The Tiger is a magnificent animal and even when you see it in the zoo it does inspire awe. In India it is the national animal and the only place in the world where this beast is in relative abundance. So in case you want to see the tiger in its natural habitat you will have to come to India. One of the best places to see the tiger is at the Kanha National park. This park located in the state of Madhya Pradesh, the heart of India is part of the national plan to help save the tiger.
Visiting Kanha is not difficult. You can get direct flights from Mumbai and New Delhi to Jabalpur, the nearest airport. From Jabalpur the reserve forest of Kanha is about 4/5 hours drive through mountains and thick jungles. The road is fairly good and you traverse and go through the hills and the forests, one will realize the beauty that India offers.
Kanha caters to the tourist traffic and a number of resorts and hotels are available to stay. You can choose from the three stars White Chalet Resort and the Kumar resort to the budget hotels like Chandan or the medium priced Mogli resort. There are no five star comforts. The tariffs range from about an Rs 1000($20) to Rs 7000 ($ 140) per day. Foreign tourists are charged about 40% extra.
Kanha can be visited any time of the year, but it is best to visit in the summer months as the grass is less sparse and green and spotting the tiger is easier. Once you check into a hotel or resort you will have to register for a jungle safari. The safari commences in the morning before sun rise and lasts about 4/5 hours. You can opt for an evening or morning safari.
The jungle at Kanha is the type immortalized by the likes of Jim Corbett the great tiger hunter. The scent, the ambience, the sound, the greenery of this place is awesome. There are almost 30,000 spotted deer in Kanha National Park. These can be seen in large numbers and are the natural prey of the tiger. The park spread over 900 square miles makes spotting the tiger elusive. Hence it is recommended that you stay at least 2/3 days to meet the tiger. The tiger which is the habitat of this park is slightly smaller than the more ferocious Bengal Tiger which resides in the Sunder bans in West Bengal.
All safari’s have guides who know the forest well. They will guide you through the forest. In case you are lucky you will be able to see the tiger hunting deer and devouring i. It’s a chilling, yet beautiful sight. The tigers at Kanha are perhaps now used to the safari’s and don’t bother much about them. You may even have a tiger crossing in front of your vehicle. It’s lovely sight and certainly worth a visit