Have you visited any of the Rajasthan National parks? Did you know that the Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan is one of the largest in the country?
One of the lesser-known facts about this state is that there are numerous national parks and wildlife sanctuaries scattered around.
Everyone knows that Rajasthan is rich in culture and traditions that are the major attractive point of tourism here. The formidable forts and beautiful palaces would be the first things that come to your mind when you think of Rajasthan.
The largest state of India has reserved a major portion of its natural space to conserve the wilderness of flora and fauna. The topography of Rajasthan is ideal for biodiversity and the environment also plays a major role in preserving its natural wealth. Here, you will see more about conserved areas such as the national parks and many more of such kinds.
Ranthambore National Park
One of the most popular Rajasthan National Parks, Ranthambore is located at Sawai Madhopur. It is mainly dedicated as a tiger reserve that also conserves several species of plants. The location is a dream destination for a traveller with the beautiful Ranthambore Fort, Jogi Mahal, etc. Royal Bengal tigers, leopards, jackals, bison, elephants, hyenas, etc are the common animals spotted here. The fearless tigers would not shy away from your cameras so you can take as many clicks as you need.
The best time for a visit here would be the winter season from October. Sawai Madhopur has a railway station. You can then take a bus or car from Sawai Madhopur to Ranthambore. RSRTC buses are also available that arrive at Ranthambore from Jaipur and other parts of Rajasthan.
Desert National Park Jaisalmer
You may not expect much wildlife from a desert area but this Desert National Park at Jaisalmer will be a surprise to you. This Rajasthan National Park extends up to the Indo-Pak border covering an area of more than 3000 sq km. The usual wildlife in these arid conditions include tigers and wolves. Desert fox, desert cat, chinkara, Bengal fox, etc. Almost 20% of this park is dunes with cacti and other common features of a desert. Desert safari is a popular sport here. You can see a vast population of birdlife as well.
The best time to visit is from October to March. Jaisalmer is well connected by rail and road from other parts of the state and popular cities from other states.
Sariska National Park Alwar Rajasthan
Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary at Alwar or the Sariska Tiger Reserve is popular for its presence of Royal Bengal Tiger. The tiger population from Ranthambore was transferred to this Rajasthan national park. This 800 sq km area used to be the hunting grounds of the Maharaja of Alwar. It is located in the Aravalli Hills that has green valleys and deciduous forest surrounding it. The rocky landscape is spectacular with some dangerous cliffs.
October to March is the best time to visit. The national park is right on the Delhi-Jaipur highway and Alwar is in the middle of these cities. Rajasthan roadways buses connect Alwar from Delhi, Jaipur, the closest cities to Alwar. From Alwar, you can find another direct bus to reach Sariska.
Keoladeo National Park Rajasthan
Located in Bharatpur, this Keoladeo National Park is a bird sanctuary and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The annual migratory waterfowl birds are the highlight of this park. It is an artificially made park meant to preserve the local avian population. The waterfowl used to be the target for Royal hunting expeditions which was later turned into a reserved space for those birds. Both rickshaw safari and jeep rides are available at this park.
The most popular time for visiting here is from August to November for the local birds the migratory birds visit from October to February. Bharatpur buses are available from Jaipur, Agra, Mathura, Lucknow, Ajmer, etc.
Mount Abu Sanctuary
Mount Abu, one of the oldest mountains in the country, was made a wildlife sanctuary in 1980. A safari through this park will see animals like tigers, langurs, Indian hare, foxes, leopards, etc., and over 200 species of birds as well. One of the specialities here is the lush bamboo trees and a collection of orchids. Gurashikhar, the highest peak of the Aravalli range is within this park. The mountain range flaunts some igneous rocks that have large cavities due to the constant weathering.
The best time for a visit here will be any time during the winter season. Due to the proximity to the Gujarat border, you will find plenty of buses not only from other parts of Rajasthan but also from Ahmedabad, Baroda, Himmatnagar etc.
Machia Biological Park, Jodhpur
Jodhpur is another city in Rajasthan famous for its palaces and forts. It also houses a national park for wildlife that is just off the city. Machi Fort is within the national park. Popular activities here include an elephant ride and bird watching. There are about 20 enclosures with walking paths for the visitors to watch the animals. A viewpoint inside the park has a spectacular view of Kaylana lake. There is also a veterinary hospital within the park to care for the animals.
Though the biological park is close to the city, the nearest bus stop is around 4 km away. You will find buses to Jodhpur from Ahmedabad, Ajmer, Baroda, Surat, Udaipur etc. Local buses are available to reach the nearest bus stop. Rickshaws are available to reach the park.
Rajasthan mainly has dry and hot weather conditions so the best months for visit are during the winter season. Most of the national parks in Rajasthan will have an entry fee with additional charges for the cameras. The jeep rides and safaris will have additional costs. The opening hours of the national parks will be different for the winter season and the remaining months of the year. It usually takes anywhere between 3-5 hrs at most of these national parks. The closing time of these is around 5-5.30 pm.
You may like to read: Jaisalmer Desert Festival