National Park in Karnataka
Located in Kodagu district and Mysore district in Karnataka state in South India, Nagarhole National Park is a national park in Karnataka and part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve. It is also known as Rajiv Gandhi National Park.
Nagarahole is named after Nagarahole, a winding river which runs eastwards through its inmost. Nagarhole Park was set up in 1955. In 1975, its area was increased to include a greater expanse of forest reserve. The original forest was once an exclusive hunting ground for the erstwhile Maharajas of Mysore. True to its name, quite a few serpentine streams split through the rich tropical forests of the reserve.
Together with Bandipur National Park (875 sq. kms) and Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary (325 sq. kms) to its South East and Wayanad (350 sq. kms) to the South-West, Nagarhole is one of the last existing and finely protected habitats for endangered species like the Elephant and the Tiger. This captivating 247 square-mile park in Karnataka has an astonishing repository of wildlife including large mammals such as tiger, leopard, wild elephant, dhole, and gaur or Indian bison. Other species present are chital spotted deer, muntjac or barking deer, four-horned antelope, mouse deer, wild boar, sloth bear, civet, hyena, otter, mongoose and more.
The serene landscape of gentle slopes, shallow valleys, Dry deciduous forest with leafless trees in summer, grassy swamps with lush green grass all year takes you in owe. The change in terrain throughout the park is refreshing and the river system provides a unique wildlife viewing experience.
Nagarhole National Park is counted among Indias best wildlife parks. It is home to a large elephant and bison population and also hosts a variety of animal species along with approximately 250 species of birds. On its northern edge is the Kabini River and on its southern confines is the Bandipur national park.
A dam on the Kabini River and its picturesque reservoir detach the two national parks. During the dry season, this artificial lake attracts a large number of animals, making it an ideal spot for sighting wildlife.
Nagarhole National park is well connected to adjoining areas of Karnataka. It is linked to the towns of Madikere at 90 kms and Mysore at 96 kms by motorable highways. The journey from both places lasts approximately 2 hours. The nearest well-connected railhead is Mysore, while the nearest international airport is Bangalore (220 km).
However the park remains open throughout the year, the best time to visit park is between October to May and especially April-May. It is suggested not to visit the park in monsoon season. There are different accommodation facilities available here such as rest houses, lodges and resorts catering the variety needs of tourists according to their wish and budgets.