5 Reasons to Visit Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan

Are you fed up from work and hustle of cities disappear? Ranthambore National Park is identified for the best tiger safari in India, and is one of the best places to visit in India. Here you may witnesses exhilarating nature, serene lakes, and roar of tigers! In Ranthambore National Park, take a Safari with the hope of seeing tigers!

This ancient hunting reserve of the Maharajas of Jaipur is located in Sawai Madhopur, 4 hours from the Pink City of Jaipur and 6 hours from the Taj Mahal in Agra. A stop of 1 or 2 nights in Ranthambore combines perfectly with most routes that include the Golden Triangle of India and is a destination especially indicated between November and May.

Ranthambore, in Rajasthan, with an area of almost 400 square km, became a National Park in 1980. It is known for being one of the best places in India to see tigers in their natural habitat. The Royal Bengal Tigers census indicates that there are currently more than 60 specimens in Ranthambore.

The Ranthambore National park is one of the royal national parks located in Rajasthan. It is surrounded by the Chambal and Banas river and is the ideal habitat for many predators and other animals. It is one of the top 10 wildlife sanctuaries in India.

Tigers in Ranthambore

We arrived in Ranthambore at dawn, due to problems we had with our car and our driver, so when we arrived it was midnight and we could not imagine the jungle that surrounded us. We stayed at the hotel. Upon arrival we were advised to rest, and do the Safari (which we had included) at dawn two days later. We had read that at dawn is the most likely time to see tigers, so it seemed fine.

1. Ranthambore Fort

Another attraction of Ranthambore is its temples, forts and hunting lodges. This humanized landscape in the middle of the reserve leaves inconceivable prints such as tigers resting in the middle of a Rajasthani palace.

The next day we decided to visit the Ranthambore Fort, although almost no one had told us about it. We had problems with the driver, because he told us that it was not possible to visit it at sunset since it was closed.

As we were already reluctant in these things (and we think that it is not possible meant is that I want to take you to my cousin's store), we decided to call the Park's information telephone number directly, where our suspicions were confirmed.

The Fort can be visited at sunset, and it is in fact when the visit is most worth it. We then transmitted the message to the driver who without putting the slightest face of "oops, I got caught" said it is OK, but then also took us to the store of his cousin.

Ranthambore fort is a wasted gem. Admission is free, and it is a shame, because perhaps charging a minimum amount could help in its conservation and especially in maintenance and cleaning.

The langurs roam freely throughout the fort, this being one of the attractions for us. The Fort consists of several palaces, mosques and ruined buildings. You can climb to the roof of one of its buildings and watch the sunset in the jungle.

We agree that it was one of the places we liked most in India. It was as if we were watching the Bear Grylls show! The Ranthambore Fort seems taken from a scene in the the Jungle Book movie. After the visit, we returned with our driver, who although we were insistent with the we are not going to buy anything chant, took us to a handloom shop, full of tourists who had also been taken there.

There a very kind gentleman told us that they were not a shop, they were NGOs, and that 80% of what they raised was for the displaced widows when becoming the National Park and then the other 20% to collaborate with the village festivities (yes, yes, he said so), and the rest for another good cause that we no longer remember (what others?).

He told us that not only did they not earn money, but that he and the rest of the employees had to pay to go there to work (he made a face of circumstance), and again that WE WERE NOT TO BUY ANYTHING. As nothing dissuades them, it took us inside equally.

Like the tenth time we said everything to NO, he stopped being nice and ignored us, so we could sneak away. When we arrived at the hotel they informed us that the next day we had the Safari in zone 1.

2. Ranthambore Safari

There are several areas in the park, and we had read that Zone 1 is where tigers are most likely to be observed, so our expectations and our nerves increased.

The Ranthambore Sunrise Safari starts at 6 in the morning, or so they sell you. It supposedly lasts 4 hours, from 6 to 10, but in reality at 6 the jeep or canter (open truck) starts picking up tourists from hotel to hotel (at least you just have to wait at the door), then go to the Park.

This means that in the park it is not until 7 or more (and from there it leaves before 9 since at 10 they have already left all the tourists again, to each owl in their olive tree). In conclusion, the 4 hours of Safari are actually an hour and a half. But well, full of enthusiasm we got on our Canter. Here you may ask, which is better, in Canter or in Jeep?

Each option has its advantages and disadvantages. In jeep you go with fewer people, it has more maneuverability so you can enter roads that the Canter does not, but it is lower (lower visibility) and is a bit more expensive. The canter has the advantage of elevation, so, especially if there is tall grass, it allows you to see more distance.

Once inside the Park, the guide told us about the tiger conservation project in India in several National Parks. We ravaged questions and it was a charm. He also informed us where we could see Flying Fox around the area for free (he told us the tree where they go at sunset), and where to look for other bats in Jaisalmer.

The Ranthambore guide explained that they can locate the tigers thanks to the warning calls that other animals made when they see a tiger, or following footprints on the roads (he told us that by the type of footprint experts can know if it is male or female, and if is going to hunt or has already eaten).

They were very attentive to the sounds of the rest of the jungle animals (and communicated between different jeeps or canters if they heard anything).

3. Tigers in Ranthambore

Suddenly and almost by surprise we saw a tiger. Everyone's heart stopped, but soon there was a stir, a lot of noise, and a stir of cameras. The guide ordered and asked for absolute silence, and we could enjoy one of the best moments of our life. It was a female, a tigress.

At first we saw her about 50 meters away, but she approached the grass sniffing the trees, literally passed by us, just a couple of meters away, peed a tree next to the vehicle, and continued on her way. We followed her for a few minutes while walking along the path smelling all the trees. We confirm with the guide that at dawn it is more likely to see tigers, especially females.

This is because, at dawn, when it is still not hot (in the sunny hours they spend the day lying in a shadow), the females travel their territory marking it (pissing the trees). In addition, they usually follow the roads because the pads of the legs are not damaged, which would be fatal for the hunting of their prey.

During the afternoon Ranthambore safaris, however, they told us that other animals such as deer were seen more frequently. As the guide told us, we had tremendous luck! At first, we saw a tiger! Some will think that they have them there to see them, but it is not so. In our canter came people who had already made several failed attempts.

That is the good thing of seeing animals in their natural habitat, if you are very lucky you see them, or if not, no. We want to make it clear that we SUPPORT RESPONSIBLE TOURISM with ANIMALS. We encourage everyone to go to see any animal in its natural habitat, but not to go to places where animals are caged to take the typical photo.

We do not want to lengthen now with this subject, because we believe that it gives more than enough for a post of our own, and we will talk about it long and hard.

We hope you liked the post and that if you go to Ranthambore you will be as lucky as we were! We say goodbye until the next post, where we will tell you about our adventures in the cities of Rajasthan.

4. Animals in Ranthambore

Among its fauna are also wild boars, hyenas, sloths, leopards, Rhesus macaque, roe deer and langurs, as well as a variety of birds and reptiles. Langurs, of course we saw everywhere and at all hours.

Sambar, Leopard, Wild Boar, Nilgai and Hyena are some of the major animals found in this National park. Tiger Safaris are the most popular in this park. Famous as an iconic destination for seeing wildlife and bird watching, this reserve even has a definite place in luxury train travel plans via Palace on Wheels train.

Ranthambore National Park is home to the illustrious predators staying in imperial Rajasthan. Tigers being the basic fascination of the place actually get the attention of nature lovers and wildlife photographers.

With your Ranthambore Safari, you will be captivated by the observation of such large cats freely itinerant and absorbing in the glow of the desert. With tigers, there are various other wild creatures like sloth bears, wild boars, Sambar and many others that attract tourists.

Best time to visit Ranthambore National Park: March to May

5. Ranthambore Safari Tips

1. In Ranthambore National Park there are ten areas open to the public and numbered successively from 1 to 10. Tigers move freely throughout the reserve and its surroundings, although their territorial patterns tend to repeat the same areas. A male occupies about 50 km2 and in its territory live up to 3 females with their cubs, which occupy about 15 km2 each.

2. The entity responsible for the park maintains a strict entrance control except in special holiday periods when the limit of 10 jeeps (6 people) and 10 canters (20 people) per area is increased to a random number decided by the authorities.

3. In all areas there are populations of Bengal tiger, although in those with open field and meadow (3 and 6) it is easier to observe their movements.

4. As a general rule, you can book a safari 95 days in advance . You should decide in time if you want to visit zones 3 and 4, which are among the most popular. In general, they are also the most frequented thing that according to the occasion can be counterproductive since silence is always a value when you are going to make a foray into nature.

5. Other areas with a good chance of seeing Bengal tigers are Zone 2, 5 and 6. Zone 6 also has the best sighting records.

6. Against the usual belief, the park remains open during the monsoon, although only zones 6-10 are accessible and departures can be canceled due to the torrential rains of this season.

7. If you are going to make more than one jeep trip in the Ranthambore Natural Park, you should choose different habitats, since the park consists of forested, mountainous and prairie areas. In addition to exposing yourself to a diverse landscape, you will enjoy the discovery of routes and the variety of flora and fauna found in each ecosystem.

When visiting any natural park in India you have to be aware that wildlife density is limited. If your goal is to see animals you will probably succeed, but focusing only on one species can be frustrating especially if you spend a single night in the natural park. Emphasize the approach to nature that shows another side of your trip to India and it will surely be a satisfying experience.

Another fundamental element is to understand that human presence modifies the behaviors of fauna and it is normal to chase away the specimens that usually frequent one or the other area. The opposite would indicate that they are getting used to cohabit with humans and therefore that our presence is detrimental to their conservation in the wild.
Kalyan Panja