wildlife destination. The dry deciduous forests of Ranthambhore helped in sighting wildlife better as compared to the dense forests at other National parks. Also booking shared safari seats were much easier at Ranthambhore.

I finalized my hotel reservation with Ranthambhore Bagh , owned by Aditya ‘Dicky’ Singh, a wildlife photographer and conservationist and also booked my safari seats. Due to the late booking, getting seats on a jeep/gypsy was practically impossible.

And lastly I booked my air-tickets, which I must admit cost me a bomb. It was a price one had to pay for planning and booking vacations at the last minute. Unfortunately, over the years, last-minute planning would become a habit with me.

But all said and done, I was setting off for my first wildlife safari to sight tigers in the wild. The excitement and anticipation was at it’s peak.

Ranthambhore! Here I come!!!

About Ranthambore
Ranthambore National Park is one of India’s largest National Parks and is famous for its wildlife especially tiger sightings. Ranthambore National Park is a ‘Project Tiger’ reserve. Ranthambore lies in the Sawai Madhopur district, in the western state of Rajasthan, India. You can get more information about Ranthambore online.
Rajasthan Wildlife:

Getting there
The nearest railway station is Sawai Madhopur about 10 kms (15 mins drive) from Ranthambore. The nearest airport is at Jaipur, the state capital, about 130 kms (3 hours drive) from Ranthambore.

Useful Sites to plan your travel
Railway Enquiry: [Enquiry site to check trains, schedules, availability and fares]
Railway booking: [Enquiry and Booking site]
Air Booking: Some Online sites –
Alternatively, you can visit the official sites of the Airlines’ operating flights to Jaipur.

Staying There
Ranthambore has a lot of accommodation options on the Ranthambore Road. Hotels ranging from Budget hotels @ Rs. 1000/- (US$ 20) per night to luxury hotels @ Rs. 30000/- (US$ 600) per night are available. Most of the hotels are within 10-15 minutes drive from the park gates. Importantly, the safari vehicles pick up the guests from their hotel. Therefore the distance to the park gates does not matter much.

You can check the official sites of the hotels or alternatively you can refer to some of the popular travel sites to help choose your accommodation,

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Hope you enjoyed reading about the joy, thrills and experience of a wildlife safari through this blog and also liked the photos of wildlife.

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