Kanha, popularly known as the 'Land of Tiger,' is situated in the Mandla and Balaghat districts of Madhya Pradesh. The picturesque Kanha National Park inspired famous poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling's unforgettable classic 'The Jungle Book.' And, if one can transcend into time, a barefooted Mowgli would perhaps come padding along the dusty trail. The enchanting beauty of the park has not faded over time, and it still captivates the attention of the tourists. Kanha National Park unlike other national parks in India offers some thrilling activities such as trekking, hiking, and more.
One of the first Tiger Reserves to work for Project Tiger, Kanha National Park was established as a sanctuary in 1933, declared a National Park in 1955, and eventually, in 1973 was made a Tiger Reserve. It is believed that Kanha got its name from the soil texture found there, locally called Kanhar. There are around 104 national parks in India but the popularity Kanha has is unbeatable.
Ruled by the Gondwana dynasty in the past, this land was home to the tribes of Gond and Baiga. These tribes reside around the park, painting the perfect example of how wildlife and human life can co-exist in harmony. They understand the jungle and its importance to the environment and themselves, too, helping reduce any man-animal conflict one could think of.
Reintroducing the Hard Ground Barasingha was one such achievement. Also called the "Jewel of Kanha," these Barasinghas were put under special enclosures to encourage breeding and avoid extinction. The result was quite evident when their population skyrocketed. From merely 66 in number, Kanha was now home to 600-700 Barasinghas. The department's efforts paid off when the Government of India awarded Kanha the best tourism-friendly national park.
Being in the tribal belt of South-eastern Madhya Pradesh, it has retained its rich old forest tracts, which form corridors for animals, especially migrating tigers, to other forests in Madhya Pradesh such as Pench as well as sanctuaries such as Achanakmar in Chattisgarh. Without these corridors, the medium to the long-term survival of tigers hangs in the balance. A true safari experience is not limited to wildlife sightings. An exceptional safari experience is a combination of jungle safari plus a stay. Kanha Earth Lodge, Bagh Villas Jungle Camp & Spa, Kanha Jungle Camp, Kanha Jungle Lodge, and Flame of the Forest Safari Lodge are a few best luxury wildlife resorts near Kanha National Park that are committed to providing an amazing safari experience.
Types of Safaries
Big 5 Animals
Places to Visit
Bhoramdeo Temple is a complex of Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva in Bhoramdeo, in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh.
Park ticket bookings should be done 120 days in advance since the park tickets are limited.
It is mandatory to carry ID cards for safaris. The ID needs to be the same as the one with which you booked your safari.
Carry binoculars, a camera, and a bird book for identifying birds and making your trip more fruitful.
Wear comfortable walking shoes. Do check your shoes every time before wearing them to avoid scorpions and other creatures.
Carry proper woollens in winters and an effective sunscreen in summers.
Carry Hats/Caps and personal medicines (if any).
Wear muted forest colours like earthy greens or beiges and avoid perfumes and deodorants.
The afternoon shift of Jeep Safari remains close for visitors every Wednesday.
Both the morning and afternoon shift remains closed on Holi and Diwali festival.
Frequently Asked Questions
Like all the other parks of Madhya Pradesh, Kanha National Park remains open for visitors from 1st October until 30th June. Parks in central India are also closed for Diwali and Holi. Visiting in October will get you some beautiful sightings of the jungle and wildlife. You get the treat of enjoying nature at its best since post-monsoon, the park becomes more attractive and dense with lush greenery. Also, it is an excellent time to indulge in birds & butterflies.
Wintery feels of the jungle are something that everyone should experience at least once in a lifetime. Sightings are good, and it is an appropriate time for all the birders to visit the park since numerous migratory birds inhabit the park during winters. Winter days end beautifully around a bonfire with steaming Indian snacks from a clay oven.
Though summer is hot, it has its charm. For hard-core tiger lovers, it is one of the most appropriate times to visit the park. The frequency of animal sightings becomes higher during summer. Different wildlife can be sighted near the ponds where they come to quench their thirst. Evenings in lodges can be spent cooling off in the swimming pool.
Elephant Safari: It is a joy ride of one hour organized only in the morning time. It takes place in Kanha and Kisli zone only. This Safari cannot be pre-booked in advance. You only get to know about the availability of elephants on the day of the Safari itself. It is compulsory to book the exclusive jeep safari tickets for Kanha or Kisli zone to experience this. In addition to the jeep safari tickets, you are charged an extra amount for the elephant safari.
Visit Kanha Museum: A beautiful museum that holds valuable work of the natural history of Kanha.
Night Safari: It is also a recently introduced activity in the park. You can go on a night safari in the Khatia buffer zone. Only headlights of the Safari are allowed to stay on, rest no other flashlight or any different light is permitted so that wildlife is not disturbed. The duration of the Safari is 2 hours. These tickets are not available online. They have to be bought at the park gate itself. For a hassle-free safari, you can ask your lodge to book the ticket for you.
Nature Trail: Although Safari remains the prime attraction of the jungle, Nature Trails are for those who wish to explore nature closely on foot and for those who find joy in every little wonder of the wilderness. Accompanied by a trained naturalist, this is a fantastic way to know about flora, butterflies, insects, birds, and small mammals that come across your walk.
This walk takes place in the Khatia zone of the park, and the duration is appx. 2 hours. You need to drive to Khatia gate for this walk and obtain a permit for the same. Better suited is to do a nature walk around Kanha Earth Lodge; trails begin at your doorstep as it is set in a forest.
Though Nagpur is an international airport and has well-connected flights worldwide, Jabalpur is a better option for people flying down from Delhi. Nagpur is a good option for people boarding a flight from Mumbai & Bangalore, while Raipur is convenient for people boarding a flight from Kolkata.
Spice Jet, Air India, and Jet Airways offer daily flights from Delhi and Mumbai to Jabalpur, Nagpur, and Raipur. Tickets can be booked on individual airline sites.