SUJAN Sher Bagh Ranthambore National Park, India
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Once the hunting ground for the Maharaja of Jaipur, who led huge hunting parties into these forests, today Ranthambore park is a protected forest area, under the aegis of Project Tiger, a venture set up to protect the tiger from extinction.
The terrain of the park varies from vast dry plains to lush grasslands and dense forests, scattered with waterholes and enchanting ancient ruins. In between game drives you can enjoy birding watching outside the park – some of the best birding sites are the Fort and the smaller water bodies, ideal for sightings of the painted sand grouse, chestnut bellied sand grouse, larks, Pipits and painted spur fowl.
The park has 10 zones in total.
Zones 1-5 are in the core area, while the remaining 6-10 are in the surrounding buffer area. Tiger sightings in the buffer zones are usually rarer than in the core zones, although they have improved a lot in recent years as the increasing tiger population has spread out across the zones. So far this year, Zone 6 has been outstanding for sightings.
The park is open from sunrise until sunset. Safaris run for two and a half hours from 07:00. and again from 14:00. The core zones 1-5 close from July 1 to October 1 due to the monsoon rain. However, the buffer zones remain open.
The most animals are seen during the hot months of March through to June, when they come out in search of water. However, it’s more comfortable to visit during the cooler months. Be sure to bring warm clothes if visiting during winter.
You can apply for an e-visa online from 120 days before travel. Passports need to have at least six months validity from the date of arrival in India and also at least 2 blank pages when you present it at immigration.