Nagarhole Overview

Nagarhole National Park, also known as Rajiv Gandhi National Park, is a vibrant and diverse wildlife sanctuary nestled in the Western Ghats of Karnataka, India. Established as a wildlife sanctuary in 1955 and later designated as a national park in 1988, Nagarhole covers an expansive area of approximately 643 square kilometers (about 248 square miles). The park forms a part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is situated between the Mysore and Kodagu (Coorg) districts, lying adjacent to the Bandipur National Park, with which it shares its southern boundary.

The name ‘Nagarhole’ is derived from the Kannada words ‘Naga,’ meaning snake, and ‘Hole,’ meaning streams. True to its name, the park is crisscrossed by serpentine rivers and streams, alongside several waterfalls, which enrich the landscape and provide vital water sources for the park’s flora and fauna. The Kabini River, in particular, forms a natural boundary between Nagarhole and Bandipur, creating a large reservoir that attracts a plethora of wildlife, especially during the summer months.

Nagarhole National Park is renowned for its rich biodiversity, including a healthy population of Bengal tigers, Indian elephants, and leopards. The park’s varied topography, from gentle slopes and shallow valleys to dense forests and open grasslands, supports an impressive array of other wildlife, including the endangered Indian wild dog (dhole), sloth bear, various species of deer, and over 250 species of birds.

Visitors to Nagarhole National Park can explore its natural beauty and wildlife through jeep safaris, which offer the chance to witness the park’s majestic animals in their natural habitat. The park also offers boat safaris on the Kabini River, providing a unique perspective on the aquatic and bird life.

With its rich tapestry of habitats, abundant wildlife, and serene natural beauty, Nagarhole National Park is a crucial conservation area and a must-visit destination for nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts visiting Southern India.

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Park Map
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Engaging Nagarhole

Experience the rich biodiversity of Nagarhole through a guided safari. Traverse various terrains in a jeep, observing wildlife in their natural habitat. Sightings may include tigers, elephants, and a variety of birds. The safari offers an immersive experience into the forest’s heart, highlighting the park’s conservation efforts and the importance of preserving natural ecosystems.

A unique way to explore Nagarhole, the Kabini River boat safari allows visitors to enjoy the park’s aquatic life and birdwatching. Witness elephants bathing on the riverbanks, crocodiles basking in the sun, and various birds in their natural habitat. The serene waters and lush landscapes offer a peaceful retreat into nature.

Visit the nearby elephant camp for a closer look at how these majestic creatures are cared for. Though not a hike, it offers educational insights into elephant behavior, feeding, and conservation efforts. It’s an interactive experience where visitors can learn about the park’s efforts in elephant conservation and management.

Nagarhole National Park Trails

No Traditional Trails

Nagarhole National Park, part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, is primarily known for its wildlife safaris rather than traditional hiking trails.

It’s a place where the dense forests, waterfalls, and serene lakes are explored in the safety of guided tours due to the presence of wild animals like tigers, elephants, and leopards.

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