Bandipur National Park, Karnataka – place to go in India
Bandipur National Park is regarded as one of the most beautiful and the better-managed national parks of India. Located amidst the picturesque surroundings of the towering Western Ghat Mountains on the Mysore-Ooty highway in Karnataka, Bandipur National Park covers an area of about 874.2 sq km.
Together with Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary in Tamil Nadu, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala and Nagarhole National Park in the North, it creates the India’s biggest biosphere reserve popularly known as the ‘Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve’. The Bandipur National Park occupies a special place in India’s efforts towards Eco-conservation.
Bandipur National Park established in 1974 as a tiger reserve under Project Tiger, is a national park located in the south Indian state of Karnataka. It was once a private hunting reserve for the Maharaja of the Kingdom of Mysore. Bandipur is known for its wildlife and has many types of biomes, but dry deciduous forest is dominant.
Bandipur also has a sizable number of Tigers. Other natural inhabitants of this lovely forest are gaur (a type of bull), sambhar, chital, mouse deer, four-horned antelope, wild dogs, wild boar, jackal, sloth bear, panther, malabar squirrel, porcupines and the black-knapped hare. Birds like jungle fowl and green pigeon are also found here.
How to Get There
Bandipur National Park is easily accessible by road, rail and air from Mysore which is the near-est city.
Road: Bandipur is located at a distance of 80 kms from Mysore and 220 kms from Bangalore and 70 kms from Ooty. Bandipur is well connected by road and you could get here either by the State Transport buses, private buses, all stop at the Forest Reception office. It takes 2 hours from Mysore by a taxi.
Rail: The Mysore railway station located at a distance of 80 kms is the major railway station closest to Bandipur. The Nanjungud railway station which is 55 kms from Bandipur is the nearest railway station.
Air: The closest airport- Mysore – 70 kms from Bandipur. Bangalore-International airport is 260kms to Bandipur.
The highest point in the park is on a hill called Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta, where there is a Hindu temple at the summit. Bandipur has typical tropical climate with distinct wet and dry seasons. The dry and hot period usually begins in early March and can last till the arrival of the monsoon rains in June.