Bandipur National Park

Bandipur National Park was set up in 1974. It was earlier a private hunting reserve of the Maharaja of Mysore. Today, it is a tiger reserve that comes under Project Tiger. The place is known for its wildlife. It features dry deciduous forest. Bandipur lies in Gundluet Taluka of Chamarajanagar district, about 80 km from Mysore city. Traffic in this area is prohibited from 9 pm to 6 am for the safety of wildlife.

The park is famous for harboring various species of endangered wildlife of India. Combined with the adjacent Nagarhole National Park, Wayand Wildlife Santuary, and Mudumalai National Park, this is a part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, which is sprawled in an area of 2184 square km. This makes it the biggest protected area of South India. It is also the biggest habitat in South Asia for wild elephants.

Anshi National Park

Anshi National Park lies about 60 km from Karwar in Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka. It is sprawled in an area of 340 sq km and is adjacent to Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary, which was opened on May 10, 1956. A part of the sanctuary is converted to Anshi National Park. In January 2007, this park was labeled among the Project tiger sanctuary. The park lies in the eco-sensitive part of Western Ghats.

Anshi National Park is home to Malabar Civet, Malabar Giant squirrel, Bonner Macaque, Indian Bison, sloth bear, and pangolin. It houses tigers, Melanistic leopard, elephants, and other animals. It features bamboo, lantana, eucalyptus, teak, silver oak, and other trees. Visitors can find reptiles like rat, krait, king cobra, and python here.

The park accommodates over 200 bird species. Nearby attractions of the park are Kadra Valley, about 12 km from the park, and the Ulavi Channa Basaveshwara Temple located outside the south east boundary of the park. The best time to come here is between November and March.

Bannerghatta National Park

Bannerghatta National Park is 22 km south of Bengaluru city. The park was set up in 1971 in an area of 25,000 acres. This national park houses 10 reserve forests of Anekal Range that comes under the Bangalore Forest Division.

Visitors can find animals like fox, jackal, elephant, leopard, gaur, sloth bear, wild pig, spotted dear, sambar, bonnet macaque, hare, barking deer, common langur, and porcupine in the park. Snake farm, crocodiles, and the butterfly park lure tourists towards them. The lion and tiger safari forms the major attraction. The park’s Tiger Reserve is accredited by the Forest Department of India.

Bannerghatta National Park has a rich flora and a variety of bird species. There is also a small museum that displays zoological exhibits. A small theatre also exists here. The reptile park attracts lots of tourists.

An added attraction of this park is the children’s corner. A natural rock formation known as Hajjamana Kall, Uddigebande, and Mirza Hill are a trekker’s delight. Visitors come to this park all year round. The park is open from 9 am to 5 pm all days of the week, except Tuesdays.

Kudremukh National Park

Kudremukh National Park lies 95 km south-west of Chikmagalur town. It is in the Western Ghats in Dakshina Kannada district. A part of the park lies in Chikmagalur and Udupi districts that stretches between, Jamalabad Fort, located in Belthangady taluka, in the south and Narasimha Parvatha, located in Sringeri taluka in the north.

Kudremukh National Park is known for its natural scenery. It lies amidst mountains and harbors a variety of flora and fauna. The park is named after the horse-face-shaped eponymous peak.

The park has four ranges: Shimoga, Kalasa, Kerekatte, and Kudremukh. The park features thick hilly forests, which consists of mostly semi-evergreen and evergreen trees near the coastal plains on the west side. Tea and coffee plantations surround the park on the north and the east boundaries.

The area receives an average rainfall of 7000 mm per year. The humid climate of this area, plus the high water retention capacity of forests and shola grasslands here has led to the formation of numerous perennial streams that converge to form three main rivers: Bhadra, Nethravathi, and Tunga.

The park features plantations of casuarinas, eucalyptus, acacia auriculiformis, and gravillea robusta. Visitors are greeted with a variety of wildlife like wild dog, leopard, tiger, common langur, gaur, sloth bear, Malabar giant squirrel, barking deer, spotted deer, porcupine, jackal, sambar, mongoose, and the giant flying squirrel.

Kudremukh National Park boasts of around 195 species of birds. Visitors also find interesting reptiles like tortoise and snakes here. Kudremukh Waterfall is one of the chief attractions of the park. This area is also the place to be for trekkers. Several tracks wind through rolling hills.

Visiting coming here also visit pilgrimage centers like Horanadu Annapoomeshwari Temple, Gangal Moola, and Sringeri Sharada Peetham.

Nagarhole National Park

Nagarhole National Park is a paradise for nature lovers. It lies about 95 km from Mysore, to the northwest of Bandipur National Park. It is sprawled between Kodagu and Mysore districts. The park features forests, waterfalls, streams, and valleys.

Kabini dam divides Nagarhole National Park from Bandipur National Park. The former park gets its name from two words: “naga,” which means “snake” and “hole,” which means “streams.” The park was established in 1955 and is regarded as one of the best-managed parks of India. It features three forest ranges viz; Thitimathi, Kallahalla, and Nagarahole.

The then Maharajas of Mysore used to hunt at the original forest here. The park features most South Indian species of wildlife. It harbors a variety of reptiles and about 250 species of birds. The park is open all year round.

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