Bandhavgarh- The Abode of the Majestic Tigers
Set amongst the Vindhya hills of Madhya Pradesh with an area of 437sq km it contains a wide variety of habitats. It is located about 195km off Jabalpur and home to the famous Royal Bengal Tiger. It consists of a core area of 105 sq km and a buffer area of 400 sq km of topography that varies between open meadows, steep ridges and craggy uneven forests. The density of Tiger population is known highest here. This is also called the White Tiger Country, which was found in the old areas of Rewa.
Before it was declared as a national park in 1968, it had been maintained as a game reserve of the Maharaja of Rewa. It was considered a good omen to shoot 109 Tigers. The park has been divided into 3 major zones named as Tala, Mangdi and Bamera. Bandhavgarh is a typically moist, deciduous forest and consists of a mixed variety of vegetation.
Most of the area is covered with rich Sal (Shorea Robusta) forests while the upper terrain it is a mix of Sal, Saj, Dhobin and Saja. The flora ranges from tall grasslands and bamboo stretches. Around 300 species of fauna are to be found in the core and buffer area.
There are more than 22 species of mammals and 250 species of birds. The common langurs and rhesus macaques form the primate group. The main wild beasts are tigers, leopards, sloth bear, gaurs, nilgai, chinkaras and wild boar. Apart from these, the park boasts of variety of species of birds like Grey hornbill, common teals, red jungle fowl etc.
The fort is located within the park and still belongs to Maharaja of Rewa. It is believed to be 2000 years old and built at a height of 800m. The point shesh saaiya named after 35m long statue of Lord Vishnu carved in 10th century from whose feet the Charanganga is said to flow offering a panoramic view. Vultures wheel around the cliff attract Craig martins and blue rock thrushes. A small population of blackbucks can also be spotted.
Jeep safaris and Elephant safaris are the best ways to view Bandhavgarh at its best.
Excursions in Bandhavgarh
Apart from wildlife, Bandhavgarh is equally famous for the archaeological remains of the Kalchuri period, which depicts the immense rich heritage.
How to Reach
The nearest aerodromes are Khajuraho (250 km) and Jabalpur (150 km).
Bandhavgarh is well-connected from nearby towns and cities like Jabalpur, Umaria, Khajuraho and Satna.
The nearest railway stations are Umaria 35 km and Katni 100 km.