Experience the best of Wildlife Sanctuary in South India

Animals in their natural habitat, roaming around in the verdant and lush green forest with no humans in sight makes for the best kind of wildlife sanctuary. And watching them from afar in their majestic homes is an experience truly unmatched. Wildlife sanctuaries in India are spread over acres and acres of farmlands and tended to with care ensuring no encroachment or poaching takes place in these spaces. If you have always wanted to explore the best wildlife sanctuary in South India, we have rounded up the top five that should be on your list.

1. Periyar National Park

Located in Thekkady, an offbeat destination, the Periyar National Park is touted as one of the best places for wildlife tourism enthusiasts. Spread over a sprawling 925 sq km, the entire park is teeming with rare species and rich flora and fauna. Forming the watershed of the Periyar and Pamba rivers, the scenic vistas you will set your eyes upon are breathtaking and surreal, to say the least. Among its major wildlife attractions, you will spot elephants, gaur, wild pigs, sambar and tigers. The rare species of primates like the lion-tailed macaque, the Nilgiri Langur, the common langur and the bonnet macaque can also be found here. If birding is on your list of things to do, look out for the great Malabar Hornbill and racket-tailed drongoes.

2. Bandipur National Park

Touted as one of the most beautiful national parks in all of India, Bandipur is a wildlife enthusiast’s dream come true. The picturesque landscape covered with mist in the wee hours of the day to the bird calls of diverse species and the mightiest of the animals roaming around freely in their habitat makes for a lifetime experience. Located in the surroundings of the Western Ghats on the Mysore-Ooty highway in Karnataka, the entire national park is spread across 874.2 sq km. With its efforts towards eco-conservation, which has become the need of the hour, this national park is one of the best wildlife tourism attractions in South India. Among the many species, you will spot wild boar, panther, sloth bear, jackal, Malabar squirrel, porcupines and the black-knapped hare.

3. Mudumalai National Park

Mudumalai National park is located in Tamil Nadu and along with Bandipur, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala and Nagarhole National Park in Karnataka makes the ‘Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve’. This is the biggest biosphere reserve in the entire country, thus making for a beautiful attraction among the locals and tourists alike. The national park is home to the elusive Bengal Tiger and Indian elephants among other rare species.

4. Dandeli National Park

A beautiful and vast stretch of green and vibrant hues make this national park in Karnataka not just unique but also supremely beautiful. From the meandering paths offering a distinct view at every stretch to 200 species of birds making this park their home, there is a lot to be explored here. Apart from its diverse flora and fauna, there are also two attractions that should be on your list of places to check out when in Dandeli - Syntheri Rocks and Kevala Caves.

5. Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary

Another beautiful wildlife sanctuary located in the hinterlands of Karnataka, the Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary is a lesser-known spot that should be on your list of wildlife parks to visit. Part of one of the best tiger reserves in the country - Nagarhole National Park, Kabini is a secluded region that is designated for safari. Among the myriad wildlife species, you would also find a beautiful dam right in the middle of the wildlife sanctuary. Sprawled on a vast area of 642.4 km2, the sanctuary is perfect for wildlife photographers. An unmissable experience would be to watch a beautiful sunset by the river and cruise down the Kabini reservoir.

South India’s exploration is incomplete without stepping foot in its expansive national parks and with so many to pick from, you will never run out of options and adventures.

-- Priya Chaudhary --

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