Wildlife sanctuaries

Top 10 Wildlife Sanctuaries in India

Exploring the beauty of wildlife sanctuaries in India has its own appeal. Whether the beasts or other   beings of the jungles, watching them at their natural habitats has always been a delightful as well as speculating experience.

Wildlife sanctuaries in India have been extremely successful in conserving the wildlife of India. They are the ideal place to witness the imposing beauty of the forests and their endless range of wildlife.

Here is a list of top 10 wildlife sanctuaries in India:

1. Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand

Top 10 wildlife sanctuaries in India

Image Credit: Ranna MV

Among all the national parks in India, the Corbett National Park is the oldest and one of the best among the top 10 national parks in India. It was established in 1936 to protect the imposing Bengal Tigers. Located at the foothills of the Himalayan range of Uttarakhand, Corbett National Park is one of the hot spots of the wildlife lovers.

[Check out Tiger safari in Corbett &Rafting in Rishikesh tour]

This park has been named after the popular wildlife story writer Jim Corbett. Beauty and wilderness of this park attracts enthusiasts from various parts of the globe. This wildlife tourist destination of India has also been featured in many wildlife documentaries in order to raise the awareness towards the mighty and stunning Bengal Tigers.

2. Kaziranga National Park, Assam

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Image Credit: Pradnyesh Sawant

Kaziranga National Park is the only natural habitat of the endangered One-Horned Rhinos in India as well as in the world. Located in the Golaghat district of Assam, Kaziranga National Park is one of the largest wildlife sanctuaries to explore the wildlife of Northeast India. It is also a highly visited park among the top 10 national parks in India.

Top 10 National Parks in India

This park also boasts of its number of tigers and other wildlife species. Due to the noteworthy number of tigers, Kaziranga National Park has been declared as Tiger Reserve Forest in 2006. Other wildlife consists Elephants, Wild Buffaloes and Swamp Deer. The park also witnesses a large number of migratory birds during the winters.

3. Bandipur National Park, Karnataka

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The Bandipur National Park is the most popular among all the national parks in South India. It is a natural home to Elephants and several other endangered species. Lush forest of the Deccan Plateau and the Western Ghats makes this park one of the beautiful parks  in India. [Go for Bandipur Wildlife Safari] The park is located 80 km away from Mysore and almost 215 km away from Bangalore.

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4. Bandhavgarh National Park, Madhya Pradesh

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Image Source: Robert Rybnikar

The Bandhavgarh National Park is another enticing name in the list of national parks of India. Located in the Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh, it is one of the largest national parks of Madhya Pradesh. Declared as a national park in 1968, this park has a noteworthy number of Tigers in India. [Go for thrilling Bandhavgarh wildlife and Tiger Trail Safari]

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This park also has a significant number of Leopards and Deer. Among all the attractions of Bandhavgarh National Park, White Tigers are the most spectacular.

5. Kanha National Park, Madhya Pradesh

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Image Credit: Tarique Sani

Kanha National Park is another sought after destination in the list of national parks of Madhya Pradesh. Established in the year 1955, this park has gained a lot of attention due to its efforts in saving the rare and almost extinct species of the Swamp Deer, also known as ‘Barasingha’. It is also one of the well-maintained parks in Asia.

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The other feature of the Kanha National Park is its sunset point called Bamni Dadar. Almost the entire park can be seen from this point. It offers the most eye-catching views of the animals in their natural habitat.

6. Gir National Park and  Sasan Gir Sanctuary, Gujarat

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Image Source: Kishore Bhargava

The Gir National Park and the Sasan Gir Sanctuary of Gujarat are the only wildlife sanctuaries in India that have Asiatic Lions. October-June is the ideal time to visit the place and watch these majestic beasts strolling in their territories.

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The park was established on 18th September 1965 and it is one of the largest and elegantly preserved areas for the Asiatic Lions. Rivers and streams flowing through this national park remain occupied by the dwellers of the park.

7. Keoladeo Ghana National Park – Bharatpur, Rajasthan

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Image Credit: Flip Nomad

Keoladeo Ghana National Park is one of the man-made wetlands in India that has been declared as a National Park. It was formerly called as ‘Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary’. This park hosts a large number of avifauna during the summers and is considered as one of the best national parks to observe exotic migratory birds and other birds of India.Located in Bharatpur district of Rajasthan, this park serves as a primary centre for ornithologists and other zoological studies.

8. Periyar National Park, Kerala

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The Periyar National Park, Kerala is the only national park in South India as well as in India that has an artificial lake flowing through the forests. [Explore wilderness of Kerala]Located on the evergreen hills of the Western Ghats, this wildlife sanctuary is also one of the Tiger Reserve Forests in India.

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While boating in the Periyar Lake, visitors can behold the mighty beasts of this park, quenching their thirsts on the lakesides. Elephants, Deer, Nilgiri Tahrs and Langurs are the other attractions of this park.

9. Pench National Park, Madhya Pradesh

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Image Credit: Tarique Sani

While visiting the Pench National Park in Madhaya Pradesh, the childhood fantasy of most of the visitors will turns into reality. Rudyard Kipling’s ‘The Jungle Book’ is based on the natural surroundings of this national park; this park is also known as ‘Mowgli Land’.

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While Tigers are the most dominant species of this park, Leopards, Sloth Bear, Wild Dog, Barking Deer are some of the other attractions. With more than 170 species of birds, this park has also become one of the best places for birdwatchers.

10. Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan

Ranthambore National Park

The Ranthambore National Park, Rajasthan, is one of the royal national parks in India. It is ranked as one of the top 10 wildlife sanctuaries in India. The majestic Tigers are the pride of this national park. Surrounded by the Banas and Chambal River, this park serves as an ideal habitat for the predators and other animals of this park. Leopard, Nilgai, Wild Boar, Sambar and Hyena are some of the major animals found in this park.  Tiger Safaris are immensely popular among the visitors of Ranthambore National Park.

Bandhavgarh National Park

Image Source: RobRyb

Here are other 10 wildlife sanctuaries and national parks which are as important as above top 10:

1. Manas National Park, Assam

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Considered as one of the youngest names in the list of National Parks in India, the Manas National Park or Manas Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam has a large number of rare and endangered species. Assam Roofed Turtle, Hispid Hare, Golden Langur and Pygmy Hod are some of the most endangered species of this park.

[Check out 5 Best things to do in Assam]

This park boasts of its 55 species of mammals, 380 species of birds and a substantial number of reptiles and amphibians. Asian Elephant, Indian Rhinoceros, Water Buffaloes, Leopard and Assamese Macaques are the other dwellers of this park. It is also one of the popular destinations for river rafting.

2. Nagarhole National Park, Karnataka

Nagarhole National Park is located in Mysore district of Karnataka and is a popular destination for Tiger spotting. It is also known as ‘Rajiv Gandhi National Park’. With quite a large number of Tigers, this park also has a significant number of Indian Bison, Leopard, Sloth Bear and Elephant.

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Forests of this park are extremely rich with several species of high commercial valued trees. Teak, Sandalwood and Silver Oak are the major trees found in this park. Along with the endangered Mugger Crocodile, this park also has more than 250 species of birds, 96 species of Dung Beetles and 60 species of Ants.

[Have a riveting time in these places around Bangalore]

3. Sunderbans National Park

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Image Source: Ashish Gautamm

Sunderbans National Park is one of the largest and oldest in India. Located in the deltaic region of India, this park also shares its boundaries with Bangladesh. Covered with mangrove forests, Sundarbans is the original abode of the stunning Royal Bengal Tigers.

It has the highest number of Bengal Tigers than any other parks in the world. Salt-Water Crocodile can also be found in this park. Sundarbans is extremely rich in avifauna, aqua fauna and reptiles. Some of the other endangered species in this park are Gangetic Dolphin, River Terrapin, Hawks Bill Turtle and Mangrove Horseshoe Crab.

4. Sariska National Park, Rajasthan

Ranthambore National Park

Image Source: Dawn Huczek

Sariska National Park is located in the Alwar district of Rajasthan. Though it was declared as a Wildlife Reserve in 1955, due to the large number of Tigers within this park, it was later declared as one of the Tiger Reserve Forests in 1978.

[Check out some of the best Rajasthan Wildlife tours]

Sariska National Park was the first national park in the world, which was successfully adapted by the majestic Royal Bengal Tigers as their natural habitat. Leopard, Jungle Cat, Stripped Hyena and Golden Jackal are also found in this national park.

5. Dudhwa National Park, Uttar Pradesh

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The Dudhwa National Park, a part of Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, is situated in Uttar Pradesh. History of this park lies back into 1958, when it was declared as a wildlife sanctuary for Swamp Deer. Later, in 1978, it was declared as a Tiger Reserve due to its large number of tigers.

6. Panna National Park, Madhya Pradesh

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Panna National Park is one of the best maintained National Parks of India. Declared as a Tiger Reserve Forest of India in 1994, this park suffered a heavy downfall in the number of Tigers due to poaching.

Among other animals found in this park, Chital, Chinkara, Sambhar and Sloth Bear are found abundantly in this park. Bar-headed Goose and King Vultures are the most commonly found birds among the 200 species of its avifauna.

7. Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, Maharashtra

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Tadoba Andhari Tiger Project, a Tiger Reserve in Chandrapur district of Maharashtra is the oldest and the largest National Park in Maharashtra. Bengal Tigers, Leopards, Stripped Hyena and Jungle Cats are some of the commonly found carnivores of this park. Sloth Bears, Gaur, Nilgai and Spotted Deer are the herbivores.

Forests of this park always bear the green colour due to the geographical topography of the park’s location. Axle-wood, a fire-resistant species of trees can be commonly found in this park. Among the other species, Black Plum, Arjun and Palas are dominant.

8. Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Kerala

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After the Periyar National Park, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the largest wildlife sanctuaries in Kerala. This sanctuary is located on the Western Ghats and shares its border with Tamil Nadu on the Annamalai Hills. Among the 34 species of mammals found in this sanctuary, Panthers, Spotted Deer, Indian Elephant, Tiger and Nilgiri Tahr are the most spectacular.

It is also the dwelling of Mugger Crocodiles and more than 240 species of exotic birds. The presence of Thoovanam Waterfalls within the forests has made this sanctuary, one of the popular trekking and camping destinations in Kerala.

9. The Great Himalayan National Park, Himachal Pradesh

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The Great Himalayan National Park lies among the lush coniferous forests of and the snow-capped mountain peaks Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. It is one of the high altitude national parks in India. While the location of this park is itself a stunning feature, the emerald meadows in some portions of the park makes it one of the stunning parks in India.

[Check out The Great Himalayan National Park Expedition]

Snow Leopard, Himalayan Brown Bear, Blue Sheep, Musk Deer and Himalayan Thar are the commonly found animals in this park. It also houses 181 species of birds, and many more species of reptiles, annelids, amphibians and insects.

10. Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka

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Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary is the second largest wildlife sanctuary in Karnataka. Located on the banks of the Kali River, it is one of the highly visited wildlife sanctuaries in India. Black Panther, Flying Squirrel, Tiger, Elephant and Leopard can be easily spotted in this sanctuary. [Check out Dandeli Adventure] Among the wide range of amphibians, Crocodiles are the major attraction of this sanctuary. It is also an ideal place for river rafting, trekking, Bird watching, Tiger and Crocodile spotting.

Note: We have included National Parks in this list since there is a fine difference between a wildlife sanctuary and a national park.

 

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