Birding in Bandhavgarh and Panna

09 Nights/10 Days
Destinations : New Delhi – Jabalpur – Bandhavgarh – Panna – Khajuraho – New Delhi – fly back

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Tour Overview - Birding in Bandhavgarh and Panna

Central India is rightfully called the Land of the Tiger. Emerald Forests and famous hunting reserves for the Maharajas who ruled these lands, this area has to this day been preserved for shooting wildlife – with cameras.

Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve and Panna National Park are almost isolated park, which have few migration routes for dispersed male Tigers looking to find a home for themselves, hence, along with suitable habitat and prey-base, it has retains a high density of tigers. Around 100 or so wild tigers are in this area. It is often said that Bandhavgarh is the best place to see tigers in the wild in the world.

These are also amazing birding destinations: Bandhavgarh & Panna have a good population and high visibility of birds – over 250 species are recorded here. Vultures though in decline, are surviving at these Parks : Indian Vulture, White Rumped Vulture which roost along the cliffs. A chance to see other residents and winter migrants such as the Egyptian Vulture and Red-headed Vulture along with the Cinerous Vulture(winter and Himalayan Griffon(winter). The Indian Paradise Flycatcher, Golden Oriole, Indian Pitta, Malabar Pied Hornbill, Scarlet Minivet, Crested Hawk Eagle as well as the sight of the not so common White-capped Bunting(winter).

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Detailed Itinerary - Birding in Bandhavgarh and Panna

Day 1 : Arrive New Delhi (by flight)

Meet and greet on arrival at New Delhi airport by our representative. He will transfer you to the hotel, assist you in checking in at the hotel, handover documents and explain all travel arrangements.

Overnight stay at the Hotel in Delhi.

Day 2 : New Delhi – Jabalpur – Bandhavgarh ( 200 km / 4 hrs drive + flight )

Early morning checkout from the hotel in Delhi, and proceed to the airport for your flight. After a quick lunch, go for the Evening Jeep Safari.

Your initiation of the jungle begins in the afternoon, as you explore the habitat of Bandhavgarh -in search of the birds of Peninsular India, along with the Big cat.

Day 3 : In Bandhavgarh National Park

Morning and evening safaris in the park.

Bandhavgarh: The national park is mainly known for the density of its tiger population. This is the place where the famous White Tigers of Rewa were discovered. The other wild attractions in the park include Leopards, Blue Bulls, Indian Gaur (Bison) Chausingha (Four Horned Antelopes), Spotted Deers, Sambar Deer, Wild Boar, Sloth Bears Fox, Jackals, Wild Dogs, etc. There are at least 22 mammal species and about 250 bird species in the Park. The other animals found in Bandhavgarh are Ratel, Porcupine, Small Indian Civet, Palm Squirrel, Lesser Bandicoot rat, the Jungle Cat, and the shy Hyenas. The reptile population in the park includes Cobras, Kraits, Vipers, Ratsnakes, Pythons, Monitor Lizards and turtles. The two-primate species – the rhesus macaque and the Hanuman langur – inhabit Bandhavgarh.

Birding opportunities await, as the cliffs and open areas are home to several species of Vulture including Indian Vulture, White-rumped Vulture, Egyptian Vulture, Red-headed Vulture and Himalayan Griffon(Winter) soar the skies or perch on dead trees around.

Lunch, Dinner and overnight stay at the lodge.

Day 4 : In Bandhavgarh National Park

Morning and evening safaris in the park.

Bandhavgarh has been a center of human activity and settlement for over 2000 years, and there are references to it in the ancient books, the Narad-Panch Ratra and the Shiva Purana.

The oldest sign of habitation in the park are caves dug into the sandstone to the north of the fort. Several contain Brahmi inscriptions dating from the 1st century B.C. Various dynasties have ruled the fort, for example, the Maghas from the 1st century A.D., the Vakatakas from the 3rd century A.D., From that time onwards Bandhavgarh was ruled by a succession of dynasties including the Chandela Kings. It became more and more deserted until the forest overran the area and it became the royal hunting reserve. This helped to preserve the forest and its wildlife, although the Maharajas made full use of their rights. At Independence, Bandhavgarh remained the private property of the Maharaja until he gave it to the state for the formation of the National Park in 1968. After the park was created poaching and hunting was brought under control and the number of animals rose dramatically. The Tigers in particular prospered and the 1986 extension provided much needed forest to accommodate them.

Bird species such as Emerald Dove, Asian Paradise Flycatcher, Black-naped Monarch, Lesser Goldenback Woodpecker and Greater Racquet-tailed Drongo can be found in the Sal and Bamboo forests of Bandhavgarh.

Lunch, Dinner and overnight stay at the lodge.

Day 5 : In Bandhavgarh National Park

Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner at the lodge. Morning and evening safaris in the park. Overnight at the lodge.

Day 6 : Bandhavgarh – Panna ( by road 240 km / 5 hrs drive )

Morning safari at Bandhavgarh. After early lunch at the lodge, checkout drive to Panna national park 240 kms/5 hrs drive. On arrival check into the lodge. Lunch at Panna national park. Panna Tiger Reserve, known for its tigers and leopards, as well as its huge biodiversity.

Day 7 : At Panna National Park

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner at the Lodge. Morning & Evening Jeep drive in the park. Overnight In the resort.

Panna is situated in the Vindhya Hill range and spreads over the Panna and Chhatarpur districts in the northern part of Madhya Pradesh. Panna National Park is the most important protected area in the north-central highlands of India.
The Parks is home to rare birdlife, such as Painted Sandgrouse, Chestnut-headed Sandgrouse, Crested Bunting, Bay-backed Shrike and Peregrine Falcon. 06 out of 09 Vulture species of India can be seen here in Winter.

Panna National Park is located along the banks of the Ken River. The Park, with its deep ravines, cascading waterfalls and thick teak forests, is predominantly a plateau, with sprawling flatlands punctuated by hills, deep valleys and gorges. The terrain is largely rocky and uneven. There are mixed dry deciduous forests with short grasses and open woods. Panna is home of majestic tiger, including leopard, wolf, hyena, jackal and sloth bear. The reserve is also well known for sightings of Blue Bull, Four Horned Antelope, Indian Gazelle, Vultures and Crocs.

Day 8 : At Panna National Park

Morning or evening a boat ride at Ken river inside Panna National Park – India’s cleanest river to find a Mugger Crocodile. A separate sanctuary for Gharial has been set up as well at the Ken, however, chances of sighting remain minimal. The park can probably boast of the highest density of the Paradise Fly-Catchers. This rich avian and faunal life combined with its picturesque scenery make a visit to the Park a memorable.

Great chances to see some Migratory ducks such as Ruddy Shelduck and Bar-headed goose with chances of 04 species of Kingfisher: Stork-billed Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, White-throated Kingfisher, and Common Kingfisher.

Take a jeep safari in the park in the morning or evening, depending on the Naturalist’s call.

Lunch and Dinner with an overnight stay at the lodge.

Day 9 : Panna to Khajuraho – New Delhi ( by road 50 km / 1 hr 15 min away + flight 4 hrs 15 min )

Early morning, take an unforgettable walk with a local tribe of the area: The Pardhis. Pardhis are a nomadic community that since the time of the Mughal emperors, have been hired to help in shikar (hunting), whether it was for sport for the British or for the royal kitchens of the ‘zameendars’ (landowners). However, due to combined efforts of the Forest Department and NGO’s, a large part of the population has given up hunting. Thus, ‘Walk with the Pardhis’, an initiative undertaken by an NGO in association with the Forest Department and lodges nearby, Panna Tiger Reserve not only encourages this reformation but also aims at providing an alternative source of livelihood for the community members while utilizing their already existing skill sets.

The crux of the venture is to go on an experiential walk in the wilderness with the people of the forest wherein, you will be privy to the age-old knowledge of the Pardhi community members along with some spectacular stories from the forest. This initiative is also bound to help you reconnect with the wilderness, and learn about their tried and tested tracking skills.

After Breakfast, checkout from the lodge at 1100hrs and drive to Khajuraho City – to catch your flight to New Delhi at 1400hrs – arrive at New Delhi at 1815hrs.

We’ll transfer you to your hotel in New Delhi. Overnight stay at Delhi Hotel.

Day 10 : New Delhi onwards

Transfer to the airport the next day, to catch the onward flight to your next destination or home. Hopefully, the wilderness of India have influenced you in some way.

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